16 October 2006

bibus - quick and dirty review

Bibus is a free bibliographic reference management application, developed by Pierre Matineau. It uses either MySQL or SQLlite to store references.Will it usurp EndNote? - too soon to say, but it has potential.Based on a quick and dirty evaluation


  • works on most modern platforms
  • works with OpenOffice.org and Microsoft Word
  • multi-user
  • pretty easy to use - but read the documentation first - it's short
  • imports RIS, EndNote, Bibtex, ISI, Medline
  • hierarchical organisation of references and queries using drag and drop


  • Very few styles available as yet, but users can develop their own and they can be hosted on the bibus wiki.
  • At present only PubMed and etBlast onPubmed can be searched directly
  • I managed to hang it and couldn't really figure out easily how to fix the problem. Some debug message appeared but was not helpful, and the process could not be cancelled without using Task manager

On the whole it's a contender, but as it is in development it's likely to be a while before enough styles and searchable databases are integrated, and the worst of the bug resolution is finished.