Add support for offline mode



That would be just perfect on that way


I’ve also been looking at switching to paperpile from papers 3. However, no offline support is a deal breaker. It would be great if this feature was added.


Having just started commuting by train, I would also benefit greatly from the ability to insert citations from Paperpile while offline…


I am using Zotero with Zotfile so far and just started my 30 day trial with Paperpile.
So far I really like it, but the ability to search papers offline would be an essential feature. However, since I mainly read on a tablet, I agree that a mobile app with offline functionality would be even more important.


Indeed, integrated search of PDFs, both on and offline, is probably the feature I miss the most having switched from Mendeley


I’ll add my vote for offline: absolutely critical to have reference manager when I travel (fly or remote) and have no internet access.

Paperpile is among the best of the many reference managers I’ve used so far (Papers, Mendeley, Zotero, Endnote, Bibdesk, Jabref, …) and that’s why I support it with my subscription. But the inability of Paperpile work offline is what forces me to juggle a concoction of subpar tools, instead of one great reference manager. Please make this a priority.


+1 in support for this feature


Mind sharing your workflow in this respect?

This would be potentially interesting to many users who look for a temporary workaround until offline mode is a default feature.




vpnj: I agree with Robert, it would be helpful to know what you use! I try to find the PDFs I need using the file browser search function (eg Mac OS Spotlight). For writing, I type in a note of the reference into Google Docs, then highlight the ref, and insert a Docs comment that it needs fixing when I get online again (so I don’t forget it). Pretty tedious, but I’ve been doing it a lot and haven’t figured out a better method. As I understand it, offline support is NOT something the Paperpile team is planning to work on, so it would be very helpful for other users to share their techniques.


Another option could be to use Mendeley to index the local PDF folder synchronized from Google Drive, and use Mendeley PDF full text search.

Unfortunately, Mendeley does not store annotations together with PDF, so Mendeley cannot be used to annotate PDFs in a way that can be accessed from either Google Drive or from MetaPDF. MetaPDF highlighting is compatible with Mendeley, but Mendeley does not show text notes.


And there is no way to insert references in offline mode, sadly.



I can not work with paperpile without an offline option. How can I cite a paper on a google docs if I have no access to it offline as well as online. We would like to work anywhere we want without depending on internet access to do so. If it is not on your roadmap it should be!


As a researcher who has to work in both online and offline environments often I think an offline mode to allow adding of references is a critical feature. Of course I agree that a plugin for Microsoft Word and for Apple Pages is a critical next step, however, I suspect that many perspective users will not “buy in” to paperpile without an offline mode.


I thought that the point of syncing papers locally was partly to read them offline. I’m a little confused why opening a paper in the Paperpile viewer would require a server.

Anyway, just using Google Drive is not an option on ChromeOS (ironically) since there is no way to keep an entire folder offline, only individual files, which is way too much user overhead.


Another vote for offline mode. All of my papers on paperpile I uploaded from my machine, so I would like to be able to search and use them even when I don’t have wifi available. Like say when I’m on the bus, as I am for 2-4 hours daily. Would just be nice, and really really helpful.

Guess I’ll just go back to zotero?


It is not just about searching offline.

The fact that paperpile does not support full text searching of PDFs is a huge disadvantage on its own.

A responce I got in the past that we are supposed to use standard Google Drive search functionality for this purpose. However, this is extremely limiting, since Google Drive does not support restriction of search to a specific folder, does not differentiate search results between title/abstract/content of the article, and does not highlight search results in the text of the PDFs.

A workaround I came up with is to have my Paperpile Google Drive folder containing PDFs synchronized to my computer, and tell Mendeley to watch that folder. I can then use Mendeley for offline work and for searching the content, and use Paperpile as the importer and Google Docs citation manager.

Really look forward to either Mendeley providing integration with Google Docs, or Paperpile adding offline and search features, so I can use just one product. Or maybe someone else will come up with yet another reference manager that combines the best from these two products.


I just started my 30 day trial and thus far I have found Paperpile to be useful. In fact my “cohort” is considering using it so that we are able to work together. The major problem that we are seeing is how to work if there isn’t an offline mode. There are times in airports, on airplanes, at the beach or especially when we go on writing retreats and don’t have internet access. This summer and next summer I will spend time in Latin America researching and writing. There will be days at a time when I won’t have internet access and don’t want to have to stop writing or use Word instead of Google to get things done. Hopefully, you will work to develop an offline mode.


Paperpile is great. Offline mode is essential. I live in the US but travel quite a bit, meaning I write and need to cite on a lot of planes. Would love to see this feature added. Right now I am using Ulysses and Papers. Love Ulysses, could definitely live without Papers, but it works with Ulysses…kind of. Your app has made me seriously consider writing in Docs, which I dig for the collaborations. But if I can’t cite offline, it makes it difficult to fully commit. First world problems I guess…but we want it all…


+1 for being able to read my .pdfs while offline.

On a related note, is there a way to change where the .pdfs are stored? Chrome is on my C: drive, and I try to keep C: as clean of data as possible (SSD with limited space)… what if they were stored on my D drive in a folder, or some sort of CHrome shelled folder? That would help solve my problem, and maybe allow them to be viewable ofline? (dreaming?)


Paperpile caches PDF files in your Chrome profile. It cannot control where this Chrome Profile is saved.

For security reasons it’s not possible to save files outside of the Chrome sandbox, i.e. in a folder outside of the Chrome profile.