Access to Relay library’s online resources (including databases, ebooks, online journals, and other e-resources) is restricted due to license agreements with vendors and publishers. This is where the proxy comes in! When you use the proxy to access a restricted online resource from the library website, you will be prompted to enter your Relay credentials - this confirms your “online identity” as a member of the Relay community.
From a technical perspective, a proxy lets you go online under a different IP address. Relay's library databases are set up to only allow access from certain IP addresses, so you must be signed into the proxy to get access.
You don't need to use the proxy if you are accessing resources through the Relay library website. It's also not necessary if you're accessing Relay resources through Google Scholar (learn more about how to do this here!). These platforms automatically add Relay's proxy for you, so you don't have to worry about it.
However, there are a couple of instances where you might want to use a proxy:
There are several different ways to set up a proxy, outlined below. If you plan to use the proxy frequently, using Zotero or the Bookmarklet are most recommended!
Zotero is a citation management tool that allows you to build a personal library of information from articles, books, documents, web pages, and more! You can use Zotero with any word processing tool to help format your research paper. With Zotero, you can
You can learn more about Zotero here.
If you’ve already got a Zotero account, there’s a browser extension called Zotero Connector that will automatically proxy websites for you! All you will need to do is download the extension (linked above), and then use library resources as usual. You will see a yellow banner that asks if you want to save the proxy - once you’ve saved the proxy, Zotero will automatically set up the proxy for you on future websites.
If you often do your research from off-campus, we recommend you install the proxy bookmarklet on your browser's bookmarks toolbar. The bookmarklet lets you log into the proxy without having to browse from the Relay GSE Library website.
Many people like to just search for a journal using Google and go directly there. To get your browser to route you through the library proxy server, you can simply try the following:
Drag this button up to your bookmarks toolbar in your browser: (or right-click to save it to your favorites toolbar)
Now, when you're on a web page that you'd like to redirect through the library's proxy server, clicking this button will automatically reload the web page.
If you are browsing a website that you know the Relay Library provides access to, you can copy the proxy URL (below) and add it to the front of the website URL.
For example, to view this article:
You would add the proxy in front to get access:
It’s possible to paste this URL in front of any paywalled online information resource to try to gain access - however, keep in mind that this only works with resources that the library provides access to. You may get an error message if the library doesn’t provide access to that resource, or if the resource is not configured to work with the Relay proxy.