X2 slow to load

Why is X2 so slow to load compared to X1?  And how can I speed it up?

Thanks,  Phil

Amen.  I have a fast computer, except with X2 is executed.  I also had no problem with X1.  Once it is loaded it works well, but I feel uneasy with the load time.

The easiest way to speed up the load time of EndNote X2 is to edit the list of content files in the folders that your “Folder Location” Preferences point to [For example - C:\Program Files\EndNote X2\Styles, etc.]. If you only use a small subset of Connections, Filters, and Output Styles - as the vast majority of EndNote users do - simply move the files that you do not commonly use to a separate location. You can always move files back to the list.

Jason Rollins, EndNote Product Development

I will give that a try…is there a way to change the default directory for the Styles, etc.?


The content file folder locations can be configured by accessing the EndNote “Preferences…” window and choosing the “Folder Locations” tab.  On Mac EndNote X2, “Preferences…” is accessed from the ‘EndNote X2’ menu, while on Windows, it’s found on the ‘Edit’ drop down.

Jimmy McColery
Customer Technical Support Representative Scientific

Thomson Reuters
Phone: +1 800 336 4474
ResearchSoft Product Support


Thanks, this was very helpful.  Huge improvement.  Slow load was driving me batty.

Dear Jason,

since I am also frustrated because of the slow start I also cleaned my folders for connection style and filter. I even restarted the computer. But always when I want select annother style, connection, filter I got the whole list again. It seems, that the changes under preferences are not accepted by the program. I have to state, that the program is installed under C:\program files\Endnote X2. Since I am working without administrator permissions I moved all folders to D:\program files\Endnote\ where I have write permissions. And I entered the location “D:\program files\Endnote…” under preferences, which is also displayed after restarting Endnote.



EndNote X2 uses 2 folders for styles, the one set in the preferences and the one where ENdNote X2 was installed to, i.e. C:\Program FIles\EndNote X2\Styles.  If Styles folder in the EndNote X2 Program File folder has all of the styles they will all still be available.

Just to add, it is the program folder-endnote-styles folder you want to delete the styles you don’t need to get a faster load.  Only the styles you create or alter and “save as” (which is also a default in EndnoteX2) reside in the preferences styles folder. 

I was surprised when I read that Endnote still uses the styles etc. stored in the program folder, even when I changed the links in the preferences. Such things should not happen. Than the selection in the preferences become senseless.

In my case, the speedup occurs as long as you cut down on the connection files and the filters. Cutting down on the styles did not make a difference to my load time.

How do I know which connections and filters I need. supposely, I know all the journals and websites from which I usually download papers. Thanks

The filters and connections files (and output styles) are in appropriately named folders in the Program Folder/endnote folder.  When installing the program you have the option of customizing the installation to select which parts to install.  I select all, to NOT install and then carfully select the very few filters and connections files I routinely use for installation.  With Output Styles, I also deselect research areas that I don’t need.  Even then, I ended up with over 2000 styles.  So you can then removed extraneous ones to another folder from which you can get them back, if needed.   In Vista, I don’t know how easy that is, since I understand the folders are write protected.   

Hi Jason, Jimmy, and Peter

I agree, X2 is terribly slow to load. However, your suggestions may work for a stand-alone installation, but not necessarily for an institional one.

The issue is that some institutions install Endnote to point to style folders on the network drive: so that stuff stays clean and is not locally edited by every person who logs onto the computer. So pointing to local files may not be possible.

The related issue is that all that stuff then has to be downloaded across the network, and so the speed at which Endnote loads is dependent on any network bottlenecks.



Hi Leanne, Thank you for your reply. I know where endnote stores the connection, filters and styles but i don’t really know which connection and filter i need so i can delete the other. for example, I usually download paper from ACS publications “journal of american chemical society”, but when i come to the filter folder in endnote i did not see anything that looks like " ACS pubs" or “journal of american chemical society”. Any suggestions?

Most of the time, when you “download” from a Journal site, it is using the RIS filter to import, so I suspect that is one you want to keep.  Other users might be more helpful there, who do this more often.  Connection files are pretty obvious.  You need to select them specifically, when you connect, so I usually keep PubMed, Library of Congress and maybe some of the University Libraries, and Web of Science. 

For our institute X2 installations, we run a script to replace the users installed folders with the more abbreviated sets after installing, and keep the full folders on a network so they can be downloaded if users have a need for some of the others. 

Hi Leanne, You are totally right. After cut off most of connection and style files, Endnote now loads crazy fast. Actually, I never use endnote to search for papers and books " I usually use SCI fider ", so connection files do not important to me. However, it is still not clear to me about the filter, i.e which filter i need to be able to import papers from “J amer chemical society” but i’m happy with endnote now. Thank you so much !