November 13, 2006

Google Accelerator and Library Resources

Google Web Accelerator (GWA) is a product from Google Labs that uses the Google network to allow one to surf the Web faster than before. This sounds like a good idea at first. Recently, staff in the University Libraries have discovered a downside to using Google Web Accelerator while using library-licensed resources such as electronic journals and online databases.

GWA creates a dynamic IP address for any of its users within the Google IP range. Therefore, if you are trying to access an e-journal via GWA, it will appear to the journal provider that you are coming to this resource from Google and not from the University of Minnesota's IP range. Consequently, you'll be denied entry into this library-licensed resource.

According to the GWA's FAQ, there are ways to disable GWA or to tell it not to "accelerate" a particular website, but in practice we've found this to be problematic. For the near future, we recommend not using GWA when using the University Libraries' licensed resources.

Posted by Kevin Messner at 3:14 PM