Manual Zotero Database Repair Instructions

Advanced (or adventurous) users can repair their databases without uploading them.

Be sure to make a backup of your entire Zotero data directory before performing these steps.


  1. Open Terminal in /Applications/Utilities.
  2. Type "cd" (without quotes) followed by a space, and then drag the 'zotero' folder from your Zotero data directory into the Terminal window to copy its path. Press Return.

Then type the following commands in Terminal:

  1. sqlite3 zotero.sqlite .recover > dump.sql
  2. mv zotero.sqlite zotero.sqlite.old
  3. sqlite3 zotero.sqlite < dump.sql

Your Zotero database should then be repaired, and Zotero shouldn't show any errors. Once you're sure of this, you can delete the zotero.sqlite.old file.

Post to the Zotero Forums with any problems.

Windows and Linux

Same as the macOS instructions, with appropriate modifications.