EndNote Basic/Online/Web

This guide will provide support for students and researchers who are using either Endnote Basic or the full Endnote Online

What are Endnote Online and Endnote Basic?

Over the past couple of years, Endnote (which used to be a desktop citation management system) has moved into the cloud. As of September 2016, the cloud version comes in 2 flavors:

  1. Endnote Basic: This is the free version of Endnote. You can sign up for it through Endnote's website here, or through UNC's Web of Science subscription (instructions for this on the next page). Endnote Basic comes with limited features--for example, you will have less storage space than in the full version, and you will not be able to mark up PDFs within the program. On the upside, it is free, and may be a good substitute for Refworks, at least temporarily.
  2. Endnote Online: This is the cloud based service that comes with the full version of Endnote Desktop. Note that you will need to purchase the full Endnote before you can use it. For more information on how to purchase Endnote, see below.

Creating a Free Endnote Basic Account

Through our subscription to the World of Science database, UNC affiliates can create a free account on Endnote Basic (Online). This will allow you to take advantage of some, although not all, of the basic functionality of Endnote without buying the desktop version. Here's how to do it.

1. Navigate to Web of Science, and click on the Endnote link at the top of the screen.

Web of Science

2. You will see a pop-up which will ask you to sign in. Click on the link that says Register, below the sign-in fields.

3. Follow the prompts to create your account.

4. When you have created your account, you will see a pop-up telling you that you are signed into Web of Science. Do not worry--you have not done anything wrong. Click OK, and you will see another pop-up with the Endnote End User License Agreement.


5. Click I agree, and you will be taken to the Endnote Basic homescreen. Congratulations, you now have an Endnote account!

Endnote Basic

Create an Account with Endnote Online

Setting up an EndNote Online Account

(Note that this is the procedure for creating an Endnote Online account if you have bought the full software package. To create a free Endnote Basic account through UNC's Web of Science subscription, see the previous page of this guide).

Open your EndNote library.  Click on the Sync Library button Sync Library in the toolbar along the top.  The EndNote Online Login dialog box will open.  If you:


  • Do NOT already have an EndNote Online account: Click the Sign Up button to open the User Registration dialog box.  Enter the required information and click the I Agree button to complete the registration process.  
  • Do already have an EndNote Online account: Enter the email address and password for your EndNote Online account.  Click OK.

Web Login

Syncing a Desktop Library with Endnote Online

  1. Click on the Sync Library button Sync Library in the toolbar of the desktop version of Endnote.  The Sync process synchronizes both sets of references (those in your desktop library and those in your Online account), including file attachments.

Note: We recommend that you set aside one Endnote library file that will be your "sync file," and only sync references from that file with Endnote Online. Keep in mind that if you sync a desktop file with Endnote Online, all of the references you already have saved in your Endnote Online account will appear in your desktop file.

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