Install Firefox and Zotero on a USB drive and you can take your library with you to use on any computer!
First, download and install Portable Firefox for Windows or Mac on your USB drive. This is a special edition of Firefox designed to run entirely from a portable drive. It keeps its own settings, bookmarks and Zotero library separate from the settings installed on your computer.
Then, copy your Zotero library from your computer to your USB drive, using either method below:
You might want transfer your references between Zotero and EndNote if:
Please note that PDFs do not export between programs - only citation information.
Zotero to EndNote
EndNote to Zotero
It is important to fully understand how Zotero stores its data, so you can correctly back up your Zotero library and, when disaster strikes, recover it. By default, your entire Zotero library is stored in the 'zotero' directory of your Firefox profile. The most important file in this directory is the zotero.sqlite file, which contains the majority of your data: item metadata, notes, tags, etc. The directory also contains a 'storage' subdirectory, containing all of your file attachments, such as PDFs, web snapshots, audio files, or any other files you have imported (note that files that are linked are not copied into this subdirectory).
Your 'zotero' directory will likely contain several other files. These can include zotero.sqlite.bak (an automatic backup of zotero.sqlite, which is updated when you quit Firefox and the existing zotero.sqlite.bak file hasn't been updated in the last 12 hours) and zotero.sqlite.[number].bak files (automatic backups of zotero.sqlite that are created during certain updates to the Zotero extension).
Warning: Before you copy, delete or move any of these files, be sure that Firefox is closed. Failure to close Firefox before moving these files can damage your data.
Syncing your library means backing up your citations on Zoter's server. This way you can access your citation remotly and retrieve them if something happens to your personal computer.
This arrow will appear in your Zotero library. It will spin when it is uploading your citations.
If you're regularly using more than one computer in your research, Zotero's sync feature can keep your library up to date on all of them. Zotero can store a copy of your library on the Zotero.org server and check it for updates whenever you open your library on a different computer. All your computers must be running the same version Zotero and be configured to sync to the server.
For more details and help troubleshooting sync problems, check the Zotero site.