I'm using the newest Version of MikTeX and TeXmaker. I am trying to use biblatex-apa with BibTeX, but it simply does not work (and believe me, I read all comments and forums). In TeXmaker, the default option is BibTeX. Here is my code:


  • 1
    You get the error: Package biblatex Error: Biber backend is required by style. because biblatex-apa must be run with backend=biber. You simply can't use backend=bibtex. So you need to switch to backend=biber and tell TeXmaker to run Biber: tex.stackexchange.com/q/154751/35864
    – moewe
    Sep 30, 2018 at 16:14
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    I think the APA style has never worked with BibTeX ...
    – Joseph Wright
    Sep 30, 2018 at 16:19

1 Answer 1


The MWE produces the error message

! Package biblatex Error: Biber backend is required by style.

That message is quite clear: biblatex-apa requires Biber as its backend because it uses Biber-only features that are not available with backend=bibtex. This requirement was introduced six years ago in version 4.5 (commit 5e70972).

So you must switch to

\usepackage[style=apa, backend=biber]{biblatex}

and tell TeXmaker to run Biber instead of BibTeX for you, see Biblatex with Biber: Configuring my editor to avoid undefined citations.

Please note also that the file name in \addbibresource must contain the file extension, so it should be


instead of \addbibresource{MAIN}.

  • Thank you! It still does not work... When running BibTex I now get
    – holger
    Sep 30, 2018 at 16:23
  • Process started INFO - This is Biber 2.1 INFO - Logfile is '_MAlN.blg' INFO - Reading '_MAlN.bcf' INFO - Found 19 citekeys in bib section 0 INFO - Processing section 0 INFO - Looking for bibtex format file 'MAIN' for section 0 ERROR - Cannot find 'MAIN'! INFO - ERRORS: 1 Process exited with error(s)
    – holger
    Sep 30, 2018 at 16:23
  • _Main is my bibliography...
    – holger
    Sep 30, 2018 at 16:24
  • @peter When you use \addbibresource you must include the file extension, so it should be \addbibresource{MAIN.bib}. Note that Biber 2.1 is quite an ancient version by today's standards (the current version is 2.11) - it was released about three and a half years ago.
    – moewe
    Sep 30, 2018 at 16:26
  • It still shows plenty of error messages (even more now). I think this problem is more complex...
    – holger
    Sep 30, 2018 at 16:34

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