Here are some answers readily available to the more common questions asked by patrons about using BARD Express, a tool for searching, downloading, organizing and making books playable on your Digital Talking Book player. This is offered in reference to BARD Express only. For more tips and tricks NLS has produced BARD Express How-To Series videos.

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BARD Express is a free Windows-only downloadable software application designed to simplify searching for, downloading, and transferring audio titles from BARD to a cartridge or external USB flash drive for playback in a digital talking book player.

For good overview of things see the NLS BARD Express welcome page.

BARD Express runs on personal computers running Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8 and 8.1, and Windows 10. BARD Express does not run on Apple computers.

  • If you already are a BARD userlaunch BARD Express from your computer, enter in your current email address and permanent password and start downloading today. You can not use a temporary password with BARD Express. You have to create a permanent BARD password on the website first.
  • If you haven't used BARD beforeyou will need to setup a BARD account first by going to Fill out the online application and wait for approval (usually within 2 days). Once you are approved you will get a temporary password, which you will need to go in and change to a permanent password using a Web Browser on the BARD website (NOT BARD Express). Once this is complete you are ready to start using BARD Express to download books and magazines to your computer.

After choosing a title from the BARD Express bookshelf, use the Copy To Cartridge button to begin the process of moving your book or magazine to an external storage device connected to your computer, such as an NLS cartridge or USB flash drive. Highlight the drive to which you want to move the book or magazine, and select the Okay button. BARD Express will unzip the file that was downloaded from BARD and copy it to the storage device. Disconnect the device from your computer and enjoy your book on your digital talking book player.

There are 2 options to reset your password:

  1. Open the BARD login page using a web browser on your computer at: and choose the link “Reset your BARD password here.” Fill out the form to create a new password.
  2. Contact the library and let us know you’d like assistance resetting your BARD password. We can only reset your password to a temporary one, which we will email to you. Then you must reset it to a permanent one using a web browser on your computer.

After you reestablish a permanent password on the BARD website, then log into BARD Express with your user name and new password.

Note that BARD Express will remember your login credentials after the first time you log in. If you change your username (e-mail address) or password using the BARD web interface you will need to reset your credentials in BARD Express, or simply log into BARD Express using your new username or password.

Here is list of some simple keyboard shortcuts:

  • F1 - Access BARD Express help documents

  • Alt+F - Access account information

  • Alt+V+F+F+Enter - Increase font size

  • Alt+V+F+F+Enter - Decrease font size

  • Alt+H+G - Access the getting started guide

  • Alt+H+C - Check for software updates

  • Alt+H+A - Access About BARD Express

  • Ctrl+D - Access Most Popular Books list

  • Ctrl+G - Browse by Series

  • Ctrl+I - Browse the magazine collection

  • Ctrl+J - Browse by subject

  • Ctrl+W - Access your wish list

  • Ctrl+R - Access Recently Added Books and Magazines list

  • Ctrl+S - Search BARD

  • Ctrl+M - Access the main menu

  • Ctrl+P - Access preferences

  • Ctrl+Q - Screen reader speaks title of current screen