EZProxy Maintenance

EZproxy is a web proxy server used by libraries to give access from outside the library's computer network to restricted-access websites that authenticate users by IP address. This allows library patrons at home or elsewhere to log in through their library's EZproxy server and gain access to resources to which their library subscribes, such as bibliographic databases. Source EZProxy is used by the Five Colleges and is an OCLC Product. Vendor documentation can be found at EZProxy Support

Basic Changes to Stanzas

  • Using a FTP client (preferably WinSCP-Put in a SysHelp Ticket to have it installed on your machine) access the Proxy Server
    • The Username and Password can be gotten from Scott, Kat, or Jack
  • Once logged in, navigate to the config.txt file
    • There are many old Config files and backups that are not used anymore. Make sure you select the correct one.
    • Before using WinSCP, set up a local file somewhere in your C Drive for the software to use when you start editing the actual text.
  • Drag the config.txt file from the right pane into the left pane (the local folder on your C Drive)
    • Allow it to overwrite or change the existing filename.
  • Double click on the file in the local folder to open the text editor. (For more advanced edits, use Notepad++-Put in a SysHelp Ticket to get it on your machine)
    • The text file has a specific structure. The beginning has administrative information for the Server, UMass IP Addresses, Blocked/Banned IPs, etc.
    • Different sections are commented out using a #
      • To add new comments, begin the line of text with a X
    • The Stanzas are roughly alphabetical, and they are hierarchical. Lines that are higher are given priority over lines that are lower.
      • Trials are always at the end of the file.
  • To add a new stanza, Check OCLC or use Google to try and find one that someone else has created.
    • To make edits (like HTTPS) add information to existing stanzas.
  • Save the Local copy
    • Drag the local file back into the Proxy Server and allow it to overwrite the existing config.txt file
  • Go to the EZProxy Admin and login with the same credentials as the Server
    • Restart the Server AFTER you've updated the file
  • Test the resource in Opera.

Sample Stanza configuration entry without javascript:

  • T Journal Title
  • HJ Host Source: Other hosts at resource? e.g. otherserver.publisher.com
  • DJ Direct Source: Top level domain e.g. publisher.com or publisher.ac.uk
    • Do not use colons
    • Some resources store information on different servers, so for instance, you might have access to the text but not the images if the server housing the image is not in the proxy config file.
    • Not every stanza will look the same

Sample configuration with javascript:

Maintaining the Configuration File (config.txt)

  • Suggested definitions for many resources may be found at Database Setup
    • Note that in our configuration file Chadwyck-Healey has a special setup because of RefWorks linking issues. See main Chadwyck-Healey entry for instructions. Subsequent entries must be below initial entry.
  • Where something is in the file matters. It is read top down.
  • When creating a resource configuration stanza, determine whether javascript is used.
  • Our configuration file is edited using the text editor vi.
  • EZProxy processes must be restarted for configuration changes to be operational. At present we must restart from the web admin page.

Weekly Maintenance

  • Removing unused host log entries
    • Go to http://silk.library.umass.edu/status [Admin Login required]
    • In the section entitled Host Maintenance select the radio button for “Remove XXX hosts that have not been used in over 30 days
    • Select the Process button
    • Select the Administration link at the top of the page to go to the Admin page.
    • Select Restart Proxy from the Admin page menu.
  • If time permits, review message log (available via Admin page also) for problems. Restarting no longer yields syntax error messages for configuration file as it did in the past, you must look in the message.txt log file.

Upgrades

  • Notices of available upgrades to the EZProxy software are announced on the Listserv. Do not be hasty in requesting load of upgrades unless a bug fix is urgently needed. Each upgrade contains all previous upgrades. There is no risk in skipping one.

License Violation Incidents through proxy

Includes Files

Publishers provide config files for EZProxy which may be found at OCLC or on publisher sites.

Create a .cfg or .txt file, depending upon publisher instructions, and FTP it to the EZProxy server. If you have trouble adding a .cfg extension, go to Windows explorer>Tools>Folder options>Deselect “Hide extensions for known file types.”

To edit and backup the config.txt file, FTP the file to R/S:Acquisitions/Electronic Resources/EZProxy. OCLC instructions for setting up the entry in the EZProxy config are here. FTP the corrected file back to the proxy server.

We use includes files for Oxford, Sage.

ezproxy_maintenance.txt · Last modified: 2019/05/22 16:07 by jmulvaney
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