Zotero for business/organizations

Our school has withdrawn support for the MS Word plugin - which kills local interest in Zotero. There is some concern about security - but I cannot find a basis for that concern. I think the problem is the frequent updates of the plugin executable is challenging our IT dept.

Does anyone have a best practice to manage the frequent updates at an organizational level?


  • That doesn't sound quite right. The actual Word component of the Word add-on is quite rarely updated -- I think the current Zotero.dotm file is over a year old.
    It's Zotero itself that gets updated fairly frequently -- on average about once a month (think 13 or 14 updates since last January).
    I know that my university (Syracuse) has a centralized package that they push to all Windows machines, typically within hours of the official release, but I don't know exactly how that's managed. On a standard roaming desktop, Zotero also works just fine if installed locally, without admin privileges, i.e. not requiring IT at all, but that does depend on how restrictive the security settings are.
  • Yes, Zotero.dotm is updated very rarely, so that wouldn't be a valid reason.

    Note that the digital signature of the current Zotero.dotm expired on January 4th. @badgett, if your institution requires a signature for Office macros, that could be the issue. A Zotero.dotm with a new signature is available in the current Zotero beta, which will be released as 5.0.95 within the next few days. In the meantime, the updated .dotm is available from here and can be manually installed.
  • All helpful comments.
    1. If you think someone in Syracuse IT would be willing to describe their approach, could you please email me their address to rbadgett@kumc.edu?
    2. Is there a security concern (whether true or not) at the organizational level that may be the source of reluctance of my institution?
  • There's no point in speculating on this. You should ask them for the specific reason so we can advise you further.

    I'm just explaining the signature issue, which will be resolved within a few days, in case that's what they're referring to. Word doesn't check macro signatures by default, but some institutions put in place additional restrictions that require a valid signature.
  • @badgett: Zotero 5.0.95 is out now with the updated signature on Zotero.dotm, in case that was the issue.
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