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OCLC Support

Online Catalog

Use the settings in WorldCat Registry > Online Catalog to list information about your Web-accessible catalog. When you are finished, click Save Changes or Reset to start over.

 Note: Find instructions on how to Configure links to your online catalog, including instructions for WorldCat Discovery libraries and for Dutch customers.

Online Catalog Availability

Use this section to select the availability option for your online catalog.

The options are:

  • Available Online – If you select this option, the setting fields below will appear
  • Available on Intranet Only
  • Not Available (default)

Suggest Links

If no links are present under Online Catalog

If under Online Catalog links are NOT present or if the links are out of date, add or update them.

The Suggest Links feature will automatically generate URL syntaxes for many vendors and online catalog products. To use the Suggest Links feature:

  1. Open a separate browser window or tab to search your library's Web catalog for a held item. Enter in the search string to your library’s search box.
  2. Copy the URL from the record page for the item and paste it in the "Suggest Links" field. Click "Suggest Links." If a search term is present in the URL, remove the search term information from the URL.

If the system is able to construct ISBN, ISSN, and OCLC number search strings they will appear automatically as will your ILS vendor:

  1. Confirm that the queries work by using the “Test” buttons. You will see a system-generated ISBN or ISSN, or OCLC number that is widely held among OCLC member libraries.
  2. If your library does not have the ISBN or ISSN that appears in the test box, replace it with one that your library holds/is present in your local MARC records.
  3. Save your changes in order to activate these links.

If the system does not suggest links:

  1. Search your catalog using an ISBN. Using the URL from the item's page, strip out the ISBN and paste the remaining URL in the "Online Catalog Direct to ISBN" field.
  2. Specify whether the query should use 10 Digits or 13 Digits for the ISBN.
  3. Click "Test." If needed, replace the ISBN with an ISBN for a title you know you hold.
  4. Repeat this process for the remaining test fields (ISSN, e-Serial ISSN, OCLC number searches).

If you are unsuccessful in creating working links, request assistance from your ILS vendor.

If links are present under Online Catalog:

If under Online Catalog links are present, confirm that they work.

  1. Click the "Test" button. 
  2. Clicking the button will open a new window and load the proposed URL syntax with an ISBN, ISSN, or OCLC number appended.

A successful test will display your ILS interface and will take you to the record for the test item.

It is possible you do not hold the item represented by the system-generated ISBN or ISSN; In this situation, you will see your ILS interface but instead of seeing a record page, you will see a message indicating that the record wasn't found.

If your library does not hold the ISBN or ISSN generated by the system, replace it with one that your library holds and that is present in your local MARC records.

Online Catalog

Use the instructions above under Suggest Links. It may take up to 24 hours for any changes to your institution's Online Catalog links to be reflected in other OCLC services. When you are finished, remember to Save Changes.

Online Catalog field definitions:

  • Library System Used: Select your vendor from the drop-down list.
  • Base URL: Main URL for your library’s catalog. Only one link can be used per profile.
  • Online Catalog Direct to ISBN: URL for the screen that displays the results of an ISBN search of your catalog.
  • Online Catalog Direct to ISSN: URL for the screen that displays the results of an ISSN search of your catalog.
  • e-Serial ISSN Search: URL for the screen that displays the results of an ISSN search of your catalog for electronic serials.
  • Online Catalog Direct to OCLC Number: URL for the screen that displays the results of an OCLC Number search of your catalog.
  • Add Leading Zeroes to the OCLC search Term: Click the check box to add leading zeros to the search term if your library configures its catalog to retain the leading zeros on OCLC numbers.
  • OCLC Number Prefix: Select which option you prefer for adding a prefix to the OCLC Number.
    • Example: OCM
  • Custom Prefix: Custom prefix to add to all OCLC Numbers.
  • Online Catalog Direct to Multiple OCLC Numbers: The URL to conduct an OR search against the local catalog for multiple OCLC numbers which identify the same record. This will handle cases where many OCLC numbers have been reduced to a single OCLC number in the WorldCat database and the holdings in the local catalog may not match the holdings in WorldCat. Use {oclc} as a placeholder for where OCLC numbers can be inserted into the URL.

Tips on deep link construction

  • Remember to save your changes. Deep links from your WorldCat Discovery interface to records in your OPAC will be functional after a short delay
  • If OCLC numbers are not consistently present in your local MARC records or are present but are not consistently indexed, we recommend leaving the Online Catalog Direct to OCLC Number field blank as we will not be able to search by ISSN/ISBN if the OCLC number search fails
  • Deep links should be constructed so that the ISSN, ISBN or OCLC number is at the end of the URL string
  • Deep links cannot include semicolons (;) or carats (^) as they will cause links to break, even though they will seem to work correctly when tested
  • Deep links cannot include a unique session identifier (session ID). A session ID is a device for tracking a specific user's visit to a Web site which expires after a pre-set time of inactivity; it often appears as a string of letters and/or numbers. Sirsi catalog links almost always have a session ID value, so be sure to remove it when constructing your syntax

Additional information

Resources for WorldCat Discovery libraries

Find documentation and training on how to Configure links to your online catalog for WorldCat Discovery libraries.


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