How to get my library back without a backup or an account?

I had Zotero but my computer recently had to be wiped and restored to factory settings. I don't think I had a Zotero account and I never backed up my files. I have re-downloaded Zotero to my computer but of course my library is empty. Is there any way of getting my library back?
  • If you are on Windows, check if you have a Windows-Old folder in your C: drive. You might be able to find your database in there. If you have that, we can give you more detailed instructions on where to look.

    If not, your options are pretty limited. If you have Word documents with Zotero citations, you can extract those and re-import using:
    https://rintze.zelle.me/ref-extractor/
  • I do not have a Windows-Old folder. I do have Word documents with Zotero citations. I followed the directions in that link and tried downloading them as CSL-JSON and then importing and I also tried copying them to clipboard and then importing from clipboard but both times I got a message saying: The selected file is not in a supported format.
  • Try exporting to BibTeX instead. Can you share one of the Word documents that produced bad CSL JSON on Dropbox or similar and post a link here?
  • @Rintze This is the second recent report of Reference Extractor-produced JSON being invalid.
  • @rentdancer, if you'd be willing to (privately) share the Word document in question, or a smaller section that still gives the same CSL-JSON error in Zotero, I'd be happy to take a look to see if there is a bug I can fix.
  • It worked when I did it as Bibtex, although some of the item types are wrong, but it's better than what I had before which was nothing! Here is a link to the document: https://www.dropbox.com/s/jr7sudhyeznoxt5/Thesis Lit Review.docx?dl=0
  • @rentdancer, thanks. I'll try to take a look in the next few days to see if this can be fixed on my side.
  • edited yesterday at 3:24am
    @rentdancer, thanks for posting a link to your Word document. It turned out that there was a general bug in the CSL JSON output since May 20th, which should be fixed now. Let me know how it goes.
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