How to move your Mac library to your PC

You can use your Papers license key to register up to three computers, whether they are Mac or PC. A large number of people who have been using Papers on their Mac, would like to move their library over to a PC, or sync their library with their PC.

Although we do not support syncing libraries, even between Macs, it is possible to either copy your Mac library to your PC or sync between the two libraries.

How to move your Mac library to your PC

First, find your library on your Mac. You can locate where your library is located by going to Preferences -> Library.


Close Papers, and use Finder to access your library folder.


Make a copy of your Papers2 folder, and copy it to an external harddrive, or to a dropbox folder.
Depending on the size of your library, this can take a little while.


Install Papers on your PC, and when the installation process is complete, navigate to:

In this folder, you will see a Papers2 folder. Delete the Papers2 folder on your PC and replace it with the Papers2 folder you copied from your Mac onto your portable harddrive.



Once the transfer is complete, you can start Papers. You will see Papers will take a few seconds to migrate your library. After this is complete, Papers will start up and you will see your Mac library.
You will have to register your PC with your Papers license, but you will only need to register it once.


How to Sync your Mac library with your PC using Dropbox

Sync between libraries is not officially supported, but many users successfully use a service like Dropbox to sync their libraries across computers.

The concept of syncing your library across your Mac and PC is the same as moving your library, described above. Most of the steps are similar, with some small differences.

  • On your Mac, copy your Papers2 folder to your dropbox account.
  • On your Mac, start Papers, and navigate to Papers -> Preferences -> Library.
  • Click on the "Change" button, to change the location of your Papers library. Note that you must have finished copying your Papers2 library folder to dropbox before this step.


  • Open your Papers2 library folder in dropbox, and select the Library.Papers2 file inside.
  • Click on "Change".


  • Your Mac library should look the same, but is now pointing to your Papers2 library on your dropbox. Your original Papers2 folder which is still in the location from which you copied it can be saved as a backup. We always encourage our users to frequently back up their Papers library to ensure you have a recent working copy in case of corruption of the database.

Now it is time to move to your PC

  • Close Papers on your Mac.
  • Make sure Dropbox has finished syncing your Papers2 library folder.
  • Start your PC and install Papers for Windows.
  • Open Papers
  • Go to File -> Options -> Library
  • Click on the "Browse" button next to your Papers library location


  • Select the Papers2 folder in your dropbox account


  • Click "OK".

  • Papers will ask you if you are sure you want to change your settings, and subsequently Papers will close. When you restart Papers, you will be using your library stored in your dropbox.

Important notes on syncing across computers

It is very important that the two computers sharing the same library on dropbox are never running Papers at the same time. This can cause both computers to try writing to the library, which will result in a corrupted database file. This can only be fixed by replacing the library with a backed up version.

In addition to this, before turning off your computer (either your Mac or PC!), make sure dropbox is finished syncing so all changes Papers made to the database and library have uploaded to dropbox successfully. If you turn off the computer in the middle of the sync, and you turn on your other computer and Papers tries to access the database from there, this might overwrite the library to an earlier version or it can cause your library to become corrupted (which can only be fixed by replacing it with a backed up version).