Mendeley .bib import with linked files

I have decided to move from Mendeley to JabRef since they decided to discontinue the desktop client.

My Mendeley database contains several 1000nd linked pdf entries, which I would like to migrate into JabRef. The problem I ran into is that the linked files are correctly represented in the .bib file. Mendeley exports the following:

file = {:C$\backslash$:/Users/XXXXXX/AppData/Local/Mendeley Ltd./Mendeley Desktop/Downloaded/Brown - 2017 - Physical test methods for elastomers.pdf:pdf},

This is clearly not the correct format to create the link to the file. How do I have to manipulate the entries so that they all can be properly imported?

Thank you very much already for your help.


thanks for giving JabRef a chance!

it seems like that for some reason the file field contains latex symbols:
It should be sufficient to replace the
$\backslash$ with a normal backslash, \ then JabRef should be able to parse it so that it looks like a normal windows path. Otherwise, the syntax is correct.
The path should look like C:/ or C:\. Although windows normally use backslashes, it should also work with forward slashes.

I advise copying the bib file before making any changes. You can use JabRef’s inbuilt search and replace function Edit → Find and Replace. There you have the option to limit this to the file field.

Hey Christoph,

Thank you so much for getting back to me so quickly. Your help is very much appreciated. I have managed to get my entire bibliography transferred without any problems with your help. I am already completely sold on JabRef – in other words, Mendeley is already uninstalled.

I made changes to the copied file in VS Codium, which I know really well, as you suggested, I replaced $\backslash$ with C:/, and I also removed the trailing :pdf at the end of the path.

I wasn’t able to import this for some reason. It never converted the path properly. However, by simply opening the path got properly imported.

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Glad to hear that it’s working well for you!

But nonetheless, I think it would make sense for JabRef to try to parse the files or replace the latex chars in the file path.

JabRef’s file field consists of 3 parts in general:


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