Table of Contents

Is something in Zotero not working correctly for you? Here's how you can provide feedback that will allow others to help you most effectively.

Please provide both #1 and #2 listed below.

1. Provide a Report ID

Zotero

If you're experiencing a problem, before restarting Zotero, open the Help menu in Zotero and select “Report Errors…”.

In the window that pops up, submit the error report, and then copy the Report ID (not the contents of the report) and paste it into your Zotero Forums thread. Error reports aren't reviewed unless referred to in the forums, since the reports generally aren't helpful without context and/or follow-up.

If you're not able to provide a Report ID, be sure to include your operating system and Zotero version in your forum post.

Zotero Connectors

If you're experiencing a problem, before restarting the browser, open the Zotero Connector preferences:

In the Report Errors section, click “Submit Report”. A dialog box should pop up containing a Report ID. Post the Report ID to the Zotero Forums.

If you are unable to provide a Report ID, be sure to include your Zotero version, Zotero Connector version, browser, and operating system in your forum post.

2. Provide Steps to Reproduce

The most important thing you can do to help us fix a problem is to explain exactly what's happening and how to consistently reproduce it: if you can, we can almost certainly fix it quickly or tell you how to fix it. Note that after a problem occurs, other things in Zotero may temporarily break, so it's important to restart Zotero and try to repeat what you did before it occurred.

Post a message to the forums with the follow info:

  1. The exact steps you took to reproduce the problem (or, if you're unable to, a what you were doing when the problem first occurred), including, in order, any buttons or other interface elements that you clicked on
  2. What happened, including include exact error messages or other relevant text that you see on the screen
  3. What you expected to happen (unless you're reporting a clear error message)

Bad:

Zotero keeps crashing while I'm using it! HELP!

Good:

Report ID: 1892199645

When I drag an item from the Unfiled Items into another collection while a tag is selected in the bottom left, Zotero tells me it has to be restarted.

Steps to reproduce:

1. Start Zotero.
2. Click on “Unfiled Items” in the left pane.
3. Click on a tag in the tag selector.
4. Drag an item to another collection.

Zotero displays the message 'An error has occurred. Please restart Zotero.' in the middle pane.

Bad:

I can't figure out how to add a web page to Zotero.

Good:

Report ID: 19672347

I can't figure out how to add a web page to Zotero.

Steps to reproduce:

1. Click the leftmost toolbar button above the middle pane in Zotero, with a white plus inside a green circle.
2. Open the “More” menu.

I expected to see “Web Page” in this menu. I see “Artwork”, “Audio Recording”, “Bill”, etc., but nothing about adding a web page. How can I add a web page?

Reporting Startup Errors

For serious problems that prevent you from using the reporting wizard — such as Zotero not opening at all — we may need more information:

1. First, be sure you've tried restarting your computer. Many startup errors will go away after a computer restart.

2a. If you're able to access the Zotero Help menu, go to “Help → Debug Output Logging → Restart with Logged Enabled…”.

2b. If you can't access the Help menu, start Zotero via the command line. The steps for that depend on your platform:

macOS
  1. Open Terminal via Spotlight or from /Applications/Utilities.
  2. Go to the Terminal menu and open Preferences. In Settings→Window, make sure Scrollback is set to “Limit to available memory”.
  3. Paste the following into the terminal and hit return.
    /Applications/Zotero.app/Contents/MacOS/zotero -ZoteroDebug
Windows
  1. Press Windows-R or search for “run” to open the Run dialog.
  2. Click Browse and locate the Zotero application directory. This is typically "C:\Program Files (x86)\Zotero\".
  3. Select the "zotero.exe" file and click Open.
  4. The complete path to the "zotero.exe" file will be displayed in the text box. Add " -ZoteroDebug" to the end, after any closing quotes, with a space before the hyphen. For example:
    "C:\Program Files (x86)\Zotero\zotero.exe" -ZoteroDebug
  5. Click OK.
Linux


3a. If you used “Restart with Logging Enabled…”, you should be able to return to the Help menu, submit the output, and copy the given Debug ID to your forums post.

3b. If you used the command line, Zotero should start with a separate debug output window. Once it has stopped logging activity, click “Submit…” in the top section, click the clipboard icon to copy the Debug ID to the clipboard, and then paste the Debug ID into your forums post.

Alternative: Error Console

If the above steps don't work, repeat the steps above, replacing “-ZoteroDebug” with “-jsconsole”. Zotero should open with a separate Error Console window showing errors that have occurred. Right-click on any lines with a pink background, select Copy, and paste them into your forums post.