FAQ - Overview#


What if I have forgotten my password?#

Just go to the password reminder page and enter your username and the e-mail address you used for registering at BibSonomy. After confirming the security code (Captcha) we will send you an e-mail with a temporary password with which you can log in and change your password.

How can I delete my BibSonomy account?#

To delete your account, please follow these steps:

  • Log in on the BibSonomy homepage.
  • Click the settings link in the top right corner of the page.
  • The delete my account paragraph allows you to delete your user account.

Importing and exporting data#

Is it possible to import my data from del.icio.us?#

Yes, it is possible via the settings page where you can find the imports tab. There you can enter your username and password and all your del.icio.us bookmarks will be imported.

Is it possible to import my Firefox bookmarks?#

Yes, it is possible via the settings page where you can find the imports tab.

Is it possible to import my local BibTeX files?#

Yes, it is possible via the postPublication page where you can upload a file. Please choose the right character encoding and select who may view the BibTeX items. If a BibTeX entry has a field tag = "tagA tagB tagC" or keywords = "tagA tagB tagC", then these tags are imported and show up on the summary page which appears after uploading the file. There you can enter a set of tags for every imported BibTeX entry. The system assigns the tag imported to every BibTeX entry without a tag.

If the tags in your BibTeX file are not separated by whitespace (but by comma, e.g.) you can change this by clicking on the options link below the upload form on the postPublication page.

Can I export my basket BibTeX entries without logging in?#

The basket function was not intended to be public. You can have a similar public function by adding the tag "basket" to posts and clicking on this tag. To export your BibTeX entries to your basket, you can use wget. There's a simple workaround to access the basket: just give wget the Cookie file of your browser, e.g.:

wget --load-cookies=/home/rja/.mozilla/firefox/xyz1234.default/cookies.txt /bib/basket

and then you get all your publications in your basket.

Can I upload my papers as pdf, ppt, pps or doc and make them available for public usage?#

Unfortunately, BibSonomy does not support this due to privacy concerns. We only support a private copy which can be shared within a group.

A way to work around this is the following: you upload your pdf etc. on your own server and then add a link from the publication to the pdf by using the url field.

User Interface#

For more information about the user interface go here.

Groups and privacy#

Is it possible to have private posts?#

Yes, just select private in the viewable for dropdown box when you post a bookmark or a publication . Private posts will only be visible to the user who posted them.

You can find further information on visibility here.

Is it possible to have a group of users sharing public and private resources?#

Yes. Just create a user account with the desired group name and write an e-mail to webmaster@BibSonomy.org . We will then make this user the group admin.

There are two aspects of groups:

  • Seeing everything posted by group members:Everything you post with public visibility will then be visible under all groups you belong to. This can be used to publicly present a group of users under a common name (which can be found under the groups link).
  • Restricting access to group members:You can choose to post content with visibility restricted to members of a certain group. If you select a group when posting, only members of that particular group will be able to see that content.

You can find further information on visibility here.

What do you mean by "friends"?#

Each user can state that some other users are his friends on the friends page. Links can be posted so that they are visible for the friends of the posting user only.

You can find further information on visibility here.

Why are my private posts not visible on some pages?#

Except on user or group specific pages, only public posts are visible on all pages.

You can find further information on visibility here.

Can I make posts available for multiple groups?#

No. For performance reasons, each post belongs to exactly one group (public, private, friends being special groups, too). For a workaround, refer to the next question.

You can find further information on visibility here.

Will the posts be lost for a group if the user leaves?#

Posts made by a user are lost if he or she decides to cancel his or her account. In order to prevent the loss of group knowledge, posts can be automatically copied to one or more groups which the posting user is a member of by attaching the special tag for:groupname to a post. This causes the post to be copied automatically to the respective group.

Can I post to a particular group by default?#

Yes, but you'll have to hack the Javascript in the post button for this. Just append +'&group=mygroup' (where mygroup is the group you want to use) to the Javascript code of the button.

Handling publications#

Is it possible to upload a BibTeX snippet from a web site?#

Add this button to the links toolbar of your browser and go to the web site of interest. Then mark the BibTeX source code on the web site and upload the snippet by clicking the button. You will be redirected to the usual post page but the system has parsed the snippet and filled out the form.

We have also implemented some scrapers which enable you to use the post publication button on pages without explicit BibTeX source code. For an overview on supported services have a look at the scraper info page.

Is there a way to get a nicely formatted output for my publication?#

Just put /publ after the hostname on any page, which shows resources, for example: /publ/tag/web. There are several other layouts available, just click on the more button on the top of each page to access them.

What if I post the same BibTeX entry twice?#

If you post exactly the same BibTeX entry twice, the duplicate will be detected and you will be offered a form for merging the two. Minor changes outside the entry type, title, author, editor, booktitle, journal, key and year fields will not be considered.

For the popular page and similar purposes, there is a weaker form of duplicate detection that tries to find as many similar publications as possible, so that the social effect of having similar interests can be exploited. For this kind of duplicate detection, only author, title and year are considered in a normalized form (e.g. excluding spaces, non-word characters and punctuation).

Can I download all of my publications at once?#

A user who is logged in can use the BibTeX button at the top of the page to download the currently selected number of his BibTeX entries as one file. To get all (e.g., 1000) entries just append '?items=1000' at the end of the current URL.


Official dumps of the BibSonomy database for research purposes are available from Knowledge and Data Engineering Group Kassel.

Jabref integration#

How can I change the keyword delimiter within JabRef?#

JabRef allows the specification of a delimiting character for the keywords (or tags) entered into the keywords-field. You can change this setting at:

Options > Preferences > Groups

There you find a textbox labeled When adding/removing keywords, separate them by, into which you can insert your desired delimiter. Please note that within BibSonomy, no spaces are allowed in keywords. This is why the following steps are applied when uploading a post to BibSonomy:

  1. Split the contents of the keywords-field based on the specified JabRef keyword delimiter.
  2. From each resulting part, remove space and other whitespace characters.

In general, we recommend to use a space character as separator.

When uploading posts to via JabRef to BibSonomy, all my keywords are concatenated to a single tag. What am I doing wrong?#

You may have specified a wrong delimiting character; see the previous question for more details.

Categories: Advanced, Basic, External Systems, Overview, Posting, Search, Social Interaction