I'm using an internal bibliography in my main .tex file :


Is there a way to tell which entries I'm not referencing so I can remove them? I'm using texshop, and except for a

LaTeX Warning: There were undefined references.

it tells me nothing more specific (I think).

  • The LaTeX Warning: There were undefined references. tells you that you either using \refs without proper \labels or IIRC a wrong \cite. Feb 1, 2011 at 10:34
  • 1
    Further up in the log file there will be more specific message telling you what references weren't defined.
    – Seamus
    Feb 1, 2011 at 10:40
  • 1
    did you run latex->bibtex->latex ?
    – user2478
    Feb 1, 2011 at 11:04

1 Answer 1


First, to find out uncited bibliography item, you can use


to enable back reference. Be sure that there is a blank line after each \bibitem. Then check the pdf file, you'll see uncited item clearly.

Test file:


\bibitem{foo} foo

\bibitem{bar} bar


Second, for cross references, which is an independent question, there should be a waring like:

LaTeX Warning: Reference `XXX' on page 123 undefined on input line 1234.
  • I think he is looking to find out which entries in the thebibliography environment are not cited, not which cites are not in the environment. Feb 1, 2011 at 11:56
  • Ah, I missed it. There're two independent questions.
    – Leo Liu
    Feb 1, 2011 at 12:19
  • Sorry. I was not clear in my question. I was indeed looking for uncited references which was answered by @Leo. The error message I was pointing out has nothing to do with this, and the cross reference problem was not my present issue.
    – Nigu
    Feb 3, 2011 at 9:10

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