Frequently Asked Questions
Products such as Google Web Accelerator and the Firefox plugin DownThemAll can make web pages load more quickly. However, they can also cause problems when using electronic information resources that the library subscribes to, such as journal article databases.
When you try to use these resources through a web accelerator, it comes between your computer and the website you are using, masking your UC Berkeley IP address and caching pages from the site for later use. Consequently, you may not get correct results or may not be able to log in at all. This can happen whether you are on or off campus, and even when you are using our proxy service or VPN.
For this reason, we recommend turning off your web accelerator before using our website, or setting it to ignore specific databases, etc. that you plan to use. Please see the Wikipedia article about Google Web Accelerator.
- Be sure you have followed the configuration instructions exactly. Check to make sure you have entered the correct "automatic proxy configuration" URL into your browser settings:
- Be sure there are no spaces or extra characters to the left or right of the URL.
- Before closing the configuration dialog box, be sure to click the OK, Apply now, or Reload button if provided.
- Be sure you are using a browser that supports Automatic Proxy Configuration.
On a Macintosh, no version of Internet Explorer supports Automatic Proxy Configuration. Use Firefox, Safari, Mozilla, or Netscape for this purpose.
AOL's browser (a highly customized version of Internet Explorer), will not work with the proxy server. Use a different browser instead.
- Make sure that cookies are enabled in the browser.
Laptops which are configured with a static UC Berkeley IP address have problems using the proxy server. If you plug your laptop into the UC Berkeley network on campus, and you're not using the DHCP service, then you probably have a static UC Berkeley IP address.
If you're using Windows, you can check by going to Start > Control Panel > Network > TCP/IP > Properties. Look under the IP Address tab to see if there is an IP address specified there.
You can let us know about problems by using our Problem Report Form. Please include the fact that you're using a laptop with a Berkeley IP address.
Browsers configured to use the proxy will give an error message such as "Proxy Server Refused Connection" or "Internet Explorer unable to open webpage" when you try to access a resource URL that starts with "https". If you encounter this error, please try accessing a different resource whose URL does NOT begin with "https" (such as the Oxford English Dictionary). You will be asked to log into the proxy. After you've logged in, please access the resource with the "https" URL again. Subsequent access to "https" resources within the same browser session should not trigger this error.
Alternative: use the Virtual Private Network (VPN).
Eligibility is governed by our license agreements with the vendors of electronic resources. These typically stipulate that the Library can permit off-campus access to authorized users only.
- Current UC Berkeley students, faculty, and staff
- Continuing UC Berkeley students who, although unregistered, are in good standing and working towards a degree
- UC Berkeley emeritus professors and retired academic staff
- UCOP (University of California Office of the President) staff with valid UC Berkeley library cards
- UC Extension students with valid UC Berkeley library cards (must be a California resident and apply for the card in person)
- UC Extension faculty with valid UC Berkeley library cards.
- Visiting scholars and post-doctoral fellows who are registered with the Visiting Scholars and Postdoc Affairs office.
Off-campus access via the proxy server is not available to alumni, to former employees, to retired non-academic staff, to persons unofficially or only loosely affiliated with UC Berkeley, to associates of other University of California campuses, to those who have purchased a UC Berkeley Library Card, or to the public at large. Please see the Library Proxy Server page for details.
If you have questions concerning your eligibility for Library services, please contact the Privileges Desk in Doe Library (510-642-3403).
However, anyone may come into the Library and use these resources through the "Research Access" option on our public computers.
To receive a refund for billed items paid the original items checked out must be returned and a request for refund must be made within 90 days of payment. Go to the Library Privileges Desk in Doe Library with the original receipt of payment and photo ID. Complete the refund request form. A refund check will be issued within 6 to 12 weeks. Please note: processing/billing fees are non-refundable.
Bills are cleared immediately after the PayPal transaction is approved. Close the confirmation window and return to the fines to be paid page. Refresh the page to have the payment reflected on the screen. Please note that the fines to be paid page does not refresh automatically.
No. Automatic Proxy Configuration causes your browser to request only the Library's licensed electronic resources (as listed in a file that is loaded into your computer when the browser starts up) through the proxy server. It lets the browser send all other requests directly over the Internet. Thus, your personal use of web pages, e-mail, chat, etc. are not recorded or observed by the proxy server.
A browser that supports an Automatic Proxy Configuration feature is required. We recommend that you use a modern browser for which security updates are provided, such as Firefox 10+, Microsoft Internet Explorer 8+, Google Chrome 17+, or Safari 4+.