Available Indexes

Summer 2021: New HathiTrust Book Viewer

Date:  May 5 - August 9, 2021

Impact: Changes to book viewer interface.

All users are now able to use the new version of the HathiTrust book viewer application, which became permanent on August 9th. During the summer of 2021, users were able to switch back and forth between a beta version and the classic version of the book viewer. The changes to the book viewer were made based on feedback received from users about difficulties they encountered reading “temporary access” books in the HathiTrust interface and incorporated feedback we received during the beta phase. 

NEW tutorial and demo video! 

We have released two additional ways to learn about the changes to the book viewer. 


You can also explore the changes using a guided walkthrough. With a book open in your browser (such as The Complete Jell-O Recipe Book), click the question mark icon in the the book controls along the bottom of the page. A popup will invite you to explore the the primary features of the book viewer. 

Screenshot of the book controls along the bottom of the book display. A popup box activated by the orange question mark Help icon reads

What Changed?

We have taken feedback provided by our users to create a better reading experience. Users are able to:

  • Reorder search in book results by relevance or page number

  • View search results within a book at the same time as viewing the book

  • Remove and re-add search term highlighting on book page images

  • Clear search in a book

  • Discover featured collections that contain a book

  • Read the entire plaintext OCR of the book in scroll or flipmode

  • Explore different display modes for the book pages in an easier-to-read menu

  • Hide interface elements that interrupt their reading experience 

  • Resize or collapse the sidebar and sections within it to meet their needs 

Plain text display mode

The screenshot above displays two pages of the book in Plain Text format. The View menu with different page format and view mode options can be accessed at any time to change how the book is displayed.

Search in a book

The screenshot above displays the Search in a Book feature. It has been moved to the sidebar so that you can view search results at the same time as the book pages. The sidebar has also been expanded using the Close Sidebar button to show more of the search text on the screen.

Reading mode

This screenshot above displays reading mode when controls and the sidebar are hidden. Only the page navigation buttons are displayed on screen.


Change log

In addition to the above changes to the book viewer, we made the following changes during the course of the beta phase. 

  • August 9, 2021: The new book viewer became the default version, and the classic version was removed. 
  • August 4, 2021: Users are now able to download a small number of images at a time in high or standard resolution TIFF format. 
  • August 2, 2021: Bug fix: Issues with search term highlighting in different view modes were fixed. 
  • July 28, 2021: The following changes were made: 
    • The Search in this Text feature was made bright yellow, to help users find its new location. 
    • Users can now open Search in this Text results in a new window by selecting the checkbox under the search field and hitting the magnifying glass search icon. 
  • July 23, 2021: Bug fix: The option to return to the old version of the book viewer did not work for two weeks. It was re-enabled on July 23rd and will continue to be available until August 9. 
  • July 12, 2021: All users start at the new book viewer. 
  • June 23, 2021: A walkthrough tour was added to the book controls along the bottom of the screen, which allows users to explore the interface at their convenience. 
  • June 14, 2021: All users (not just logged in users) can now access the new book viewer.
  • June 9, 2021: The Search in a Book feature is initially expanded in the sidebar, to assist users who were having difficulty finding this feature in its new location. 
  • June 1, 2021: Users can now collapse both the Emergency Temporary Access banner as well as the 2021 new book viewer notification.
  • May 24, 2021: The following changes were made:
    • Language change: users have reported difficulty finding the Search in this Text feature. We renamed it from "Search Inside" back to the previously used "Search in this Text."
    • When a user selects pages for download, the radio button to Selected Pages is now automatically selected.
    • More definition was added to the borders between headings.
    • Bug fix: books containing no OCR weren't loading at all, either the images or plain text versions. 
  • May 10, 2021: All logged in users received the option to access the new book viewer. 
  • May 5, 2021: Logged in University of Michigan users received the option to access the new book viewer. 

Provide feedback on the HathiTrust Book Viewer application in beta by submitting this brief survey: http://bit.ly/HTbook_viewer



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