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Mendeley Institutional Edition: Mendeley Desktop

Mendeley is a free reference manager and academic social network that can help you organize your research, collaborate with others online and discover the latest research.

Install Mendeley Desktop

Mendeley desktop allows you to build, manage your personal library. It can easily helps you to take notes and citations on your resources. The desktop software can be freely downloaded from to multiple devices and is compatible with operating systems including Windows, Mac and Linux. 



By default, when you import a PDF, Mendeley does not move that file; it just creates a reference so it knows where to find that file on your computer. If you later move or delete that file, Mendeley will not be able to access it.

There are two ways to address this:

  1. If you already have a folder system on your computer that you use for research documents, just move the PDF into the correct folder before importing it to Mendeley. Then, leave the PDF there.
  2. Turn on automatic file organization. If turned on in Options/Preferences, this feature will move files from wherever they are imported to a designated Mendeley directory on your hard drive. You can choose if the files are automatically placed in subfolders (based on such characteristics as author name) or even whether the PDFs are renamed.

Mendeley desktop interface


You can add documents to the Mendeley desktop in different ways.

Drag and drop 

You can add your Mendeley desktop window by dragging and dropping your documents.  Mendeley will automatically extract the details from the documents and generate bibliographic information for your library. 

You can also drag and drop a folder containing multiple documents. 

Use the File Menu to 'add file' and 'add folder'

Use this menu to select a specific document or folder from your computer and add it to your Mendeley library. 

This can be used to create library entries for items that you do not hold in PDF form – such as books, articles and other types of media.

Create an entry manually


Import from software 

Your can transfer your library from other reference management software.

  • Use the Export option within the other software to extract your references to RIS, BibTeX, or EndNote XML file format.

  • In Mendeley Desktop, click File > ‘Import’ and select the exported file to add its contents to your Mendeley library.


Create folders and subfolders: You can create folders and subfolders that will group your documents and search within them with Mendeley interface. To create a new folder, you can right click anywhere in the left panel of Mendeley Desktop and select ‘New Folder’, use the ‘Create new folder’ button that appears on the main toolbar or use the ‘Create folder…’ option that appears under ‘My Library’ in the left panel. 

Search:Mendeley desktop offers a search tool that allows you to easily retrieve your references.

Tag and filtering: Tags allow you to easily group resources in your library. 

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