Computer and Database Connection FAQ

Here are some technical/computer problems you may encounter when you attempt to connect to a database or other electronic resource. This FAQ does not cover how to search databases or otherwise use them; for that see the Research Methods page.

How do I connect to WorldCat, the library catalog?

Go to or click the WorldCat tab in the upper menu of any page of the library website.

How do I connect to databases?

Read this.

What is my library ID number? My password?

If you are a DTS student, your library ID is your student ID, and you create your own password. See information about My Account (ID and password).

My ID and password do not work when I try to login. What should I do?

You should receive a very specific error message when your login attempt fails. However, consider the following.

  • IDs and passwords are case sensitive. Be sure your keyboard CAPS LOCK is not on.
  • Your browser may be set to remember your ID and password. The password may have changed.
  • If you are both a DTS grad and Community User (e.g., TexShare user), then you have two library accounts under two different IDs.
  • Use the password reset feature to set a new password.
  • Contact library staff for assistance.

I encounter problems when I connect from my place of work, but not when I am at home or on campus. Why?

There are several possibilities.

  • A firewall or security software may be blocking the connection to the library proxy server. This could be a company firewall or it could be a personal firewall on your computer.
  • Your company may have configured browsers to use their own proxy server. This could possibly interfere with the library proxy, although it is not likely to do so.
  • Your web browser may be configured to reject all cookies or to disable javascript. Both are required by many of the databases provided by the library. You can check this yourself at the browser diagnostics page.

When I use eBooks on EBSCO, pdf files open in Adobe Acrobat in a separate window rather than in the browser. And I cannot advance to the next page.

An Adobe Acrobat setting controls this behavior. You can set it to display in the main browser window:

  1. Open Adobe Reader.
  2. Go to Edit==>Preferences==>Internet
  3. Click on the "Display PDF in Browser"

When I attempt to open a pdf file, my browser says "File is damaged and cannot be repaired".

Sometimes the error message is false. Configure your browser so pdf files first download to the desktop, then open in your pdf reader.

Where can I get a copy of EndNote?

We no longer have a site license for EndNote.

When I try to connect to a database, I am asked to login twice, once at the normal login page, and once at a different page, and the second login always fails. What should I do?

This probably means there is an error in the EZProxy configuration. Contact the library. Explain what happened. Include the name of the resource you were trying to access.

I got an EZProxy Hostname error. What should I do?

Contact the library. Explain what happened. Include the name of the resource you were trying to access and the computer hostname line listed on the error page. We will fix the problem.

Curious about what is wrong? The proxy server configuration file must include all the domains (e.g., and computer hostnames (e.g., associated with the restricted resources accessed by library users. Database vendors occasionally add new hosts or change names, sometimes without informing customers. The configuration file must be updated when this happens so you can use the the resources.

The links I save to databases do not work. What is wrong?

You cannot save a search results page because it is a temporary dynamically created page. It is created when you search, and it ceases to exist when you logoff. You can save a link to a database login page. However, links you save to database search pages will probably fail to work because they attempt to circumvent login. Use the links we provide.

Some features (commands) or some links in the database do not work correctly. What should I do?

In other words, you are able to login and to search, but some other feature does not work. For example, you not be able to view the full-text of an article, or printing may fail, or emailing may fail, or clicking certain links may do nothing. This is a very complex problem and there are many possible explanations. You probably need to contact library technical support staff. However, here is some helpful info.

  • Your browser may be configured incorrectly.
  • The database software may be malfunctioning. Library staff will have to ask the vendor to fix the problem.
  • The library proxy server may be failing. Library technical staff may be able to solve the problem by adjusting the proxy server configuration file. However, the library proxy server has certain limitations. First, EZProxy cannot proxy links in pdf/Adobe Acrobat Reader files that point to other resources outside the pdf file. The link will be clickable, but it will not proxy, so if you click it, you may be asked to login. Second, EZProxy is sometimes unable to rewrite links when a database vendor uses certain javascript techniques to supply and write links in the target page. The links will be clickable, but they will not proxy, so if you click them, you may be asked to login. Speak to library technical support staff when you are on campus; they can probably provide a link on campus that circumvents the proxy server so you can get the information you need.
  • The library may not have subscribed (paid for) all features in a certain resource. Library staff can tell you if that is the case.

Firefox can't find the server at but other browsers are working.

This can be caused by the Zotero add-in to Firefox. Uncheck "automatically remember proxy resources" and erase recorded hostnames on the proxy tab of Zotero preferences.

Why am I not receiving email notices from the library?

The library uses email to send notices, including hold pickup notices ("your book is ready for you"), due soon notices ("your books will be due soon; please return or renew on time"), overdue notices, bill notices, etc.

There are many reasons that you might fail to receive the email we send to you. For example, when the library sends a notice to you it might be blocked by a SPAM filter or it might be lost by intermittent Internet failure. SPAM filters are changed daily by ISPs, so what was reliably delivered yesterday could be consistently [or intermittently] blocked today. SPAM problems are difficult to resolve because the mail just disappears with no clues.

Sometimes an email provider will not deliver a message, and instead return it to the library, often with an explanation of why it was not delivered. This will happen if your mailbox is full, your account is inactive/unused for a long time, or that email address has been deleted/terminated. On average, three to six pieces of email are returned to the library every week. This is the most common email problem. When it happens we print the email and send it to a ground mail address such as SIC campus box. This kind of email problem is very easy to resolve because the returned mail provides the needed clues.

If you think library email is failing to reach you, let us know. As of 12/12/2007 keep a log which we hope will help us discern patterns and deal with ISPs. We need to know the following.

  • your email address
  • what is not being delivered; whether you are currently receiving some kinds of library notices but not other kinds
  • whether you have recently changed Internet Service Provider or email vendor
  • whether you have received email notices from us in the past at this address (and, if so, when you stopped receiving notices)

Where can I get help?

Contact library staff for assistance.