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Ex Libris Knowledge Center

Alma May 2018 Release Notes

This Alma release provides numerous new features and enhancements. Some of these enhancements are a result of Idea Exchange or NERS initiatives.
PDF.png Download a PDF of the Release Notes – Note that the PDF includes the online help pages that describe the core functionality of the new features.

Make the Most of This Release

Action Items
Reply-to in Vendor Communications – Does your institution use a specific dedicated email address for communicating with vendors?  if so, you will be pleased to know that it is now possible to configure a library level reply-to address for purchase orders and vendor communications. This email address is used as the From address when sending a PO line.
Moving Portfolios – This new feature facilitates collection management, enabling you to ensure that each of your collections contains the correct portfolios. 
Normalization for Z39.50 and SRU Records – Are you providing an SRU or a Z39.50 service for other systems or integrations?  Now you can use Alma’s normalization routines to refine and format the record output in order to better serve external systems and your own record policies.
Community Zone Authority Record Copy Cataloging – For institutions that maintain local authorities, this new capability improves the workflow for copy cataloging authorities and facilitates the creation of records when starting with a Community Zone search. 
MD Import Creation of Holdings Without Items – This new feature provides better support for the creation of holdings using the MD import process. It is especially useful for repository metadata imports where item creation is not required.
Holdings Configuration in the Get It Tab – The holdings information that is displayed in the Primo Get It tab is now fully configurable. You can determine which holdings fields are displayed, the order in which they are displayed, and how they are labeled. You can even make use of separate CSS customizations for each field, to further fine-tune the fields' display in the Get It tab. 
Local Parameter Fields in Reports – You can now report not only on bibliographic local fields but also on holdings record local fields—10 local bibliographic fields and 10 local holdings record fields. In addition to the many other Alma Analytics fields, these new fields enable you to gain in-depth insight into your catalog.
Reports for Bibliographic Records with No Inventory and Holdings Records with No Items – This new feature enables you to retrieve and display bibliographic records with no inventory and holdings records with no items in Alma Analytics reports. This is possible in both the Titles and Physical Items subject areas. 
Select List Size – This feature enables you to control the amount of information to view per page on certain Alma pages. This flexibility will be extended to additional pages in future releases. 
Search Main Menu Navigation Bar – Using this new search functionality, you can quickly and easily find any action you're looking for in the main Alma menu.

What's New

The following sections present the new and changed features in this release of Alma.


  • Trial Enhancements – The Alma Trials workflow was enhanced with a number of new features, such as a new link to the survey form, an option for multi-choice and single-choice multiple choice questions, an option to load participants from a set, and more.
  • Purchase Request Enhancements – The Alma Purchase Request workflow was enhanced with a number of new features, such as the task list showing only purchase requests that require your attention, new purchase request roles, the ability for patrons to cancel their own requests in Primo, and more.
  • Reply-to in Vendor Communications – It is now possible to configure a reply-to address for purchase orders and vendor communications.
  • Additional Acquisitions Enhancements

Resource Management

  • NERS.png NERS Enhancement (ID #3792) and idea_exchange.png Idea Exchange: Moving Portfolios – Local portfolios and portfolios activated from the Community Zone can be moved from their current electronic collection to another electronic collection one by one or using a set of portfolios.
  • idea_exchange.png Idea Exchange: Normalization for Z39.50 and SRU Records – Bibliographic records in Alma that are retrieved using Z39.50 or SRU can be normalized prior to being presented via these protocols.
  • idea_exchange.png Idea Exchange: Physical Item Condition Field – The physical condition of an item can now be specified using the Alma Physical Item Editor.
  • CNMARC Record Format Enhancements – This includes several enhancements for working with CNMARC records such as the 193 fixed length field, new resource types, and new supported classification headings.
  • ISO 20775 Holdings SRU Schema – Alma's support of ISO 20775 holdings SRU schema continues to be expanded with the ability to calculate the availability of electronic and digital resources and filter by campus with the SRU query.
  • Fixed Fields Supported in Extension Packs – In addition to data fields, extension packs can now include fixed fields.
  • Community Zone Authority Record Copy Cataloging – New options to specify vocabulary code and originating system are available when you use one of the copy options Copy or Copy to network (in a Network Zone) for an authority record from the Record View page.
  • Regional Change: Preserving Local Subfields When Linking to Authority Records by ID – In the BARE environment, when preferred-term correction occurs from utilizing F3 in the MD Editor or when executing the Authorities - Preferred Term Correction job, local subfields will continue to be maintained when the authority controlled field is updated by linking to an authority record and preferred-term correction occurs.
  • Shortcut Keys for Alternate Graphic Representations – Shortcut keys are now available for alternate graphic representation options in the MD Editor.
  • Multilingual Handling of Multiple Preferred Terms with the Same Language – When you are doing preferred-term correction from the MD Editor using F3 in an authority controlled field of a bibliographic record and you select a non-preferred term, the system checks for a preferred term to which to link. If it finds multiple preferred terms with the same language, the system prompts you to select which preferred term to use.
  • General Publishing Profile Enhancements – This includes several enhancements for working with general publishing profiles such as a dynamic file naming convention for the FTP protocol option, configurable Created by and Updated by fields, a new Suppress from publishing field/subfield for holdings, and so forth.
  • General Electronic Service Enhanced for Newspaper Collections – The general electronic service's linking capability was enhanced with availability rules for displaying newspaper electronic collections (with no portfolios) through the Alma link resolver.
  • Specific Items Display for Related Records – For related records that are cataloged using the 773 field with specific item information in $g, the system now displays in repository search results only the specific items identified.
  • Additional Resource Management Enhancements

Digital Resource Management


  • NERS.png NERS Enhancement (Request ID #4629) and idea_exchange.png Idea Exchange: New Re-loan Limit – You can now configure a re-loan limit, preventing patrons from re-loaning items that they have just returned. 
  • Holdings Configuration in the Get It Tab – Alma now offers expanded holdings information and customization options in the Primo Get It tab, such as enabling you to configure which of the holdings records' fields and subfields appear. 
  • Additional Fulfillment Enhancements

Resource Sharing

Course Reserves


Administration and Infrastructure

Alma-Summon Integration

The following improvements were made to Alma-Summon:

  • When no URL is defined for the logo, the system now redirects users to the view's logout URL.


  • The following APIs were added for handling reminders: add, edit, delete, retrieval of a list of reminders for a specific bibliographic record, and retrieval of reminder details. For detailed information on these APIs, see
  • PUT and POST APIs were added for standalone portfolios. For detailed information, see
  • The Request options APIs now include the following:
    • For general electronic services: service code, service name, service public name, service ordering information, URL to the service, whether the service is available for physical and/or electronic resources
    • The partner defined as a service with the following information: partner code, partner name, URL (the fully constructed URL)
  • The GET BIB API can now include the number of requests on the bibliographic record.

Known Issues

There are no known issues for the May release.

Next Release Sneak Preview

View a list of the features that are planned for the June 2018 release.
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