JabRef 5.0 Beta release

We are proud to announce the release of the first beta of JabRef 5.0 just in time for Christmas! :rocket: :christmas_tree:

Since the alpha release of Jabref 5.0 we continued fixing bugs and addressed many usability issues.

In total, more than 40 major bugs have been fixed so that JabRef is now more stable and performs better than the previously released alpha. As usually, the Changelog contains a detailed list of all changes.

Our Linux users will surely be happy that we finally offer deb and rpm packages as well as a portable edition, and that we now completly support the X11 primary selection (typically used by the middle mouse key).

After feedback on the new integrated preview next to the entry editor on the alpha version, we added an an option to show the preview as an extra tab in the entry editor (instead of in a split view).

One major feature of the upcoming 5.0 release is the “Dark Theme” which has been improved since the alpha 5.0. The “Dark Theme” can be enabled in the preferences under the tab “Appearance”.!

We also would like to thank all of our various contributors, translators, testers and donors! This helps us a lot!


With the release of the 5.0-beta we switched to a new native Java build system which allows us to bundle a custom Java runtime together with JabRef. This means that problems with other installed or outdated java versions on the system are a problem of the past. This also means it’s no longer possible to start JabRef directly from the jar.
For the installation we now offer self-containing .deb and .rpm files for Linux users and in addtion to the usual installer for Windows. We also offer a portable zip version of JabRef which also includes all necessary files to run JabRef. No installed Java version required.

Known Issues

Currently the following major issues are known:

  • There is a problem loading other citation styles than the default “Preview”. #5622
  • The Medline fetcher is not working. #5645
  • On Windows, a command line windows is displayed in the background. #5474

Please report any other issues that you encounter in our bug tracker (in case it was not already reported before).

Get It

You can get it from FOSShub.

You like it? Foster JabRef development with Knowledge or Money.

1 Like

this looks good! i tried it on arch linux with java13, recipie here: https://aur.archlinux.org/packages/jabref-git/, with newest libreoffice.

on a small screen the spacing of the table feels to large, more lines were displayed before with version 4.x.

@soloturn You can also directly use a deb or rpm file from here:

JabRef now includes a custom version of the jdk and all other dependencies.

Regarding the layout: You can still change the font size

Great work done @Siedlerchr! Since its a first beta version, tests may need to be curried out to fix some little bugs that may exist. Is there any way I can get involved in this :eyes:


sure, just check out the open issues:

1 Like