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OverDrive – E-books, Audiobooks, Video, and Magazines

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OverDrive enjoy ebooks, audiobooks and video

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What is OverDrive?

OverDrive is a service the library subscribes to in order to provide 24/7 access to downloadable e-books, audiobooks, magazines and videos. Public library cardholders in Albany and Rensselaer counties are eligible to download from OverDrive. OverDrive titles can be enjoyed on computers, e-readers, mp3/WMA players, and mobile devices. While some downloadable titles appear in our standard library catalog, this information is not always up-to-date. For real-time holdings and availability, visit our Digital Collection page.

The Basics

  • Check out up to 10 digital titles (audiobooks, e-books and videos combined) at a time.  Magazines do not count against this total.
  • Choose your lending period of 7, 14, or 21 days for e-books and audiobooks.  Streaming video checks out for 3, 5, or 7 days. E-books can be returned early. Audiobooks and videos can only be returned early from certain devices. Titles are automatically returned on the due date, but if a file was downloaded, it remains on your computer/device until manually removed.  You may keep magazines as long as you like without returning them.
  • Titles labeled “Borrow” are available for immediate checkout. Some titles require you to sign in to find out if they are available to you. Otherwise, you may place a hold and receive email notification when your title is ready for download. Phone notification is not available. After notification, the download will be available for 2 days.  If a magazine is labeled “not available”, there are no more copies available for any patrons until the next issue is published.
  • If you would prefer not to download any software or files, some e-books are available for checkout to read in your browser. Just select “OverDrive Read” as the format at checkout. For more information about how to use OverDrive Read, check out our print-friendly instructions.
  • See individual device pages for required software and device-specific instructions.


  • E-Readers – Getting started with Kindle (for Kindle Fire see Mobile Devices) | Nook (for Nook Color/Tablet see Mobile Devices)| Sony Reader | other e-book readers.  These devices cannot stream video.
  • Mobile Devices – Getting started with Mobile Devices: includes Android, Blackberry, iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch, Windows Phone, Kindle Fire, and Nook Color/Tablet.  These devices can stream video.
  • Desktop Computers – Getting started with Windows PC | Mac.  These devices can use e-books, audiobooks and video.  Only Windows 8 PCs can use magazines.
  • Other Devices – Getting started with audiobooks: includes iPods and MP3 players.
  • To see a list of supported devices, visit the OverDrive Device Resource Center.
  • Some mp3 players may not be able to play audiobooks in WMA format.  iPods can only play WMA content if it is downloaded to a PC and transferred via the PC version of OverDrive Media Console.  Please see your device documentation to determine if your player is WMA compatible.

Tutorials and Help

Find More E-books

  • 100 Legal Sites to Download E-books – Post with a categorized list of links to free e-book sites.
  • – contains a wide range of fiction, popular books, children’s books, historical texts and academic books.
  • Baen Library – Hundreds of free Science Fiction and Fantasy e-books.
  • Barnes Noble Free e-books – Hundreds of free e-books that can be used on your Nook, NookColor, iPad iPhone, Android and PC.
  • BookRix – Over 95,000 new books written by the community’s 371,000 members are available on BookRix for free. Foreign language and audiobook titles are also available.
  • Free E-books – Internet’s #1 online source for free e-book downloads, e-book resources and e-book authors.
  • Free Kindle E-books – Navigate to “Special Features/Free E-Book Collections” to download free classics and out-of-copyright, pre-1923 books, as well as limited-time free promotional e-books available only for the Kindle.
  • Get Free E-books – Free e-book and trade magazine site.
  • Google Books – Nearly 3 million free e-books and hundreds of thousands of title for purchase. For use on the web, Android devices, iPhone/iPad/iPod touch, and supported e-readers.
  • Kobo Books – over 1 million titles in multiple formats.
  • Many Books – More than 29,000 free e-books.
  • Mobipocket Free Books – Free titles for Mobipocket or Kindle apps and devices.
  • Munseys – Over 30,000 rare and hard-to find fiction titles, downloadable in a variety of formats.
  • Project Gutenberg – Download over 42,000 free e-books to read on your PC, iPad, Kindle, Sony Reader, iPhone, Android or other portable device.
  • SmashWords – e-books from independent authors and publishers.
  • University of Pennsylvania E-book Collection – Lists over 900,000 free books on the web.
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