The XML writing tool is telling "NO pdf linked"

The PDF files are correctly linked. Jabref is able to open the pdf; also display it with the internal viewer.

But, when I am trying to write metadata into the PDF, Jabref tells me that no PDF is linked.

Why is this happening?


thanks for reporting. Could you please add some details about which JabRef version you are using and if you have relative/absolute file links and if you use Win/Linux/Mac.

Could you also please check for possible errors in the Error Console?

Please describe your steps you do, so we can try to reproduce this
These information help us to identify the problem a bit more in detail

Best Regards

  • OS: Mac 10.12
  • Jabref version 4. The feature seems broken at version 4. Jabref 3.8 wrote many of the files.
  • In Jabref 3.8, the problem seems restricted to some types of files ( Premature end of file is the most frequent error here.).

I am not sure about the difference between absolute and relative links (I use this:

You can also set a file directory (absolute, or relative to the bib file location) specifically for one database under File -> Database properties. Finally, in the Database properties dialog you can set a user-specific file directory, which will be valid only when you are the one working on the bib file.

I just put the folder where I store the files in the Library Properties.

The files are stored in @articles folder, as you can see from the screenshot.

Here is the reference data where the file field points to the file name.

author = {Adams, Marianne},
title = {Multiple Interrogation in Italian},
journal = {The Linguistic Review},
year = {1985},
volume = {4(1)},
number = {1},
pages = {1–28},
doi = {10.1515/tlir.1985.4.1.1},
file = {Adams 1985 Multiple Interrogation in Italian.pdf},
url = {},

The reference data contains the file name. Jabref is able to find the files and link them with the correct reference based on the file name given in the file field.

So, if you want to reproduce:

  1. downlaod any pdf file to your desktop (rename your file to Adams 1985 Multiple Interrogation in Italian.pdf)
  2. create a new Jabref library with the above reference data
  3. modify the Library Properties: such that the file store will be in the Desktop (as in the screenshot)
  4. save the library anywhere (downloads folder, for example)
  5. try to write XML to the pdf by going to Tools menu in Jabref