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Chat with a Librarian: Additional Information


UW Librarians are generally available Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., when UW classes are in session

For Best Service

Enter your email address and use the Exit button to receive a complete transcript with links to all websites visited during your session.

  • Use Internet Explorer; Netscape 4.79, 7.1 or 7.2; Mozilla or Firefox; and have "session cookies" enabled in your browser
  • Clear your cache or you may be disconnected - see below
  • Disable or reconfigure your firewall (Norton Internet Security, etc.) or you may not be able to see the chat from the librarian. Remember to re-enable the firewall afterwards! Here's how to reconfigure
  • If you don't want to disable the firewall, please be thorough when asking your question. You'll receive an e-mail response
  • Use the forward, back and refresh buttons provided in the software - not the ones on your browser
  • Don't try to bookmark (add to Favorites) or print anything during the session - wait for the e-mailed transcript
  • If you must open a second browser while connected, please use the "start" menu or taskbar shortcut. Using Control "n" or File New will end the session

Clear Your Cache

  • Internet Explorer 6 : go to Tools > Internet Options
    click on “Delete Files” then “OK”
  • Internet Explorer 7: go to Tools > Internet Options
    go to Browsing History and click on "Delete". In the next window, click on the "Delete Files" button. Say "Yes" to the verification screen. When it's finished, click on "Close" and then "OK"
  • Netscape and Mozilla : go to Edit > Preferences > Advanced > Cache >
    click “Clear Cache”, then "OK"
  • Firefox: go to Tools > Options. Open the Privacy tab and select "Cache" sub-category.
    click the "Clear Cache Now" button, then "OK"
  • Opera and AOL are not supported.

Privacy Statement

A transcript of your chat session including URLs will be emailed to you. Use of this service constitutes consent for the library to use the transcript of the interaction for research purposes provided that all identifying information about the requestor is deleted.

Information collected about any person using this service is generally incidental to the technical operation of the system. Such information is not published or shared voluntarily with any other entity.

No e-mail addresses will be sold or given to any other entities. The UW Libraries may use the email address to:

  • Send a transcript of the session to you for your reference
  • Follow up on an incomplete session.

Transcripts of every session are stored on our vendor’s website. After 30 days, names and email addresses are deleted from the stored transcripts. Transcripts may be used only to:

  • Send the user by email a transcript of the session including links to any resources used
  • Monitor and improve the overall quality of service
  • Develop aggregated statistical data for reporting (number of requests received, number of requests completed, average length of sessions).

In order to better help you, the librarian may ask for information regarding purpose (for instance, is this for a class assignment?), or class level (undergraduate? graduate?). Any information given to the librarian will become part of the session transcript.

Technical Requirements

Operating Systems:

If you are using Internet Explorer, or Netscape 4.79, 7.1 or 7.2, Mozilla or Firefox , and have "session cookies" enabled in your browser, the librarian should be able to take you to various Web sites to show you the answers. We will be able to "chat" with you in real time and send you Web pages via your browser during the session.

Be, Linux, Unix and WebTV are not supported.

If you use Windows XP and have Service Pack 2 installed, you must configure it to work with our software in order to chat with the librarian. Please check these instructions.
Firefox and Safari are supported as is IE 5. You will be able to chat and receive webpages from the librarian. You may, depending on your computer setup, have to click on links in the chat window to see the webpages that the librarian sends to you.
If you are an AOL subscriber, please use an IE browser instead of the AOL browser to get better results.

Internet connection

A minimum 56k modem connection is recommended.

Security certificates

Depending on the version of browser you are using, you may be asked to accept a "security certificate" on your first visit to the Q&A LIVE website. Older browsers will require you to accept the security certificate in order to access the site. Newer browsers will have the security certificate built in. If you are prompted to accept the security certificate, click on "accept" in order to access the chat service.


Every effort is made to provide accurate information; however, the UW Librarians or librarians from our national cooperative do not control the content of resources used. The user agrees to hold the Libraries harmless from any claims, losses, damages, obligations, or liabilities relating to the use of information obtained from this service.

The provision of any factual information or materials, and the identification of other web sites that may be useful in obtaining additional information regarding legal or medical issues cannot be construed as advice. Only a professional practitioner can provide specific advice and direction in resolving legal and/or medical issues.


The Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code) governs the reproduction, distribution, adaptation, public performance, and public display of copyrighted material. Responsibility for any possible copyright infringement lies solely with the user; the Library disclaims any responsibility or liability resulting thereof.

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