Lean Library – helping you access Library and Open Access resources more easily.

Sharon Nangle
Friday 6 October 2023

Have you ever come across a journal article or book and wanted to quickly find out whether or not you have access to it?  You’ve maybe found an institutional login, successfully logged in, and then found you can’t access what you need.  Maybe you’ve concluded the Library doesn’t have what you need, so you submit a request to the Library, only to be told that you already have access.  Annoying, right?

Lean Library is a browser extension which does the checking for you. If you find details of e.g. a journal article, it will let you know if you have access and give you a direct link to it.   It removed the need to find an institutional login on a webpage, and the wasted effort of logging in to find you don’t have access through the service you’ve used, or having to search again on Library search. It also searches Open Access resource.

Click the image below to see a real time comparison of accessing an ebook without and with Lean Library

The video is recorded with cookies cleared without and with lean library to provide a fair comparison.
  • Access is quicker with Lean Library.
  • No more searching around a webpage for an institutional login option.
  • If you have access through a different service, Lean Library will take you to it.



The Lean Library browser extensions is compatible with Chrome, Edge, Firefox, Opera and Safari browsers.  To install it go to https://leanlibrary.com/download

Click the image below which shows how to install the Lean Library browser extension in Chrome:








Lean Library always wants to help you out, but if you find the pop-up access options appearing when you’re not wanting them you can switch the browser extension off when you don’t need it, and back on when you do:

  • Click the browser extension icon in your browser – it looks like a jigsaw piece.
  • Chose manage extensions and select Lean Library.
  • Switch the blue “On” option to “Off” (or vice-versa to switch it back on).

If you want to know more about Lean Library see the Lean Library guide, and if you have any questions or experience any problems using Lean Library email [email protected].

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