Default port 6050 blocked

Many years (decades?) ago I ran JabRef and used it to create large databases. I’m running linux Devuan and have JabRef 3.8.2+ds-17 installled. When I do $ jabref I find that poirt 6050 already in use. $ lsof -i:6050 tells me it is used by java PID 20229. I do $ kill -9 20229. Now The $ lsof -i | grep java command returns nothing, which I take to mean that 6050 is free to use. When I now do $ jabref I get
$ jabref
17:24:01.710 [AWT-EventQueue-0] WARN net.sf.jabref.JabRefGUI -
There seem to be problems with OpenJDK and the default GTK
Look&Feel. Using Metal L&F instead. Change to another L&F with


$ ps aux | grep jabref 
haines   23212  0.0  0.0   6332  2056 pts/22   S+   17:50   0:00 grep jabref

shows it is not running. But
$ ps aux | grep java
haines 23448 0.0 0.0 6332 1960 pts/22 S+ 17:51 0:00 grep java

shows me that java is running.

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JabRef 3.8.2 is very much outdated and no longer supported.
The latest released version is 5.10
You can download it from

Yes, when I upgraded my OS, for some reason JabRef was not updated.
I now try to install 5.10 but it failed. The reason:

Setting up jabref (5.10.60000) …
xdg-desktop-menu: No writable system menu directory found.
dpkg: error processing package jabref (–configure):
installed jabref package post-installation script subprocess
returned error exit status 3

I do not have a system menu because I do not run any desktop, but only
a window manager. Nevertheless, there are *.desktop files in
/usr/local/share/applications/. I would think jabref configuration
would write a jabref.desktop file to that directory and be satisfied.
But it didn’t.

There must be a way to work around this. I find it strange that jabref
depends on a desktop menu.

I copied an old fossil jabref.desktop file over to
/usr/local/share/applications, but installation still fails

xdg-desktop-menu: No writable system menu directory found.

It did not help to create writable ~/.menu directory.

Hi you could try the portable version. Jabref just tries to create a desktop shortcut.

Yes, the porttable version works. I can start JaaRef. Unforunately
when I try to symlink the esxecutable it fails to find java. But works
if I simply run the executable.

Thanks for the suggestion.

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Instead of bin/JabRef, you could try to symlink /lib/runtime/bin/JabRef. Maybe that one works?