Searching with Z39.50

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Using a Z39.50 connection, you can search your OPAC to see if your reserves department owns an item and to record the call number and shelf location of the item. On an Item request form, clicking on the Z39.50 tab will perform an auto search on the following information: TitleAuthorKeywordSystem NumberStandard Number, and Call Number. Additionally, you can perform a custom search. See Custom Searching for more information.

In order to user Z39.50 searching, you must have a server connection set up. If your catalog does not support Z39.50 searching, you may want to consider adding the Clipboard Wizard as a Client Addon to automatically copy the title of the Item record to your clipboard and limit the amount of copy and paste functions between applications.

Starting a Z39.50 Search

  1. On an Item request form, click the Z39.50 tab.
  2. The search fields will be filled with existing data from the Item form, and the default search will be run automatically. Search results will display in the grid.
  3. To try a specific search, click the search icon next to a search field. You can also perform a custom search by clicking the small arrow on the bottom right of the search boxes.
  4. To stop a search in progress, click Stop on the bottom right of the form.

If you manually create an Item in the Ares client, you will be able to conduct a Z39.50 search as soon as you have saved the Item form.

Selecting a Search Resource

Use the Z39.50 icon on the Discovery ribbon to specify the resource to be searched. If multiple resources have been set up, the screen will default to the resource set up in the Ares Customization Manager as the default search resource. This is typically your institution's local OPAC. All Z39.50 search options will first need to be set up in the Ares Customization Manager before they will be accessible for searching on this form.

See Connecting to an OPAC Using Z39.50 for more information.

Search Fields

Along the Discovery ribbon are five automated Z39.50 search fields:

  • Title search
  • Author search
  • Keyword search
  • System Number search (OCLC or Docline Number)
  • Standard Number (ISSN/ISBN) search
  • Call Number search

The automatic search conducted when the Z30.50 form is opened uses the search field configured in the Ares Customization Manager as the default search for the search resource. If you are conducting a manual search using one of the search fields, click on the search and the system will automatically perform the search and display the results in the Searching grid on the form. You can change the information in the search boxes to narrow your search if necessary.

See Configuring Z39.50 Searching for more information.

If the automated search options are not sufficient for your needs, you may also perform a custom search using the Custom Searches field on the Discovery ribbon.

Viewing Z39.50 Search Results

All search results are shown in a grid under the Searching tab. Details of the results, such as Title, Author, Location, Call Number, and Availability for the selected search result appear as columns in the grid for each copy of the item found by the search. Searches that obtain no results display a blank grid where results would normally show.

To view record details, select the record and click the Record Detail tab. Records can be viewed in either MARC or Text format. Click the Marc or Text tab to view the format. A list of all matching items in the Holdings tab now shows the Location, Call Number and Availability of a selected search result. The Ares Citation group shows the original item citation as it appears using the default serial or monograph citation templates. These templates can be overridden.

Importing Z39.50 Information

To import the call number and location information into the Call Number and Shelf Location fields on the Item form:

  1. Select the record by clicking on it in the grid.
  2. Holdings information for that record will appear in the Holdings display on the bottom right.
  3. Select the copy you want in the Holdings display.
  4. Click Copy Info or double-click the Holdings entry to copy the Call Number and Location information into the Item form.


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