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Stable Links to Online Articles, eBooks & More: Anatomy of a Stable Link

Consistent access to online readings from Library databases requires links that are proxied and stable. This guide presents resources for this process.

Anatomy of a Stable Link

The first part of a proxied, stable link is the proxy script or prefix.

This connects to the VIU Library proxy server and prompts VIU users to log in so that they can use the target resource whether on or off campus:

The second part of a link is the permanent address of the online book or article in its source database. For example:

Below is a sample stable link with its two parts put together:

Bookmarking or copying a URL from the address bar is usually unsuccessful, because information in the URL relates to an expired session and search, or because a new user who clicks on it will not be recognized as belonging to VIU.

Instead, check the information that the database presents about the article for a link that is labeled "permalink", "persistent", or "durable."


  • A link that ends in .pdf is frequently stable.

  • Issues that affect off campus access may not be visible while you're on campus - please test links both on and off campus before distributing!

  • Links may be "stable" or "persistent" but not "eternal" - check reading links frequently, including prior to each successive offering of a course. 

Examples: Stable Links

Online Reading Links: Help

Assistance with linking to online library resources:

Ivan Cormier


ext. 2379

Library Reference


Your subject liaison librarian