Using proxy servers with the ICPSR website

Key Points

  1. ICPSR would prefer you link directly to our site at https://www.icpsr.umich.edu/, rather than through a proxy server, but we understand that some institutions have policies in place that require proxy servers.

  2. Access to ICPSR does not require proxy servers. We use your campus IP range to control access; when a user successfully logs in from on campus, his/her account is flagged to allow the user to download from off campus for the next six months. Furthermore, we provide institution-specific reporting tools, so that you don't need a proxy server to track usage.

  3. ICPSR is a consortium of dues-paying institutions, of which your institution is a member. This consortium of 700+ other institutions determines our priorities through a representative council elected by the member institutions. Supporting technical issues related to the wide variety of proxy servers can be resource-intensive because it is costly to manage the different applications and network configurations for so many institutions; thus Council has directed ICPSR to be selective in supporting proxy servers. Currently, ICPSR has elected to test EZProxy and adjust our site where possible to allow it to work correctly.

  4. When a proxy server is not set up correctly, it can result in the user being denied access to data. Furthermore, the user is often completely ignorant of the fact that s/he is accessing the site via a proxy server, which makes it very difficult for ICPSR to assist them.

  5. Even when configured correctly, proxy servers block third-party authentication like Google or Facebook. It is difficult to determine if this is the case for each variety of proxy server software or if there is a configuration that will work, so be prepared for pass through authentication to fail.

Configuring Your Proxy Server

If you absolutely must use a proxy server, ICPSR is unable to provide technical support in configuring the proxy server beyond the information below:

General Information

To ensure that your students and faculty have access to all of ICPSR's resources through the website, the server should proxy to ICPSR's base URL as follows:

  • https://www.icpsr.umich.edu/

In addition, please email the IP address of your proxy server to help@icpsr.umich.edu so that we can associate it with your institution.