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Permalinks: What You Need to Know

Why Permalinks Are Important

In many library databases the URL that appears in your browser's address bar is not a persistent or permanent URL. The URL includes session information specific to your search and will expire in a short time.

Here is an expired URL to a search results page in an EBSCO database:

https://web.a.ebscohost.com/ehost/resultsadvanced?vid=2&sid=8a1f8e33-f9a4-43e1-bd9a-2df3383190a1%40sessionmgr4006&bquery=test&bdata=JmRiPWE5aCZ0eXBlPTEmc2VhcmNoTW9kZT1TdGFuZGFyZCZzaXRlPWVob3N0LWxpdmUmc2NvcGU9c2l0ZQ%3d%3d

Here is a permalink to the same search results page:

https://proxy.coastmountaincollege.ca/login?url=https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=a9h&bquery=test&type=1&searchMode=Standard&site=ehost-live&scope=site

The permalink differs in two ways from the expired URL:

  1. It omits the session information that will expire.
  2. It prepends the library's proxy server URL to the database URL. Without the proxy prefix the database URL cannot be accessed from off-campus. This is because the library's licensed databases authenticate users based on IP addresses that belong to Coast Mountain College. The proxy server allows users to access databases from an authorized IP address.