Mendeley is a free reference manager and academic social network. In particular, it can automatically extract references from PDFs and generate bibliographies in a variety of formats (including bibtex).

User instructions

Mendeley is available via the module system:

$ module load mendeley/1.15.3

The program is called mendeleydesktop. Note that you need to register for an account at before you can use it.


Proprietary but free (in terms of beer).

Admin notes

Mendeley is distributed pre-compiled and packaged with its own set of libraries, which is a bit wasteful but makes installation easy: just a case of extracting a tarball. Note - I tested version 1.17.10, but it seems to have some issues. It’s possible they would be fixed in the deb package, but this installs around 300M of stuff in /opt which it would be nice to avoid. 1.15.3 seems all right for the moment.

I had to create a separate module file for it, as the standard_program module file also adds to the library search path. We do not want this to happen as Mendeley includes a subset of Qt4 libraries which conflict with the system Qt4 libraries and hence prevent other Qt4 programs from running. To add mendeleydesktop to the environment only requires the bin subdirectory to exist on the PATH.