The great Zotero migration - can I have my tags AND my formatted notes?
September 2, 2013 7:07 AM   Subscribe

I am trying to migrate my Mendeley library to Zotero (around 500 citations). From what I can tell, I need to either export the data as an RIS file or as a BibTex file and then import that file to Zotero. I've tested this and both formats work -- but there is a catch. The RIS format preserves the note formatting (hard returns) very nicely, but does not migrate the tags. The .bib file will migrate the tags, but all of my notes (some of them are lengthy) wind in one line with no breaks.

I think the solution to this involves using my Mendeley tags to sort items into folders, and export RIS files a folder at a time and re-tag them on import to Mendeley. BUT -- I have multiple tags on most things. Hmmm. Is my best bet just to export in folders based on the first tag -- and then re-add the other tags manually? Or is there some brilliant option someone else has already figured out. Thanks!
posted by pantarei70 to Computers & Internet (3 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
You could try adding unicode line breaks to your notes in Mendeley, but not sure if that will work. May I ask why you're switching?
posted by Mr. Gunn at 10:27 AM on September 2, 2013

I take it you're using Windows? The .bib file is in UNIX format, which means it has only line feeds (LF) to indicate line breaks. That's why it appears to you as though everything is on one line.

That's easy enough to fix with unix2dos.
posted by rhombus at 10:30 AM on September 2, 2013

Response by poster: I'm using a mac -- but I don't really think that's an issue. I may try manually editing the .bib file to place some line feeds to see if that helps. Thanks for the unix2dos link -- I have a Windows machine I have access to if need be.

I'm migrating mostly because of 1) Zotero now has a stand-alone product instead of just operating through FireFox and 2) Mendeley was acquired by Elsevier in the spring, which has a lot of people in academic land a little worried.

BUT....mostly I'm happy with Mendeley so I might just do a bit more research before proceeding.

Thanks for the help!
posted by pantarei70 at 11:03 AM on September 5, 2013

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