Digital Library Manual



  • Not yet happy with navigation and linking to specific parts of manual, but layout works fine, much better than pdf.
  • how to get this text into dev blog:
    • one-shot copy: we copy all image assets to local wp (dev-blog) and link it to an html export (copy-paste) of this page (from luxcommons wp),
    • or we use the syncing feature between gdoc and wordpress, then we need to install jetpack for our local wp, which is probably a major security policy problem (solution may be to move the whole blog to wordpress hosting)

Text is based on TF v0.8.

  • Changes made:
  • Removed Word ToC (even gdoc created ToC didn’t sync to WP)
  • Removed all anchors
  • Cleaned all images to “inline”
  • Deleted a-z cheat sheet completed (didn’t render), still need to try and make a screenshot of the whole thing and upload again as image, better: link to pdf versions of cheat sheet.

General and administrative information

There are stipulated access restrictions for all content that is not available in freely accessible documents. Correct authentication is for this reason essential when using the digital library. In this chapter, the different access options are presented and explained in detail.

Reader card

In order to access content from specialist databases and publisher platforms, you need to be an authorised user i.e. to be registered and possess a valid reader card issued by the National Library or any other library of the Consortium Luxembourg.

We recommend contacting one of the institutions responsible for issuing you with a reader card:


Contact information

Resident in the Grand-Duchy or its neighbouring regions

National Library of Luxembourg

Student, researcher or staff of the University

University of Luxembourg

Scientist or staff member at LIST or LIH



Max-Planck Institut Luxembourg


Ministère de la Fonction publique de la Réforme administrative


Most of the publications in the digital library are not owned by the National Library. Instead, contracts are negotiated containing access permissions, which define type and scope of access for library users. Access can be:

  • limited to local networks of the library or
  • unlimited, i.e. accessible from outside the library, e.g. home

In order to access restricted documents in the digital library, you need to login with your reader card and password.

Your User account contains all information necessary to use the library’s services

  • get an overview of your library activities (loans, ILL, reservations, fees)
  • update your personal information (so that the library can contact you)
  • check library subscription(s) and their expiration date(s)
  • save and manage successful search queries and search results

For further information, please go to your personal space in the help section

Rules and regulations for usage

The general terms and conditions of use issued by publishers are similar for most digital publications. Generally, the following conditions apply:

  • Access to full text resources is only permitted to authorized users.
  • Full text articles are only allowed to be saved for personal use
  • Systematic download of articles or search results, in particular processed by robots, is strictly forbidden. In case of a noncompliance, general access to the publisher’s server will be blocked for all authorized users.
  • Authors’ names and any publisher’s copyright information in the electronic version must not be deleted or overwritten.

The specific conditions for each case are available on the relevant publisher’s website.

Additionally, use of the digital library has to be in line with the rules and regulations of the Rules and Regulations of the National Library of Luxembourg (in French).

Most relevant information on usage is found in the “Terms of use” section below the login form.

Software requirements

Most online full texts are available in PDF format (Portable Document Format). You need the Adobe Acrobat Reader to display the format properly. However, you will still find a lot of full texts in HTML-format, so that you will also need an up-to-date web browser.

On some platforms, e-books are provided for reading offline with the software “Adobe Digital Editions”. To download and save the e-book, you need to install “Adobe Digital Editions” on your computer or tablet and the “Bluefire Reader” on your smartphone. This copy protection software ensures that e-books cannot be handed on illicitly to third parties, and are only accessible on your device for the period of the “loan” to you.

Find more information on Adobe Digital Editions or Bluefire Reader

Browser settings

Your web browser needs to be set to accept cookies to correctly display

documents on some platforms. Make sure that this function is activated

in your browser.

Searching for digital information

There are currently two search interfaces available to search for content in the digital library: and is the unified search engine for all collections of the library network in Luxembourg, in other words, this is where you find information for work and leisure purposes as well as scientific information.

In detail, you are searching in electronic and printed documents simultaneously, access to them is via the following resources:

  • The collections (books, journals, films etc.) of the various members of the library network
  • The digital content of, a project of the National Library to digitize the printed cultural heritage of Luxembourg and
  • The digital information acquired by the Consortium Luxembourg
  • The Open Repository and Bibliography ORBilu from the University of Luxembourg

The digital library managed by the Consortium Luxembourg currently, gives access to:

  • 56 000 e-journals
  • 230 000 e-books
  • 350 databases

with English, French and German content.

For rapidly access to digital resources, please read the information here

Additionally, you can use the filters that proposed (at the left of the screen)

There is also a mobile version available for The mobile interface only contains the essential filter options and is limited to basic functions: is the portal of the digitization project of the National Library. It offers:

  • Daily and weekly newspapers from Luxembourg from 1848 to 1950
    • e.g. Luxemburger Wort, Tageblatt, Lëtzebuerger Land (1954-2007), Bürger- und Beamten-Zeitung, etc.
  • historical postcards, manuscripts, reference works

Please find more information about eluxemburgensia here (French language)

Access options for the document

On completing a successful search, you receive information on the availability of online documents relating to the title you found as well as information on alternative ways to get the title, if there is no immediate access to it (e.g. via Interlibrary loan (ILL)).

In the results list from, open the tab “Check online access” or “Get this online” respectively.

Please find here more information about Indication of resource availability

Display of access options

The access information will be listed in a separate browser window. Depending on the document, the following information will be displayed.

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  • Article citation
  • Link to full text
  • Article recommendation
  • Other online documents
  • Citation export
  • Help
  • Order via interlibrary loan

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At the top of the menu, you see the citation of the article, e-book or e-journal. Below that, you find the corresponding information relating to online access.

Link to full text access

The full text appears directly below the citation. Sometimes, a title is accessible from several publisher platforms, but access is subject to varying usage regulations. Find details where applicable in the note below the link.

If instead of the link a message is displayed “no full text”, than there is no digital version available for the document or it is not licensed by the Consortium.

With thousands of data records being managed and constantly updated, errors can occur in some situations. Find tips in our FAQ on how to quickly test whether you can still access the full text, if you receive an error message for something that worked before. In addition, please report the problem to the Helpdesk. To do so, click on the contact form “Feedback Form” further down in the menu or send us an email to

Article recommendation (bX service)

Similar to recommendations on shopping websites, the so-called bX recommender helps you to find relevant literature which you would not have found otherwise. By analysing millions of searches worldwide, the system checks, on the basis of the accessed article, which other articles are related to this one and presents a list of additional relevant articles.

For authors registered in the database Web of Science, there is a link to further articles available in Web of Science by the same author.

More online resources

Besides the full text link, you will also be given access to abstracts or tables of contents. Additionally, there is an option to check for the availability of the title in Google Books.

Export citation

Here you can choose between different citation styles before you save or copy the reference.

Get help

This link leads you to a contact form in which you fill in your request. The helpdesk of the National Library will be sent your request and endeavour to answer as soon as possible.

Order the document via interlibrary loan

If the desired document is not available online, you will see the link to the interlibrary loan. In this way, the National Library offers you an alternative way to order a copy of the document via other libraries (abroad).

Interlibrary loan (ILL)

The international interlibrary loan is a service offered by the National Library to provide scientific literature which is not available in Luxembourg. The literature will be provided in the form of:

  • a copy of the journal article (electronic or on paper) or
  • a loan (books or theses)

You need to be registered with the National Library to order an article via interlibrary loan (see chapter Reader card).

Please find more information about this service in the National Library’s web page (in French)

Access to our subscriptions directly from Google Scholar and Pubmed

In Pubmed and Google Scholar, you can add a direct request about the availability of online documents licensed by the Consortium directly to your search results. Simply activate the connection to the Consortium Luxembourg /

Google Scholar

In Google, no registration is required for configuration. The connection is activated as follows:

  1. Open Google Scholar in your browser:
  2. Select « Settings ».

  1. Select « Library links » from the menu and search for Luxembourg.
  2. Select « Consortium Luxembourg – –” and click “save” to save your personal settings.

Go back to the results list and then click on the on the right side. You will find the available access option displayed as usual (see chapter Access options for the document for more information).


In Pubmed, you need to create a user account in order to set up the connection:

  1. Open Pubmed in your browser:
  2. Create a “MyNCBI” account and login
  3. In your account “My NCBI”, select “NCBI Site Preferences” and then “Outside Tool”

  1. In the results list, navigate to C and select the Consortium Luxembourg.
  2. Do not forget to save your settings.

Things worth knowing about searching for scientific articles

Scientific publications are the basis of research in the scientific community.

Typically, you search for articles explicitly, if

  • you already known the article and check the online availability
  • you search articles on a subject

In general, the article reference is a good starting point for the search. Here’s a typical example:

Hagey. (2012). Building healthy soils: Urban farming grows in Oakland. BioCycle, (3), 23-26.

Author. (Publication date).Title: Journal title, (issue), pages start – end.

Basically, a reference can contain the following information:

  • journal title
  • ISSN is an international standard to uniquely identify journals or newspapers, also e-journals (e-ISSN).
  • date is the date of publication. Usually, only the year of publication is given.
  • volume and issue of the journal, in which the article was published.
  • Pages – first and last page of the article
  • article title
  • author
  • DOI – the digital object identifier (DOI) identifies digital or abstract objects. It is used, in particular, for articles in scientific journals

Things worth knowing about searching journals

Electronic journals are a very important medium for the science community. There is a long tradition of publishing research activities in journals. With the emergence of the information society, these traditions have led to an uncountable number of specialized journals that are published weekly, monthly or yearly, and new journals are being published all the time. Electronic journals can be published as the digital version of a printed journal or exclusively online without a printed equivalent.

Impact Factor (IF)

In order to find out which journals are relevant in a discipline, the citation of an article is used as an assessment basis. In other words, how often was my article mentioned in articles of other researchers? This value is called Impact Factor (IF) and has become the key factor for scientific journals of high quality.

  • journal articles
  • bibliographic records (of journals articles, e-books etc.)
  • theses
  • conference papers and proceedings
  • research data (statistical data, measured data)

Databases are provided by publishers or aggregators, and there are many mixed forms. To accommodate for these varying combinations, you find subject-related and interdisciplinary databases.

Contracts are negotiated for specialized databases and publisher platforms which stipulate different access rights for library users. Therefore, you should be aware that you do not have access to some databases, or not from everywhere.

Manage and process search queries and results

Alongside search support, the user interface of also offers you tools to process your search results, such as:

  • highlight favourites (further information are available here)
  • save search queries with alerts (further information are available here)
  • export options:

In the tab “Details” you find the menu “Actions”. From there, you can export the title information instantly, for instance, into a reference management program (EndNote, Refworks…), print or send as an email. Furthermore, you find a permalink for each result in, meaning a consistent URL by which you can directly access the result. The system also generates the citation for you. In “Citation” you select the citation style and then copy it to the clipboard. Besides, you can also remove your result from the list of favourites in this menu.

Configuration of reference software to import references from the Digital Library

When writing a scientific paper, you need to refer to results of other scientific works by citing correctly the source used (e.g. books, journal articles, web sites). These references help the reader to retrieve the sources you employed.

For more complex research projects, collection, organization and management of bibliographic references can become very confusing. So-called reference management programs facilitate this organizing effort. You can import your citations, store centrally, organize and edit them. Furthermore, you also have the option of creating a bibliography automatically and exporting it.

Configure a connection with the reference program

To facilitate the import of information from the digital library into your reference management program, we recommend connecting the program with our digital library.

For this, you need to add the OpenURL resolver (also called “base URL”) in most cases. An OpenURL resolver is used in search engines and library catalogues to link to documents on the internet.


Several reference management programs include an option to directly select different library catalogues and search them. At present, Citavi and EndNote, amongst others, offer this service. EndNote even offers an integrated search in the scientific databases PubMed or Ebsco.

In most cases, it is enough to install the so-called “picker” of the reference software for your browser. It will then add the bibliographic reference, the citation or the image of a scientific database with one click to the library of your reference program (e.g. Zotero).

The following looks at a selection of common reference management programs. It is possible in all of them to import references and/or PDF files.

Zotero is a free, open-source and easy-to-use program. It helps collect, organise, cite and share your research sources. Zotero also allows you to search for other research colleagues in your discipline.

Functions that make Zotero comfortable to use:

  • it is an add-on for the Firefox browser.
  • it automatically recognises potentially relevant content while you are browsing the internet or a scientific database. With a single click you can add the reference to a relevant result to your personal Zotero library.
  • Since it is a browser add-on, you will not have to change between your browser and your desktop application to manage your references.


Note: Zotero automatically recognises proxies and stores their settings. In other words, once you access a fee-based specialized database or publisher platform, Zotero detects the specific settings of the particular database and can import the results immediately.

You add the OpenURL resolver in the Zotero menu at Tools > Preferences > Advanced.

Citavi is widespread in Germany. Its core features consist of managing references, knowledge organisation and task planning. Equally to Zotero, Citavi offers the so-called “picker extensions” for the browser. Using the picker, you can also select individual sentences or paragraphs from an article and allocate them as a citation, abstract or keyword to a bibliographic reference in your Citavi library.

Citavi offers a limited version for free. In the limited version you can add a maximum of 100 references per project.


Note: Go to Tools > Options > Search to determine your setting for the search in Citavi. Look for “Bibliothèque nationale de Luxembourg” and click “Add” to save the result to your settings.

EndNote a reference management program by Thomson Reuters. In contrast to Citavi and Zotero, EndNote is fee-based. A 30-day trial is available.

EndNote Web allows you to collect and organise your references and format citations, footnotes or a whole bibliography. In addition, you can share your references with other EndNote Web users. It is also possible to synchronise your content in order to access and manage your EndNote library from different devices anywhere.

EndNote does not support an integrated search within the National Library’s digital content, but it does allow you to search in more than 400 other library catalogues and databases (among others Pubmed and Web of Science) within the EndNote user interface


Note: To connect EndNote with the digital library, you add the OpenURL in the menu Edit >Preferences > Find Full Text.

Mendeley a free reference management program and a social network for academics. It supports you in organising your research library, in your collaboration with others via the internet. It also suggests relevant works according to your search behaviour.

In comparison to other reference management programs, Mendeley focuses on the collaborative aspect of research. It functions as a network for researches, in other words you can create a personal profile, exchange information with other researchers and view the most frequently requested articles (“hot articles”) which result from usage statistics of documents, authors and publications.

Mendeley can be seen as both an internet and desktop application. Articles are synchronized and can be shared to a certain degree with other members of the scientific social network.


Note: In your account, select Account Details. Add the OpenURL resolver to “Your library access links” and confirm the changes by clicking on the button “Add library manually”.

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Searching – a step by step instruction for beginners

The principles of searching apply for both printed and digital documents. The following outlines the basic steps for searching in and

  1. What am I searching for?

Before your start to search in or, think about what you are actually looking for:

  • Are you looking for a specific title (e.g. to answer a question, retrieve a certain text, film or music record) or
  • Are you looking for relevant information about a certain topic? Are you looking for scientific information in particular?

  1. Find appropriate search terms

Depending on what you aim to find, you need to pay more or less attention to search terms.

Search terms to retrieve information

In most cases, it is sufficient to search for title, author or a unique reference (e.g. ISSN, ISBN, DOI). Make use of the filter in Avoid special characters and less informative words (like “the”, “and”, “or”). Instead, concentrate on meaningful key words such as nouns or phrases.

Search terms to search for relevant information on a topic

Start your search with a general search term for your topic (e.g. “globalisation”). Utilise the functionalities in (filter) to then explore the vast number of results and find more precise search terms and subordinated topics.

Following this, it is worth taking a closer look at the context information provided with a result. This will deliver pre-defined and differentiated subject terms for your topic, relevant authors and abstracts, all of which can serve as an important help for focusing closer on the topic.

I have to pay to access the document

Did you click on the link to the full text in or, and then were you informed on the vendor’s web site that you have to pay for the document?

Check the URL of the web site in your browser. Is there a proxy address “”? If this extension in the URL is included, the vendor identifies that you are authorized to access the document. If this extension is missing, you can add it yourself. To do so, add “” to the host suffix as follows:

Additionally, please inform the helpdesk.

If the message still occurs or you get a different kind of error message, this is probably due to an erroneous configuration, which has not been recognized yet. In this case, we would kindly ask you to contact the helpdesk so that the error can be corrected.

“Sorry, no full text available”

You found an interesting document. You check the access option to the document and receive and the information “Sorry, no full text available”.

There are three possible causes for error messages like this:

No license available

In the course of searching in, it can happen that you come across an article or a book with no digital full text supplement, or the library did not license the full text. In the tab “Check online access”, you then find the message “Sorry, no full text available”. In this case, you can order the document via the interlibrary loan. This is a service offered by the National Library to acquire documents via libraries abroad. Since there is an additional administrational effort necessary, you will be charged a small fee.

Limited access

Some database content, especially legal information, can only be accessed within the library building. You receive an error message if you are outside the library’s network.

False information in the access options

If you recognize false information regarding availability of a document in the access options, click on the contact form and report the problem to us. Our staff will correct the mistake as soon as possible.

An error message occurs in the access options (

Could it be that you are accessing the document from a network different to the one you usually use?

In this case it is very likely that the firewall of the network is not configured correctly and is blocking the port which our link resolver uses.

Verify that the Port 9003 is open in the firewall. To do so, type “” in the address bar of the browser.

If the image does not appear on your screen, you need to check the firewall configuration, or contact your IT department to do it for you.

You can also send us an email to Helpdesk.



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Contact information

Consortium Luxembourg / Bibliothèque nationale de Luxembourg

31, Blvd Konrad Adenauer, L-1115 Luxembourg


Content of the digital library is available on



Specific enquiries regarding


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Background information on digital content

Most digital content is stored in databases. Common resources are:

  • journal articles
  • e-books
  • bibliographic references (of journal articles, books, etc.)
  • theses
  • conference papers and proceedings
  • data (statistical data, measured data from experiments)

Fee-based content

There are publishers who index and provide their digital content in databases themselves. Other companies acquire licenses for digital content from various publishers and index the resources in specialized subject and interdisciplinary databases. These services come at a high cost. Libraries subscribe to a license to allow users to search within the database and download content. In the course of the last decade, prices have soared. This has forced libraries to negotiate digital content in specific packages, and in many cases they can only afford to license a part of the database’s content (often with limitations in subject and publication periods).

Example: EBSCO, Elsevier Science Direct, Wiley online

Free accessible resources

Besides fee-based databases, there are also freely accessible resources. Free resources are databases or repositories that offer their content free of charge. Their providers are normally non-commercial institutions (such as research institutes, governmental organization or universities).

The price explosion for fee-based digital content has given rise to the Open Access movement in response to the ethical debate about free access to scientific information. The initiative forms standards to publish scientific material for free use under the conditions of copyright control. Most of Open Access content is published in institutional repositories housing theses, proceedings or research data.

Example: Orbilu, ArXiv, HAL, psydoc, DART, DOAJ

With the increasing acceptance for the publication of scientific information using open access, more and more publishers are making selected content available free of charge.

OpenURL resolver

You can check the access options to a document using the button or the tab “Check online access” in This information is generated by a link resolver – the SFX link resolver. This is a software bought by the Consortium Luxembourg in order to link the bibliographic information potentially spread throughout the internet (e.g., or GoogleScholar) to the corresponding document on the publisher’s server (e.g. Springer).

Find more information on the working of a link resolver, click here.

More information about the Impact Factor


Another possibility to define the quality of a journal is the peer review procedure. In the process, a specialized article is reviewed by another scholar of the discipline first, before it is published. Only if the quality of the article is verified by the specialist community does the article get published. People involved in the procedure remain anonymous most of the time.

More information about Peer-Review

Searching in historical journals

For searching in the historical archive of digitised newspapers and journals from Luxembourg, please check the information here .

Things worth knowing about searching e-books

An electronic book is a digital publication of book-length. It consists of text, images, or both, and is readable on computers and other electronic devices. There are special data-formats like epub, but mostly e-books are in pdf-format. Some publishers publish their e-books with a rights management system (DRM), which allows reading anytime online. To download and save the e-book, you need to install “Adobe Digital Editions” on your computer or tablet and the “Bluefire Reader” on your smartphone. This copy protection software ensures that e-books cannot be handed on illicitly to third parties and are only accessible on your device for the period of “loan”. E-books can be published as the electronic version of a printed book or “born digital” without a printed equivalent. E-books have an ISBN, the e-ISBN

Things worth knowing about searching specialized databases and publisher platforms

Most content of the digital library are stored in databases. Content generally comprises: