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Mendeley Institutional Edition : Basic Level Training

Mendeley is a free reference manager and an academic social network. Mendeley enables you to access your library, everywhere, easy referencing, building your research network, advance your career, and finding funding opportunities.

Encountered problems

  • Why am I seeing an 'Incorrect username or Password' message in Mendeley Desktop? 

As of our new authentication process, if you have re-authenticated your account (you'll have been asked to accept some new terms and conditions and verify with your password) or changed any of your credentials with Elsevier, you may have problems running Mendeley Desktop if you are on an older version. To fix this problem, follow the steps below.


  1. Upgrade to the latest version of Mendeley.

  2. Go to and authenticate there.


  • What should I do if I receive a message saying my account doesn't have a password when I enter my email address?

You should receive a notification stating an email has been sent to you along with this message. Go to your inbox, open this email and click 'add a password' or follow the link below that. You will be directed to the registration page and prompted to enter your name and a new password. This password can be the same as the one you originally used. Should you sign up for any further Elsevier products, you can login to all of them using the same password.


  • How can I create a backup of my database?


You can backup the database files that Mendeley Desktop stores. You can do this from within Mendeley Desktop, or manually through your OS if you cannot access Mendeley Desktop. Select the action you want to perform below to see the steps.


In Mendeley Desktop

  1. Click 'Help' in the menu bar.

  2. Select 'Create Backup'.

  3. Specify where you wish to save your backup files.

  4. The backup will be created and saved in the selected location.

Please note: this backup should be stored in your local drive. If you try to recover this backup in a future from Mendeley Desktop and the folder is linked to a cloud-based drive or folder, you may experience serious database recovery issues.

Manual backupYou can also create a backup manually, which is only advised in the case that you cannot access Mendeley Desktop.

  1. Locate your database. Where your database files are stored varies from operating system to operating system. In order to locate yours, please follow the corresponding value:
    • Windows: %LOCALAPPDATA%\Mendeley Ltd.\Mendeley Desktop\
    • Mac OS X: /Users/<Your username>/Library/Application Support/Mendeley Desktop/
    • Linux:~/.local/share/data/Mendeley Ltd./Mendeley Desktop/
  2. Copy this entire folder to somewhere safe. You can copy this to another computer, a USB stick, or another folder on your computer for safe-keeping.
  • How do I locate my Mendeley Local Database?

Please follow the steps below to locate your Mendeley Desktop database.

Finding it automatically

  1. Open Mendeley Desktop and press Ctrl + Shift + D on your keyboard (Cmd + Shift + D in Macs)
  2. Click ''Open Data Directory' to locate your data directory on your hard drive.

Finding it manually

In case you are unable to open Mendeley Desktop, you can also find your database manually.

Where your database files are stored varies from operating system to operating system. In order to locate yours, open an explorer/finder window and navigate to:

  • Windows: %LOCALAPPDATA%\Mendeley Ltd.\Mendeley Desktop\
  • Linux: ~/.local/share/data/Mendeley Ltd./Mendeley Desktop/
  • MacOS: Macintosh HD ->/Users/"Your Name"/Library/Application Support/Mendeley Desktop

If you cannot locate your Library folder in Mac, please click here to find steps on what to do next. If you have not entered an e-mail address into Mendeley Desktop, your database file is called "online.sqlite". If you have entered your email address, the local database is a file called ""; for example, "". The database file containing information on the selected watched folder settings is called "monitor.sqlite".

Please note:The database is stored in SQLite format. You can browse its contents using the SQLiteBrowser tool



How can I use Mendeley Citation Plugin and Endnote Citation Plugin together in MS Word without any overlap problems?

  1. Open your Word document
  2. Choose File to go to Options at the low left corner 
  3. Add-ins should be marked
  4. Find Word-ins in the dropdown menu at the bottom and go
  5. You can unmark either Mendeley or Endnote option