Can I move or reinstall Zotero?

Hi all,

I started using Zotero about 3 months ago and I installed it on drive C:. In the meantime, I got "hooked" with it, because it is such a good tool, and I'm doing everything in it now, even reading PDFs and annotating.

I have on my drive D: a folder for my PhD research that I sync with Google Drive and periodically transfer to an external hard drive just in case.

What I would like to do is to reinstall Zotero and install it in that folder on drive D:, so it (and all its files) are synced on my Google Drive. Can I do that and save all the settings, PDF annotations, links, etc.?

Also, I don't put PDFs directly into Zotero, but link them from my existing library from my research folder on D:. Will the links still work if I reinstall?
  • 1) you don’t need to reinstall
    2) you should not store your Zotero database itself in Google drive or any other cloud folder. That will corrupt your database and cause data loss
    3) where is are the linked files currently stored? On the c: or d: drive?
  • 2) I don't want to store the database on Google Drive, I want to store it on my computer's drive D:\ in a folder which only synchronizes with Google Drive. I apologize if I didn't sound clear the first time.

    When I started using Zotero, I started using Obisidian as well, but I have put my Obsidian vault in D:\Philosophy\Obsidian. And it has actually helped me because I frequently have power outages and last time some Obsidian notes got corrupted. I was able to download them from my Google Drive as simple text files. I'm just afraid that something similar doesn't happen with Zotero.

    3) My PDFs are stored in D:\Philosophy\PDF
    Zotero is installed in C:\Program Files (x86)\Zotero

    The reason why I don't just shove everything in Zotero and use Zotero storage is because I already have years of PDF accumulation, custom folder organisation, renaming, etc. that I still use and navigate myself through. So I just link them in special Subcollections in Zotero.
  • P.S. Also, if I ever decide to store my PDFs using Zotero's storage, I don't want it to clutter my C:\ drive with PDFs, but to store them on D:\ as well.
  • I don't want to store the database on Google Drive, I want to store it on my computer's drive D:\ in a folder which only synchronizes with Google Drive.
    I'm not sure what you mean by this, but the point is that you can't store your database somewhere where Google Drive software could write to it in any way. See Can I store my Zotero data directory in a cloud storage folder?.
  • Hm. I think I'm starting to understand now. Maybe I got it all wrong, but what I was trying to say is this: when you download the Google Drive app on your PC, you have two options:

    1. [username] - "Folders from your computer"
    2. Google Drive - "Folders from Drive"

    And when you go to your Google Drive on your Google account, you also have on your left side

    1. My Drive
    2. Computers

    I am using the second option, Computers. I don't have anything uploaded to Google Drive itself, only folders that I selected from my PC in the Computers menu to sync. Now, I'm guessing they are synced with all devices, but I'm not using any other device except my PC and I'm not editing files online. (Am I using Google Drive wrong?). I guess it can in theory rewrite files on my PC. I'm not sure anymore, but confused nod :D

    Anyway, let's assume a scenario in which my PC gets fried. I buy a new hard drive and restore my D:\Philosophy folder from my external hard drive or download files from Google Drive - all the files sorted as they were (all the paths) - and I install Zotero again. Will my Zotero keep all my Collections and Subcollections, links to my PDFs in my D:\Philosophy\PDF folder, and all Annotations and Comments in Zotero's PDF reader?

    (I'm sorry if I'm asking obvious and redundant questions, I'm just really bad with computers in general and don't know much)
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