IP Authentication

What Is an IP Address?

An IP address is analogous to a street address or telephone number in that it is used to uniquely identify an entity.

With IP authentication, callers that are added to the configuration (whitelist) are allowed to access content. Any caller not on the list is blocked.

How IP authentication works 

Acceptable IP Formats

When submitting a list of IP addresses, please place each IP or IP range on a separate line to avoid confusion.

  • (A single IP)

  • (Proxy; let us know it is an externally facing proxy IP)

  • (A range of IPs)

  • 12.13.*.* - (The *.* translates to all ranges 0–255. In this example,

    it would translate to

  • (IPv4 subnet CIDR)

  • 2001:a98:a070::/48 (IPv6 CIDR)


FAQ & Troubleshooting

Can we include a proxy server’s IP address?

Because proxy servers such as EZproxy have a variety of configuration options, VitalSource cannot guarantee that the proxy IP will work. However, VitalSource has had great success with the vast majority of proxy servers when the externally facing IP is provided. Please let us know if you are including a proxy IP in your list so that we can easily identify it should an issue arise.

Does placing an access link on the library website ensure everyone can access the content?

No. Let’s say a student is off campus and the library does not offer a proxy service that would allow the student to log in to the library network from off campus. Since the student is not on the library network, access will not be authorized.

Users click on the link and receive a “Not Authorized” error message.

This means the user is not on an authorized network. Either an IP address was missed when sending over the list of IPs to be whitelisted, or the user is not on an authorized network and needs to connect to a network that is authorized. This may mean connecting their mobile device to the correct network, or it can involve physically moving location and joining the appropriate network at the designated location.

When viewing analytics, there is no specific student user information.

With the IP authentication option, all users are anonymous. This prevents analytic reports from being able to show specific user information.

FixFix: VitalSource offers keyed, rostered, and LTI integration options, which allow for deeper, more actionable analytic data to be gathered on students and classes.VitalSource also offers a SAML integration option, which would provide you with student data. These integration methods also enable students to utilize great Bookshelf® features like notes, highlights, and—if licensing allows—access their content on any mobile device using the Bookshelf app.

I am unable to restrict access to books based on course.

With IP authentication option, all users are anonymous. This prevents utilizing a user’s identity to restrict access.

FixFix: VitalSource offers rostered, keyed, and LTI integrations that allow you to restrict access to content by course.


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