bibtex - make a bibliography for (La)TeX


bibtex [ -min-crossrefs =number ] [

-terse ] [ auxname ]


This manual page is not meant to be exhaustive. The complete documentation for this version of \*(TX can be found in the info file or manual "Web2C: A TeX implementation" .

\*(BX reads the top-level auxiliary ( .aux ) file that was output during the running of

R latex (1) or

R tex (1) and creates a bibliography ( .bbl ) file that will be incorporated into the document on subsequent runs of \*(LX or \*(TX. The auxname on the command line must be given without the .aux extension. If you don't give the auxname , the program prompts you for it.

\*(BX looks up, in bibliographic database ( .bib ) files specified by the \\bibliography command, the entries specified by the \\cite and \\nocite commands in the \*(LX or \*(TX source file. It formats the information from those entries according to instructions in a bibliography style ( .bst ) file (specified by the \\bibliographystyle command, and it outputs the results to the .bbl file.

The \*(LX manual explains what a \*(LX source file must contain to work with \*(BX. Appendix B of the manual describes the format of the .bib files. The `\*(BXing' document describes extensions and details of this format, and it gives other useful hints for using \*(BX.



-min-crossrefs option defines the minimum number of

crossref required for automatic inclusion of the crossref'd entry on the citation list; the default is two. With the

-terse option, \*(BX operates silently. Without it, a banner and progress reports are printed on stdout .


\*(BX searches the directories in the path defined by the BSTINPUTS environment variable for .bst files. If BSTINPUTS is not set, it uses the system default. For .bib files, it uses the BIBINPUTS environment variable if that is set, otherwise the default. See

R tex (1) for the details of the searching.

If the environment variable TEXMFOUTPUT is set, \*(BX attempts to put its output files in it, if they cannot be put in the current directory. Again, see

R tex (1). No special searching is done for the .aux file.


  • *.bst
        Bibliography style files.
  • btxdoc.tex
        ``\*(BXing'' - \*(LXable documentation for general \*(BX users
  • btxhak.tex
        ``Designing \*(BX Styles'' - \*(LXable documentation for style designers
  • btxdoc.bib
        database file for those two documents
  • xampl.bib
        database file giving examples of all standard entry types
  • btxbst.doc
        template file and documentation for the standard styles

All those files should be available somewhere on your system.

The host math.utah.edu has a vast collection of .bib files available for anonymous ftp, including references for all the standard \*(TX books and a complete bibliography for TUGboat.


R latex (1),

R tex (1).
Leslie Lamport, "\*(LX - A Document Preparation System" , Addison-Wesley, 1985, ISBN 0-201-15790-X.


Oren Patashnik, Stanford University. This man page describes the web2c version of \*(BX. Other ports of \*(BX, such as Donald Knuth's version using the Sun Pascal compiler, do not have the same path searching implementation, or the command-line options.