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Downloading Audio Books with a Chromebook

We recommend that you review this process before downloading. Please contact TBBL if you need help:, 1-800-342-3688
The Chromebook system does not support the BARD Mobile app. Instead, patrons using a Chromebook can download books using the BARD website. Book files can be downloaded to a Chromebook and transferred to a flash drive or audio cartridge. The flash drive or cartridge can be played using the talking book player.

To get started you will need a talking book player and a blank flash drive or blank audio cartridge. If you choose to download to an audio cartridge, you will need a USB cable. Contact our library for this accessory.

Please note: TBBL does not supply flash drives or audio cartridges for downloading.

  1. On your Chromebook, open the Chrome internet browser and go to the BARD webpage.
  2. Login to your BARD account.
  3. Insert your flash drive in the computer or attach your blank cartridge with the USB cable.
  4. Search or browse BARD for an audio book or magazine.
  5. When you find a book or magazine you would like, select to download that book. The book will begin downloading to your computer.

Note – Books and magazines are downloaded as compressed folders with the file extension, .zip. The files within the compressed (.zip) folder will need to be copied to your flash drive or audio cartridge before you can play them using your digital player.

  1. Locate the downloaded book by navigating to your Downloads folder. Do this by pressing the Search (or Launcher) key on your keyboard. A search option will pop up from the bottom of your screen. The Search or Launcher key is located on the left side of your keyboard between the Tab and Shift keys. It may be marked with a magnifying glass icon.
  2. In the search option, enter the word, files. Press enter on your keyboard. Your My Files folder will display. Shortcut: You may also press these three keys: Alt + Shift + m, to display your My Files folder.

  3. Image of the searching for your Files folder:

    Screenshot of the My Files folder highlited in grey
  4. Next, click on the Downloads folder that is located within your My Files folder. Open your Downloads folder.
  5. When you have opened your Downloads folder, select the downloaded book or magazine folder. The book or magazine folder will be compressed, .zip.
  6. Open the compressed folder. There should be many individual files within this folder. You will need to move all of these files to your flash drive or audio cartridge.
  7. Select all files within the book or magazine folder. Do this by selecting the first file within the folder. Then, using your keyboard, press the two keys: Control (ctrl) + a. All items should be selected now.
  8. Next, using your keyboard, press the two keys: Control (ctrl) + c. This will copy every file within the folder.

Image with all files selected within the downloaded books folder:

Screenshot of files selected highlited in grey with checkmarks on the left side
  1. Locate your flash drive or audio cartridge that you have plugged into your computer. The file folder may be called 'USB Drive'.
  2. For advanced computer users – please see the following bullet points '5' through '8'.
  3. When you have located your USB Drive, paste the book or magazine files into the flash drive or audio cartridge using your keyboard. Press the keys: Control (ctrl) + v to paste the book files.
  4. You may continue to download books and magazines from BARD and add them to your flash drive or cartridge. If you completed this step, please move to Step 4: Play the Book or Magazine.
  5. For advanced computer users: When you have located your USB Drive, you can create a folder and rename it based on the book or magazine's title. It is important that the folder name is unique, different from other folder names. For example, if you have downloaded the book Charlotte's Web by E.B. White, you can create a folder and name it after the book's title, 'CharlottesWeb'.
  6. Create a new folder by navigating to your flash drive or cartridge. Using your keyboard, press Control (ctrl) + e. A new folder will be created. Name your folder with your book or magazine's title.
  7. Next, advanced computer users can move the downloaded book or magazine files from the Chromebook into your newly created folder on your USB drive or audio cartridge. To do this, navigate to the downloaded book or magazine's compressed folder within your Downloads. Open the compressed folder. There should be many individual files within this folder.
  8. You can move or copy these individual files by pressing the keys: Control (ctrl) + x or Control (ctrl) + c. Navigate to your new folder on your removable flash drive or cartridge. Next, Press the keys Control (ctrl) + v. This will move or copy the book or magazine files to your new folder.

The benefit of creating a unique folder on your external drive for your book or magazine is that downloads are better organized and easier to locate. If you finish reading a book or magazine and you would like to delete it from your flash drive or cartridge, you can navigate to the book or magazine's folder and delete the folder without deleting other titles.

Image of book files that have been moved from Downloads to a unique file folder:Screenshot of USB Drive folder with a folder titled CharlottesWeb
  1. Safely remove the flash drive or cartridge from your computer.
  2. Turn your digital player on.
  3. Plug your flash drive into the USB port on your digital player. (Note: The USB port, which has a removable plastic cover, is on the right side of the player, next to the audio jack.) Or, if using a digital cartridge, insert it in the front of the player, just like a regular digital book.
  4. The digital player will announce the book that is on your flash drive or cartridge. Press Play to listen. If there are multiple books or magazines, hold the Play button down until the player beeps to go into bookshelf mode so you can select the book you want.
  5. Once you have finished a book, you can delete it from your flash drive or cartridge. If you think you may want to read the book again later, you can keep the book on your computer in its compressed form.
  6. Chromebooks do not have very much built-in storage space. You can delete the original book or magazine file from your Chromebook and download it again through BARD at any time.


Last Updated: February 5, 2021