Shared SQL database: compatibility with other software?

Dear JabRef developers and users,

I am a long-time JabRef and LaTeX/BibTeX user, but I am now facing a new challenge, with little experience with it: working in a collaborative setting, in particular with non-JabRef users. It looks like the Shared SQL database approach may be a good solution.

However, I tried to look up JabRef documentation, code (through the GitHub repository) and this forum, without finding the answer to my question: Is the SQL format used by JabRef for the Shared SQL database specific to JabRef, or can it be used (and is it actually used!) by other software, e.g. Mendeley? In other words, is it a universal bibliography format that can truly be shared (among JabRef users as well as non-JabRef users)?

Thanks in advance!


as far as I can see, the database schema is JabRef specific and unfortunately it’s not documented (except in the code). However, as JabRef is Open Source, other Applications are free to adapt the schema and the synchronization mechanisms. I am not aware of any other application using that schema. Maybe @koppor has some more information about the used schema.

Regarding collaborative editing: A while ago I have started to implement synchronization between and JabRef. While it basically works, it needs still some polishing and work. Unfortunately atm my time is limited and we are currently trying to focus on fixing bugs from the 4.0 release

That’s what I was afraid of. Although by definition an open specification, it is not a standard, and has no adoption by other software, making it limited to JabRef users. This is not a complaint here, merely a statement about the unfortunate state of affairs in sharing a bibliography. Kudos to JabRef developer to provide what I think is a progress!

I did not know about, this looks like a cool initiative, but (as far as I understand) it does not solve the problem of using different software on a shared bibliography.