Open up to a less complex life

With over 25 years experience, our library single sign-on solution ensures access and authentication are managed simply, securely, and effectively while providing insight and data that supports librarians.

OpenAthens single sign-on solution resource catalog on a laptop screen

Key features and benefits

  1. Single sign-on

    OpenAthens establishes one set of log-in credentials for all web resources and applications. Users can sign in and access the information they are looking for without unnecessary barriers or complications.

  2. Access rights and permissions

    OpenAthens provides flexible control for managing access rights to groups of users. Using new or existing attributes and categories, you can control access to specific resources based on licensing requirements as well as the structure and strategic focus of your organization.

  3. Statistics and data

    Comprehensive usage statistics show how often content is accessed and by which users, giving you insight into the value of your subscriptions. It provides valuable detail into which parts of your organization engage most regularly with your library or information center services.

  4. Account management

    OpenAthens is designed specifically for librarians to manage authentication and end-user accounts. Our admin dashboard provides an intuitive user interface to manage users and control the subscriptions they can access.

  1. Seamless off-site and on-site access

    OpenAthens integrates with institutions that still rely on IP authentication. Single links are created that allow patrons and end-users access to the information needed whether they are located within your organization or working off-site. It also enables access for users using mobile devices to reach the information they need.

  2. Support for today and the future

    OpenAthens is built on international standards. Our fully hosted and supported service and ITIL accredited service desk ensure these standards are maintained for all our customers. As the technology evolves, OpenAthens evolves with it.

  3. Easy integration

    OpenAthens removes any unnecessary complications, by seamlessly slotting into your existing library systems and working with them to provide the best user experience possible.

Product tour

Reporting dashboard

Our reports area provides insight into provider usage, number of authentications, active accounts, location of successful session logins and much more!

Account management

Create, edit and activate accounts. Assign users to permission sets. Integrate with your organization's active directory.

Permission sets

Create permission sets to control resource access based on departments, faculty, libraries or whatever your organization needs.

Compare library single sign-on solutions

OpenAthens EZproxy Shibboleth
Admin dashboard
A tick indicating this feature is available

Comprehensive portal for managing all configuration e.g. user management, reporting, and resource management.

A cross indicating this feature is unavailable

All configuration is managed on the server.

A cross indicating this feature is unavailable

All configuration is managed on the server by a Shibboleth developer.

User management dashboard
A tick indicating this feature is available

Option to create OpenAthens accounts and /or integrate with any local directory. Ability to create personal accounts or access accounts (e.g. for walk-in users, etc.) organization accounts. The administrator can also disable accounts if misuse is suspected.

A cross indicating this feature is unavailable

Text file-based system for user management or the option to connect to a local directory.

A cross indicating this feature is unavailable

No in-built user management function. A developer must connect to a local directory.

Reporting module
A tick indicating this feature is available

Reporting available on any attributes the library wants to see usage on e.g. department and user group, international students, walk-in users, alumni. Reporting API available for data integration with systems such as Tableau or Power BI.

A cross indicating this feature is unavailable

Basic reporting that provides information about remote users’ activity only.

A cross indicating this feature is unavailable

No inbuilt reporting capabilities. There is access to Shibboleth log files or the ability to integrate with 3rd party applications.

Web portal
A tick indicating this feature is available

MyAthens portal available. Provides a lightweight knowledge portal to curate resources and add content discovery widgets.

A cross indicating this feature is unavailable

Not available.

A cross indicating this feature is unavailable

Not available.

Two factor authentication
A tick indicating this feature is available

Can point to an institutional Identity Provider that has been configured for multi-factor authentication.

A cross indicating this feature is unavailable

In development.

A cross indicating this feature is unavailable

A Shibboleth developer could build multi-factor authentication functionality.

Personalization
A tick indicating this feature is available

Users can save their searches/ annotated content/ preferences and login to publishers’ websites that support it automatically.

A cross indicating this feature is unavailable

Access is all based on IP recognition, so personalization is not possible.

A tick indicating this feature is available

Users can save their searches/ annotated content/ preferences and login to publishers’ websites that support it automatically.

Photo by Bruce Mars via Unsplash

Helpful resources

  • What publishers and service providers are we compatible with? Search our database of publishers and service providers that are compatible with the OpenAthens service. Filter on those that are in identity federations, or compatible with the OpenAthens Redirector or managed proxy.
  • Setup and onboarding. Our detailed six-step guide walks you through everything to consider and carry out when onboarding to OpenAthens. And we’re there to support you at every step.
  • FAQ. Search our bank of frequently asked single sign-on solution questions to find the answers you need.
  • Listserv community. Our OpenAthens Listserv connects our customers. Join our global community to share best practices, expertise, ideas, and information, ask questions, gain knowledge, explore opportunities and collaborate with each other!
Person thinking

How do I get an OpenAthens account?

Learners or researchers, you will need to speak to the library or information management team at your organization about access to online journals and databases.

Find out more

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