Saving an Endnote Library

Many MSK staff favor Endnote as their citation management software. Saving an Endnote Library is one of the issues that requires special attention from the Endnote user.

In the desktop version of EndNote, a Library is saved with the extension .enl after its name, and its associated Data folder, with the extension .Data after its name. (NOTE: On Mac computers there is also an option to save your Library as a .enpl file, which combines both the library and the data file into one.)

The Library contains the records and the Data folder is intended for PDFs of the full text associated with the Endnote Library records, as well as anything inserted into the Image field of a reference. Even if no PDFs or images are available, the Data folder will still be there; however a Data folder should never be deleted. Data folders should never be moved or copied without first compressing them into a .enlx file. From there, the compressed zip file can be moved, copied, and shared.

Endnote library (.enl), associated data folder (.Data) and the compressed zip file of both (.enlx)

It is important to know that saving an Endnote Library to any network drive does not work well. There is a very high chance of getting a pop-up Damaged Library message at some point if the Library is saved to any drive other than your local drive, i.e. to your computer. On a PC you may consider This PC>Documents for saving an Endnote Library. If you want to save a Library to a network drive for better security you can save a backup copy either as a Compressed Library as explained above or by using the Endnote File>Save a Copy feature. You can save the backup copy to your personal drive or, as a Read Only copy, to a shared drive for your collaborators’ use (but not for their adding/removing the content). As an alternative, instead of using a shared drive for sharing your Endnote Library with others, you can use the Endnote Online companion to your desktop Endnote for collaboration.


  • Don’t save an Endnote Library to a network drive.
  • Never delete the .Data folders associated with Endnote Libraries.
  • Don’t try moving the Library separately from its Data Folder, use the Compressed Library feature instead.

MeSH Mapping in PubMed

The latest version of PubMed has made a significant change behind the scenes that for more sophisticated PubMed users, needs to be addressed. If a PubMed user manually types in a subject heading, a MeSH term, in the search box, double quotation marks should now be used around these terms even with the [MeSH], [MH], or [Majr] fields; otherwise PubMed will automatically map to a variety of Mesh terms.

There can be times when PubMed’s mapping of [Mesh] designated terms can be useful. If, for instance, you knew that the Mesh term for cancer was neoplasm, but did not make it plural, using double quotation marks would retrieve no results while not using quotation marks would retrieve relevant results as PubMed is able to map to the correct Mesh term.

Even though manually typing in Mesh terms into the search bar can be more efficient, it can also become problematic. It is advised to simply use the MeSH Database to not only ensure that you are inputting the terms properly, but also to ensure that you are using the correct term for the concept you are searching for!

Keyword Proximity Searching

Sometimes just combining search terms (keywords) with the standard Boolean ‘AND’ operator is not granular enough to focus results in to retrieve relevant articles. Typically, in addition to Boolean Operators and double quotes for exact phrases, many databases also allow specifying that the keywords searched be within a certain number of words of each other in either direction. This bridge between the narrow exact phrase search and the broad ‘AND’ operator search is called Proximity or Adjacency searching and it uses Proximity, or Adjacency, operators. Proximity searching is not applicable to searching with subject headings, it is applicable to keyword searching only. Proximity operators help increasing specificity of the search. Typically, in complex search strategies, both Proximity and Boolean operators are used.

Proximity searching is available in major proprietary databases, including Embase, Scopus, CINAHL, Web of Science, and databases on OVID platform, such as Medline and PsycINFO. Proximity searching is not available in Pubmed.

Proximity operators and rules for using them vary by database.

An example of Proximity Operators in Embase:

The databases specific Proximity Operators and the rules for their use can be found in the Help pages for each database.