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Using the Libraries

Connecting from off-campus

How to connect

Current faculty, students, and staff are able to access library resources whether on or off campus. To access subscription databases, e-books and e-reserves from off campus, you need to be connected to the Vassar proxy server. When prompted, use your Vassar OneLogin credentials. Once you've successfully connected, you will have access to all of our licensed resources. 

If you have problems, email

Please note: Using your cell phone (not on wifi) to access library resources will require authentication regardless of whether you are physically on campus or not.  

Having Trouble?

Accessing our electronic resources can get complicated, but you may be able to clear up some problems on your own. Give the solutions listed below a try. If none of them work, please email

Browser-related fixes

  • Allow cookies
  • Go incognito
  • Clear your cache
  • Try another browser

Link-related fixes

  • Use library website links 
  • Add proxy to the URL

Resource-related fixes

  • Check if the problem is with one resource or all resources
  • Check user limits
  • Ask a Librarian about our holdings

Internet Service Provider (ISP)-related fixes

  • Spectrum
  • Comcast/Xfinity
  • Try a workaround

Browser-related Fixes

1. Allow cookies

Safari private browsing mode Safari: Always allow cookies

Chrome incognito mode  Chrome: Allow all cookies

Firefox private browsing mode  Firefox: Standard protection

Microsoft Edge InPrivate mode Edge: Allow sites to save and read cookie data


2. Go incognito

Cookies and data stored in your browser's cache can cause login problems. Choosing the private mode in your browser bypasses your cache. If you are able to access the needed resource in a private or incognito window, the problem is likely in your cache. You can simply continue to browse incognito or clear your cache.

Safari private browsing mode Safari private browsing

Chrome incognito mode Chrome incognito

Firefox private browsing mode Firefox private window

Microsoft Edge InPrivate mode Edge InPrivate


3. Clear your cache

If you don't want to clear your entire cache, a "hard refresh" will clear the data from just the website you're on. For most browsers, on a PC or Mac, simply hold down the keyboard Shift key and click the reload icon refresh icon on your browser’s toolbar.

Safari private browsing mode Safari clear history

Chrome incognito mode Chrome clear data 

Firefox private browsing mode Firefox clear history

Microsoft Edge InPrivate mode Edge clear data


4. Try another browser

Many library products are developed and tested using the most recent versions of Chrome and Safari, but having more than one browser on your machine can be handy. Some resources behave differently in different browsers, so if you're having trouble simply switching browsers could solve your problem. Making sure you have the most recent update can also be helpful.


Link-related Fixes

1. Use VC Libraries website links

Links to licensed material found using Google can lead to a firewall. Accessing material via our Databases A-Z list or from Library Search is likely to be more successful.

2. Add proxy to URL

If you do find a resource on the web you think should work, you can prepend (add to beginning) the proxy to the URL using the tool below. 

Example: If you find an article on a commercial site, and you think the library might have access to it, rather than copying and pasting the details into Library Search, you can shortcut the process by copying the the URL into the tool below and clicking the button. It will turn a vendor URL into a proxied URL:  becomes

Resource-related fixes

1. Check if the problem is with one resource or all resources

Try to access another resource from our A-Z Databases. If other resources are working for you, the problem could be with the vendor. Please email to report the problem.

2. Check user limits

Some vendors restrict access to a limited number of users at one time. Examples include LIONonline, the Avery Index to Architectural Periodicals and Art Index Retrospective.

3. Ask a Librarian about our resources

There is often more than one route to success when using for e-resources. Use our Ask a Librarian services to get help finding a another way to get what you need.     

Emailwalk-inAppointmentResearch guides

email | chat | appointment | research guides

Internet Service Provider (ISP)-related fixes

An easy way to see if your problem involves your ISP (Internet Service Provider) is to bypass your wifi by using a device with a data plan (phone, tablet, etc.) to attempt to access the resource. If you can access the resource, the problem is likely with your ISP.

If you are a Spectrum or Comcast/Xfinity customer, the problem could be with security settings managed remotely by the ISP.  We suggest you contact your ISP for a long-term fix, but try one of the workarounds below in the meanwhile.


If your ISP is Spectrum and you have "Advanced Home Wifi" as part of your package, please call them (855.243.8892) and ask them to modify the wifi security shield so that you can access You'll need your account number. If you do not have "Advanced Home Wifi" and/or your router is more than a few years old, Spectrum may need to troubleshoot your particular system. 


If Comcast/Xfinity is your ISP, please contact them and ask them to adjust the security settings on your router. You'll need your account number.

Workaround 1: VApps (Comcast and Spectrum)

  • Visit and log in with your Vassar OneLogin credentials. 
  • You may be prompted to download and install a Citrix Receiver application. 
  • Click on the Chrome browser app icon and drop the URL of either the particular resource or VC Libraries ( into the address bar
  • For more information on how to use Vapps visit our Service Desk knowledge base article.  For help accessing VApps, contact the Service Desk at 845-437-7224 or email

Workaround 2: Turn off your Advanced Security (Comcast only)

Please note: It is recommended you do this only while you are using the proxy resources.

Workaround 3: Use a smartphone or tablet to create a hotspot

  • Bypassing your internet router is one way of solving ISP-related problems
  • The process for setting up a hotspot varies from device to device, so we recommend searching the web for your model
  • Some devices use the term "hotspot" but others use "tether" or "tethering
  • Note: some phone service providers charge additional fees for data usage via a hotspot. Other potential drawbacks include relatively slow data-loading speed and limited data security

Workaround 4: Use Vassar's VPN (current Vassar employees only)

  • Connecting to the college's VPN (Virtual Private Network) is an alternative to the proxy server as an authentication method necessary for access to the library's licensed resources 
  • Installation instructions and FAQs are available from the CIS helpdesk 

If you are still having issues, please reach out to to report any problems.