Admins: MARC records and PDA

The key feature of PDA is being able to provide a broader set of titles for your patrons – without having to purchase all those titles up front. With the PDA model, no distinction is made to your patrons about whether you’ve already purchased the title – they just know it’s a title you’ve made available to them.

You can restrict the set of titles you decide to make available in your PDA collections as narrowly as you’d like – you’ll want to be sure your active PDA collections only contain titles you’re happy to have purchased should they encounter sufficient usage.

For your PDA collections to be useful, it is important that they be discoverable.

We provide you with a MARC record for every title in your PDA collection as soon as you make that PDA profile active.  That way, you can load those MARC records into your catalog so the titles in your PDA collection will be discoverable through your catalog.  (Your PDA-discoverable titles are also shown in your Holdings report under the profile’s collection.)

When a PDA-discoverable title is triggered for purchase, we don’t send a new MARC record for it – the assumption is that you had uploaded the title into your catalog when we initially sent the MARC record for it.  (Once purchased, the title will be in the “All Perpetual” collection in your Holdings report, not the profile’s collection.)

If a title becomes no longer available as PDA discoverable, we provide you with a MARC-delete record for it, and you should remove the title from your catalog.  A title becomes no longer available as PDA discoverable if:

  • You manually remove the title from your PDA collections
  • The publisher makes the title ineligible for PDA
  • The PDA collection the title is in is disabled (which makes all the titles in that collection no longer available).  Causes for this:
    • You manually pause a PDA profile by unchecking it’s “PDA” and “Loan” boxes
    • You manually delete a PDA collection
    • The associated Fund Code runs out of funds or you pause it
  • Your PDA account runs out of funds (which makes all of your PDA-discoverable titles no longer available)

To distinguish your PDA discoverable MARC records from MARC records in a subscription collection (for example, Academic Complete):

  • Assign a Fund Code to each of your PDA profiles
  • MARC records for titles in subscription collections don’t have a 981 field
  • MARC records for titles in a PDA profile with a fund code have a 981 field with the fund code specified, for example:
    • =981  \\$bPsyGroup

Suggestions or requests to add content to ebrary

If there are titles ebrary does not currently offer that you would like us to offer, please email us at However, please be advised that ebrary cannot guarantee that titles you request will be added. We must first establish a relationship with a publisher and that publisher then needs to grant us special copyright permissions to put the content in an online format. This takes time, and some publishers are not be interested in publishing content online.

Admins: EZproxy Single Sign On (SSO)

EZproxy Single Sign On (SSO) works very well with ebrary sites and offers two distinct advantages over a standard proxy approach:

  1. Response time is much better because SSO is a hand-off approach, whereas with a standard proxy approach every command and response passes through the proxy server.
  2. Users have just one username and password to deal with.  Users sign in through your proxy server for both remote access and to sign in to their personal ebrary account.

Three requirements of your proxy server to use this approach:

  1. Your proxy server must require a unique login for each person.  That is, every user has their own username and password or barcode instead of everyone logging on as, for example, “student”.
  2. Once a user logs in through the proxy, a unique identifier for that user must be passed on.  That is, users aren’t all called “cgi-user” or something once they are logged on.
  3. You need to be running at least version 4.0 of EZproxy.

An overview of how EZproxy SSO works:

  • When a user is on-campus, they can access the ebrary site without logging on, but as soon as they try to use a feature that requires them to be signed into their personal ebrary account, we pass them to your proxy-log-on screen.  Once they successfully enter their username and password there, they are passed back to the ebrary screen, and they will have full access to the ebrary site and to their personal ebrary account.
  • When a user is off-campus, they will still use the regular (unproxied) link to access the ebrary site,<YourSiteName>.  The ebrary site recognizes they are off-campus and they are immediately passed to your proxy-log-on screen.  Once they successfully sign in there, they are passed to the ebrary site and at that point they are also already signed in to their personal ebrary account.
  • Note that once EZproxy SSO is in use, users won’t have their old personal ebrary accounts; their ebrary account username will be based on their EZproxy SSO login.   Any users that want the info in their old bookshelf transferred to their new bookshelf just needs to send us their old and new usernames, and we can quickly transfer their bookshelf contents.

Important note:

  • If you are migrating to EZproxy SSO and you have users that had created bookshelves using the prior setup, the contents of those bookshelves will not be automatically transferred over to the new bookshelves.  However, users can email to request their bookshelf contents be copied over; users would need to supply their old username and their new username.  One challenge is that any folders that users might have set up in their bookshelves will not be copied over – all of their bookshelf items will be copied over to the top (uncategorized) level of their new bookshelf.

Setting up EZproxy SSO:

  • To set up EZproxy SSO for your ebrary site, email
  • We’ll make a few changes to your ebrary site’s configuration from our side. To do this we’ll need to know:
    • Your proxy server IP address
    • The URL of your proxy server
    • The version number of EZproxy you are running
    • A temp log-in for your proxy if possible so we can test the setup (just a username/password like a student would get)
  • We’ll send you the specific lines to add to your proxy config file
    • It is important that the ebrary config lines are placed in the config file before any use of AutoLoginIP
    • (AutoLoginIP is used to identify computers that should be automatically logged into EZproxy – and this blocks the process of having on-campus users sign in to their personal ebrary account, which is done via the proxy server)
  • Once both you and we have made the changes, we’ll test and confirm

Admins: Customization options for your MARC records

We can customize your ebrary MARC records by adding static information to specific fields, or moving one field to another.  Customizations will apply to all MARC records retrieved from your ebrary MARC records page – they cannot be restricted to certain collections.

There is no charge for MARC record customizations that involve changes such as the ones described here.

Common customizations we CAN provide:

  • Adding your proxy prefix to the URL in the 856 field
  • Changing the 856 u subfield to your desired wording
  • Adding static information (i.e., a specific text string) to a field;
    note this cannot be a conditional such as if this then that

Uncommon customizations we CAN provide:

  • 020 field, all ISBN numbers can be moved to the “a” subfield
    • MARC records that ebrary obtained prior to October 2013 have all ISBNs (e.g., eISBN, pISBN, and others) in the 020 “z” subfield
    • MARC records that ebrary obtained after October 2013 have the eISBN in the 020 “a” subfield, all other ISBNs (e.g., pISBN) in the 020 “z” subfield
    • ebrary MARC records often include two or three different ISBN numbers: print, paberback, ebook, etc.  We include all ISBNs provided by our MARC record vendors; we cannot limit to or remove only certain types of ISBN (for example, only eISBNs and pISBNs) or differentiate beyond the raw ISBN information provided
    • We can, however, move all the ISBN numbers to the “a” subfield of 020, but if you’re not careful it can lead to problems of overwriting your print records
  • 050 fields, LC subject codes, can be deleted
    • These should not be deleted unless you want to remove them completely

Notes re specific customization considerations:

  • Innovative and ExLibris Voyager can draw on text added to 049 field
  • Innovative can draw on text added to 949 field to set holdings within the catalog

Customization we CANNOT provide:

  • We cannot make changes that are not static (that is, we cannot make ‘if this then that’ changes)
  • Customizations cannot be restricted to certain collections
  • The 001 field cannot be removed
  • The 035 field, OCLC numbers, cannot be edited or removed
  • The 650 fields, Medical Subject (MeSH) Headings, are removed during pre-processing and cannot be retained


Admins: To get the title list of all titles on your ebrary site, or just the titles in one or more collections on your ebrary site

You can get an up-to-the-minute list of all titles on your ebrary site, or just the titles in one or more collections (such as Academic Complete) on your ebrary site – you don’t even need to have admin-tab privileges:

1) Go to your ebrary site.

2) Sign in to your ebrary account.  It is important that you sign in, otherwise you cannot get the complete list.  If you do not have an ebrary bookshelf account, please create one using the “Sign In” button at the top right and clicking on “Create an account”

3) Click on “Advanced” just to the right of the “Search ebrary” button.

4) If you want to search for a particular collection only, in “Search in”, select “Collections” then select “Academic Complete” (or another collection) from the list of available collections.  Note, if you only have one collection on your site, you don’t need to select a collection.

5) Leave all other search lines empty

6) Click the “Search ebrary” button below the search fields.

7) Then, to get a file with all these titles (complete with urls), click on the “Export Search Results” button over on the far right.

This will create an excel file of all titles on your site (or just those in the collection(s) you selected), complete with the url for each document.