FAQ - Databases

Why can't I access some databases?

There is a number of issues you could encounter. Please try the following solutions:

Check if your computer is connected to the network of Eawag/Empa/PSI/WSL

Databases are activated only for members of Eawag, Empa, PSI and WSL within the networks of these institutions. Publishers control access to databases through the IP address of your computer.

The IPv4 address of your computer is:
Please follow this link to test your IPv6 address.

If you are logged into the network of Eawag, Empa, PSI or WSL, your IP address should be in the following range:

— For users at Eawag and Empa using IPv4: 152.88.xxx.xxx

— For users at Eawag and Empa using IPv6: 2001:620:d:xxxx:xxxx:xxxx:xxxx:xxxx

— For users at WSL: or

— For users at PSI: 129.129.xxx.xxx or 192.33.118.xxx (VPN)

— If your IP address falls within these ranges and you encounter access issues, please contact us at eresources@lib4ri.ch.

The xxx stands for any number between 0 and 255.

You can also access licensed databases from outside the network of the institutes (e.g. from home) via a VPN connection. Please contact your IT department about how to set up a VPN connection.

Note, while VPN from desktops and laptops is generally possible with all research institutes, VPN from mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets may be blocked. So, should you lack internet access via your laptop (i.e. no WiFi, no LAN), consider setting up your internet capable (3G or 4G) mobile device as a personal hotspot, connect your laptop to the hotspot (WLAN, Bluetooth or tethered) and activate VPN on your laptop.

Users of Lib4RI that are not members of these institutions can access most databases via the computers in the library.

Clear the browser cache and delete cookies from your browser

Occasionally, your browser «remembers» a failed access attempt. In these cases, clearing your browser cache and cookies will usually resolve the problem. Restart your browser afterwards. Note that clearing your cache and cookies will result in the loss of all temporary files saved in your web browser.

Detailed instructions for many browsers:
How to Clear Your Browser's Cookies
How to Clear Your Browser's Cache

Enable cookies and JavaScript in your internet browser

Some publishers require that your browser accepts cookies and that JavaScript is enabled. Test if your browser accepts cookies and if JavaScript is enabled. Note that it might be necessary to restart your browser after you have enabled cookies and Javascript.

Check if Lib4RI has a subscription to the database

All subscribed databases are listed here. If a database is not in the list, the library does not have a current subscription to this database. If Lib4RI does not subscribe to the database, you might want to suggest it for purchase.

Please contact us via eresources@lib4ri.ch, or call the library at 058 765 5700 if you encounter any problem with the access to databases.

Who can access databases licensed by the library?

Licensing agreements with electronic service providers restrict access to electronic resources, for which the library Lib4RI pays a subscription fee, to current members of Eawag, Empa, WSL and PSI. However, most licensing agreements permit visitors as so-called “walk-in users” on-site access to our electronic resources on publicly accessible library computers.

Restrictions on using electronic resources

Access to licensed electronic resources (such as databases, e-journals or e-books) are governed by the conditions of use contained in license agreements between the library Lib4RI and the respective publishers. These licenses vary but have some common elements.

You are generally not allowed to:

  • systematically download from an e-resource, e.g. all articles from one issue of a journal, or an entire e-book. Publishers may monitor use levels of electronic resources and suspend access to this resource in the entire network of the institution if large amounts of information are downloaded in a short time period.
  • share downloaded material with unauthorised users, i.e. anyone who is not a member of Eawag, Empa, PSI or WSL.
  • use e-resources for commercial gain (i.e. reselling, redistributing or republishing licensed content).

TEL. +41 58 765 5700  info@lib4ri.ch 

Stephanie Hofmann

t +41 58 765 5032

Dr. Bobby Neuhold

t +41 58 765 5133