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Building a LibX Edition for Primo

As of yesterday, we’re a Primo library. So for the last couple of days we’ve been working to change all the things that need changing after you get a new catalog. One librarian is doing most of the work to change all of our links to our old catalog or items in the catalog in all of our LibGuides. Meanwhile, I took on trying to get LibX to recognize our new catalog.

The LibX thing turned out not to be the least bit straightforward, so I thought I’d post what I did in case a) you want to try this and can benefit from my hours of fumbling, or b) you are good at this and can help me make what I did better. I was helped to get this far by a librarian from the LSW.

Start an Edition

In the Edition Builder, it might be a good idea to first search for the Carleton College edition and copy that to use as a base, or you can click “Build a New Edition” on the right of the page.

From here, there’s one confusing thing that will help for the rest of the time. To find your edition and edit and test it, you’ll click on the “my editions” tab. Then click on the edition name on the lower left side. THEN click on the revision you want to work on in the list of revisions that shows up to the right of the “Select an Edition” box. THEN, if you don’t see a “Revision x is being worked on” notification, you’ll have to either click “Open Revision x (modify)” or, if you have a live revision that you want to modify you’ll have to click “Copy Revision x Forward.” At this point you’ll end up with tabs across the top to configure the various different functions of the LibX extension.

Configuring your Primo instance with LibX

You’ll need the Web Developer extension (chrome or firefox) to find the variable names LibX asks for. Once you’re armed with that, click on the “Catalogs & Databases” tab in the LibX Edition Builder for your new Edition.

LibX catalog

I tried to get LibX to auto-detect my catalog’s settings, but it kept saying that it couldn’t do it, so I had to resort to manual set-up. So under “Manual Configuration” I chose ExLibris Primo and then clicked “Add Catalog.” After this you’ll need to add information to both the “Required Settings” and the “Optional Settings” for the catalog (my edition didn’t work at all until I added some things to the “optional” settings… so apparently they aren’t terribly optional).

The URL you need is JUST the base URL up to the .com. All the other parameters that ExLibris puts into Primo URLs have to be added in other spots.

Then you’ll need to find things that LibX calls “Advanced Search Choice Variable 1,” “Advanced Search Mode Variable 1,” etc. Fire up the Web Developer “Inspector” tool and point it to the boxes I’ve labeled here:

advanced search variables

When you click the Inspector tool on the Advanced Search Choice Variable 1 (the first search box), you’ll find the variable name in the Web Developer browser pane:

variable name

Put that value into the corresponding field in LibX, finding and entering each of the variable names in the required fields in LibX.

You’ll find your VID in the standard URL for your catalog. I’ve bolded our VID in our URL here: http://carleton-primo.hosted.exlibrisgroup.com/primo_library/libweb/action/search.do?vid=01BRC_CCO

In the Optional settings, you’ll need to fill in 5 of the fields, as far as I can tell:

  1. In “Path” put “/primo_library/libweb”
  2. In “Search Function” put “search”
  3. In “Basic Mode Variable” try putting in “vl(1UIStartWith0)” — you may have to adjust this, but it’s worth a try.
  4. In “Tab Variable” put “default_tab”
  5. And in Title Search Mode put “contains”

Beyond the Catalog

The thing I use LibX most for is the added right-click context menu in my browser that allows me to reload the page through my library’s off-campus access, so I highly recommend putting your proxy information into the “Proxy Access” tab on the LibX Edition Builder.

You can also add your Open URL base url to the OpenURL Resolvers tab. If you do this and select a logo, then that logo will appear next to citations online, allowing you to click on the logo and check for library access. (You can add your own logo in the “File Management” tab.)

Testing your Edition

Back in the “My Editions” page, click on the Revision you’ve been working on and then click the link that appears below it called “revision test page.” If you can search your catalog through the test page, congratulations! If not, I don’t have a lot of advice beyond asking around and maybe trying to have the LibX folks help you out (you can click “help me with x edition” in the “Select an Edition” box to the left of the list of revisions).

Go Live

Once things are ready, click on the revision you’ve been perfecting and then click “Make Revision x Live.”  Now people will be able to download the LibX extension for Chrome or Firefox, tell it which library they want, and start using it.

 

Adventures in CSS: Changing the way LibGuides gallery boxes display

We weren’t happy with the default way that LibGuides displayed labels and captions on the images in Gallery boxes, so I started tinkering with the CSS. We didn’t want the labels and captions to be white, and we didn’t want them to be on top of the images in the gallery. And we didn’t like the font sizes. So I fired up the Web Developer extension and started poking away, figuring out how the original CSS worked and what I could over-write to make some changes.

I don’t know that I would have made it too far without help from people who responded to my plea for help from the Library Society of the World, but in the end a few lines of CSS shifted the label and caption fields down below the images, and shifted the navigation buttons up above the images where they could be in a consistent spot no matter what size the image.

If you’d like to do something similar, go into the Custom CSS area of LibGuides and add the following:

<style>

.carousel-caption {position: relative; text-align: left; left: 2%; color: #5C5757 !important; text-shadow: 0 0px 0px rgba(0,0,0,.6); padding-top: 20px; padding-bottom: 0px;}
.carousel-caption h4 {font-size:16px;}
.carousel-caption p {font-size:12px; margin-bottom: 1px;}

.carousel-indicators {position:relative; margin-top: 20px; margin-bottom: -10px;}
.carousel-indicators .active {background-color: #5C5757;border: 1px solid #fff;}
.carousel-indicators li {background-color:#fff; border: 1px solid  #5C5757;}

.carousel-control.right {background-image: none;}
.carousel-control.left {background-image: none;}
.carousel-control {color: #000; margin-top: -25px;}

</style>

And if you come up with great ideas for tweaks beyond this, I’m all ears!