Exporting/Importing fails


is there a way to export and import zotero entries manually? I don't care about the files as I have all files linked anyway.

Using the export opportunity in zotero standalone seem to work. However, importing again leads to an error message "An error occurred while trying to import the selected file. Please ensure that the file is valid and try again."
After that message my library seems to be restored with all folders. However, a few items are missing on a first glance, thus, totally unacceptable to go that way.

If there is a file somewhere where the library is saved, that would be great.
  • Could you explain what you are trying to do with export/import? There are usually much easier ways to accomplish most things than this, and export/import can cause numerous problems.
  • Hi, I am trying to export all my entries from zotero. I'm just talking about the entries and folder structure in zotero, not the files as I have linked all files. I like to browse my files in windows explorer in addition to zotero. The zotero storage is very uncomfortable as each file is stored in an individual folder with a random name.

    Later I want to restore my library with all entries and all folders in zotero. The build-in export/import function in zotero does not seem to be reliable. A few enrties are always missing that way.
  • Generally export/import for your own library is pretty much always the wrong choice. I'm still not clear _why_ you want to use that.

    But I'm also skeptical that you'd actually have items missing. That's quite unlikely. Slight changes in data yes, but entire missing items is quite odd.
  • As I pointed out earlier, actually I'm not going to use the export/import function of zotero anymore. Instead, I'll give this a try: https://www.zotero.org/support/zotero_data
    That is, I will simply copy and paste the relevant folders of/to my zotero folder. I copied all files already but haven't pasted them again yet. The reason all behind this is my surface book that had to be replaced. And I didn't want to create an image but to go for a entire clean install of the system on my replacement SB.

    As for the missing entries: I assure you there were items missing when I used the build-in ex/im function of zotero. I couldn't replicate why, I tried it several times, always the same entries that were missing. Then I tried other formats but the zotero backup format. However, this is completely uncomfortable as the folder structure of my library couldn't be exported in the first place.

    I'm going to paste the zotero folders soon when I install the app on my new SB. Will let u know whether things went out smoothly.
  • I am about to implement Zotero 5. As a precaution I want to back up my zotero links before moving from Zotero 4 so IF somethimng happens to my research on the switch I should be able to import the data manually. (That's the theory!) I tried exporting the links (Notes & files) at the My Files level and got the error message 'something went wrong'. So...

    Do I 1) only inport notes OR files, or do I drop down a level and save the sub directories - of which I have around 20 or so (some much bigger than others) ?

    any help would be appreciated
  • Thanks for this Adam. I have successfully backed up my 58K (!!) zotero references. Who knew I had so many...

    One point. The instructions for Windows 10 aren't quite as written in that document you quote. Microsoft have hidden the appdata pathway in Windows 10. I had to type in % appdata % (no spaces when used) into Run to locate the pathway. Once there it was a doddle to back up.

    NOW... how do I reinstall this file if I have a catastrophic failure, somehow?
  • There is a restoring from a back-up section right below on the same page.
  • Thanks for help. I've copied instructions ready for any melt down I may get should the transfer from 4.0 to 5.0 not go as planned. I've spent years in IT, and have low expectations...
Sign In or Register to comment.