JabRef has an official browser extension. It automatically identifies and extracts bibliographic information on websites and sends them to JabRef with one click.
When you find an interesting article through Google Scholar, the arXiv or journal websites, this browser extension allows you to add those references to JabRef. Even links to accompanying PDFs are sent to JabRef, where those documents can easily be downloaded, renamed and placed in the correct folder. A wide range of publisher sites, library catalogs and databases are supported.
Normally, you simply install the extension from the browser store and are ready to go.
Most JabRef installations include the necessary files, so test the extension before proceeding with the following instructions. However, sometimes, a manual installation is necessary (e.g. if you use the portable version of JabRef). In this case, please take the following steps:
Make sure you have at least JabRef 5.0 installed.
On Windows 7, please upgrade Powershell.
Make sure that the correct file name of the
JabRef.bat file is specified in
Run the following command from the console (with the correct path to the
For Firefox support:
REG ADD "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Mozilla\NativeMessagingHosts\org.jabref.jabref" /ve /d "C:\path\to\jabref.json" /f
For Chrome/Opera/Brave/Vivaldi and other chromium based browser support
REG ADD "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Google\Chrome\NativeMessagingHosts\org.jabref.jabref" /ve /d "C:\path\to\jabref-chrome.json" /f
You may need to change the root
HKEY_CURRENT_USER if you don't have admin rights.
Download and install the Debian package of JabRef 5.0
3.a Firefox: Download org.jabref.jabref.json and put it into
/usr/lib/mozilla/native-messaging-hosts/org.jabref.jabref.json to install with admin rights for all users
~/.mozilla/native-messaging-hosts/org.jabref.jabref.json to install without admin rights for the current user
3.b Chrome: Download org.jabref.jabref.json and put it into
/etc/opt/chrome/native-messaging-hosts/org.jabref.jabref.json to install with admin rights for all users
~/.config/google-chrome/NativeMessagingHosts/org.jabref.jabref.json to install without admin rights for the current user
3.c Chromium: Download org.jabref.jabref.json and put it into
/etc/chromium/native-messaging-hosts/org.jabref.jabref.json to install with admin rights for all users
~/.config/chromium/NativeMessagingHosts/org.jabref.jabref.json to install without admin rights for the current user
Install the snap package of JabRef 5.0
Connect the appropriate plug for the selected browser:
snap connect jabref:hostfs-mozilla-native-messaging-jabref
snap connect jabref:etc-opt-chrome-native-messaging-jabref
snap connect jabref:etc-chromium-native-messaging-jabref
Download and install the DMG package of JabRef 5.0.
3.a Firefox: If it's not auto-installed for you, download org.jabref.jabref.json and put it into
/Library/Application Support/Mozilla/NativeMessagingHosts/org.jabref.jabref.json to install with admin rights for all users
~/Library/Application Support/Mozilla/NativeMessagingHosts/org.jabref.jabref.json to install without admin rights for the current user
3.b Chrome based: If it's not auto-installed for you, download org.jabref.jabref.json and put it into
/Library/Application Support/Google/Chrome/NativeMessagingHosts/org.jabref.jabref.json to install with admin rights for all users
~/Library/Application Support/Google/Chrome/NativeMessagingHosts/org.jabref.jabref.json to install without admin rights for the current user
After the installation, you should be able to import bibliographic references into JabRef directly from your browser. Just visit a publisher site or some other website containing bibliographic information (for example, the arXiv) and click the JabRef symbol in the Firefox search bar (or press Alt+Shift+J). Once the JabRef browser extension has extracted the references and downloaded the associated PDF's, the import window of JabRef opens.
You might want to configure JabRef so that new entries are always imported in an already opened instance of JabRef. For this, activate "Listen to remote operation on port" under the "Network" tab of the JabRef Preferences.