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Legacy RefWorks: Write-N-Cite 4 Installation Troubleshooting

Write-N-Cite Quick Start Guide

Download the new Write-N-Cite Quick Start Guide to help you get started!

Write-N-Cite Advanced Features and Other Options

Having Trouble Installing Write-N-Cite 4?

If you are having difficulties installing Write-N-Cite 4 on your computer, below are some steps you can try on your own to resolve the problem.  Please contact RefWorks Technical Support ( if you need further assistance.  If you continue to have installation issues and are on a deadline, you have the option to use Write-N-Cite III which is web-based.  For information on Write-N-Cite III, click here.

Write-N-Cite 4 for Windows is compatible with the following applications:

  • Microsoft Word 2007 and 2010

  • Windows XP, Vista and Windows 7.  

Write-N-Cite 4 for Macintosh is compatible with the following applications:

  • Microsoft Word for Mac 2008 and 2011

  • Mac OS X version 10.5, 10.6 & 10.7 (Leopard, Snow Leopard & Lion)

1. Verify you have the latest version of Write-N-Cite 4.  If you do not, you may wish to download a newer version.  To locate your current Write-N-Cite 4 version number, open Write-N-Cite 4 in Word and click on Preferences.  The version number will be displayed in the bottom left-hand corner.

To see which version is the latest version, log in to your RefWorks account with your browser.  Go to the Write-N-Cite 4 download page by selecting, Tools, Write-N-Cite.  The version number is listed just below the link for the Windows or Mac version.

To see what version you have downloaded, right click on the installer (wncinstall32.exe for example) and select properties. Now select the details tab. Your version will be shown there.

2. Verify that prerequisites are installed.  The prerequisites are various software components that may or may not be on your computer.  If you have some of the prerequisites, they may need only to be updated to the latest versions.  The software needed to run Write-N-Cite 4 includes:

a. Please make sure you have updated your computer’s operating system and MS Office itself by visiting

b. To download and install .NET 4 please visit Microsoft .NET Framework 4.

c. To download and install Visual Studio 2010 Tools for Office Runtime please visit Visual Studio 2010 Tools for Office Runtime.

d. Please make sure you have a current installation of Java on your computer by visiting the Java download site. (Note: an update of your Java will request the installation of a third-party toolbar for You will need to be aware that you need to decline the installation of this toolbar to avoid its installation.)

Still having trouble?

Q. I’ve installed the latest version of Write-N-Cite 4 but the tab does not appear. Where is it?

A. Please make sure you have updated your operating system and your installation of MS Office with all updates and patches available. Also make sure your installation of Java is updated as well by visiting here –

Q.  I tried to log in to Write-N-Cite 4 and got an “authorization token has expired” message.

A.  Make sure you copy the ENTIRE login code from the Write-N-Cite 4 download page in your RefWorks account.

If you are a Mac user running Mac OSX-10.5.8, you need to use Write-N-Cite 2.5 as this version of the Mac OS does not support Java 6.

Q.  How do I log in with my Institutional (Athens or Shibboleth) credentials?

A.  You need to use the Write-N-Cite 4 login code which you can get from within your RefWorks account by going to Tools, Write-N-Cite (do not try to enter a group code/login name or password).


The login code will identify you and link Write-N-Cite 4 with your RefWorks database for reference syncing.  If you are on your own personal computer, you do not need to log out of Write-N-Cite 4 and will not need additional authorization codes.  If you log out of Write-N-Cite 4, you will need a new log in code the next time you want to access your data in Write-N-Cite 4.

If you are on a public computer, make sure you log out of Write-N-Cite 4 and the next time you want to use Write-N-Cite 4 on another computer, you will need a new authorization code from the download page.

Downloading your references to a public computer renders them in a read-only mode.  No one can modify your data. 

Installing Write-N-Cite 4 and Logging In