BibDesk: Free Open-source Reference and Bibliography Manager

BibDesk: Free Open-source Reference and Bibliography Manager

What is BibDesk?

BibDesk is a lightweight free open-source citation/ bibliography macOS package. It provides researchers with a powerful BibTeX file management options without hustle.

If you are familiar with BibTeX you will find BibDesk very easy to use. We have created a list for best LaTeX/ TeX editors for macOS, which will be useful for BibDesk users.

BibDesk offers a simple easy-to-use interface to import, search, manage and export BibTeX references. It has many useful tools like an integrated web browser, advanced search options and comes with drag-n-drop support. It also features export templates support and seamless integration with macOS.


  • Libre software (Free and open-source)
  • Simple UI
  • LaTeX compatible
  • Powerful database search
  • Searching external database
  • Quick Search
  • Advanced Search options
  • Spotlight search integration
  • Fine and replace option
  • Enhanced citation keys management
  • AutoFile option to manage local copies of the paper
  • Import files from other programs, .ris, .fcgi, BibTeX file translation with command-line filter
  • Export with advanced options PDF, rich text to the clipboard, LaTeX-ready export, HTML and RSS
  • Web-search with Integrated web browser
  • AppleScripts support Extends functionalities
  • Task automation with AppleScripts
  • Library management
  • Export templates with template editors
  • Smart Folder
  • Author managers
  • Live statistics
  • Drag & Drop support
  • PDF file management
  • Supports Google Scholar, ACM DL, Hubmed and more
  • Macro support
  • Seamless integration with many macOS LaTeX editors
  • Import data from Endnote



Publication manager

Web search


  • BSD License


  • macOS (Mac OS X 10.7 and above for the current version v1.7.1)
  • There are older versions that support older macOS versions

Website & Download

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Hamza Mu

Written by Hamza Mu

A physician with programming skills, Linux user since late 1990s, Open-source supporter. Created several medical products EMR/ DICOM and more.
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