Checkout EBSCO eBooks to your mobile device (Android or iOS) for offline reading

EbscoHosticonThe Library owns and subscribes to thousands of academic ebooks from EBSCO Publishing. These ebooks are accessible to authorized users from our EBSCOhost eBooks Collections database (select it from the “Resources” dropdown > Databases > “General & Multidisciplinary” on the Library website). They are also indexed for access in the Milligan Libraries Catalog, and will also surface among other search results in MCSearch.

The EBSCOhost platform includes a built-in viewer for reading ebooks online using any modern web browser. In a previous post, I provided instructions for checking out and downloading EBSCO ebooks to your computer for offline reading. As it happens, EBSCO’s ebooks can also be checked out and downloaded to your Android or Apple iOS mobile device (smartphone or tablet) for offline reading.

The following instructions will guide you through the process of checking out and downloading EBSCOhost ebooks to your Android or Apple iOS mobile device. The procedure is a little challenging because it requires that you create two authorization accounts and download an application. However, you shouldn’t have too much trouble if you follow these instructions closely. The first 3 steps only have to be done one time. Feel free to contact a librarian if you need assistance.

Step 1: Get an Adobe ID

EBSCOhost ebooks are copy-protected using Adobe Digital Rights Management (DRM). Consequently, you will need an Adobe ID to authorize your access to the ebooks you download from EBSCOhost. You only have to do this step once.

  • Go to http://www.adobe.com/.
  • Click the “Sign in” link on the top right side of the page.
  • Click the “Get an Adobe ID” link.
  • Fill out the Sign up form then click the “Sign Up” button to complete the registration. The email address you supply will become your Adobe ID. You will also need to create a password during registration. Write down your Adobe ID and Password.

Step 2: Create a My EBSCOhost account

If you are a currently registered Milligan College student, faculty, or staff member you do not need to create an account to view an EBSCOhost ebook online. Simply click the “PDF Full Text” link to launch the ebook viewer in your web browser. (If you are off campus or using a mobile data to access electronic resources on the Milligan Libraries website from your device you will be prompted to login using your Milligan network (e.g., Canvas) credentials.)

If you want to checkout and download an EBSCOhost ebook to your mobile device for offline reading you will need to create a “My EBSCOhost” account. You only have to do this step once.

  • From any EBSCOhost database (including MCSearch) click the “Sign In” link at the top right side of the page.
  • Click the “Create a new Account” link.
  • Fill out the form then click the “Save Changes” button to complete the registration. The user name and password you supply will enable you to login to your My EBSCOhost account and download ebooks to your device. Write down your User Name and Password.

Step 3: Download and setup the Bluefire Reader 

application

  • Launch the Google Play Store application on your Android device, or the App Store application on your Apple iOS device.
  • Search for and download the free Bluefire Reader application to your device.
  • Launch the Bluefire Reader application.
  • Tap on the “Info” button from the bottom row of icons (the location of the “Info” button may be different on your specific device), on the next screen tap on the “Authorize” button. Enter your Adobe ID and Password (from Step 1) then tap “Authorize”. Your device is now authorized to download EBSCOhost ebooks on your mobile device. You only have to do this step once.

 The setup is complete. Let’s download an ebook now!

Step 4: Checkout and download an EBSCOhost ebook

NOTE: These instructions apply only to ebooks in EBSCOhost eBook Collections (Milligan Libraries also provide ebooks from other publishers. Those ebooks cannot be downloaded to your device using these instructions).

ebsco3a) Launch the web browser on your mobile device. Browse to the EBSCOhost eBooks Collections database on the Milligan Libraries website (select it from the “Resources” dropdown > Databases > “General & Multidisciplinary”). EBSCOhost eBooks are also indexed for access in the Milligan Library Catalog, and will surface among other search results in MCSearch. (If you are off campus or using a mobile data to access electronic resources on the Milligan Libraries website from your device you will be prompted to login using your Milligan network (e.g., Canvas) credentials.)

ebsco4b) Search (for example) for the book entitled From Plato to Platonism by Lloyd P. Gerson. Click the title link on the search result. This takes you to the book’s record screen.

c) On the record screen tap the “Download (Offline)” button. This takes you to the Sign In screen where you enter the My EBSCOhost account User Name and Password (from Step 2 above). Tap the “Login” button. After the login is accepted you see a “Download This eBook” screen. Select the Checkout Period (most can be checked out for as long as 30 days) and then tap the “Checkout & Download” button.

ebsco6d) You should next see a screen indicating that the ebook has been successfully checked out, and the download process has begun. Assuming you have earlier downloaded and authorized Bluefire Reader (Step 3 above) the app should launch automatically. When the download is complete tap “Read Now” to open the book.

ebsco9e) If you tap anywhere in the middle of the screen you are presented with various navigation and settings controls. From here you can also access the “Bookshelf” to see and open other titles that you may have previously downloaded. The bookshelf also keeps track of how many days remain in the checkout period. The title will cease to be accessible for reading once the checkout period expires. eBook files can be deleted from your device at any time.

Checkout EBSCO eBooks to your computer for offline reading

EbscoHosticonInstructions updated 06.06.2016.

The Library owns and subscribes to thousands of academic ebooks from EBSCO Publishing. These ebooks are accessible to authorized users from our EBSCOhost eBooks Collections database (select it from the “Resources” dropdown > Databases > “General & Multidisciplinary” on the Library website). They are also indexed for access in the Milligan Library Catalog, and will surface among other search results in MCSearch.

The EBSCOhost platform includes a built-in viewer for reading ebooks online using any modern web browser. However, most of EBSCO’s ebooks can also be checked out and downloaded to your computer to be read at leisure offline. Downloadable titles are indicated wherever you see a “Download” button at the top right side of the online viewer:

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The following instructions will guide you through the process of checking out and downloading EBSCOhost ebooks to your computer. The procedure is a little challenging at first because it requires that you create two authorization accounts and download a piece of software. However, you shouldn’t have too much trouble if you follow these instructions closely. The first 3 steps only have to be done one time. Feel free to contact a librarian if you need assistance.

Step 1: Get an Adobe ID

EBSCOhost ebooks are copy-protected using Adobe Digital Rights Management (DRM). Consequently, you will need an Adobe ID to authorize your access to the ebooks you download from EBSCOhost. You only have to do this step once.

  • Go to http://www.adobe.com/.
  • Click the “Sign in” link on the top right side of the page.
  • Click the “Get an Adobe ID” link.
  • Fill out the Sign up form then click the “Sign Up” button to complete the registration. The email address you supply will become your Adobe ID. Use this, and the password you create to access content in the Adobe Digital Editions application. Write down your Adobe ID and Password.

Step 2: Download Adobe Digital Editions

Download the Adobe Digital Editions reader application from Adobe’s website (Mac OS or Windows versions available). You will need this (free) application to view the ebooks you checkout and download from EBSCO. The process will be smoother if you already have this software on your computer before you attempt the first ebook download. You only have to do this step once.

Launch the Installer and follow the instruction prompts to complete the installation. Once the installation is complete launch Adobe Digital Editions. You will be prompted to enter your Adobe ID and password to authorize your computer. This will also prepare your computer to recognize Adobe Digital Editions as the default application for opening EBSCO ebooks. Here is a screenshot of the open application.

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Step 3: Create a My EBSCOhost account

As indicated above, if you are a currently registered Milligan College student, faculty, or staff member you do not need to create an account to view an EBSCOhost ebook online. Simply click the “PDF Full Text” link to launch the ebook viewer in your web browser.

However, if you want to checkout and download an EBSCOhost ebook to your computer for later offline reading in Adobe Digital Editions you will need to create a “My EBSCOhost” account. You only have to do this step once.

  • From any EBSCOhost database (including MCSearch) click the “Sign In” link at the top right side of the page.
  • Click the “Create a new Account” link.
  • Fill out the form then click the “Save Changes” button to complete the registration. The user name and password you supply will enable you to login to your My EBSCOhost account and download ebooks to your computer. Write down your User Name and Password.

You now have everything you need to download and read EBSCOhost ebooks on your computer. Let’s download an ebook now!

Step 4: Checkout and download an EBSCOhost ebook

NOTE: These instructions apply only to ebooks in EBSCOhost eBook Collections (Milligan College Library also provides ebooks from other publishers. Those ebooks cannot be downloaded to your computer using these instructions).

a) Launch EBSCOhost eBook Collection from the “Resources” dropdown > Databases > “General & Multidisciplinary” on the Library website and search for a book. As noted above, EBSCOhost ebooks are also included in relevant catalog and MCSearch search results. I am searching for a book on Alexander the Great. Here’s one that looks interesting:

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b) Launch the online ebook viewer by clicking on the “PDF Full Text” link. If the book is downloadable for offline viewing you will see a “Download” button at the top right side of the online viewer in your browser window:

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c) When you click the “Download” link you will be prompted to sign-in using your My EBSCOhost account.

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d) Enter your User Name and Password from your My EBSCOhost account (see Step 3) and click the “Login” button. (If you are using a personal computer you may choose to have your web browser “remember” your credentials so you don’t have to re-type this information in the future.)

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e) Once you are logged into My EBSCOhost, a “Download This eBook” dialog box for the ebook you have selected will pop up. If the ebook is available for checkout, select the Checkout Period (this particular title can only be checked out for a maximum of 7 days, although most can be checked out for as long as 30 days) and click the “Checkout & Download” button. Notice the download dialog box informs you that you need to have Adobe Digital Editions on your computer in order to view the downloaded book (see Step 2).

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f)  If the download is successful you will see this screen:

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At the same time you should see a prompt to save an ACSM (Adobe Content Server Message) file to your computer. For convenience, save the file to your desktop.

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g) Double click the URLLink.acsm file. This will initiate the downloading of the ebook file to the Adobe Digital Editions reader application. Once the download is complete the ebook will open automatically in Adobe Digital Editions (assuming you previously downloaded the application as instructed in Step 2).

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h) Clicking on the “Library” link takes you to the screen showing all currently downloaded titles:

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i) The title will cease to be accessible for reading once the checkout period expires. However, titles can be “returned” or removed from your Adobe Digital Editions library anytime (by right-clicking on the title icon to bring up the contextual menu).

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EBSCO’s ebooks can also be checked out and downloaded to your Android or Apple iOS mobile device (smartphone or tablet) for offline reading. See instructions here.

Downloadable e-books in EBSCO Academic Collection now with 30-Day checkout period!

In an earlier post, I walked you through the steps for downloading e-books from the Library’s EBSCOhost eBook Collections to your computer for offline reading. You will recall I pointed out that if the e-book is downloadable you would see this label in the title record:

Download This eBook (Offline)

At the time I first posted these instructions, the download or  “checkout” period of all our EBSCOhost e-books was limited to seven (7) days. I am pleased to report that the checkout period for the downloadable titles in our EBSCOhost Academic eBooks Collection has been extended to 30 days–the same checkout period we provide for our physical lending books. This extended period reduces some of the inconvenience of having to re-download the title after only a week–especially nice if you have also taken the steps to transfer a downloaded e-book to your mobile device of e-reader.

If the e-book you have selected for downloading is available for this 30-day checkout period, you will see this dialog box during the download process:

Please note that this extended checkout applies only to the EBSCOhost Academic eBooks Collection. The Library’s older EBSCOhost eBooks Collection (what some of you may know as our NetLibrary Collection) is still limited to a 7-day checkout. Incidentally, unlike this older collection, the Academic eBooks Collection also supports unlimited simultaneous users. You should never encounter a turn-away for any title you would like to read from this collection.

Please feel free to contact the Library if you have any questions, or if you would like assistance with the download/checkout or transfer to mobile procedure.

Transferring e-books from EBSCO to your mobile device or e-reader

In my previous post, I described the procedure for downloading EBSCOhost e-books to your computer for offline reading. In this post I will describe how you can transfer a downloaded book to a mobile device–a smartphone, tablet computer, or dedicated e-book reader.

Before proceeding, make sure that you have successfully completed all the steps described in my previous post and listed here:

  1. You have created an Adobe ID
  2. You have downloaded and installed the Adobe Digital Editions application software on your computer
  3. You have created a My EBSCOhost account, and
  4. You have downloaded an EBSCOhost e-book into Adobe Digital Editions

Adobe Digital Editions negotiates copy protection for EBSCOhost e-books on your computer or your mobile device. In order to successfully transfer an EBSCOhost e-book to a mobile device that device must either natively communicate with Adobe Digital Editions when attached to your computer, or allow the installation of an application that can communicate with Adobe Digital Editions on its behalf. Dedicated e-book readers such as the Barnes & Noble Nook, Sony Reader, or Kobo eReader support Adobe Digital Editions natively. Unfortunately, Amazon E-Ink Kindles do not currently provide support for Adobe Digital Editions. Many smartphones and tablets, including Apple iOS devices (iPhone, iPod touch, iPad) and Android devices (including Amazon Kindle Fire tablets with some special tweaking), work with Adobe Digital Editions through a third-party application that can be installed on the device. I will describe the transfer procedure on a Barnes & Noble Nook and an Apple iPod touch. The specific procedure for your device may differ from these, but the following instructions will give you a good idea for what is involved. Please contact a librarian if you would like assistance, or if you run into any difficulty.

Transferring an EBSCOhost e-book to a Barnes & Noble Nook Simple Touch e-reader

Step 1: Authorize the device in Adobe Digital Editions

Launch Adobe Digital Editions on your computer then attach your e-reader device to your computer with the supplied USB cable. Adobe Digital Editions should automatically detect a compatible e-reader. You will be prompted to authorize the use of the device with Adobe Digital Editions (which may include entering your Adobe ID). In this screenshot notice “NOOK” is detected under Devices in the left column:

Step 2: Drag an e-book to your device

To install an e-book to the device simply select the desired title from the Bookshelf in the right column and drag it onto the device icon as shown here:

Step 3: Open and read the book on your device

Adobe Digital Editions will notify you when the e-book installation is complete. Eject the device from your computer. Browse and launch the e-book from the device’s book Library. Start reading!

Step 4: Remove an expired e-book from your device

As with EBSCOhost e-books originally downloaded to your computer, when the checkout period expires you will no longer be able to open the book on your device. At this point, you may choose to delete the expired file from your device’s book Library. Re-attach the device to your computer, launch Adobe Digital Editions, highlight “NOOK” under Devices in the left column, select the expired title from the Bookshelf in the right column, Control-Click the book icon and select “Remove from Library” from the drop down menu.

Transferring an EBSCOhost e-book to an Apple iOS or Google Android device

Unlike the previous procedure where a compatible dedicated e-reader (like the Barnes & Noble Nook Simple Touch) is immediately recognizable by Adobe Digital Editions when connected to your computer, transferring EBSCOhost e-books to a smartphone or tablet requires a separate application capable of communicating with Adobe Digital Editions and serving as a book reader. You also need a transfer method that the reader application can understand.

As with downloading EBSCOhost e-books to your computer, the procedure for preparing your mobile device for transferring e-books is a bit complicated. However, you shouldn’t have too much trouble if you follow these instructions closely. The first three steps only have to be done one time. Feel free to contact a librarian if you would like assistance, or if you run into any difficulty. (Note: Amazon’s Kindle Fire is an Android-based tablet. However, installation of applications on this device is a bit more complicated than most. Special instructions are at the bottom.)

Step 1: Create a Dropbox account

You need a fairly easy and straightforward way to transfer a downloaded EBSCOhost e-book in Adobe Digital Editions on your computer to your mobile device. Dropbox is a handy cloud storage service that can be used to facilitate this transfer. Go to http://www.dropbox.com to create a free account. (The free account comes with 2 gigabytes of storage–more than enough for routine e-book file transfers.) Write down your Dropbox email address and password.

You can use the Dropbox web interface on your computer to facilitate file uploads to your account, or you can download a dedicated desktop application (for Windows or Mac). However, it is strongly recommended that you download and install the mobile version of the Dropbox application to your mobile device (choose the appropriate version here). You only have to do this step once.

Step 2: Download and install Bluefire Reader to your device

The process for transferring EBSCOhost e-books to a compatible Apple iOS or Google Android device requires that you first download and install an application that can be authorized to communicate with Adobe Digital Editions and function as a book reader. Bluefire Reader is a free application that is excellent for these purposes. You can use Bluefire Reader to open PDF and EPUB files on your mobile device. Download and install the Apple iOS or Google Android version as appropriate. You only have to do this step once.

Step 3: Launch and authorize Bluefire Reader on your device

I am using Bluefire Reader on an Apple iPod touch here. Launch Bluefire Reader on your device and select “Info” from the application menu. Tap the “Authorize” button in the Enable Adobe eBooks box. This will bring up a screen for entering your Adobe ID account information. Tap “Authorize.”

 

Your device is now authorized to open and read e-books downloaded to Adobe Digital Editions on your computer. You only have to do this step once.

You now have everything in place to transfer and read EBSCOhost e-books on your mobile device. Let’s transfer an e-book now!

Step 4: Upload an EBSCOhost e-book to your Dropbox account

a) Go back to your computer. I downloaded a new e-book from EBSCOhost into Adobe Digital Editions following the instructions in Step 4 from my previous post. The process went much smoother the second time around!

b) Although the e-book loads into Adobe Digital Editions, the e-book file is actually stored in another folder on you computer. On a Windows PC browse to this folder is called “My Digital Editions,” which is located in your “My Documents” folder. Notice the e-book file titled “The Autobiography of Charles Darwin” (Note: Although the file is a PDF, it will not open as normal in Adobe Reader because it is copy-protected. Adobe Digital Editions registered with your Adobe ID enables you to open this copy-protected file.):

On an Apple Mac computer, the same file is found in the “Digital Editions” folder in your user “Documents” folder:

c) Sign into your Dropbox account. For this demonstration I am using the web interface at http://www.dropbox.com. When you sign in the first time you will see three folders.

d) For this demonstration I am going to upload the e-book file into the “Public” folder in my Dropbox. Double-click the “Public” folder to open it. Click on the “Upload” button (it is the document icon with the blue arrow pointing up to the far left of the “Search Dropbox” search box). This brings up the “Upload to ‘Public'” dialog box.

e) Click the blue “Choose files” button. Browse to the “My Digital Editions” (Windows) or “Digital Editions” (Mac) folder and locate the e-book file you would like to upload as described above. Highlight the file and click “Open”. (If the upload appears stalled, click the “basic uploader” link and try again.) The file is processed and uploaded into (in this case) your “Public” folder. When the upload is complete you will receive this message:

Clear the dialog box by clicking “Done”.

f) You should now see the uploaded file in your Dropbox “Public” folder.

Since Dropbox stores your uploaded documents to the “cloud,” you can access them on any computer or device with an internet connection. This is how you will now access this e-book file and transfer it onto your mobile device.

Step 5: Launch Dropbox on your mobile device and open the EBSCOhost e-book in Bluefire Reader

a) If you haven’t already done so, download the appropriate Dropbox application version for your mobile device (e.g., Apple iOS or Google Android).

b) Launch Dropbox and sign into your account. You must have an active connection to the internet in order to access your Dropbox.

 

c) Notice the same folders in your mobile Dropbox as in the desktop or browser-based version on your computer. Remember that you uploaded your e-book to the “Public” folder. Tap “Public” to open this folder. There is your e-book!

 

d) Tap on the e-book file to download it to your device. Notice that this is a PDF file.

 

e) The e-book file download to your device appears to be complete. But notice that you don’t see anything other than the title on the screen. This is because the file is copy-protected and can only be opened by an application authorized to view Adobe Digital Editions copy-protected files. This is where Bluefire Reader comes into play. Tap the download button on the lower right of the screen (the icon with an arrow pointing down into a tray). This brings up a dialog that includes an “Open In…” button. Tap this button. You are now presented with one or more applications that may be able to open this file. Tap the “Open in Bluefire” button.

 

f) Tapping the “Open in Bluefire” button launches the the Bluefire Reader application. Notice your e-book, The Autobiography of Charles Darwin in the Library list. Tap on this title to open the book. Start reading!

 

Step 6: Remove an expired e-book from your device

As with EBSCOhost e-books originally downloaded to your computer, when the checkout period expires you will no longer be able to open the book on your device. At this point, you may choose to delete the expired file from the Library list in Bluefire Reader using the application’s Edit > Delete feature.

Special Note about installing Bluefire Reader and the Dropbox mobile app on an Amazon Kindle Fire tablet

I mentioned above that Amazon’s E-Ink Kindles currently do not support e-books copy-protected using Adobe Digital Editions. Consequently, it is not possible to read e-books downloaded from EBSCOhost on your E-Ink Kindle.

Amazon’s Kindle Fire tablets run a version of the Google Android operating system. Consequently, it is possible to install Android versions of both the Bluefire Reader application and the Dropbox mobile app on your Kindle Fire. However, getting these applications on your device requires a little extra tweaking. Follow these steps to prepare your Kindle Fire (part of these steps come courtesy of the Bluefire Reader blog):

a) Tap “Settings” on your Kindle Fire (it’s the icon that looks like a gear)
b) Tap “More”
c) Scroll down until you see “Device”
d) In the Device tab, set “Allow installation of Applications” to ON, and tap OK when you see the Warning prompt
e) Using the web browser on your Kindle Fire, go to http://www.bluefirereader.com/files/ and tap on BluefireReader.apk to download the Bluefire Reader application. Tap on this file to install the application on your Kindle Fire.
f) Using the web browser on your Kindle Fire, go to http://www.dropbox.com/android and download the Dropbox Android application. This app should be labeled Dropbox.apk. Tap on this file to install the application on your Kindle Fire.
g) Return to the instructions to continue with the e-book transfer procedure.

MCSearch & Milligan College featured in EBSCO’s “Customer Success Story” marketing

By creating a strong library research platform with the speed and simplicity of a commercial Internet search engine, Milligan College makes its library holdings even more accessible to students and faculty.

Soon after Milligan College Library’s launch of MCSearch in early September 2011, we were contacted by the public relations folks at EBSCO Publishing to do a “Customer Success” story for their promotional/marketing materials.

MCSearch is our custom implementation/branding of EBSCO’s Discovery Service platform. MCSearch is best described as a search engine that provides a user experience not unlike Google, but its search capabilities focus on library-provided information resources instead of the open Web. In our own promotion, we have branded MCSearch with the tagline “One search box–for the good stuff” to underscore the ease of use search experience applied to accessing the quality information resources provided by the Library.

We recently learned that our story has been released. Here is a direct link to the five page piece (pdf) covering the launch. Links to the story appear in two locations on EBSCO’s website: On the EBSCO Customer Success Center (see  http://www.ebscohost.com/customerSuccess/ > Colleges/Universities > Customer Success Stories), and on the EDS Support Center (see http://support.ebsco.com/eds > the Customer Success Stories section on the home page. Our story is the third item.) It’s a nice read that features both the Library and Milligan College. Check it out!