Bookends free download for Mac


16 September 2019

Reference management and bibliography software.


Bookends is a full-featured bibliography/reference and information-management system for students and professionals.

  • Bookends uses the cloud to sync reference libraries on all the Macs you use. Access the power of Bookends directly from Mellel, Nisus Writer Pro, or MS Word (including Word 2016): Bookends allows you to scan your existing word-processor files and automatically generate finished manuscripts with properly formatted bibliographies. You can also scan Apple Pages '08, '09, and 5,, and LibreOffice/OpenOffice 4 files, or RTF files saved from any word processor.
  • Bookends allows you to share your references over the Internet with anyone, on any platform. And with Bookends, you can directly search and import references from numerous sources:
    • PubMed
    • Web of Science
    • JSTOR
    • Google Scholar
    • Amazon
    • Library of Congress
    • arXiv
    • and hundreds of other online sources
    Or use a built-in browser to download references with PDF's and/or Web pages. Also, with automatic searches of PubMed, you can discover articles as soon as they're published. Bookends allows for powerful group-based searches, with static, smart, virtual groups, and smart folders as well as tag clouds that make hierarchical searches easy.
  • Bookends also offers a robust assortment of file attachment features:
    • Attach any file (such as a PDF) to a reference and view or open it instantly.
    • Automatically rename and organize PDF files on-the-fly.
    • Automatically download and attach the PDF of an article from the Internet if you have access permission.
    • Automatically locate and attach PDF's on your hard drive.
    • Annotate and markup PDFs and have the information instantly accessible in notecards.
    Easily migrate references and attachments from other reference managers to Bookends.
  • Sync your library with Bookends for iOS on your iOS devices, so that you have your references and PDF's with you wherever you are.

What's new in Bookends

Version 13.2.6:
  • Updated the JSTOR importing function to deal with changes made by JSTOR
  • In addition, when JSTOR provides editors names Bookends will import them.
  • Updated parsing of Google Scholar URLs to deal with changes made by Google
  • When you launch Bookends and there's a second copy of Bookends on the network, you will be offered the choice of quitting the remote copy, in which case you can continue to work on the local machine, or the local copy
  • Previously you had to quit the local copy.
  • Bookends will include qualifiers when importing PubMed MESH headings (keywords)
  • Updated database engine
  • You can permanently remove references from the library itself when in a group, virtual group, or folder by holding down the Shift key when you Delete
  • Right-clicking an image (not a PDF, which has its own Action pop-up menu option) in the display pane or Attachment tab of the edit pane will offer to Move it to the Trash.
  • This is in addition to Detach, Zoom In, and Zoom Out.
  • Backward compatibility
  • Bookends will no longer convert formats made for, or import files exported from, versions prior to 11.2. Bookends won't offer to convert libraries made with versions 8 or earlier. Bookends no longer creates a special folder to store custom formats made with Bookends 11 or earlier.
  • BibTeX scans will recognize complex citations where modifying instructions are inserted between the citation beginning and the cite key, such as citep[see][chap.~2]{smoth2019}
  • Note that if you are having Bookends insert final citations when you scan, the modifying instructions will be ignored.
  • Mellel will be brought back to the front after the verifying references process has completed
  • When attaching a PDF Bookends will look for its DOI on the second page if there is none on the first
  • When automatically renaming PDFs slashes (/) will be removed from file names
  • Slashes are allowed in macOS but not iOS.
Bug fixes:
  • Fixed a bug when adding a PDF via the watch folder to an existing reference where it would replace any attachments already there. Fixed a problem where Bookends wouldn't recognize temporary citations in Scrivener footnotes. Fixed a bug where Bookends couldn't find a file inside an attached folder. Prevented an error that could occur when closing the Online Search window when a browser search was in progress. Fixed a bug in the Links Inspector where the comment field was locked when it should be editable. Fixed a bug that could cause text to become temporarily invisible when coloring required BibTeX fields. Fixed a bug where no field got the focus when exiting the Key field while BibTeX citekey duplicate checking is enabled. Fixed a bug in renaming attachments where Bookends would use a space before a random number even when the user asked for underscores in preferences. Fixed an error that could occur when trying to import metadata for some references from CrossRef. Fixed a problem when using tag cloud file tags and the PDF name included a slash. Fixed a hard crash that could occur when closing the library window after using tag cloud file tags. Fixed problems in the Compare References window where changes in the marked or ratings status of references weren't being updated in the database of the UI. Fixed a problem when doing an Autofill From Internet for multiple references at once via PubMed where references weren't updated. Fixed a bug in AppleEvents that could cause a search of some SQL groups to always return 0 references.

88 Bookends Reviews

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Rate this app:

22 February 2010

Most helpful

EndNote has driven me slightly crazy for the last few years, so I don't really use it any more, but it's cite-while-you-write feature is still more powerful than anything else. Bookends and Sente... Both are excellent programs for managing your pdfs, maintaining a reference library, and generating bibliographies on demand. I've used both very extensively, including current versions and previous versions of Bookends and Sente. Details below... Stability: - Both are very stable programs, and don't crash (unlike EndNote, unless X3 has dramatically improved). They play very nicely with loads of word processors and are very reliable. Searching: - Sente: it's built-in browser uses webkit, i.e. it's basically Safari. You can do standard web searches from within Sente. I like the 'targeted browsing' feature, which quickly shows you what you and don't have in your library already when you do pubmed search. - Bookends has a straightforward PubMed/other site searching window that works very well. It doesn't look like a standard browser page, but obviously does the same thing. Refs already in your library are highlighted in yellow in PubMed windows. It is very good at finding and loading pdfs. Updating incomplete refs: Bookends has a really nice host of tools to update refs. If you have a ref that got loaded in when it was online only, it's quick and easy to use a Bookends menu command to update the reference. There are a couple of ways of doing this, and it works well. Sente is supposed to do some auto-updating, but it doesn't seem to work nearly as well. I really like this handy feature. Speed: On a very large library (7,500 refs), Bookends is noticeably quicker at start-up (about 10 seconds quicker). Searches within the library are faster, and happen live as you type in the Spotlight window in the library. This is more responsive. Pdfs: Both allow you to quickly see your attached pdfs within the main window, open them into a standalone reader, etc. Sente supports pdf comments etc. Custom fields: Both allow you make and view notes etc very easily. Sending to colleagues: Bookends 'email ref' works reliably and attaches any pdfs to your email. Helpful for finding and sending stuff to colleagues. Technical support: Both Sente and Bookends offer good technical support, but Bookends is the best. Jon provides tech support, and is incredibly helpful. It's not that Sente is bad in any way, just that Jon and Bookends is superb. Working with Apple Pages: Both scan open Pages documents. Sente has a re-scan option that they are cautious about recommending. Haven't tried it myself - I use Pages all the time, but don't rescan a formatted doc, I always go back to the unformatted doc to edit. Working with Word: Both support scanning and rescanning with Word. I don't currently use them with Word, but have successfully used Bookends with Word in the past. You don't get the live formatting you see with EndNote cite-while-you-write, but this is no bad thing given the number of times it's caused hangs and crashes in my previous experience. Import/Export: I have a large Sente library which doesn't export the attachments absolutely reliably and puts them in the URL field rather than the attachments field. Bookends gets this right, and therefore it's easier to move a library out to EndNote from Bookends. Both import an EndNote library without problems. User help/ configuration of export filters etc. Online for Sente, a very thorough manual for Bookends. Formatting controls work fine on both. OVERALL: (If anyone cares) I used Bookends extensively, then switched to Sente when it was the first to be able to scan open Pages files. Bookends has now been doing this for a while. It's a bit quicker, and plays more nicely with EndNote (at least as things stand now). Reference updating is a bit easier. I slightly prefer the Sente online search (linking to the PubMed webpage), and Sente is very very slightly prettier, but the speed and other features of Bookends win out. Both are excellent, but I'm going to stick with Bookends.
Like (15)
Version 11.0.0
27 May 2019
Great app. Use it with my Word docs and works flawlessly. Been around forever.
Version 13.2.3
13 October 2018
Nice program!
Like (2)
Version 13.1.3
26 June 2018
Been using for many years, usually with Nisus, but sometimes Word and Mellel. It has never let me down. I've tried others and nothing else works as well. Constantly updated. Support is fantastic.
Like (5)
Version 13.1
29 January 2018
Microsoft released a major rewrite of Word, which broke compatibility with Endnote and Bookends. Bookends had a workaround available to users in hours, and has been updated (V13.0.5, and a backport for V12 users too!) now to fix this . Endnote? Forces users to run beta software and no ETA when an official fix will come. This just gives you a flavour of the difference in support you will receive with both pieces of software (apart from the fact Bookends is far more powerful than Endnote, and far cheaper).
Like (3)
Version 13.0.5
01 December 2017
Bookends may not be the prettiest software out there but it does the job done. The support is outstanding with the main developer being super-responsive. The community is booming on the forums with a lot of people writing scripts or filters for the others. Bookends has a VERY comprehensive format editor/generator. The manual is something like 450 pages long. The software is also very stable despite being a new major release (as of 01.12.2017, v13.0). I also find Bookends support in almost any third-party software (where applicable) which is a nice surprise as well. The only thing I miss there is the ability to insert a citation without fully switching to BK. Something like Magic Citations in Papers (from which I switched to BK, hence I might be spoiled). This and the somewhat old-looking interface are the reasons I cut half the star.
Like (4)
Version 13.0.0
1 answer(s)
28 December 2017
Hi, if you use Alfred, there is a workflow available that enables a similar functionality as Magic Citations. Bookends supports Applescript so you can create these kinds of automations for other tools:
Like (1)
22 November 2017
I'm using Bookends for more than 10 years. Since then, the developper has stayed focused on its software with regular updates and the support is just great. Clearly one of my best choice of software.
Like (4)
Version 13.0.0
21 November 2017
Best reference manager ever.

I have tried all of them. I like Zotero. I also use BibDesk and Jabref for my latex references. I have been user of Sente for many years. I have also used Papers for a while. But, Bookends stands as the richest and most reliable of all. I love the Global tools that help me to manipulate my references.
The automatic data extraction has gone from DOI to Justor and recently even to iSBN. You don't have to go and search for reference data from Google Scholar. It magically picks the data from the PDF and autfills it.
Like (2)
Version 13.0.0
18 November 2017
Well, probably the best supported, and as a result, flexible, reference managers on the Mac just received a significant update. I purchased it immediately, with a fair amount of relief. Relief since Bookends is easily the most frequently updated applications of all my Mac apps, and I had been wanting to pay again, as appreciation for all the work that is put in to both the Mac (and iOS companion) application. If you are looking for a reference manager, across iOS and macOS, look no further. The others might be bigger, but how many of them frequently pose a question in their forums asking how many would support a user-request change, and then implement that change within weeks, if not days? Bookends has been in existence since the very early days - and it shows, in a mature and powerful app that often is an example of "way more than what you expect under the hood"!
Like (4)
Version 13.0.0
12 November 2017
Actually I like what I see from this new version (13.0) thus far. I've always had a license for Bookends, but ended up gravitating towards Papers (so many years ago till the 2nd version started crashing), followed by Sente (till it stopped receiving regular updates a couple of years ago), and now Mendeley. However, now that people using Macs are having problems with Mendeley on HIgh Sierra (with no official support for 10.12 or 10.13), I've begun revisiting Bookends. I always had problems with how Bookends managed and viewed PDFs, which is where Sente and Mendeley excelled (full screen, tabbed views, easy to read, simple and straightforward UI, etc).

This new version of Bookends (along with its reputation of always being updated with stellar support) has me hopeful. I don't have a license for this new version, but I'm going to spend the better part of the next 30 days or so experimenting with it to see how it goes. In the end, I'm not so sure if there really is any viable alternatives on the Mac right now (and don't talk to me about Endnote). Unless Mendeley gets updated or Readcube finally puts it together, I'm going to seriously look at Bookends and I like what I see thus far. We'll see after a month or so.
Like (4)
Version 13.0.0
12 November 2017
Bookends is overall the best reference manager for macOS. The major advantage lies in the fact its database engine is the most flexible/accessible, allowing powerful group editing of the reference data. Bookends has been continuously developed for the Mac since 1984, and still receives regular updates. In V13 there have been major improvements to the way you can view and annotate PDFs. For example, there is a sticky tab bar for multiple reference PDFs so you can quickly add several PDFs then switch between them effortlessly, while being able to view the annotations note stream (metadata about your PDF annotations are automagically extracted into the main database for you). Full screen is now contextual, if you are editing reference lists, it opens into the reference list, if you have a PDF panel open, it opens into the PDF. The automated Pubmed search has been improved, and it greatly enhances the speed at which we can scan through new potentially interesting references. There are many more interesting features and Bookends really offers the best mix of detailed reference management, search interface, PDF handling, flexible bibliography generation and more.
Like (6)
Version 13.0.0


App requirements: 
  • Intel 64
  • OS X 10.10.0 or later
Developer Website: 
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