How to break long URLs in Bibtex

Hello fellows,

today I would like to share some insights on URLs in a bibtex file and how to do a line brake for long URLs so they fit on the page.

Ok, a quick word why that is interesting:

I am currently writing my Master’s Thesis and had some troubles with my bibliography, here a screenshot so you can see what I mean:

long URLs do not properly wrap at line end

Here is what I did to get this:

\usepackage{url}
\usepackage{breakurl}
\usepackage[breaklinks]{hyperref}

and this is the bibtex entry:

@misc{GartnerNFC,
author = "Clark, Sarah",
howpublished = "nfcworld.com",
month = aug,
note = "Cited July 3rd 2012",
title = "{Gartnerโ€™s Hype Cycle places NFC at โ€˜Peak of Inflated Expectationsโ€™}",
url = "http://www.nfcworld.com/2011/08/11/39008/gartner-hype-cycle-places-nfc-at-peak-of-inflated-expectations",
year = "2011"
}

So, as you can see in the screenshot above, the URL does not get broken. So how to fix that?

After reading this entries (https://groups.google.com/group/comp.text.tex/browse_thread/thread/b2ff42fe61a0ee3a), I checked the following file and found the characters where URLs are allowed to be wrapped to a new line (search for “\UrlBreaks”): http://www.tex.ac.uk/tex-archive/support/ltx2x/url.sty

Since in my case there are a lot of “-” in the URL, I want latex to use them too to break lines. That can be done with this command, right below of “\usepackage{url}” (so actually I add “/” and “-“):

\def\UrlBreaks{\do\/\do-}

Here is how the result looks like:

URLs now get wrapped at line end

I hope this helps you.

Cheers
norbert

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30 thoughts on “How to break long URLs in Bibtex

  1. Thank you for providing this information, it helped me a lot !

    Another way without modifying “url.sty” and using the “hyperref.sty” package, is to put the following in the preemble of .tex file;

    \usepackage{url}
    \usepackage[breaklinks]{hyperref}
    \usepackage[hyphenbreaks]{breakurl}

    This way, you can have hyper-references and URL breaks at the same time…

    Thanks again…

  2. Thank you so much, this is the only thing that has worked for me. Im handing in my thesis tomorrow, and I’m so happy to have fixed this first!

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