IP Addresses


Locations and Hours icon

With these settings, you can:

  • Set up location based settings
  • Use IP Addresses to configure logouts


You are able to configure IP addresses for each location and configure rules to block access to Aspen Discovery. Some various aspects of Aspen react differently when the user in at the IP address, such as saying that an item is "here" instead of at your location.



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IP Addresses

Find My IP Address

If you want to determine your current IP as well as information where Aspen thinks you are, you can navigate to: http://{YOURASPENURL}/Help/IP 

Add an IP Address

In Aspen Administration > Primary Configuration > Library Systems > IP Addresses you can define IP addresses for your library and/or library branches.

Defining IP addresses for your locations signals to Aspen when users are accessing the catalog from within a library building. Some benefits of this include:

  • Prioritizing that location's owned and available copies within search results
  • The option to display the "It's Here" label rather than "Available"
  • Automatic logout for users who are logged in after a period of inactivity
  • Refreshing the catalog back to the main page after a period of inactivity (when no user is logged in)
  • The option to display different collections in search results, or a different theme, based on the IP address

To define an IP address, choose the 'Add New' button and input the address, enter a display name, and choose the applicable location from the Location dropdown.

You can input either a single IP or a range of IPs. For example: 100.xxx.001-100.xxx.299


IMPORTANT: After setting up an IP address for a location, double check that your Location settings are correctly scoped.

1. Go to Aspen Administration > Locations and choose the location you want to check.

2. Make sure your Records Owned and Records to Include are correct. If you'd like your users to have access to the same collections when accessing Aspen from this location's IP address, check the box for Include Library Records to Include. This tells Aspen to use the same collection as specified in the Library System settings.

3. If you have side loaded eContent, navigate to the Side Loaded eContent Scopes section and select All Side Loaded eContent for parent library (or other appropriate scope) from the dropdown.


4. For any additional modules you are using in Aspen, like placards and system messages, make sure the Locations are also checked if you want them to show in the library. By having these location options in combination with the IP Address settings, you can tailor different messages and placards to show within the four walls of those libraries.

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Configure IP Addresses

In Aspen Administration > Primary Configuration > Library Systems > IP Addresses

When you input an IP address or range of IP addresses, you have options to enable for those IP addresses. 

  • Treat as a Public OPAC - Enabling this setting will tell Aspen to apply a few different location-based settings:
    • Automatic logout for users after a certain period of inactivity. This ensures users who forget to log out from a public device will be logged out automatically. To customize the length of time before automatic logout, head to Aspen Administration > Primary Configuration > Locations > Automatic Timeout Length (logged in) and Automatic Timeout Length (logged out).
    • Show "It's Here" for available copies. When users browse Aspen from a public computer at this IP address, they will see available items display as "It's Here" instead of "Available"/"On Shelf". Whether or not "It's Here" displays depends on the setting in Primary Configuration > Library Systems > Holdings Summary > Show "It's Here"
  • Default "Log me out" checkbox on when placing a hold - When enabled, the "log me out" checkbox will be checked automatically for users accessing Aspen on that IP address. 
    • Example: a patron uses a public catalog computer, places a hold, and walks away. Once the hold is placed, Aspen will log the user out and end their session.
  • Block Access from this IP - Gives you the ability to block an IP that is affecting your site's performance
  • Allow API Access - Allows the defined IP address to use Aspen through an API connection to get information; used by Aspen team for debugging and troubleshooting
  • Show Debugging Information - Used by Aspen team for debugging and troubleshooting
  • Log Timing Information
  • Log Database Queries
  • Authenticated For EBSCOhost - Related to the EBSCOhost integration. More Information Here.
  • Allow Masquerade - Libraries can restrict masquerade mode to specific IP Addresses. More Information Here.
  • Allow Single Sign-on (SSO) - Libraries can restrict staff logging in by SSO to specific IP Addresses. More Information on SSO Here. 


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Turn On Refreshing Sessions by IP Address

If you want to only turn on refreshing sessions by IP address and not change any of the catalog views by location, go to Aspen Administration > Primary Configuration > IP Addresses.

  • Add an IP Address
  • Give it a Display Name
  • DO NOT select a Location from the drop down/leave this blank
  • Check Treat as a Public OPAC
  • Save


Note: If you select a corresponding Location from the dropdown, it will also change the catalog view to match the scoped records in the Location Settings.



By default, if no location is selected there will be a 90 second timeout for logged in users and 450 second timeout when no users are logged in.

Turn on Refreshing Sessions by Link

If you don't want to add IP addresses or a range of IP addresses to Aspen, you can bookmark the following link on your catalog/public opac computers:


By adding the /?opac=true to the end of your URL, it will default to 90 sec timeout for logged in users and 450 seconds for logged out users.

Prevent Automatic Logout for Staff Accounts

Allow Prevention of Automatic Logout By Patron Type

If your staff cards are all on one patron type (p-type), such as STAFF or LIBSTAFF, you can tell Aspen to ignore IP address settings related to refreshing the session for users logged in with a staff account.

1. Go to Aspen Administration > Primary Configuration > Patron Types

2. Click into the Patron Type you want to modify.

3. Check Treat as staff and save your changes. This activates a new setting in the staff account that will allow staff users to bypass automatic logout.



In Staff Settings

If a staff member has been assigned permissions in Aspen, OR if the patron category for their account has been marked "Treat as staff," they should see a Staff Settings link in their user account.



When the staff member clicks on Staff Settings, they will see a Bypass Automatic Logout toggle. Toggle that ON to prevent Aspen from automatically logging them out.



Note: With "Bypass Automatic Logout" enabled, users will not be logged out according to the automatic timeout settings for OPACs, but will only be logged out after an hour of inactivity.


Keep Me Signed In 

If users are not accessing Aspen from one of the added IP addresses, they will see the "Keep Me Signed In" option on the login screen. Users that choose "Keep Me Signed In" will remain logged in to Aspen for up to two weeks of inactivity.

If users are accessing Aspen from one of the added IP addresses, they will not see the "Keep Me Signed In" option. This is to prevent patrons using Aspen on public computers from remaining logged in.

View the Catalog From a Certain IP Address/Location

You can test how Aspen Discovery search results will look from a certain location by using URL parameters at the end of your catalog URL. 


View From Location Code:

{yourAspenDiscoveryURL.org}/?branch={location code}&opac=true

The Location Code can be found in Aspen Administration > Primary Configuration > Locations.



These Branch URL parameters can also be useful if your locations don't have unique IP addresses. Individual catalog computers can be set up using URL parameters with location codes to tell Aspen to respect location-based settings such as timeouts and search result display for those devices only. 


View From IP Address:





Stop Viewing from a Certain Location/IP Address

To stop viewing from a certain location/IP address, add the same parameter but leave it blank after the = sign.





Then, enter in your URL with "&opac=false" at the end. 



Spam IP Addresses / When Users Can't Access Aspen from Certain Devices

Aspen has built-in detection for spammy/malicious behavior. We are continually looking out for updated new tactics spammers use to help catch malicious behavior. Once 10 requests from an IP address have been flagged as spam by our monitoring, Aspen will automatically block the IP.

These addresses will show up in Aspen Administration > Primary Configuration > IP Addresses settings as "Spam IP" and will have "IP Blocked due to SPAM" marked as "Yes."

Users might see an error message like: "Forbidden. We are unable to handle your request". Other times, users may be able to access Aspen from a personal/mobile device but not from a specific home computer (as an example).



If originating IP address is not Spam, you can add the IP address to Aspen's settings and either attach the IP address to a Location and/or check the "Treat as a Public OPAC" box to teach Aspen that this is legitimate and not spam. This will prevent Aspen from marking the address as spam again in the future. 


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User Agents

The User Agents settings allow user agents to be identified as bots within Aspen and allow traffic by specific user agents to be blocked within Aspen.

You can find the settings in Aspen Administration > Primary Configuration > User Agents.

User agents sending requests to your Aspen site will appear here. They can be marked as Bots and/or access can be completely blocked from a user agent if it is malicious.

Unlike IP addresses, User Agents will not be automatically blocked or marked as bots. For partners supported by ByWater Solutions, our systems team may make use of these settings as a part of their regular server monitoring procedures, so this is not something library staff will necessarily need to monitor themselves.

To view a report of user agent activity, head to Aspen Administration > System Reports > Usage by User Agent. When a user agent is marked as a bot, this will ensure that activity is no longer tracked with the regular usage statistics on the usage dashboards; the activity will be logged in activity by bots. Click here to read more about the Usage by User Agent dashboard.


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SSL Certificates

Unless there is a special situation, SSL Certificates are administered and managed by the ByWater Aspen support team for both library-owned and .aspendiscovery.org domains.