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E-books: Downloading E-books : the basics

Finding and using our Online books

Downloading - what software is needed?

Key software - Adobe Digital Editions

Some ebooks can downloaded, for offline reading.  In order to download ebooks to your desktop or laptop computer, you will need to download Adobe Digital Editions version 1.7.1 or higher (this is already available on all campus PCs). 

The first time you open a loaned ebook, Adobe Digital Editions (ADE) will ask you to authorize your computer.  The best way to do this is to supply an Adobe ID.  This way if you open the book on another computer, you can simply supply the same ID to open the book.

If you don't have an Adobe ID, click the "Create an Adobe ID" link.  After creating the ID on the Adobe website, you can close that browser window, return to ADE, and enter the newly created Adobe ID.

Nooks and most other e-readers (except Kindle)

Since nearly all of our ebooks are in PDF format, you should be able to read the texts on personal devices which support PDF. You can use Adobe Digital Editions to transfer PDF files from your computer to most ebook readers except for the Kindle.  It is usually easiest to find and save an e-book to your computer, and then transfer the e-book to your tablet using a USB cable connection.

Adobe Digital Editions is compatible with dozens of devices


Although the Kindle is not compatible with Adobe Digital Editions, it is possible to use Send to Kindle to email PDF files to your Kindle reader.

E-books on Android or i-pad

Some ebooks, but not all, can be downloaded directly to Android and iOS devices.  You will need to download and install the free Bluefire Reader app.

Bluefire Reader for Apple iOS  (Apple devices)

Bluefire Reader in Google Play Store  (Android devices)

After installing the Bluefire Reader app, you will need to authorize the app using your Adobe ID.  If you do not have an Adobe ID, click the "Don't have an Adobe ID?" link.   After creating the ID on the Adobe website, you can close that browser window, return to the Bluefire Reader app, and enter the newly created Adobe ID.

Toubleshooting guide


Printing Problems

Problems with printing  are usually related to Adobe Reader preferences and/or browser settings.

Make sure that:

  • You have Adobe Reader installed
  • Adobe Reader's JavaScript Preferences (Edit --> Preferences) have Acrobat Javascript enabled
  • Preferences are set to "Open PDF in Browser"
  • Your web browser has Javascript-enabled

Firefox vs. PDF

Firefox sometimes creates problems with the PDF view. To avoid these, switch to another browser OR use the "image" view instead of PDF.