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EndNote: Getting Started

A guide to using EndNote X8 with some help for X7 & X6

Guide Update!

EndNote X8 has just been rolled-out across WA Health. There are a few more features in EndNote X8 (see What's New in EndNote X8? below right) including a change to the iconography and look. We will update this guide as quickly as possible to reflect these changes, but in the meantime the basic functionality remains the same so these instructions overall remain relevant.

How to get EndNote X8


The WA Health Libraries Network (WAHLiN) has purchased a WA Health licence for EndNote and EndNote Online (formerly EndNote Web)!  

EndNote X8 should be available on your WNHS work computer - if not log a job with the Health Information Network.

Once downloaded you should Configure EndNote X8 to Find Full Text .

Minimum requirements for Windows are Windows 7 and Word 2007. 

Minimum requirements for Macs are OS X 10.10 and Word 2011.

See more about EndNote Compatibility - but don't download from this site

Download EndNote X8 on your home computer from the appropriate tab above

EndNote X8 is compatible across platforms you can create your library on a MAC, save it as a compressed library on a USB then open it on a PC (and vice-versa). EndNote X7 & X8 are also compatible. 

 Mac users & EndNote X7: There are known compatibility problems with Cite While You Write & Word 2016 for Macs. See these Recommendations. These problems have been resolved with EndNote X8EndNote X8 is compatible with the latest Mac OS Sierra. EndNote X7 is not!


WNHS staff download of EndNote X8 @home for Windows PC 

  1. Uninstall any previous versions of EndNote on your PC. Make sure all libraries, edited styles, filters or connectors stored within the EndNote program folders are saved on an external hard drive / USB prior to the uninstall.
  2. Check compatibility requirements
  3. Click on Windows PC Download for EndNote X8 fill-in all boxes > click Submit to begin the download.
  4. Open the zipped file > copy & paste both the .msi and license.dat files onto the desktop.
  5. Close Word if it is open so EndNote can install a cite-while-you-write toolbar into Word.
  6. Click on the .msi file.
  7. Follow the installation prompts using the default options UNTIL Select Install Type > choose Custom installation option.
  8. Continue accepting default options UNTIL Select Features.
  9. Click on red crosses next to Additional connections  Additional Filters   Additional Styles > select 'Entire feature will be installed on local hard drive' for each one.
  10. After this continue selecting the default options until the software install is completed. You can then delete both files from your desktop.
  11. Once downloaded you should Configure EndNote X8 to Find Full Text .
  12. It is important to install updates as prompted.

WNHS staff download of EndNote X8 @home for Macs 

  1. Uninstall any previous versions of EndNote on your Mac Make sure all libraries, edited styles, filters or connectors stored within the EndNote program folders are saved on an external hard drive / USB prior to the uninstall.
  2. Check compatibility requirements - must have Word 2011 or 2016 (version 15.21.1 or later)
  3. Click on Mac Download for EndNote X8 and complete the form to sign the licence agreement.
  4. Once you fill-in all boxes & click Submit the software will automatically begin to download creating a zipped file.
  5. Open the file. You will see a .dmg file & instruction PDF.
  6. Close Word if it is open so EndNote can install a Cite-While-You-Write toolbar into Word.
  7. Click on the .dmg file and a window will open with the .dmg file on one side & Applications folder on the other.
  8. Drag the .dmg to the Applications folder to install.
  9. Once downloaded you should Configure EndNote X8 to Find Full Text .
  10. It is important to install updates as prompted. 
  11. Check the CWYW toolbar in Word: Go to EndNote tab in Word > Preferences > Application > make sure EndNote (not EndNote Online) is showing

Note: EndNote X8 is compatible with the latest Mac OS Sierra. EndNote X7 is not!


First Steps...


EndNote allows you to create many separate 'libraries'. However, it is highly recommended that you work with only one library and use the groups function to organise your references.

  • Double click on the EndNote icon (at KEMH Library go to the Start menu > Health > EndNote > EndNote Program).
  • Do not integrate with EndNote Web at this time and click Finish.
  • Click on Create a new Library.
  • A dialogue box will open with My EndNote Library.enl as the name of the new library.


  • In the top Save in box select where you wish to save your library (to your USB or the file path of your EndNote program > Examples folder if at home).
  • Type a name for your library in the File name box > click Save.
  • A new library window will appear.

Mac & EndNote X7 users: Once you click Create a new library > name your library > tick Save as Package - this will make it easier to make stable backups.



  • The Preview tab on the right displays the highlighted reference formatted in the selected reference or output style.
  • The Groups pane on the left allows you to organise your references into subject groups.
  • You are now ready to add references to your personal library!



In EndNote X7 the new library will open with the preview tab on the right hand side.



To move this panel to the bottom of the window click on the Layout arrow (bottom right Windows PC, top right Mac) & select Bottom (or Bottom Split to have the Reference/Preview & PDF displayed side by side on the bottom of the window).



How can EndNote help?


EndNote is a bibliographic software program by Thompson Reuters that allows you to:

  • Create a database or 'library' of references.
  • Search and download references from electronic databases and library catalogues.
  • Store downloaded PDFs with their relevant references.
  • Generate bibliographies in specific styles with the click of a button.
  • Share your library or group of references with your research colleagues.

What's new in EndNote X8?

  • You can now share your entire library, including references, groups, group sets, full text attachments, annotations and notes with up to 100 other EndNote X7 and X8 users.
  • New activity feed that shows shared library member activity, including when new members join the shared library.
  • Automatically find and apply bulk reference updates.
  • Unified iconography across both Mac and Windows.
  • Clear and simple Configure Sync option:


What is EndNote Online?

EndNote is the desktop version. EndNote Online (formerly EndNote Web) is the online version.

EndNote Online complements your EndNote desktop library by enabling you to:

  • Work collaboratively and share your EndNote Library.
  • Access your EndNote library from multiple locations without making multiple copies of your library.

Find out more about EndNote Online!

Note: You must create a new online account for EndNote X8 even if you have an existing web account with a previous version of EndNote.

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