Stack requests after ‘go-live’

An update on what will happen to stack requests once the new library system comes in:

Stack requests already called up to libraries
These will remain on reserve in the reading rooms until Monday 1st August. This should give you time to renew your stack books on SOLO to keep for longer if you so require, otherwise any books you currently have called up will be returned to the stack from that date.

New stack requests
Assuming all goes well with the last few bits of the implementation over the next couple of days, you should be able to start ordering books from the stacks again from 9am on Friday 22nd July.  Stack requests, like all other library functions, will now be placed via SOLO. See the SOLO online guide for information on how to do this.

Need help with SOLO? Training and guide available

If you’re having difficulty with SOLO, or would like some extra help or guidance, the Bodleian Libraries are running extra ‘Finding Stuff on SOLO’ workshops this summer, as follows:

WISER:  Finding Stuff on SOLO
This hands on workshop will focus on search techniques for finding books, journals and other Library materials in print and online using SOLO. The session will also cover placing requests and reservations using SOLO, book renewals and using the SOLO e-shelf and saved searches.

Dates:   This workshop will run on the following dates (you only need to attend one session). 

  • Wednesday 27 July 9.30-10.30 at the Radcliffe Science Library
  • Tuesday 9 August 14.30-15.30  at the Social Science Library
  • Wednesday 24 August 10.00-11.00  at the Radcliffe Science Library

More dates will be added over the summer, please check for more details.

Don’t forget you can always get help from the SOLO online guide, or ask staff in any library to give you a hand.

New library system: delay to ‘go live’ date, now Friday 22nd July

Due to OLIS (the old version) crashing last Thursday, there has unfortunately been a delay to getting the new system up and running.  The new date for all to be working is 9am on Friday 22nd July.

All the arrangements that have been in place for the downtime this week will continue throughout next week. If you need material urgently, the ‘just-in-time’ team will be available to locate alternative copies where possible via the online request form. The SOLO Live Help will also continue to be available for assistance with SOLO, which will remain available until 3pm on Thursday 21st, when it will need to be taken down for the final part of the preparation for the new system.

We apologise for the delay, and thanks for your patience!

Update 18/7/11: The Bodleian Libraries have posted a notice with more information on their website.

OLIS downtime: help with SOLO and/or locating material

The Bodleian Libraries have put various things in place to help support readers during the OLIS downtime. Please note that OLIS crashed yesterday and is currently still down; we should find out shortly whether it will be resurrected today before the scheduled downtime begins.  I should underline that this unforeseen crash is completely unrelated to the switchover to the new system, and our systems people are working very hard to restore access today. 

Obtaining material held in the Bodleian stack
If you need to get hold of books that are in the Bodleian stack over the next week (and are unable to wait until the new library system is up and running on Monday 18th), there is a dedicated ‘just-in-time’ team available who are there to try and locate alternative copies of books and journals which are unavailable during the downtime. You can contact them via an online form at:

SOLO help
If you are not familiar with SOLO, and are having difficulty finding things, there is now a live online help service available from the SOLO main page. This will be staffed 9am-5pm, Monday-Friday, throughout the downtime, for any questions you may have or to help you with searching SOLO.  There is also an online guide to SOLO, which should show you how to do most things.

Further questions or help
The Bodleian Libraries email address for questions relating to the downtime is  You can of course always contact library staff in any library as well, and we will all do our best to help you during the transition.

New library system update: using SOLO

Here’s some more information from the Bodleian Libraries about SOLO, which as previously mentioned will be the only way to search the library catalogue when the old OLIS is taken down at 5pm on Friday.

As part of the transition to a new integrated library system at the Bodleian Libraries, on 18 July all patron functions currently offered in OLIS will move to a new version of SOLO. This will replace OLIS (WebOPAC and telnet versions) and can be searched by anybody anywhere in the world. Registered readers need to use only one interface both to locate collections and to order them, but can then also renew loans and holds, check their patron record, etc. Also, once signed on to SOLO (s.b.), Oxford members who are working off-campus will have seamless access to subscription e-resources without having to sign on again.

More about SOLO
Since October 2008 SOLO has been a search and discovery tool for the major collections of the libraries of the University of Oxford. As well as searching the University libraries’ print and electronic holdings and title links to more than 1,100 databases on OxLIP+, it also searches ORA (Oxford University Research Archive), the Bodleian Library Allegro Chinese and Allegro Japanese catalogues and the Refugee Studies Cardbox catalogue (mostly grey literature published before 2004).

On 18 July, in addition to patron functions, the new version of SOLO will also feature enhanced searching functionality, esp. in Advanced Search where an additional search box and new fields have been added. For instance, scholars researching early printed books will welcome the addition of certain searches such as date of publication, place of publication and publisher.

Unlike OLIS, SOLO allows registered readers to save search results and set up search alerts; all registered readers, including non-Oxford users, can also save details of collections to a personal e-shelf.

Signing on to SOLO after 18 July
Readers who wish to check the status of books, stack requests, use the e-shelf, etc. need to be registered readers before they can sign on to SOLO. Oxford members should sign on with their Single Sign On details; non-Oxford members will continue to sign on with their Library Card barcode and associated password.

Need help with SOLO?
A SOLO guide gives helpful instruction how to use it. A series of SOLO workshops will be offered after the go-live. See the timetable for details and bookings. Do not hesitate to contact library staff who can also assist with any enquiries or problems. Finally, for the period of the downtime 8-18 July, a SOLO Live Chat will offer immediate assistance to readers in the use of SOLO.

Important news for current e-Shelf users
If you are currently using SOLO’s e-shelf functions, we shall need to migrate your personal data. It is imperative that by 8th July you have set your email address correctly in SOLO. If you have not already done so, then please sign in to your SOLO account using the “Oxford Single Sign On” link on the top right corner of the screen. Once signed on, click on “My Account” then choose “Edit Details” to set your email address. Please use the same email address as you do for OLIS. (You can check your current email address in OLIS by logging in to OLIS,, or by asking library staff.) This must be done before 8th July so your email addresses in SOLO and OLIS match before data migrations are started on 8th July.

[From Bodleian Libraries Reader Notices.]

Bodleian update: Gladstone Link, System downtime, Book delivery times

An update on a few things relating to the ongoing changes and improvements in the Bodleian Libraries:

Gladstone Link opening Tuesday 5th July, 12.00pm

The Gladstone Link, a new area for readers, will open at 12:00 on Tuesday 5th July. The Link will connect the Old Bodleian Library and Radcliffe Camera reader spaces and will be accessible from both these buildings. It will offer work spaces and the books there will be available on the open shelf.  You will be able to identify books held in the Gladstone Link by the shelfmarks beginning (UBHU).  

System downtime, 8th-18th July: Limited fetching service for stack requests and help to locate alternative copies

The Bodleian Libraries will now be offering a limited fetching service for stack requests during the period of downtime from 8th-18th July. However, you are still advised to get your requests in as soon as possible, and before the system is taken down at 5pm on 7th July.  Any books which are up at any reserves within the Bodleian Libraries will stay up throughout the downtime.

If you are having difficulty getting hold of material during the downtime, there will be online support available from the Bodleian Libraries’ website from 7th July, which will help you locate alternative copies of books and journals which are unavailable.  As ever, if you have any questions or need any help, you are always welcome to ask us!

Book delivery times

We’ve had confirmation of the times when the Bodleian van will be calling at the VHL, until at least December. Our morning delivery will now be at around 9.45am and afternoon delivery around 3.15pm. 


Reminder: downtime for switchover to new library system, 8th-18th July

We are now in the last few days before the switchover to the new library system begins. Here’s what you should make sure you have checked or done by the time the system goes down at 5pm on Thursday:

Stack requests
If you want to consult books from the Bodleian stacks during the downtime (8th-18th July), you need to place your requests for them as soon as possible in order that they can be delivered to the reading rooms by Thursday afternoon.

Check your password!
We will not be able to reset passwords while the system is down. Please check that you know your library card password and that it works, and if not, ask us to reset it by 5pm on Thursday at the latest. This is the password that goes with your library card barcode, and that you need to log on to library PCs, the Bodleian Libraries’ wireless network, place stack requests or check your record on OLIS.

Familiarise yourself with SOLO
After the system is taken down at 5pm on Thursday, there will be no more access to either the telnet or web versions of OLIS. The only catalogue available for the new system will be SOLO, which will continue to be available throughout the downtime. When the new system goes live on Monday 18th July, this will bring with it a new and improved version of SOLO with enhanced searching and the ability to do all the things within it that you used to have to click through to OLIS for.  For more help and guidance on searching SOLO in its current form, see the SOLO online guide.

SOLO e-shelf – check your email address!
If you use the e-shelf function on SOLO, you need to check that your email address is correctly recorded, otherwise your data will not be able to be migrated to the new system and you will lose anything you have saved there. To do this, log in to SOLO as you normally would, then click on ‘my account’ in the top right-hand corner. If you need to change the email address listed, then click on ‘edit details’.

For more information, continue to keep an eye on the blog, as well as our Facebook page and Twitter feed for updates throughout the downtime. If you have any questions, please ask us!

New library system: Stack requests

As the date for the switchover to our new library system approaches, this is a reminder to place any requests for books you may want from the Bodleian stacks during the downtime (8th-18th July) as soon as possible. The absolute last date to place requests is Thursday 7th July, but if you want to guarantee that your books get delivered to the reading rooms before then, you should put your requests in now!

Important information: Switchover to new library system, 8th-18th July – UPDATE

The date for the switchover to the new library system is fast approaching! Here’s an update on the planned schedule and things to be aware of for using the Bodleian Libraries in July.

Stack requests
From 5pm on Thursday 7th July to 9am on Monday 18th July, while the new system is being implemented, it will not be possible to order items from the Bodleian bookstacks. If you would like to use material from the Bodleian stacks during this period, you are advised to place your stack requests by Friday 1st July in order to ensure that the book can be delivered to the reading room before the downtime.

We will be able to fetch material from the VHL stacks (for consultation in the VHL only) using manual request slips. Please ask staff at the desk for a slip.  You should also still be able to request special collections material in the Radcliffe Science Library or stack material in Rhodes House Library in those libraries in the same way.

Library catalogue
Both telnet and the web versions of OLIS ( will be switched off permanently at 5pm on Thursday 7th July.  The only catalogue available for the new system will be SOLO, which will continue to be available throughout the downtime (except for a brief period towards the end).  With the new system, SOLO’s functionality will be increased to allow you to do all the things you used to have to click through to OLIS for.  If you are not already familiar with searching on SOLO, we would suggest you start familiarising yourself now! Library staff are always available to provide help and guidance, and once the new system is in place there will also be further guides, courses and tutorials. For more guidance on searching SOLO in its current incarnation, please see the SOLO online guide.

OxLIP+ and e-journals
OxLIP+ and e-journals will be unaffected, and you will still be able to search for and access electronic resources as usual. 

Password resets
As the staff system will be down, we will not be able to reset any library passwords (for logging on to the PCs or wireless or checking your record) from 8th-17th July.  Similarly, you will not be able to log in to your record on OLIS and change it yourself.  Please make sure you know your password before 8th July, and ask us to reset it if necessary before then.

Lending (for those registered to borrow)
It will still be possible to borrow books throughout the downtime, using a back-up system. However, transactions will not be recorded on the catalogue so you won’t be able to see for yourself whether a book is out on loan. As check-in and renewal won’t be possible, any books checked out from Thursday 7th July until Friday 15th July will be due back on Monday 18th.  If you return books to us during the downtime, we will not reshelve them until we can check them in on the new system.

SOLO e-shelf – check your email address!
If you use the e-shelf function on SOLO, you will need to check that your email address is recorded correctly in your record in order that the records you have saved can be migrated to the new version. To do this, log into SOLO as you usually would, then click on ‘my account’ in the top right-hand corner. If you need to change the email address listed, then click on ‘edit details’.

New books and purchasing
We are now not able to order any new books until the new system is up and running.  You can continue to send us recommendations for books to buy, but please be aware that we won’t be able to get them here until probably August (taking into account delivery time).  Books that have already been ordered will continue to arrive, however from 6th-18th July we will not be able to add them to the catalogue.  Likewise, we will not be able to record the arrival of new journal issues, but if you are particularly keen to see a book or journal issue that you know is on its way or should have arrived, please do ask and we will fetch it out for you if we have it.

18th July: new system!
The new system will go live at 9am on Monday 18th July, and all normal library activities and processes will resume (with the exception of telnet/old web OLIS as described above).  Please bear with us though if there are bugs or if we’re a little slower than normal, as we’ll be getting used to it ourselves over the following few weeks.

More information
Keep an eye on the blog, as well as our Facebook page and/or Twitter feed for updates throughout the downtime.  If you have any further questions, please ask us!

Timetable for switchover to new library system, June-July 2011

This is a draft timetable for the major points to note throughout June and July as the Bodleian Libraries move over to our new library system (see previous post).

31st May: Please let us have any book purchase recommendations by this date. 

1st-17th June: Reduced purchasing.

18th June – 17th July: No purchasing. If you have urgent requests, please let us know and we will see what we can do!

1st- 7th July: Put your stack requests in now for the downtime, and familiarise yourself with SOLO (if you haven’t already!)

7th July: Last day for stack requests. Make sure you know your OLIS password (for logging on to PCs, placing stack requests, renewing loans) – passwords cannot be reset 8th-17th July.

8th July: OLIS switched off at 17:00. Beginning of transfer of data to new system. Withdrawal of character-based catalogue (ie, telnet OLIS).

8th-17th July: switchover


  • Existing catalogue (SOLO), allowing bibliographic searching, location of open-shelf material.
  • Borrowing (via back-up system, ie, not recording transactions on OLIS). 

Not functioning:

  • Stack request
  • Other circulation functions 
  • Password resets

18th July: OLIS (Aleph) goes live at 09:00.