Updated Library Search widget in NOW to go live shortly

An updated version of the Library Search widget in NOW will go live shortly. The new version, which incorporates changes requested by the ALT, replaces the ‘Find a database’ search option with an eSearch link and description. The library catalogue search options remains unchanged, but has been renamed ‘Catalogue quick search’ (see illustration below).


The ‘Athens – Login Details’ link to the Athens username and password look-up service (currently held in the NOW ‘My Information’ widget) is also to be withdrawn shortly (see illustration below):


Athens to Shibboleth migrations – eBrary and RefWorks

The move from Athens to Shibboleth authentication for both eBrary and RefWorks is now scheduled to take place during the last two weeks of August.

RefWorks’ technical team are running tests on a sample data set that we have provided before moving to the wholesale transfer of the existing accounts from Athens to Shibboleth identifiers – this will mean that existing customer accounts (including all saved references and folders) will be automatically transfered over when the move to Shibboleth is effected.

For LLR customers with ‘Bookshelf’ content (saved favourites, notes, highlighted sections of eBooks, etc) in their eBrary account, a different method has been agreed with the providers. Once the Shibboleth login process has been activated on eBrary, customers will have the option to pull across their previously stored ‘Bookshelf’ information from their Athens to their Shibboleth account. This involves the customer copying a ‘key’ number from the screen into an email to eBrary along with their Athens username; eBrary then manage the move of the data on their behalf. Customers who have not previously used the ‘Bookshelf’ facility, or who do not wish to transfer their previous saved content, are not required to take any action. The simple process of arranging the ‘Bookshelf’ transfer will, of course, be fully documented with eServices providing all necessary technical support.

Westlaw – off-campus access problems

Off-campus access to Westlaw (using a university username and password) is currently unavailable. Westlaw is experiencing technical problems which are affecting both Shibboleth and Athens based authentication for all UK academic sites. Their technicians are aware of the issue and working on a resolution. A further update will be provided once access has been restored.

Nexis UK – Athens authentication problems

A temporary problem affecting one of the authentication servers for the Nexis UK service is preventing some customers from accessing the service using an Athens username and password.

When the problem occurs, the customer login credentials are rejected and the following error message displays in the Athens login screen.

There was a problem processing your request. If the problem persists, please contact your local Athens administrator.

This problem occurs for customers who are either (a) logging in to the service for the first time ever; or, (b) logging in to the service for the first time from a different computer, or (c) logging into the service for the first time using a different browser (such as Firefox, rather than IE).

Library colleagues and university staff members who have previously accessed the service from their regular workstations (using their prefered browser) should not experience the same problems.

Unfortunately, there is no workaround for this problem for affected customers; but Nexis expect that technical work scheduled for this evening should correct the problem.

A further update will be provided once Nexis have confirmed that the service is again working normally.

Athens authentication – now working normally

Eduserv’s engineers were able to fix the problems affecting Athens authentication overnight, so it is now possible to login to LLR resources which require an Athens username and password.

The service alert has been removed from eSearch.

If you continue to encounter any problems, please contact eServices with: the details of the resource concerned; and copies of any error messages which appear on screen.

Athens authentication to electronic resources – continuing service problems

Problems with Athens authentication are continuing into this evening. The problem is affecting all universities and colleges which make use of the Athens service. Most customers may continue to be unable to login to Athens authenticated resources, and will see error message like the examples below. The problem may be continuous or intermittent.

Eduserv report that their technicians “are investigating this problem as a matter of urgency and working to restore service as soon as possible.”

It is very possible that Eduserv will be able to correct the problem in the next few hours, however the general guidance for customers who continue to experience problems using their Athens credentials during this evening is:

“LLR apologies for the temporary loss of access to electronic resources which require an Athens username and password for access. The organisation which manages Athens authentication for British universities is working to correct the technnical problems which are hampering the service and hope to have a solution in place shortly.

Electronic resources that can be accessed directly on-campus, or which require a university username and password for access continue to be accessible.”

An note has been added to the eSearch home page alerting customers to the issue.

Further updates will follow tomorrow.

Athens authentication to electronic resources – service problems

Eduserv are reporting technical problems with one of the servers used to manage Athens authentication to electronic resources. As a result, for many (if not all) staff and students it is currently not possible to login to resources which require an Athens username and password.

Various error messages may be reported by customers, such as:

“Authentication failed.
ATHENS Check token failed – code was 15”

“Authentication failed due to a system error. Please close the browser and try again.”

“You are not entitled to access this resource. Contact your Athens administrator.”

They are all cause by this same service difficulty.

We will update as soon as we have received confirmation from Eduserv that normal service has been restored.

In the meantime, if you’ve any specific queries, please contact eServices.

Athens authentication ‘network failure’ error message: Response from Eduserv

The problem reported at the end of last week, whereby some users experienced error messages “temporary network failure” followed by “No return URL specified” when trying to access Athens Authenticated eResources, has been investigated by Eduserv but unfortunately they are unable to replicate the problem and have not received reports from any other site. As a result we’ve agreed to close the call and accept that this may have been a temporary network glitch. However, if you do experience a further reoccurrence, then please report it to eServices, along with details of the Athens ID you were using, the eResource being accessed plus date and time. That way Eduserv can carry out a detailed analysis of their connection logs.