Access Databases from On and Off Campus - Library Technology

The Library provides access to thousands of databases of subscription-based articles, ebooks, images, and more. Because of licensing restrictions, these databases must be accessed through one of the following methods.

Current U of I Affiliated Faculty, Staff, and Students

Access to databases from anywhere is available to users in the following categories: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign staff, faculty, faculty emeriti, visiting scholars (with NetIDs), University High students, and currently enrolled students (including over the summer if they are enrolled in Fall classes).

On Campus

If you are using a computer connected to the campus wired or wireless network you have automatic access to many databases with no login required. Use Easy Search or one of our many Search Tools to access all electronic resources.

Off Campus

Connecting from off-campus doesn’t work as seamlessly as on-campus because the databases aren’t able to recognize that you are an U of I affiliated user. For example, going straight to a resource (like or following bookmarks or other links won’t give you full access unless you use one of these methods:

A) Connect Through the Library Website (Preferred Method)

Connect to your resource via Easy Search or one of our many Search Tools. These paths will send you through the “proxy server” and prompt you to login with your U of I NetID and password. Graduate students and university faculty and staff will also have to confirm their login with a 2FA device.

B) VPN (Virtual Private Network)

Installing the campus VPN client will allow you to securely connect to databases from any off-campus location by routing your activity through the campus network. Once connected, this will let you operate in the same way you would if you were on campus. This method is especially useful if you’re using a lot of different resources, browser bookmarks, or links you find outside of the library domain (e.g., Google or Google Scholar). NOTE: Do not use the default “Split-Tunnel” profile, please select “Tunnel-All” for this to work.  See VPN for installation instructions.

C) Proxy Bookmarklet Add-on for Web Browsers

If you find yourself on a subscription-based resource that doesn’t recognize that you are affiliated with the U of I and prompts you to pay for the article, you can click the proxy bookmarklet so that it will then prompt you to login as a U of I user then reload the page giving you full access.  See proxy bookmarklet for installation instructions.

D) Manually Add Proxy String to URL

This option just allows you to manually do what the proxy bookmarklet does for you automatically – just by editing your URL. This can be especially useful if you want to share a link to an electronic resource with other people (like on a syllabus or course site). Note: if the electronic resource provides a “stable URL” or “permalink”  use this as your base URL instead of the address shown in your browser’s address bar.

If this is your base URL:
Add to the beginning:
Result =

E) Configure Google Scholar

Add “UIUC Discover Full Text” links to quick access to more full text articles. See Google Scholar Configuration for instructions.

Alumni, Guests, and Other Non-Affiliated Users

Due to licensing restrictions, limited access (from a public computer at one of our Library locations) is provided for users in the following categories: alumni, non-emeriti retired faculty, guests, users with proxy borrowing privileges, donors, Research Park employees, visiting scholars (who don’t have a NetID), and students who are not currently enrolled or are taking non-credit courses. See also: Guide to Publicly Available Research Resources.

Questions & Troubleshooting

Although we have access to millions of items, we don’t have it all. If you didn’t find the item you’re looking for in the Library Catalog, i-Share Catalog, or Online Journals try requesting it through Interlibrary Loan.