Library Systems

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Integrated Library Systems (ILS) are the systems that support library functions like cataloging, circulation, the OPAC or catalog, and management of acquisitions. Find a description of what an ILS is at the Wikipedia entry for "Integrated Library System".


[edit] Success Stories

Tell us about your successes with your ILS, ILS migration, etc.

[edit] Tips for selecting an ILS

Tips for writing a Request For Proposal (RFP) for an ILS at the Southwest Michigan Library Cooperative (opens as a PDF)

Things to consider when selecting an ILS (culled from a list provided by Pat Williams at the Oklahoma Department of Libraries):

  • What's included and what's extra? (Modules, extra options, etc.)
  • Is there a start up fee? Migration costs? Training costs?
  • What kinds of reports are generated? Can you create your own?
  • What are the security considerations?
  • Will new software work with existing computers, peripherals, etc.?
  • What kind of training (in person, online,etc.) and support is offered?

[edit] ILS Options

The ILS market is made up of proprietary software from companies and open source products. Check out the Libsuccess page about open source software products.

Also, there are a vareity of resources available about OPACs.

[edit] Open source

Open source ILS products:






Vendors who offer support for open source products:

  • Equinox Software (Supports open source product Evergreen)
  • LibLime (Supports open source product Koha)

[edit] Proprietary

Companies that offer library system products in the U.S.:

Auto-Graphics, Inc.


Book Systems, Inc.


Cyber Tools for Libraries


Ex Libris

Follett Software Company

Innovative Interfaces

Library World

Mandarin Library Automation

Polaris Library Systems


The Library Corporation

[edit] Legacy

View a history of library automation at the Library Technology Guides website. See which systems have been bought out or retired.

[edit] Blogs/Websites to watch

  • Library Technology Guides: Key resources in the field of library automation Maintained by Marshall Breeding who, for the past six years, has written the annual Automated System Marketplace article for Library Journal.
  • ALA Techsource Search website for ILS

[edit] Specific Blogs Posts/Articles to Check Out

  • Investing in The Future: Automation Marketplace 2009 in Library Journal (April 2009)
  • Wikipedia entry titled "Integrated library system"
  • ILS Migration in the 21st century by Frank Cervone from Computers in Libraries, July/Aug 2007.