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EndNote X7.7: Managing your EndNote library

Referencing software

Page contents

This page tells you how to:

  • save your library
  • search references
  • sort references
  • remove duplicates
  • update references
  • delete references



YouTube tutorial

Searching references

For a quick search from the main EndNote library, click on All References and use the Search Library box located on the toolbar. Type the author's family name or a keyword, press Enter, and the matching records will appear on the screen. If you want to search a group only, then click on the particular group you wish to search.   

Sorting references

When you open a library, you will see headings like: Author, Year, Title, Journal etc. Clicking on these headings enables you to sort your library references alphabetically or chronologically.

To make other changes to how EndNote displays in the main library window, click on EndNote X7 and choose Preferences and then click on Display Fields. For example, choosing Record Number from the column 1 drop-down menu will display the record number instead of the figure attachments. The position of the column headings can changed by dragging the headings.

Clicking on the EndNote Defaults button and Save will change the fields displayed back to the original EndNote settings.


EndNote will find duplicates of references and allow you to compare them side by side on the screen, with auto-highlights and locked scrolling, so that you can select which one you want to keep. Click on References menu and select Find Duplicates. Compare the records displayed on the screen and select the one to keep by clicking the Keep This Record tab. The duplicate will be automatically discarded from your library.

EndNote can automatically eliminate duplicate references retrieved from an online search. Open the EndNote X7 menu, select Preferences and then Duplicates. Tick the box Automatically Discard Duplicates. Click Save

Updating online references

Select a reference, right hand click and choose Find Reference Updates or use this icon 

EndNote highlights the differences in a side by side comparison. You can choose to update the empty fields only, replace all the fields or copy and paste specific information

Deleting references

Highlight the references you want to delete. Drag the selected references to Trash, or open the References menu and select Move References to Trash. The references are now removed from the library.

Saving and restoring a compressed copy of a library

You can save your whole library, or part of it, to a compressed file in order to make a back-up copy or email it to a colleague. 

To save a compressed library file to your USB:

Go to File menu and select Compressed Library (.enlx). In the dialogue box that appears, you can choose: to either Create the compressed library or Create & Email it. Choose other options as required. Then click OK and save it at your desired location. If you selected the Create & Email option, your default email system will be launched with the compressed library file attached to it.

To restore your compressed library file, make sure EndNote is open, find the stored file and double click on it.