News archive - 2009

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Hunt the Planets - Quiz Winner

Holly Parsons, the winner of the library quiz, was presented with her prize by the University Librarian, Roisin Gwyer.

Holly took part in the 'Hunt the Planets' quiz during Freshers week and won an Apple iPod nano with camera (8GB, 5th generation).

Holly is studying BA History and Politics and is in her final year, so the iPod should come in very useful to get pictures of all the friends she has made whilst at the University of Portsmouth as well as enjoying her favourite music.

Access problems post Athens

Access to the Athens service came to an end on 31 July. Unfortunately there is a small number of services which have not yet implemented shibboleth access. In the interim, access to these is primarily via IP, i.e. from within the University or via the University Webcache, which simulates on-campus access.

Some suppliers have provided generic usernames and passwords with which off-campus users can access their resources. These are:

To find out the usernames and passwords for these services, please login to our non-standard access page.

There are currently access problems affecting the following services;

Westlaw - go to and follow the Academic Home Organisation login route ScienceDirect - go to - select Athens/Institution login and then follow the Institution location route. You can also follow individual journal links from the Library Catalogue. Cengage Learning (Infotrac): this can be accessed on campus via IP or off campus via webcache; Shibboleth access is not working.

These problems are under investigation.

 We apologise for the current problems.

Closure of the Library Open Access Computer Suite this weekend

22nd July 2009 - The Library Open Access Computer Suite will be closed on Saturday 25th July as essential system maintainance is carried out at the weekend. Students will be unable to login or work on their files until the repair work is completed.

Save Your Ebrary Bookshelf

URGENT: You have until 24th July 2009 to save your Ebrary bookshelf.

Ebrary is moving from Athens Authentication to Shibboleth Authentication on 24th July 2009!

To move your bookshelf from Athens to Shibboleth, follow these instructions..

  1. Look at the grey banner at the top of the ebrary screen. Ebrary are showing you the name of the file that they have given to your Athens account. This is where your current bookshelf is stored. Copy this user id and keep it safe (it should look similar to this: athens_1c5sdfghbhesd6).
  2. After the Shibboleth migration date, log into ebrary again. The login procedure will be the same, i.e. you use your normal University login details. You will see a different user ID on the ebrary screen in the same place as before. Make a note of this.
  3. Contact ebrary Customer Support via email with both the Athens identity and the Shibboleth identity you have noted down and ask them to put the data held against the Athens id into your Shibboleth area. Contact:
  4. If you have any additional questions, contact

New work on Display in the Library

27th June 2009 - The latest display on the Second Floor of the Library shows work by our first year Architecture and Interior Design students. Consolidating a year's worth of design experience, they were asked to design a space for four artists' studios and a gallery.

Their designs were presented using a series of drawings as well as a model. Often these drawings are reproduced at A1, which is why they are not all included here. They also showed their sketchbooks, which provide valuable information about their design process.

We are asking people to vote for their favourite scheme and the winner will receive a £25 book token. So, please do have your say!

Termination of Athens service

10th June 2009 - The University's subscription to the Athens authentication service will come to an end on July 31. Over the past year, most Athens resources have been migrated to the new Shibboleth service and the remaining few will largely convert during the time which remains before Athens goes. Those few services which are still not Shibboleth compliant by then will be available only on campus, or via the University webcache for off campus users.

For most people, this will require no action since, like Athens, Shibboleth login (otherwise known as 'institutional login') is via your standard University login. However, if anyone is still using a classic Athens account (accounts beginning with 'por') this will cease to work after 31 July. You will need to use Shibboleth, via your University login, instead. No resources will be available from the 'MyAthens' web page; you should access resources from the Library catalogue or website instead.

For those of you with personal information (bookshelves, notes etc.) in the e-books service ebrary, a migration procedure will need to be followed in order to retain this data after the changeover. Details of this procedure are outlined above.

EThOS Electronic Theses Online Service - Opening access to UK Theses

29th January 2009 - This new service from the British Library offers free download of many doctoral theses from participating British universities by logging into the EThOS website at:

The list of participating universities can be found on the EThOS website. A large number of theses is already available; others will be added on demand. 
The service allows you to search for theses, download those already available and order those not yet on the database, subject to agreeing to the terms and conditions of supply. 
Downloads are normally free, but you can also order and pay for paper copies, if preferred.

In most cases you can gain access to the theses yourself and no longer need to apply via the Interlibrary Loans service, but if you need any further information or advice about availability, please ask the interlibrary loans staff at the Information Desk in the Library: 
Telephone: 02392 843228.

New Ebrary Interface

19th January 2009 - The new Ebrary interface will launch on 20 January. Users will initially be taken to the new Quickview version of the site. This is an HTML version which can be accessed by anyone without the need for a special reader, and will enable you to search and view content. 

If you want to access Ebrary's Info tools however, you will still need the Ebrary reader which was previously used. You can do this either by clicking the 'ebrary Reader' button next to each record in your hit list, or you can go to the 'Settings' link in Ebrary and re-set your default view to ebrary Reader.

If you have any problems using the new interface, or wish to comment on it, please contact the Electronic Resources Helpdesk.

Alternatively you can contact Janet Wilmot by or your Faculty Librarian.