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At least, in teTeX/Linux, one can use environment variables like TEXINPUTS, BIBINPUTS, BSTINPUTS to change default directories. In TeXStudio/Mac, how to access these like variables to specify others directories than the defaults? Specifically, I have my own bibstyle.bst file with the other tex files in just one working directory but bibtex can't see it.

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Not a direct answer, but bibtex should find your .bst file if it is in the same directory as your source file, or in ~/Library/texmf/bibtex/bst. – Alan Munn Jun 25 '12 at 17:26

Here is a more or less direct answer. I am on Ubuntu 12.04 and TexStudio 2.4. I have given up on the environment variables and other bibtex command line solutions. An elegant workaround consists of following Mojca Miklavec's answer. Here is a summary:

  1. Run kpsexpand '$TEXMFHOME' in your console/terminal.
  2. The path generally corresponds to ~/texmf on a standard TeXLive distribution. If the displayed path doesn't exist (like in my case) then put your .bst files under ~/texmf/bibtex/bst and your .bib files under ~/texmf/bibtex/bib.

The bibtex calls from TexStudio should be able to run smoothly now.

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The default behavior of TeX Live is that $TEXMFHOME resolves to ~/texmf on Unix systems, but to ~/Library/texmf if installed via MacTeX on Mac OS X. – egreg Oct 4 '12 at 15:56

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