I am referring to https://www.overleaf.com/learn/latex/How_to_Write_a_Thesis_in_LaTeX_(Part_4):_Bibliographies_with_BibLaTeX for creation of a Thesis Document in LaTeX through TexShop.

My LaTeX document has several chapters like Introduction, Methodology, etc. I have created a references file references.bib in the same directory as the main file main.tex. Now, I have citations present in the references.bib file and I have cited each citation in the corresponding chapters at places they appear, eg. in Introduction cited paper1 as \cite{paper1}, in Introduction cited paper2 as \cite{paper2}, cite paper3 in Methodology as \cite{paper3} etc. The references in the references.bib file are in the following format:

    author        = {Albert Einstein},
    title         = {Zur Elektrodynamik bewegter K{\"o}rper. (German) [On the electrodynamics of moving bodies]},
    journaltitle  = {Annalen der Physik},
    year          = {1905},
    volume        = {322},
    number        = {10},
    pages         = {891-921},
    doi           = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/andp.19053221004}

    author        = {Donald Knuth},
    title         = {Knuth: Computers and Typesetting},
    year          = {1984},
    url           = {http://www-cs-faculty.stanford.edu/~uno/abcde.html}

    author        = {Michel Goossens and Frank Mittelbach and Alexander Samarin},
    title         = {The \LaTeX\ Companion},
    year          = {1993},
    publisher     = {Addison-Wesley},
    location      = {Reading, Massachusetts}

I am now stuck in the situation that how I can compile the references and generate the main.tex LaTex file so that I have one final list of bibliography for the entire document (means references 1-3) after the conclusion section of the thesis. I am using the following for this purpose at the beginning of document:


And this for displaying references at the place I need them to be i.e. after the Conclusion Section.


I am able to compile the LaTeX main.tex file easily and the whole document generates without the references, but when I try to do BibTeX on the main.tex file, I get the following errors:-

This is BibTeX, Version 0.99d (TeX Live 2018)
The top-level auxiliary file: main.aux
I found no \citation commands---while reading file main.aux
I found no \bibdata command---while reading file main.aux
I found no \bibstyle command---while reading file main.aux
(There were 3 error messages)

I am new to using LaTeX, referred to other documentation as well but still am confused including the website I mentioned which I am primarily referring to. I would really appreciate if you could kindly help me with this. Cheers and Thanks a lot!

  • 4
    Welcome to TeX.SE! You need to run biber, not bibtex because \usepackage{biblatex} is the same with \usepackage[backend=biber]{biblatex}. You can try backend=bibtex but I suggest to use biber ... – Mensch Dec 20 '18 at 6:41
  • 2
    @Joyjit Chatterjee please add a fully compilable MWE instead of links that redirects to internal websites. – Raaja_is_at_topanswers.xyz Dec 20 '18 at 6:47
  • It is not entirely clear what you are doing, because your question does not include a short example document (a so-called MWE/MWEB, see tex.meta.stackexchange.com/q/228 and tex.meta.stackexchange.com/q/4407), but from what I have seen so far I would guess that you need to tell your editor to run Biber instead of BibTeX, see tex.stackexchange.com/q/154751/35864. In case you don't know or are interested tex.stackexchange.com/q/63852/35864 explains brilliantly what BibTeX and Biber do. If you are still having issues after reading the links, we need to see an MWE. – moewe Dec 20 '18 at 8:51
  • Thanks its alright. Kurt's answer worked brilliantly. I used backend = bibtex and was able to compile the main.tex file with all references in place. – JChat Dec 20 '18 at 9:27
  • @JoyjitChatterjee If at all possible consider switching to backend=biber (and tex.stackexchange.com/q/154751/35864). Biber is more powerful than BibTeX and has been the default backend of biblatex for quite some time. BibTeX is considered a 'legacy backend' and supported for backwards compatibility. – moewe Dec 20 '18 at 10:12

Because you are using the line


you need to run biber instead bibtex. It is the same if you use


because backend=biber is default option. You can try backend=bibtex to call bibtex but I suggest to use biber.

  • 1
    Just to add that usually switching to Biber should be as easy as using backend=biber and telling one's editor to run Biber instead of BibTeX: tex.stackexchange.com/q/154751/35864 – moewe Dec 20 '18 at 13:40
  • Thanks @moewe , so basically, is using backend = biber going to be significantly different than telling my editor to run Biber instead of BibTex? Actually, I checked the Typeset menu but couldn't find Biber in that. Do I need to install a package etc. to use Biber. I have BibTex and LaTex with a few other options in the typeset menu in TexShop. – JChat Dec 20 '18 at 13:45
  • @JoyjitChatterjee Yes, it is different. These are two steps of the process of switching to Biber. Step one is to tell biblatex that you would like to use Biber, that is done with backend=biber (or by omitting the option entirely, since backend=biber is the default, but I prefer to set the backend option explicitly). Step two is to tell your editor to run Biber (cf. the link). Steps three to $n$ would be to try to compile a document with LaTeX, Biber, LaTeX, LaTeX, to make sure that Biber is installed if that does not work and follow tex.stackexchange.com/q/286706/35864 – moewe Dec 20 '18 at 13:49

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