Alma and Summon FAQ

If your question is not addressed here, please send it to: AlmaRequest@library.rochester.edu

Alma

Who do I contact for help?

Why can’t this student/staff/faculty member login?

  • Students, Faculty, and Staff wishing to log in to check their accounts or request items must use their Active Directory account. While some University members have the same username for both Active Directory and NetID, that is not the case for everyone (and many may not use their AD account frequently).
  • University IT can further assist users to help them:
  • 1 – Sync both accounts to use the same password
  • 2 – See if they can make the username for both the same (not available for everyone)
  • Contact University IT here: (http://www.rochester.edu/its/idm/contact.html)
  • Additional suggestions have been made to University IT to help make this process smoother.

Why can’t this Alumni login?

  • Courtesy Borrowers and Alumni will have to set up a new password to log into their accounts; they are encouraged to contact the Sibley Circulation Desk for assistance.

Why do off-campus users still get prompted for NetIDs if Summon uses ActiveDirectory?

  • Our EZProxy authentication still uses NetID so users from off-campus who are accessing our electronic resources will still need to use that too. At some point in the future, we will likely switch this over to Active Directory, although this in itself will require significant support from University IT. It will become necessary, though, as the University moves away from NetIDs.
  • Summon was set up to prompt off-campus users to login through our proxy, as some vendors will not allow their records to show up in Summon unless you are on campus. A list of the content that requires authentication to be visible in search results can be found here

Why do I get an error logging into Alma?” (aka Staff Logins)

  • Occasionally, staff may get the following error when logging into the staff side of Alma:

  • This issue is due to a stale login session either with Alma or another University web service (like Box). Simply clicking the “Return to login page” will allow you into Alma; alternatively, closing your browser and starting a new session will also work.
  • Ex Libris has confirmed they deployed a patch that is supposed to reduce the likelihood we see this issue.

 

Why isn’t Spine-o-Matic working? (see also: “Why isn’t the Course Reserves Tab working?)

  •  There was an issue with Spine-o-Matic that would return a 500 error in the label window. This is due to the throttling Ex Libris does to the API calls used for each application.
  • These issues have been resolved for the time being. Any disruptions in either should be reported to AlmaRequest@library.rochester.edu

Why is the Alma Services Page so slow?

  •  The Alma Services Page (the page you see when you click on the title of a result in Summon and which contains bibliographic and holdings information) takes a long time, by internet standards, to load. Current load times are approximately 7-8 seconds, while most internet pages should take 2 seconds. Ex Libris has acknowledged this as an issue affecting Summon-over-Alma customers and is working to develop a solution.

Why are there no barcodes on the pick or hold slip?

  •  Printing in Alma requires an email address. Using Microsoft Outlook, we receive these emails, then write a rule to automatically print them. However, Microsoft Outlook has a security feature that blocks images from automatically downloading. The barcodes are sent as images, which Outlook may block by default.

How can I recommend an enhancement to Alma or Summon?

 If you report an issue to AlmaRequest and the response is “that’s how the system works”, you can suggest the issue as an enhancement to either Alma or Summon.

  • Go to this website https://ideas.exlibrisgroup.com/ and select either Alma or Summon.
  • Search for your issue to see if someone else has already suggested it or something similar.
  • If you find that someone else has already contributed it, click on the “Vote” button to add your support. You start out with 25 points that you can put toward your votes.
  • If you don’t find what you’re looking for, you can submit the idea yourself (this counts as at least one “vote”). Ex Libris reviews the submitted ideas with the most votes for possible enhancements.
  • FAQ for the IdeaExchange:

https://ideas.exlibrisgroup.com/knowledgebase/articles/690945-ex-libris-idea-exchange-faq

How will future Alma and Summon projects be prioritized?

  •  The Alma Core Team has begun compiling a list of post-implementation projects for Alma and Summon. The group will be proposing criteria for prioritizing projects and will submit them to the Strategic Leadership Team and Alma Oversight Team (including Dan Zager and Jennifer Raynor) for approval. The criteria are likely to take into account the scope, impact, complexity, and cost of each project. We are working on additional ways to communicate decisions and priorities around projects.

Why can’t we print receipts on a receipt printer instead of wasting a full sheet of paper?

  • The system doesn’t support this at the moment, but other libraries have attempted to develop work-arounds that would avoid using so much paper. At some point, we will look into whether we can implement one of their solutions.  In the meantime, we encourage everyone to recycle the printed notices.

Summon

Where did My Book Bag Go?

  •  My Book Bag was a feature of Voyager which does not exist in Summon. We are investigating other strategies for users to enable them to save their search results. 

Why doesn’t my TinyURL work?

  • We have noticed that while a TinyURL is created right away, there are occasions where it does not work immediately. Ex Libris is aware of the issue and investigating; however, the URL usually starts to work within an hour or so.

How do I facet to separate Books and Ebooks?

  •  There currently is not a facet that separates print books from ebooks.
  • One approach to limiting to physical books would be to leverage the “Library Location” facet and selecting a location such as “Sib Music Stacks” or “Rhees Stacks”.

Why isn’t the Course Reserves tab working?

  •  There was an issue with the “Course Reserves” tab in Summon, as well as a related issue with Spine-o-Matic. This was due to the throttling Ex Libris does to the API calls used for each application.
  • These issues have been resolved for the time being. Any disruptions in either should be reported to AlmaRequest.

Why are there multiple full-text links under one record?

  •  Summon attempts to match and merge records that are a close match into one result. More information is posted here

Why aren’t my changes in Alma showing up in Summon right away?

  • Certain changes in Alma will not be immediately reflected in Summon and could take up to 8 days to be reflected.
    The schedule and more information is posted here

 

How can I recommend an enhancement to Alma or Summon?

 If you report an issue to AlmaRequest and the response is “that’s how the system works”, you can suggest the issue as an enhancement to either Alma or Summon.

  •  Go to this website https://ideas.exlibrisgroup.com/ and select either Alma or Summon.
  • Search for your issue to see if someone else has already suggested it or something similar.
  • If you find that someone else has already contributed it, click on the “Vote” button to add your support. You start out with 25 points that you can put toward your votes.
  • If you don’t find what you’re looking for, you can submit the idea yourself (this counts as at least one “vote”). Ex Libris reviews the submitted ideas with the most votes for possible enhancements.
  • FAQ for the IdeaExchange:

https://ideas.exlibrisgroup.com/knowledgebase/articles/690945-ex-libris-idea-exchange-faq

How will future Alma and Summon projects be prioritized?

  •  The Alma Core Team has begun compiling a list of post-implementation projects for Alma and Summon. The group will be proposing criteria for prioritizing projects and will submit them to the Strategic Leadership Team and Alma Oversight Team (including Dan Zager and Jennifer Raynor) for approval. The criteria are likely to take into account the scope, impact, complexity, and cost of each project. We are working on additional ways to communicate decisions and priorities around projects.