How to quickly purge multiple collections in online library?

I have returned to using Zotero standalone on Ubuntu 16.04 after a long period of not using Zotero. I have a new project in mind for Zotero but I need a refresher course through this forum.

My problem.
I have a very old online Zotero library which I have just synced into my local Zotero standalone as a backup and in there I can select multiple collections at a time to be purged. However I can find no similar functionality in the web based library which I now wish to purge in its entirety (I have turned off sync in local Zotero standalone as a precaution).

Is there a method of selecting multiple collections in web library to be quickly trashed? I can select one collection at a time and hit the Delete Collection button - but that is tedious for a long list of collections. Incidentally it would be helpful to have the buttons at a persistent place in the browser since in a long list one has to select the collection and then scroll back up the browser page to hit the Delete Collection button.
  • No there isn't. The expectation is that you perform large operations locally, not in the web interface. If need be, create a separate Zotero profile.
  • Thanks for the advice.
    I decided to use a quick and dirty method.
    I use a browser automation script which moves the cursor to the top collection in library list
    and then automatically goes through the Delete Collection process with two further button clicks.
    The script loops until completion.
    It is quicker than manual process and does the job.

    In Ubuntu I use command
    xdotool getmouselocation
    to get target locations for clicking.

    I will still investigate the multiple profiles approach.
  • I'm interested in this but confused by the statement that "in [Zotero standalone] I can select multiple collections at a time to be purged." I wonder whether I am misreading this somehow, but I can't select multiple folders to delete. Since one gets created each time I download a citation from some other database this is a bit tiresome. Any suggestions? Zotero 5.0.47 on Mac OS X.11.6
  • No, you can't select/delete multiple collections at once (I think the above just refers to the fact that you can quickly move a whole collection to the trash.
    ), but "Since one gets created each time I download a citation from some other database" also suggests that you're using Zotero in an odd way.

    The number of databases that offer RIS/bibtex, where Zotero doesn't display a Save to Zotero icon, and where it doesn't offer you to automatically import the data (in which case no collection is created) should be very small. Start a new thread, describe what you're doing as well as some sample URLs for sites from which you're importing and we can see what's going on.
  • Thanks for the response. While the databases I use are a mixed bag as far as naming Zotero is concerned, even where there is a specific Zotero option under the "cite" menu etc, choosing this downloads a file which I then have to import and which then creates a folder. I'd be happy to be corrected. Perhaps I should be more trusting that the browser plug-in can do this work (I do use it for books and for articles that are rendered directly in the browser like on-line publications)?
  • The "Save to Zotero" option via browser add-on, where it's available (i.e. a non-grey item that's not the webpage icon you see e.g. on this page) is almost always better then "Cite" options by databases/journals, regardless of whether those mention Zotero or not.

    But even the Cite option should typically be intercepted by the Zotero connector and import into Zotero directly. Make sure the

    Import BibTeX/RIS/Refer files into Zotero

    option is checked in the Zotero connector preferences (right-click on the Save to Zotero icon and select options/preferences).

    What databases are you trying this on?

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