Standalone for PowerPC Macs?

I'm extremely happy to see Zotero Standalone; Firefox has never run particularly well on my computer, and I'm looking forward to having a browser-independent version. I see, however, that there does not seem to be support for PowerPC Macs at the moment. There is actually a version of Firefox 4 for PPC, TenFourFox, and I assume that Zotero 2.1 and on will continue to work with that. Is there, however, any chance that those of us who can't afford a new computer (or simply can't stand the idea of letting a perfectly good machine go to waste) will be able to use the standalone version?

Thanks for your wonderful work on this product!
  • My guess is that we won't see Zotero Standalone making an official release for PPC Macs. It's built on XULRunner, so if the new versions of XULRunner are still being compiled (by someone) for PPC Macs, it should be quite feasible to create an unofficial PPC Mac release.
  • No, that's not very likely, but you should be able to load zotero://fullscreen to open Standalone from Firefox in Zotero 2.1, and set extensions.zotero.connector.enabled to true in about:config to get support for translation from Safari. If you want support for Word integration, you would either need to run Firefox 3.6.15 or compile PythonExt for Firefox 4 yourself, which is probably easier said than done. This is not an officially supported configuration, but will probably work.
  • I've continued to run Zotero 2.1 on my mac powerpc powerbook G4 running TenFourFox, and that's been working fine, and syncing with another machine too (running mac OS 10.6 Snow Leopard and Firefox 9). I only run the libreoffice and M$ Word connectors on the modern mac.

    My question is this. If I upgrade the modern mac to zotero 3 (FF and/or standalone), will I still be able to reliably sync my database to and from the old powerook running zotero 2.1?
  • The thread here ( seems to say that the database hasn't changed, so that syncing between zotero 2.1 and zotero 3.0 databases should be no problem, but I wanted to verify that this was true across the powerpc/intel divide as well.
  • edited February 16, 2012
    We can't support 2.1.10 if there are problems, but it's certainly designed to be compatible (and no, there shouldn't be any Intel/PPC syncing issues). You should obviously make sure you're backing up your database regularly to be safeā€”then if something broke compatibility with 2.1.10 you could revert back.
  • It's also worth noting that you should be able to use the Firefox version of Zotero 3 on a PowerPC machine. The system requirements are the same as 2.1.10.
  • Thank you Dan and Simon.

    I'm glad to hear that it should work fine. According to the compatibility matrix,, I read that Zotero standalone does not support PowerPC systems. And Firefox 4+ itself is not supported on the PowerPC. So, I had read that as saying I couldn't install version 3 of zotero on Firefox for my powerPC, but apparently if I'm using version 3 of Firefox, you're saying, Simon, that I could go to Zotero 3. I understand that the word processor processors plugins won't work on that machine, but I don't need to use those when on that machine, so that should be okay.

    Just to complicate it one step further, I'm actually now running TenFourFox on the PowerPC, which has run zotero 2.1 just fine.

    Do you think I could try to run Zotero 3 on TenFourFox? If you don't know, is there some kind of information I could give the TenFourFox folks about what Zotero 3 requires so I could ask them?
  • While we haven't tested Zotero under TenFourFox and we won't be able to help with any issues you might encounter running Zotero on TenFourFox unless they also appear under official releases of Firefox, in principle it should work. There's no database upgrade step with Zotero 3, so you can always revert to Zotero 2.1.10 if you encounter problems.
  • There is no reason not to run Zotero 3.0 on PPC and FF 3.6.x. You'll have try this out for TenFourFox - it's not officially supported, but if it works with 2.1.10 it likely works with 3.0 - try in a fresh profile if you're concerned (though since 3.0 doesn't to a database upgrade you can also just downgrade again).

    I thought word processor integration should work as well, but no guarantees.
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