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Computer and Printing

Location & Facilities

The Bibliotheca Alexandrina (BA) reading area is equipped with 330 computer stations for public use. Computers are either located on all seven floors of the library, as well as within specialized libraries, on designated reading tables or within select study rooms.

Beginning in January 2005, the Digital Library Services Section and the ICT Department instituted a centralized reservation system for all main reading hall and study room computers, based at the Computer Reservation Desk in the Hall of Fame lobby by the main entrance.

All computers are equipped with internet access, as well as access to the wide selection of electronic resources offered by the BA.


Computers may be used only by reservation as they become available and on a first-come-first-serve basis. The Computer Reservation Desk is located on the entrance level (E). To make a reservation, users must have a valid library Membership Card or a valid admissions ticket.

Number of Users

A computer workstation may only be used by one person at one time.

Hours of Use & Time Limits

To ensure equal chances for all patrons, the library has installed a software on all computers to manage the time of each reservation. The length of any computer reservation is a maximum of one hour.

  • If the user does not activate his/her reservation within 15 minutes after the starting time it will be cancelled automatically and the computer will be ready for a new user to reserve.
  • The computer will automatically log off when the reserved time is over. All programs will shut down immediately, and the PC will be made available for the next reservation.
  • If the user wants to use the computer for more than one hour, he/she has to make a new reservation.
Saving Files and Documents

Users are not allowed to save documents or personal files to the hard drives of the BA computers. Violators may be subject to penalties according to the level of damage caused to the BA hardware and/or software facilities.

  • Articles retrieved from databases and other electronic resources can be sent by email to the user's personal email account if the database includes the emailing feature within its services.
  • For users in need to save e-files at the library, it is recommended to use the Microsoft Notepad application for editing, saving, and sending texts as a Notepad file to the patron's personal email. This may be done by using the email feature available in the main toolbar of the BA information system interface.

The library is not responsible for the loss of data that may occur if the patron saves his/her documents without following the above regulations.


The printing charge is 0.50 EGP per page. The charge is applied whether the user brings his/her own paper or uses the library's paper. Patrons may only print from a library computer with a Smart Card. Smart Cards, or prepaid cards, may be purchased at the Membership Desk on the entrance level (E). The BA is not responsible for any loss of data that may occur while printing.


Patrons are allowed to use their own laptops inside the library building. The BA provides electric sockets, but does not allow patrons to connect to the BA networks. Therefore, patrons will not be able to connect to the internet nor any of the electronic resources.

Computer Problems or Technical Difficulties

Patrons are requested to report any problems or difficulties with the computers or printers to the nearest reference desk as soon as the problem occurs. Patrons should not restart the computers nor try to fix the problem on their own. Such problems should be only handled by BA staff.

Prohibited Acts/Behavior
  • Since library computers are intended for research and educational purposes, games, chat rooms, and email sites are prohibited. Patrons are prohibited from accessing pornographic or other obscene sites. Violators are subject to penalties instituted by the BA Staff.
  • For security reasons, patron's private floppy disks, external hard disks, all types of CD-ROMs & DVDs, flash memory devices, and/or any other types of external memories are not allowed to be used with BA computers at any place in the library.
  • No external equipment nor peripherals belonging to the patrons are allowed to be plugged into or connected to the BA computers and/or networks. This includes portable computers, speakers, headphones, etc.
  • BA computers, their multimedia equipments, and other adjacent peripherals and devices are made available for the fair and proper use of the BA patrons. They are property of the library and should not be moved, unplugged, or misused in any means by the users.

Violators of the established rules and regulations are subject to penalty decided upon by the BA Staff. Such penalties may include, but are not limited to, the cancellation of current computer reservation, fines, freezing or cancellation of library membership, or other penalties according to the level of damage occurred.


Copyright law prohibits the unauthorized reproduction or distribution of copyrighted materials, except as permitted by principles of fair use. Users may not copy or distribute electronic materials (including electronic mail, text, images, programs or data) without the explicit permission of the copyright holder. Sole responsibility for any consequences due to copyright infringement lies with the users. The BA expressly disclaims any liability or responsibility resulting from such use. For more information please see the BA's Copyright Policy.

Patrons are kindly requested to report any computer problems or technical difficulties to the reference desk staff.