#507 Add OpenURL support to JabRef

Next full release

Zotero has a button, called "Locate", which is using OpenURL to locate the reference and provide a link to where the full-text can be downloaded from (given that it is available at your library)

This is a very useful service, as it makes literature search much easier and faster. At the moment I am using Zotero for that, but the possibility to do it in JabRef, would be brilliant. I don't think it would be to difficult to implement, as the only thing that needs to be done is creating the URL and then open it in a webbrowser.

Details about OpenURL:


An example on how thi is used, can be found in the Firefox extension ( http://www.openly.com/openurlref/ ) which creates OpenURLs for e.g. Google Scholar searches.

As mentioned, I think this would be a very valuable addition to JabRef and should not involve to much work.

Unfortunately, I don't have any experience with Java, so I woun't be able in helping.

Thanks a lot for a brilliant reference manager,



  • Nobody/Anonymous


    OpenURL support can be added without principal additions to JabRef by means of the Entry Preview.

    Consider, the OpenURL resolver (be it SFX) is located at http://zbsfx.zb.kfa-juelich.de/sfx_local. Now, one has to build up the OpenURL from JabRefs fields. For the SFX resolver this is done by:


    Note, the crucial parameters extracted from the bibliographic data


    The rest above is blurb required by SFX and it may change with other OpenURL resolvers.

    Hence, for our SFX resolver at Forschungszentrum Jülich the entry for the preview formatter would be:


    which resolves nicely in my tests and guides you directly to the paper in question also obeying the current libraries holdings in case a full text is available via various sources like full text databases.

  • Nobody/Anonymous



    might be helpful in generating the required URL. Also note, that not all resolvers can handle all bibliographic fields. Ie. some are not capable of resolving something like author + title to the correct article but they need information like journal, volume, page e.g.

  • Rainer M. Krug

    Rainer M. Krug - 2008-12-04

    Just as an additional info: I found the following Java script for OpenURLs:


    and the example site using it:


    This should give an idea on how it could be implemented.
    I must say, I like the idea of having an SFX field in the preview - although under "Web search" to enable lookups of multiple papers at once (obviously in different URLs)


  • Nobody/Anonymous


    This is a neat way of including OpenURL support into JabRef - more should be made of the ability to include this feature. The only difficulty remaining is providing a way to find out your local OpenURL resolver.

    Sending a HTTP GET to http://worldcat.org/registry/lookup?IP=requestor is one way of looking up an appropriate URL - see the baseURL tag under the resolver tag.

    Is there any way to make this more friendly for any non tech-literate users?

  • Nobody/Anonymous

    Here is my OpenURL entry preview text:


    With my search provider, this is enough to generate a page with a direct link to the article if the publisher supports this type of linking.

  • Rainer M. Krug

    Rainer M. Krug - 2009-04-07

    That works quite nicely.

    Tee only problem is that SFX returns with this syntax goes through a "multiselection" page, where all Journals which contain names of the journal name I am looking fore, are listed (journal: BioScience, displayed for selection: Biochemical systematics and ecology, The Environment film review, Ecology & economics, Ecology, ...).

    If this could be changed, it would be perfect.

  • Rainer M. Krug

    Rainer M. Krug - 2009-04-07

    OK - I essentially took the "basic URL" used by Zotero, and replaced the formatting used by Zotero with the one above, and it is working now - resolving to the article in the correct journal, without the selection page in between.

    If somebody more knowledgeable in OpenURL could verify this?

    I would suggest, that this could be included into the next JabRef preview by default, probably introducing another field (to be set in the preferences) for the OpenURL resolver?

    Below the one I am using, where p9003-smug.calico.ac.za.ez.sun.ac.za/sun/sfx_local"" is (I think the sfx_local is also different) the OpenURL resolver.

    Thanks for all your input,



  • fdar

    fdar - 2015-07-22
    • Labels: --> google scholar
  • fdar

    fdar - 2015-07-22
    • Labels: google scholar --> search, google scholar
  • fdar

    fdar - 2015-07-22
    • Labels: search, google scholar --> search, google scholar, zotero
  • fdar

    fdar - 2015-07-23
    • Labels: search, google scholar, zotero --> search, tocategorize, google scholar, zotero
  • fdar

    fdar - 2015-07-23
    • labels: search, tocategorize, google scholar, zotero --> PDF, Import, OpenURL, EntryWeb
    • Group: --> Next full release

Log in to post a comment.

Get latest updates about Open Source Projects, Conferences and News.

Sign up for the SourceForge newsletter:

No, thanks