Computers & Wireless

COVID-19 update: walk-in computer and Wi-Fi access is available at all branches for 45 minute sessions. Wi-Fi access is also available outside of Bob Prittie Metrotown, Cameron and McGill.   

 Computers at BPL | Wireless Internet | Use of personal equipment | Bibliotech (BPL's creative technology lab) | Assistive technology | Computer classes | Internet policy

Computers at BPL

There are a total of 86 public workstations available for a variety of uses at the four branches of Burnaby Public Library. Three additional workstations are available for accessing the library's database collection at Bob Prittie Metrotown. Wireless Internet is also available at all four branches. All of the Internet terminals for adults are running Windows 10, have Microsoft Office 2016 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint) installed, and have DVD/CD-RW drives and USB ports.

Standard Internet protocols are open on the public terminals; however specialized connections like VPN, SSH, and IPSEC are not permitted by the City of Burnaby on our public network. VPN (ssl & IPsec)  is, however, permitted on the public WIFI network.

A flatbed scanner is available at our four branches. Scanned files can be saved to an USB drive, emailed, or printed from the flatbed scanner workstation. 

The children's terminals at some branches have Microsoft Office installed. Internet access on all children's workstations is filtered using Netop web filtering software.

Each branch of Burnaby Public Library also has a number of computers that are reserved for searching the library catalogue: 13 at Bob Prittie Metrotown, four at Cameron, 12 at McGill, and eight at Tommy Douglas.

Bob Prittie Metrotown
WorkstationsTime limitHours available
20 Internet and MS Office120 minutes*During branch hours
3 express Internet and MS Office15 minutesDuring branch hours
children's Internet and MS Office30 minutesDuring branch hours
WorkstationsTime limitHours available
6 Internet and MS Office120 minutes*During branch hours
2 express Internet and MS Office15 minutesDuring branch hours
WorkstationsTime limitHours available
14 Internet and MS Office120 minutes*During branch hours
3 express Internet and MS Office15 minutesDuring branch hours
2 children's Internet and MS Office30 minutesDuring branch hours
Tommy Douglas
WorkstationsTime limitHours available
27 Internet and MS Office120 minutes*During branch hours
3 express Internet and MS Office15 minutesDuring branch hours
6 children's Internet and MS Office60 minutesDuring branch hours

*A session on an internet terminal will end after the first 60 minutes if there is a reservation. If no reservations have been made, the user will be offered to accept extension by 30 minutes. If no reservations are made during the extension, the session will ask to accept extension for 30 minutes more, for a total of 120 minutes.   

Wireless Internet

Wireless internet access is available at all branches of Burnaby Public Library. The service is available from the time the library opens until five minutes before closing. There are no time limits for users. In order to connect to our wireless network, you will need:

  • A wireless network interface card, 802.11b or g. This must be set up and enabled.
  • A TCP/IP protocol installed and set up to obtain an IP address automatically (DHCP).
  • A charged battery. Some receptacles are available, but we cannot supply power for all laptop users.

In many instances, wireless devices will automatically detect the library’s wireless gateway and configure themselves to use the system.

If your device does not connect right away, please try the following:

  • Double-click on the wireless icon in the lower right corner of your task bar. Click the box to allow you to connect to "Burnaby - Library - Wifi" and click the connect button. (It may connect automatically.)
  • Open a browser. You should see the Burnaby Public Library wireless network terms of use agreement. Read it and if you agree, click yes.

Can't Connect? See our troubleshooting guide.

Limitations and disclaimers:
  • The library's wireless network, like most public Wi-Fi, is not secure. Information sent from or to your laptop can be captured by anyone else with a wireless device and the appropriate software. Take appropriate precautions when using any public wireless network. See How to Stay Safe on Public Wi-Fi Networks or similar articles.
  • Library staff members are not able to provide technical assistance and no guarantee can be provided that you will be able to make a wireless connection.
  • Printing is not available using the wireless network.
  • BPL assumes no responsibility for the safety of equipment or for laptop configurations, security or data files resulting from connection to the library's network.
  • Wi-fi networks signal strength and speed can vary, depending upon, among other things, how busy use of the internet is (both wired and wireless) at the moment, your distance from, and the number of others who are connected to, an access point.

Use of personal equipment

It is the user's responsibility to protect personal equipment against any potential abuse such as viruses, malware and breach of privacy as well as against physical theft or damage. Burnaby Public Library assumes no responsibility for the user's equipment or for any direct or indirect damages arising from the use of receptacles at any library location or the library's connection to Internet services.

Bibliotech - BPL's creative technology lab

Bibliotech, Burnaby Public Library's creative technology lab, is located at the Tommy Douglas Library and includes 14 workstations for public use. These include 12 PCs running Windows 10, and two iMacs, running OS X Lion. The workstations have photo and video editing software installed. There is also a flatbed scanner available.

Learn more >>

Assistive technology

All our public computers in four branches are equipped with adaptive technology for use by patrons with disabilities. The Bob Prittie Metrotown branch of the Burnaby Public Library has a dedicated computer that can be availed upon request. The workstations has Microsoft Ease of Access technology installed with Magnifier (a screen magnifier), Narrator(a screen reader) and On-Screen Keyboard (a virtual keyboard). The terminal may be booked for 60 minutes. Please call 604-436-5400 to make a booking or to ask any questions.

The Bob Prittie Metrotown branch also has a low-vision reader located on the second floor. The reader magnifies pages onto an adjustable 19-inch LCD monitor, with magnification from 2.4x to 77x. Pages can be displayed in full colour, black and white, and a variety of dual-colour modes.

Computer classes

Burnaby Public Library offers classes for adults new to computers and the Internet. Past classes have included instruction on using computers, searching the Internet, word processing and email setup. Classes are held in the computer lab at Tommy Douglas. Search for classes now.

Internet policy

Excerpts from Burnaby Public Library Board's Policy Manual: Internet Access and Acceptable Use Policy (3.6)

The Internet has become essential to participation in a democratic and information-driven society; and is an essential part of the universal access to information that libraries provide and support. Burnaby Public Library provides public access to the Internet to fulfill its mission to provide access to a rich array of the world’s stories, ideas and information and in keeping with provincial, national and international library associations’ intellectual freedom statements.

The library provides free Internet access in all branches through library-supplied computers and through its wireless network. Wireless access complements public computer access to the Internet and enables library patrons to access library resources and the Internet with their own wireless enabled devices. 

The Internet is a largely unregulated environment which contains information and opinions that range in scope from authoritative to completely unreliable. Often information found on the Internet is not accurate, complete or current and patrons may encounter content they might find controversial or extremely offensive. Patrons are responsible for assessing the validity of the information found. Patrons need also to be aware that the Internet is not a secure medium and that third parties may be able to obtain information about patrons' activities. While Burnaby Public Library strives to uphold its commitment to protect patron privacy in the delivery of Internet resources, the library assumes no responsibility for the security and privacy of on-line transactions that are not conducted on Burnaby Public Library’s own website.

Children are entitled to access all information and facilities in the library. As with other library materials, children's access to the Internet and other electronic networks is the responsibility of parents and guardians.

In keeping with the public library's long-standing tradition of providing age-appropriate materials for children in safe and welcoming environments, workstations designed for children are filtered. Burnaby Public Library cannot guarantee the accuracy and effectiveness of any installed filter.

With the exception of filters on designated children's workstations, the library does not manage the content of the information accessed through the Internet and assumes responsibility only for the information provided on its own websites. The library is not responsible for the content of websites linked to from its websites. Burnaby Public Library assumes no responsibility for any direct or indirect claims, damages or costs, howsoever caused, sought by patrons or third parties arising from its provision of access to the Internet.

Burnaby Public Library patrons are subject to federal, provincial and municipal legislation regulating Internet use, including the provisions of the Criminal Code regarding obscenity, child pornography, sedition and the incitement of hate. Library patrons are responsible for the sites they visit and any text or images they print. The use of the library's Internet services for illegal purposes is prohibited, and may result in prosecution.

To ensure equitable access to the Internet and efficient use of resources, the library has developed service use guidelines. The library reserves the right to modify these guidelines when and where appropriate.

Certain copying or distribution of material found on the Internet may infringe on copyright or other intellectual property rights. The library is not responsible for such infringements.
Public Internet workstations and work tables are situated in public areas, and patrons are expected to use the Internet in accordance with this environment. All patrons of Burnaby Public Library, including users of the library's Internet services, are also expected to follow the library's Code of Conduct which is designed to ensure a welcoming environment. Disruptive, threatening, or otherwise intrusive behaviour is not allowed and library staff are authorized to take action to enforce library policy. Violations of this policy and/or the Code of Conduct may result in suspension of library privileges and exclusion from the library, as well as prosecution.