Entry editor in biblatex mode

So I am still digging myself into JabRef and before I start to build a larger database I want to know exactly what I am doing. I would like to use the newer biblatex. In a newly created database, the entry editor shows journal and journaltitle as well as year and date. In an older thread it was said the bibtex field “journal” should be in the Other fields tab. (Backwards compatibility to Bibtex gone?)

Has this behaviour changed? Which field am I supposed to use or should I use both? Of course I’d like the fields I don’t have to use to not be in the way.

Edit: Okay, this is really tricky for me: So with “Customize entry types” I can change the required field “journal/journaltitle” to “journaltitle” and the superfluous field disapperas in the entry editor. What is the rationale behind including both fields by default (backwards compatibility to bibtex?)?

How am I supposed to use the newer “date” field? Just put in the year as I don’t need additional information for references? I am aware that these are not strictly JabRef-related questions, but any hints or links to introductions are really appreciated! The material I can find is mostly outdated, e.g. the useful German manual (https://manuals.jabref.org/JabRef-UserManual_de.pdf).


thanks for using JabRef!
These fields are both shown because for backwards compatibility with bibtex. These fields are there because both are valid and are just alias fields. It doesn’t matter where you put your content, at least if you are using biber,
The backwards compatibility is the fact that some journals may still require bibtex, but your content is biblatex and the field year and journal are then usually the only ones who need to be filled (as the other fields are mostly the same). Therefore your library can be still biblatex but just the entries where needed have the value.

A complete description of all avaiable entry types and their fields and possible input values are described in the biblatex manual which you can find here in Englisch, German and French:
https://www.ctan.org/pkg/biblatex (Chapter 2 in the package documentation)

Regarding the date field:
Simple ISO8601 format: YYYY-DD-MM or just year.

Theoretically more complex dates are possible, but it’s currently not possible to enter them directly (you have to enter them in the source tab)


Thanks for elaborating on this, I really appreciate it! Another alias field I noticed is address (Bibtex) vs location (Biblatex). Maybe a quick guide on the help site on JabRef and Biblatex and its improvements/changes would be helpful for new users?

I learned I can adjust the available fields of each entry type to my needs. However, this customizing dialogue is slightly confusing to me: After creating a new database, the “optional fields 2” list for any given entry type is empty but when I click on default on the left, some fields are then transferred to this list. So there seem to be two “default options”? Is there also a rationale behind this?


the reason behind this is mostly historical and because it is listed in the biblatex standard as "optional (not required) fields for an entry type.

Maybe @koppor cann tell you more about this.

Otherwise feel free to expand the help pages. Just click “Edit this page” at the bottom and you can start expanding it. It would be really nice if you could do that.
We are all working in our free time on JabRef and focus more on the code side then on the documentation.

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