Off-Campus Access

Proxy Server

Current students, faculty, and staff at WFU are eligible to use the WFU proxy server for off-campus access to databases. You will be prompted automatically for your WFU username and password.

The proxy server works by detecting a special prefix to the URL. At WFU, this prefix is The full URL for JSTOR, for example, can be seen in your browser’s status bar when the link is hovered. This prefix works for both database entry pages (the JSTOR example) and for article-specific links (such as this article from Project MUSE).

If you create content for off-campus students, please include the proxy prefix on any links to library databases or e-journals. If you receive Table of Contents alerts via e-mail or RSS (e.g. from ScienceDirect), you must add the prefix to each link before it will work off campus. Alternatively, you can use VPN.

VPN (Virtual Private Network)

VPN is an alternative to the proxy server. In addition to security benefits, VPN gives you an on-campus address which will authenticate you to our databases. Information Systems supports and provides instructions for VPN.


Are you a WFU alum?

Most electronic resources may not be used by alumni while off campus. This is a condition that our vendors place on us in our contracts when we buy databases from them. The ZSR Library does provide alumni access for selected databases. In most cases, alumni and the public are also welcome to use all our databases when they are in the library.

Are you studying abroad in a WFU house?

Students in WFU houses in Venice, Vienna, and London must use VPN instead of the proxy server. You must explicitly launch VPN from your Start menu.

Are you trying to connect from your place of work?

Please note that our databases are for educational, non-commercial use only.

If you are connecting to WFU databases from a corporation, hospital campus, or government office, there may be a firewall in place which prevents you from using the proxy server. Corporate sites often employ firewalls and may be highly restrictive in what their employees can access. If a corporate firewall prevents access, users will not be able to access the proxy server. Most Internet Service Providers do not limit the areas their users can access on the Internet, so home users do not tend to encounter problems with firewalls.

If the proxy server is malfunctioning?

Reynolda campus undergraduates and students in the Divinity School or the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences should email ZSR or call 336-758-5475.

MBA students should call 336-758-4126. Law students should call 336-758-4300.

Medical campus users should contact Molly Barnett at 336-716-2303. See also these medical campus instructions.

Why are the proxy server and VPN needed?

Many expensive subscription web-based services (such as databases and electronic journals) are restricted to current Wake Forest students, faculty, and staff. The proxy server and VPN are two ways to notify a subscription database that you are a legitimate Wake Forest user when you are off campus.

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