BIB File - opening and understanding

Did your computer fail to open a BIB file? We explain what they are used for and recommend software that we know can open or otherwise handle your .BIB files.

What is a BIB file?

The .bib file extension is primarily associated with files utilized in BibTeX Bibliography Database. BIB file is a text document containing a list of references formatted using BibTeX formatting. Files with .bib extension are often used in creating bibliographies with LaTex typesetting system. It also used in allowing bibliographies to be searched and published using standard commands.

BibTeX is used as reference management software for formatting various lists of references. It eases citation of sources in a consistent manner by separating bibliographic information from the form of the information. The process is quite similar to the separation of content and presentation/style that is supported by LaTeX.

BibTeX files may include, but is not limited to bibliographies for books, articles, research papers, and tech reports. BibTeX files can be viewed and managed on multiple computer systems, but the formatting is standard across all platforms. BIB files are text files that can be opened and modified using MikTeX, JabRef, TeXnic Center and MacroMates TextMate.

How to open BIB files

You will need a program compatible with the specific file you are trying to open, as different programs may use files with file extension BIB for different purposes.

While we have not verified the apps ourselves yet, our users have suggested 10 different BIB openers which you will find listed below.

Suggest another file format using extension BIB

While we know of one file format using the .BIB file extension, there may be more. It is widespread that different programs use files with the same file extension for very different types of data. Please let us know if you are aware of a different kind of .BIB file.

Various viewers for this file format

These apps are known to open certain types of BIB files. Remember, different programs may use BIB files for different purposes, so you may need to try out a few of them to be able to open your specific file.

MiKTeXMiKTeXUser submitted
XULRunnerXULRunnerUser submitted
WinShellWinShellUser submitted
CitaviCitaviUser submitted
JabRefJabRefUser submitted
WinEdtWinEdtUser submitted
OCLC ConnexionOCLC ConnexionUser submitted
LabEditorLabEditorUser submitted
Mendeley DesktopMendeley DesktopUser submitted
TexMakerXTexMakerXUser submitted
We have not verified any software that we know for certain will work with BIB-files on Mac. If you know one, please use the 'Suggest a program' link below and tell us about it!
We have not verified any web services that we know for certain will work with BIB-files. If you know one, please use the 'Suggest a program' link below and tell us about it!