Answered By: Scott Lapinski
Last Updated: Apr 07, 2018     Views: 564

There are a number of reasons why you may have trouble accessing an electronic resource. Please see the list below to find further instructions.

Broken Link or Institutional Denial

Sometimes links get broken within the Harvard system, or there is a change to our subscriptions. If you feel that the problem is institution wide, please report the problem to Countway Library or to the Harvard University Libraries.

Expired University Appointment

Under the terms of the licensing agreements that Harvard has signed with content publishers to obtain access to digital material, remote access to Countway's electronic resources is limited to current faculty, students, and staff of Harvard University. Therefore, if you no longer have a current appointment, you are no longer eligible for access to electronic resources through the Harvard Libraries. If you are unsure of your current appointment end date, please contact your department administrator or the Human Resources Office for your school to get more information about your status.

Expired Research Assistant Card

Research Assistant and Special Borrower cards are valid for one year. To see when yours will expire, you can check your HOLLIS+ account. Simply use the login button on the top right hand corner of the page, click on the "My Account/Renew" tab, and look the "Valid To" date.

If you find that you need to renew your card, please visit our special borrower renewal instructions page.

HarvardKey Not Set Up

  1. Go to and click "Claim Your HarvardKey".
  2. Enter your eight-digit HUID, last name, and date of birth, click "Continue", and follow the instructions.
  3. Check your email for a confirmation code and instructions on how to complete HarvardKey claim.
  4. Once you have claimed your HarvardKey, visit Click the "Sign In" button in the upper right corner of the page.
  5. Make sure the "HarvardKey" tab at the top of the log in box is selected, and enter your new HarvardKey log in name and password. The eCommons login type will not work in this instance.

HUID (Harvard ID) Password Not Set Up

  1. Go to
  2. Click "Request New PIN"
  3. Enter all required information (name, Harvard ID, DOB, etc.)
  4. Select "Email the PIN activation"
  5. Check your email for the pin activation and follow instructions to set up PIN.
  6. Once you have set up your PIN, visit Click the "Sign In" button in the upper right corner of the page.
  7. Select "HUID" tab at the top of the log in box and enter your eight-digit HUID and its "PIN" password. The eCommons login type will not work in this instance.

Your login should be successful. You now have access to those electronic resources to which Harvard subscribes.

If you have any further questions, please call us at (617) 432-2136 or send us an email via this Ask-A-Librarian system.

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