# Zotero and PDF indexing on FreeBSD

For a while now I have been using Zotero on Firefox to handle researching topics. It also allows PDF indexing, but for this you need to set some things up first. Start by installing xpdf from ports, it’s located under graphics/xpdf. This will install pdfinfo and pdftotext amongst others. Next go to your Zotero data directory, by default this is the zotero directory under your profile directory in \$HOME/.mozilla/firefox, and create two symbolic links pdfinfo-uname -s-uname -m and pdftotext-uname -s-uname -m which will point to /usr/local/bin/pdfinfo and /usr/local/bin/pdftotext, respectively.

Now, when you restart Firefox, Zotero should be able to pick up the files. Check by going into Zotero’s preferences and navigate to the Search tab. It should state something to the effect of pdftotext version UNKNOWN is installed.

## 2 thoughts on “Zotero and PDF indexing on FreeBSD”

1. Another alternative to indexing your PDF papers would be Mendeley (www.mendeley.com, I’m a co-founder). In Mendeley the indexing is done automatically for text PDF’s (including the notes you might have in Mendeley), and you wouldn’t need to install any additional software. We are also investigating implementing a solution to index picture/scanned PDF’s.

Mendeley itself is free academic software (Win, Mac, Linux) to manage & share research papers and a research network to manage your papers online, discover research trends and connect to like-minded researchers.

Best wishes
Jan

2. Mark says:

Only he would need to install additional software–he’s running FreeBSD & Mendeley is a proprietary app.

You have a fine product, but please think before you spam.