I've spent hours and hours looking through posts and documentation and I still have no idea. The documentation is unending, I just want to know how to actually use it.

I use Gummi to edit my .tex files.

I use JabRef to manage my references, it stores them in a .bib file.

How, in simplest terms, do I use biblatex with Gummi?

I've read a lot of things about biber, but I still have no idea what it does or how to use it.

Also, what is a .bcf file?

Help is very much appreciated, I can't believe how difficult this has been, all I really wanted to do was omit the url field from my references.

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    I have no idea if gummi is a good editor. But the documentation is horrible. It doesn't mention anywhere how to configure tools and engines. I would suggest to use for the first test an editor with a decent documentation. tex.stackexchange.com/questions/154751/…. When it works there you can try to find out how (if) it works in gummi. Commented Oct 16, 2014 at 15:56
  • I not sure if compilation options Rubber or Latexmk allow you to compile a file with biblatex in Gummi, but in other case Gummi is able to work only with BibTeX. The easier solution using Gummi and PdfTeX compilation is work with BiBTeX to include \cite{} commands and only then switch to biblatex to finish the work ... without Gummi. A simpler solution could be use a more configurable editor, so you can use biblatex, arara or any other compiler (TeXworks, for example).
    – Fran
    Commented Oct 16, 2014 at 16:21
  • Current Gummi release does not recognize arara, but I recommend it. Do create a local script, call it latexmk and use it to call arara and set Gummi compilation option to use latexmk. Works like a charm.
    – jotagah
    Commented Oct 18, 2014 at 1:29
  • I think your best bet it to choose latexmk-based compilation. It explicitly supports Biber, and as Gummi doesn't have any config options in this area and has not been updated for 2 years, it's likely your best bet.
    – Joseph Wright
    Commented Oct 18, 2014 at 16:52
  • @JosephWright without any intention to polemize, I agree that Gummi has not been updated for a long time, but the linux version is still IMHO a lightful editor to simple text development -- almost an auto real-time compilation cycle.
    – jotagah
    Commented Oct 18, 2014 at 18:04

1 Answer 1


I recommend to use arara, a very flexible tool to compile LaTeX documents, including, but not limited to, biblatex with biber -- and also deleting the aux files generated in the process.

I adapted from here:

% arara: pdflatex: { shell: yes } 
% arara: biber
% arara: pdflatex: { shell: yes }
% arara: clean: { files: [ test.aux, test.log] }

    Address = {Philadelphia},
    Author = {William Labov},
    Publisher = {University of Pennsylvania Press},
    Title = {Sociolinguistic Patterns},
    Year = {1972}}

    Address = {The Hague},
    Author = {Noam Chomsky},
    Publisher = {Mouton},
    Title = {Syntactic Structures},
    Year = {1957}}


As first example citation here is \cite{Chomsky1957}. 
Here is another example citation \cite{Labov1972}

Set Gummi to compile with latexmk (from Edit -> Preferences -> Compilation).

Updated: 2017, Jun 11 -- just to clarify my tip

You have two options here (a dirty hack just to use Gummi with arara):

(1) With Windows/Linux, write a simple script that calls arara and name it latexmk. Put it in your path just before the latexmk path (usually before texlive or miktex path).

(2) With Linux, you can include

`alias latexmk='arara'`

within the ~/.bash_aliases file (create one if it does not exist), or inside the .bashrc or .profile files. I used the .bash_aliases way.

I hope that the developers of Gummi will add an arara option at compilation option from Preferences menu in a future release. Until there we will need to use some kind of dirty hack like this.

Save it as test.tex and load it with gummi.

  • Thank you. One note though: for biber (unlike bibtex), you only need to run pdflatex once before and once afterwards. Commented Dec 21, 2014 at 16:09
  • @Ricardo. pdflatex + biber + pdflatex + pdflatex.
    – jotagah
    Commented Dec 21, 2014 at 17:32
  • @jotagah, hmmm, let's confirm that: tex.stackexchange.com/questions/219137/pdflatex-biber-runs Commented Dec 22, 2014 at 20:13
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    @Mårten, once you have chose create an alias inside the .bashrc aliases file that has the line alias latexmk='arara', that's all you need to do. Setting the path is needed with the second approach: to create a script to call arara. Hope this helps.
    – jotagah
    Commented Jun 11, 2017 at 13:31
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    @Mårten, have add the lines % arara: pdflatex: { shell: yes }, % arara: biber, % arara: pdflatex: { shell: yes } in the begining of your tex file?
    – jotagah
    Commented Jun 28, 2017 at 13:41

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