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I'm trying to view an ebook on EBSCOhost but it says 'sorry, this ebook is in use'. How can a virtual book have a finite amount of simultaneous users?

Last Updated: Jan 16, 2014  |  4338 Views

Was this helpful? 7   14


Think of viewing or checking out an EBSCO eBook as the same as checking out a physical book. If someone is already looking at it or it is checked out, you have to wait until they are through.

Usually if you just give it a bit of time the other user will get out of the book and you will be able to access it. Meanwhile, we can check and see if there is anything else that will work for you if you like. If you want to learn more about EBSCO eBooks, use the link below.

The good news is that users can check-in eBooks before the check-out duration has expired using the BlueFire app as well as Adobe Digital Editions. Returning the eBook early will release the title for other users, which is beneficial if the library has purchased the title with limited access.

Answered by Kathryn Park

Other Answers / Comments (9)

  1. Similar situation, but I was actually accessing the book, tried to select the next page and got that message- how can you 'boot out' an existing user to allow another person access?? And now I have to wait until they have finished...seems unfair to say the least!
    by KLS on Apr 21, 2013.
  2. I am sorry, KLS, that is definitely unfair.

    We have been using EBSCO for years and this has never happened to anyone before.

    According to the EBSCO documentation this should not happen. Once someone has the book in use, no one else should be able to should be able to access it.

    I will contact them and see what they have to say.
    by Kathryn Park on Apr 22, 2013.
  3. I'm having the same problem for the last few days
    by m on Apr 24, 2013.
  4. I am so sorry! I submitted a report to EBSCO on the 22nd, but have not yet heard back from them. When I hear back I will let you both know what they have to say. Hopefully that they have resolved the situation...
    by Kathryn Park on Apr 24, 2013.
  5. I am having the same problem. I'm using a book, and by the time I want to change page I've been kicked out and can't access it. Very annoying as I can't seem to find this particular book anywhere else.
    by Sandra on Apr 27, 2013.
  6. I'm sorry to hear someone else is having this issue. I will re-report it to EBSCO. If there is something else we can help you find, please let us know.

    Alternatively, if you can get back in once, try downloading it to your PC if possible. Then it should be checked out to you.
    by Erin McDaniel on Apr 27, 2013.
  7. Maybe you "timed out" while you were reading and that freed up the book for the other person? You would expect to get a popup saying your session is about to expire, but maybe this is an edge case due to a rare combination of browser, browser configuration, and possibly plugins installed on your computer.
    by Phillip Acevedo on May 13, 2013.
  8. I too am also getting booted out of an eBook that I was actively working with. Have we found a solution to this issue yet? It's kind of a bummer. :(
    by Stephanie McKendrick on Jun 03, 2013.
  9. We did hear back from EBSCO. Their best explanation is that users are accessing the eBook, closing the browser or tab, then trying to get back in. If that happens, you will be locked out, because EBSCO won't recognize it is you.

    If this is the case, your best bet is to create a free EBSCO account and log in before starting a book, and then your usage will be tracked accurately.

    If this doesn't solve the problem, it may be your settings. Follow this link to see if you are "optimized".
    by Erin McDaniel on Jun 03, 2013.

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