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eBooks & Digital Audiobooks

Getting Started with Desktops & Laptops

Getting Started with Desktops and Laptops


OverDrive Read

If you want to read your eBook on a desktop or laptop computer, the easiest way to get started is to use OverDrive Read to read the eBook in your browser. OverDrive Read is available for most eBooks. In some browsers, you can also download and bookmark the eBook for offline access. For step by step instructions on how to use this function, click here.

Adobe Digital Editions (ADE)

Alternatively, you can read eBooks on your computer with Adobe Digital Editions (free software) installed. If you wish to transfer your eBook to an eReader, you will need to use Adobe Digital Editions.

Install Adobe Digital Editions on Your Computer (it’s free)

  • On your computer, go to the Adobe Digital Editions website
  • Click the link next to your preferred platform
  • Choose Mac or Windows, depending on your computer
  • Download and install the software.
  • When the program launches for the first time, you’ll be prompted to authorize your computer
    • You can access the authorization information by clicking the Help file in Adobe Digital Editions

Option 1: Sign Up for An Adobe ID (it's free)

  • Use this online form to sign up for an Adobe ID
  • Keep a note of your email and password - you’ll need it shortly

Authorize Your Adobe Digital Editions with Your Adobe ID

  • With Adobe Digital Editions open, click on Help in the top left of the screen and select Authorize Computer
  • Enter in your Adobe ID and password and click on Authorize

NOTE: OverDrive recommends authorizing ADE with an OverDrive Account (see steps below), but some individuals are having problems with this. If this happens, please follow the steps above and authorize with an Adobe Account.

Option 2: Sign Up for An OverDrive Account (it's free)

  • On your computer, go to the OverDrive Account Sign up page
  • Provide your email address and create a password (Keep a note of this - you’ll need it shortly)
  • OverDrive will send a verification email to your email address. You will need to click on the link in the email to verify your new OverDrive account.

Authorize Your Adobe Digital Editions with Your OverDrive Account

  • With Adobe Digital Editions open, click on Help in the top left of the screen and select Authorize Computer...
  • Choose eBook Vendor to be: OverDrive
  • Enter in your OverDrive Account email and password and click on Authorize

Find and Borrow eBooks

  • Visit VPL to Go on your computer
  • Now you can browse or search for eBooks
  • When you find an available title that you’d like to borrow, click on the item to select it

Formats - Nearly all of our eBooks are available in EPUB format.

  • Now click the Borrow button
    • If you see Place Hold instead of Borrow, the item is not currently available
    • You can place a hold if you wish, then return to searching for an available title
  • After Signing In with your library card number and PIN, you will be taken to the Bookshelf section of your account - the title is now checked out to you
    • The next step is to download it to your computer
    • You can complete the download at any time during the loan period by signing in to your account and going to the Bookshelf section

Download eBooks to Your Computer

  • Select a format to download (if you have a choice, generally select EPUB)
  • Click the download button and open the downloaded file with Adobe Digital Editions
  • The eBook will begin to download
  • Depending on the Internet browser (Firefox, Internet Explorer, Safari or Chrome) that you use, the eBook may open automatically, or you may need to locate the file (it will show as .acsm file) in your download folder on your computer and open with Adobe Digital Editions
  • If you have trouble opening the eBook or locating the .ascm file, using a different browser can solve the issue or check these help pages

Other Things You Can Do...

Other Things You Can Do...

View Only Items that are Currently Available

To determine at a glance which titles are available, look at the open book icon in the top right corner of the eBook cover:

  • Dark Grey icon means that the title is available to be borrowed
  • Pale Grey icon means that all copies of the title are currently checked out

When browsing by genre or format, it is possible to hide all items that are currently checked out - look for the blue box on the left side of the screen that says Show me only titles with copies available.


Place Holds on eBooks that are Checked Out

If all copies of a title are in use, you can place a hold:

  • Select the eBook cover you are interested in, then click the ‘Place a Hold’ button
  • Sign in to your VPL to Go account with your library card number and PIN - Note: this is a separate account from My VPL where you would manage your library account for both physical and eBook/eAudiobook materials
  • Enter or confirm your email address to receive notification
  • When the title becomes available, you will receive an email notice
  • You will have 72 hours from the time the email was sent to check out the eBook. (Alternatively, when placing the hold you can select an option to have the book checked out to you automatically as soon as it becomes available.)
  • If you do not check it out within 72 hours, it will go to the next person on the list
  • You can have a maximum of 10 holds at once

Check the Status of Your Holds

Sign in to your VPL to Go account with your library card number and PIN - Note: this is a separate account from My VPL where you would manage your library account for both physical and eBook/eAudiobook materials.

  • Tap on Account in the top right of the screen
  • Select Holds from the menu on the right
  • You will be able to see your position in the queue
  • You can also cancel the hold from this menu or change the email address for notification

Place an Advanced Hold (Renew Titles)

Not finished with your eBook or downloadbale audiobook? Click on the Renew icon to place an advance hold on titles you currently have checked out. Renewing puts you in line to borrow a title again once your first checkout expires.

The option to renew a title becomes available three days before the title is set to expire, appearing next to the title on your Bookshelf in your VPL to Go account. You can only use the renew feature once for each checkout.

How to Place an Advanced Hold

1. Log into VPL to Go and sign in to your Account

2. Go to your Bookshelf, select the Renew icon next to the title you'd like to renew - Note: This option does not appear until three days before the title is supposed to expire

If there are no existing holds on a title, the Renew icon will be green (see example below). You can borrow this title again immediately once your first checkout expires - Note: you will need to re-download the eBook.

If there are existing holds on a title, the Renew icon will be greyed out (see example below). You can still use the renew feature to reserve a spot on the title's wait list so you can borrow it again as soon as it's available.

3. Enter and confirm your email address in the renewal form, and click the Renew icon - the Renew icon on your Bookshelf will now have a green checkmark next to it (see example below).

Return Titles Before the Expiry Date

eBooks and downloadable audiobooks are returned automatically after their lending period has expired. When a title expires, you can simply delete the expired book from your device. For information on returning a title before the expiry date, please visit How to return titles before the end of your lending period.

Two exceptions:

  • OverDrive for Mac does not currently support the return feature
  • Downloaded Open EPUBs can only be returned from OverDrive's app for Android, Chromebook, iOS, or Windows 8
  Open EPUB & Open PDF
  OverDrive Read