LibraryLibrary Automation and Use of Open Source Software automation and use of open source software
OKIKI, O. Chris (Ph.D)
Head, Automation Unit
University of Lagos Library
University of Lagos
Issues to Discussion :
What is library automation
Need for library automation
Basic features & functions of Library Management
System in a automated environment
The role of standards in library automation and
A suitable design or plan for library automation
Integrated library management system (Evaluation)
Organise and implementation of effective strategy
“ Library Automation” is a buzz word in the
contemporary environment. It refers to the
implementation of information and
communications technologies (ICT) in the
libraries & information centers.
In other words, conversion of manual system
into a specific MARC format which makes it
suitable for cooperative networking and
resource sharing among the libraries and
Increased operational efficiencies of the
Improve the quality, speed, accuracy, and
effectiveness of services.
Get better access to other networks and
systems, on the Web, etc.
Facilitate wider access to information for their
Smooth the progress of wider dissemination
of information products and services.
A library management system refers to the
implementation of software, that has been developed
to handle the basic housekeeping functions of a library.
Identifying the important role, that the library
management system will play, in planning and
implementing library automation projects. In this
situation, it is necessary to educate ourselves through
proper training and development.
Functional modules (as per requirement)
Basic modules - acquisition, cataloging, circulation, & OPAC
Add on modules - serial control, interlibrary loan (ILL), and
Web OPAC, etc.
PreferablyWindows, Linux environment.
Oracle, Informix, MS SQL, MS Access, etc…
Client-server architecture that uses TCP-IP to communicate
across networks (LANs andWANs)
Graphical user interface (GUI), it is easier to work with and it allows a wide range of tasks to be
accomplished with a click.
Library automation standards
A compatible standards such as MARC and Z39.50 protocol
The standards adopted by the library and its community
that facilitate data interchange between libraries &
information centers through a unique format which are
supported by all systems, for example MARC (Machine
Readable Cataloguing) standards and Z39.50, the
information search and retrieve protocol standard.
Why MARC The MARC standard allows libraries to
share bibliographic resources with other information
It also enables libraries to easily migrate to commercially
available library automation systems, a majority of which
support only the MARC standard.
A bibliographic record in MARC format will allow
the application system or library automation system
Format the information correctly for printing a set of catalog
cards or for displaying the information on computer screen
Search for and retrieve certain types of information within
specific fields (Keyword Searching)
Display lists of items as required by the search .
Z39.50 is generally defined as the information search and
retrieve protocol standard used primarily by library and
information related systems.
Cataloging activities using an Automated ILS, produces an
electronic catalog. Providing access to the catalog for users
which is limited to search and display, is called an “Online
Public Access Catalog” or OPAC.
An OPAC is usually offered as an add-on module that is inter-
related with the cataloging module. The specific search and
display features of an OPAC vary from system to system.
OPAC can also be linked to the Circulation Module so that users
can find out the status of any item (whether it is on loan, on-shelf,
etc.), as well as making a self-reservation, self check-in/check-out,
Through the development in ICTs we can enable our libraries to
publish their catalogs on the Web and making them accessible
remotely, asWeb OPAC
Automates the acquisition process like : ordering,
receiving, claiming material from vendors /
suppliers, & also cancellations of library material at
the time of order for purchase.
Used to maintain statistics, and in some cases
manage accounting activities.
Acquisition can be done online if system is linked
to an external network .
Creation, Storage, Retrieval and Management of
bibliographic records and / or indexes.
Defines the record in a specific format used in the
database and provides for authority control
(author, subject headings etc.)
Usually there are two different interfaces for
search and retrieval of the electronic catalog :
For catalogers: that allows them to maintain the
library database (main cataloging module) ,
For users: that allows them to search and display
the results on (OPAC)
Handles circulation activities such as: lending,
return, renewal, place on hold, and reservation
Manage library material - circulation type,
location and status; patron database - patron
type, profiles, privileges; and other transactions
such as computation and payment of overdue
fines, lost books, etc.
Engagement of Subject Expert
Selection and Acquisition of ILMS
Engagement of Subject Expect Experienced guide is more
essential initially, for the development of a new concept. It is
necessary because “learn from the mistake” concept is their.
The expert should be engaged from the beginning of the
proposal for automation.
In a automation system most important thing is the “staff
literacy”, who will work from the start to implementation &
take part in post-analysis.
Proposal In planning and implementing library
automation, a thorough study of the library’s existing
system as well as the library’s vision is necessary to
enable the environment to prepare a good
technology plan and project proposal.
A vision is a future dream. It is a vivid picture of what you
would like your library to become in the near future. It is
based on the mission of your library, the needs of our users
and on the changing trends of library service. A vision
provides direction and a philosophy for the library.
Analysis of Present Status A systems study is conducted to
assess the library’s status and needs. It involves gathering data
about the library’s operations, capacity, facilities, collections,
procedures, and staff expertise, etc.
In general, the assessment should involve gathering
information about user needs and wants and matching these
with what the library can presently offer.
The Purpose of the study is to state, analyse, and
document the data needed to make an informed and
intelligent decision.The points are:
Technical Feasibility: It deals with technical issues,
like (Hardware, Software, etc.)
Operational Feasibility: It will examine the
proposed project or system will work when it is
developed or installed or related problems
Economic Feasibility: It will call for greater
attention. In actual sense it deals with the budget
factor / Money involvement.
Library Automation is depend on a specific
technological plan, it includes:
Supported Peripherals for Automation (scanner, & printer,
IT literacy & software related of Library Staffs.
Project Proposal It is based on the
It will help to study the present environment
of the library, and able to create or develop a
vision for successful automation.
The software developed by own or in by the
institution / organisation.
Software purchased from vendor. Out side
from the organisation.
For the selection of the best package for
library, analyse and identify your needs and
match it with the features and functions of
integrated library systems.
Evaluating the Integrated Library Systems is
necessary to choose the most appropriate
library management system that will answer
the needs of the library in automating its
operations for further development.
The task of selecting software packages
requires careful planning.
To reach an informed decision you will have to
study several systems.
Engagement of subject expert
Submitting to vendor
Receiving proposals from vendors
Preparing a short list of vendors
Requesting a demo of the system
Purchasing the system
Preparing the contract
Proper training support
Implementing the system
Evaluating the implemented system
In 1998, a group of individuals advocated that the term free
software should be replaced by open source software
OSS promote software reliability and quality by supporting
independent peer review and rapid evaluation of source
OSS is computer software that is available in source code
Open-source license that permits users to study, change,
improve and at times also to distribute the software and
further defines the terms of usage, modification ,
redistribution and use it freely is open source software.
The following are OSS application:
Integrated Library Management Systems
Content Management System
Learning Management System
Open source software came into existence to
fulfill the need of the Library shrinking budget
Library Automation and Management is indeed
for the library to maintain the records,
Commercial automation software are too
expensive and not bearable within the budget.
Koha is the first open source integrated
library system in the world.
Library is one of the main centre point to
develop content management system to do it
in a perfect manner
OSS Content Management Software are
DRUPAL and JOOMLA.
Joomla is a award winning content
management systems which enable library to
build their own website with powerful online
Implementation of Digital library Software
helps the user mainly in the retrieval of
needed information such as faculty publication,
Question papers, Newspaper clippings, Video
Lecture and so on, this all together called as
DSPACE is one of the widely used software
It is easier to evaluate open source software then proprietary
Since open source software is typically freely available to download,
Libraries and systems Administrator can install complete production-
ready versions of software and can evaluate the competing packages.
Open source software usually has its versions for all popular
operating systems – Linux,Windows or Mac.
Flexibility in Choosing Support:
Open Source Software is backed by online forums and support
Established open source software is even backed by paid support
services and training programmes.
No or less personal support:
Less customer friendly ie, all the features expected by the user
may not be available.
Lack of training:
Due to lack of training and expertise on OSS may lead to
ineffective utilization of the software.
Maintenance and trouble shooting
OSS needs specialized skills and knowledge about that software.
Need for technological sophistication
Fewer advanced features
Nobody is really responsible (by contract)
OS may be incompatible with other deployed software
"is a turnkey institutional repository application."
"is a suite of software for building and distributing
digital library collections. It provides a new way of
organizing information and publishing it on the
Internet or on CD-ROM.
"a highly-scalable software for libraries that helps library
patrons find library materials, and helps libraries manage,
catalog, and circulate those materials, no matter how large or
complex the libraries“
"the first free and open source software library automation
package (ILS). Development is sponsored by libraries of
varying types and sizes, volunteers, and support companies
from around the world."
"is an easy to use, open source, automated library system
written in PHP containing OPAC, circulation, cataloging,
and staff administration functionality.
is an outcome of collaboration between Verus and
Kesavan. Institute has provided the domain
expertise. It provides many basic ILS functions as
well as having several social media functions buit
SOPAC (Social Online Public Access Catalog)
is a module for the Drupal CMS that provides
true integration of your library catalog system
with the power of the Drupal content