Importing PDFs as aliases (not duplicating) / changing from Papers to Endnote


I’m trying to import PDFs (already on my hard drive) into Endnote, however, I do not wish to duplicate all these PDFs. I just want to link to them (aliases, I think is the correct terminology).

I have been using Papers software, and had linked to all the PDFs via aliases (without duplicating or moving the PDFs). Maybe I can export (aliases) from Papers and import (aliases) into Endnote?

Please can anyone suggest the best way to begin? I’m worried about wasting loads of time, making mistakes, duplicating hundreds of files, and generally getting confused! So it would be good to know what is possible and what my options are, so I can choose the right method and not make mistakes.

Thank you!

There isn’t an easy way.  You can chnage your preferences so that files that you manually attach are linked to the “absolute” (original) location, rather than copying them to the relative location. You edit>preferences> URLsa nd Links in Enndote and untick the box that say to copy them.  this is a bit tedious as you have to drag and drop or browse to each PDF from the record to which you want it attached.  The auto “find full text” will still copy the pdf to the “relative folder struture” which is an unchangable defaut to folders in a libraryname.DATA folder located in the same folder the library.enl file itself is located.  The opposite possibility exists. 

You can automatically copy all absolute referenced PDFs in a library, to the relative folder structure and then delete the originals.  I know it isn’t what you want to hear though!

Thanks for your help. Please can you explain what you mean by “manually attach”? I also don’t understand “you have to drag and drop or browse to each PDF from the record to which you want it attached” ? Sorry, I’m not yet familiar with the different ways of importing PDFs and data into Endnote. Thinking of following this: - but I just hope I can copy what I have in Papers but keep the actual PDF files in their folders (which existed before I started using Papers). Or do I have to go to the folders and then drag each PDF file into Endnote?

Thank you!

Being unfamiliar with the way Papers maintains the PDF links, I don’t know.  I believe you will need to call tech support for this.  Perhaps they can help design an import filter that would create a hyperlink from that in Papers and keep that link in the URL or another field?

Otherwise you would need to link each individual PDF one by one, which would be a pain. 

Thanks again Leanne,

I’m not sure if you meant Papers tech support or Endnote tech support. Anyway, an email from the Papers people stated:

“I believe the location of the PDFs should be properly exported as well when you use the export functionality (menu File > Export). The Export will create an XML file that you can then add to an existing library in EndNote, by using their File > Import menu item.”

Does this make sense, or am I am about to duplicate a few hundred files and then get confused as to what links to what?

I really hope this looks feasible, and that it will work…

Plan B could be to use Papers for organising articles and book references etc. (I like how this all works in Papers) and use Endnote for references in my written work (obviously, I would need far fewer references listed in Endnote. I liked Papers, but doing simple things like omitting the authors name within the brackets in a reference was a headache in Papers).

Or Plan B could be to forget about Papers after all, but link the original folder of PDFs to Endnote (if it’s possible to this in the same way I did with Papers; i.e. as aliases) and then start again manually in Endnote (without any export from Papers).

I keep procrastinating because I fear this is all going to be a headache, but I hope to make a start at the beginning of next week.

Any advice on the above would be much appreciated.

Thank you!

I suggest that you might want to call tech support at Endnote to discuss what you are trying to do and whether they can help construct an import file that will maintain the links to your existing pdfs.  I have never worked with Papers, so I can’t be of much help.  (I have no affiliation with Thomson Reuters). 

Thanks. I’ll contact Endnote tech support and reply here if I manage to solve the problem etc.