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    Make a Search Box using Primo Deep Links (

    • Product: Primo

    Desired Outcome Goal

    Make a Search Box using Primo Deep Links ( that can be embedded on a Library's main web page.
    Direct linking to Primo's function from outside sites (such as from a search box on a Library's main web page) is neither recommended nor supported. It can only be used from the Primo user interface.


    1. Copy and paste the HTML below into an *.html file on your desktop (or web server...)
    For example, save it to a file called searchbox.html .

    2. To test it, open the html file in your browser, or if on a web server, go to: http://{__web_server__}/{__path__}/searchbox.html

    3. HTML

    <meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=UTF-8">
    <!-- Script that converts the query string into valid parameter -->
    <script type="text/javascript">
    function searchPrimo() {
    document.getElementById("primoQuery").value = "any,contains," + document.getElementById("primoQueryTemp").value.replace(/[,]/g, " ");
    <form id="simple" name="searchForm" method="get" target="_self" action="http://<HOST_NAME>/primo_library/libweb/action/" enctype="application/x-www-form-urlencoded; charset=utf-8" onsubmit="searchPrimo()">
    <!-- Customizable Parameters -->
    <input type="hidden" name="institution" value="<INSTITUTION CODE>">
    <input type="hidden" name="vid" value="<VIEW CODE>">
    <input type="hidden" name="tab" value="<TAB CODE>">
    <input type="hidden" name="search_scope" value="<SCOPE NAME>">
    <input type="hidden" name="mode" value="Basic">
    <!-- Fixed parameters -->
    <input type="hidden" name="displayMode" value="full">
    <input type="hidden" name="bulkSize" value="<RECORDS PER PAGE, e.g. 10>">
    <input type="hidden" name="highlight" value="true">
    <input type="hidden" name="dum" value="true">
    <input type="hidden" name="query" id="primoQuery">
    <input type="hidden" name="displayField" value="all">
    <!-- Enable this if "Expand My Results" is enabled by default in Views Wizard -->
    <input type="hidden" name="pcAvailabiltyMode" value="true">
    <input type="text" id="primoQueryTemp" value="" size="35">
    <!-- Search Button -->
    <input id="go" title="Search" onclick="searchPrimo()" type="button" value="Search" alt="Search" style="height: 22px; font-size: 12px; font-weight: bold; background: #DE6E17; color: #ffffff; border: 1px solid;">

    This example creates a search box that uses a deep link to search your institution's catalog. For more details, see Brief Search Deep

      Primo TotalCare customers may submit a case to request the Back Office codes needed for the above example.

    New UI

    The New UI is setup pretty close to the Classic UI. However, the baseURL changes. See the documentation Creating a Search Box With Deep Links to the New UI, for full code and other changes to the Deep Link in the New UI.

    Additional Information

    • Direct linking to Primo's function from sites outside of Primo is neither recommended nor supported.
    • Values for form action, Institution, vid, search_scope, tab should be replaced (including the { } braces) with customer-specific values for these codes.
    • NOTE that the tab value MUST be in lowercase, even if the tab value in Primo is upper or mixed case.
    • Query parameter is often problematic because it requires 3 arguments that are separated by commas.
    • An HTML form does not handle this natively, which is why the extra javascript function (validateForm()) is needed.
    • ValidateForm function checks for empty searchterm and adds 'any,contains,' arguments to query parameter.
    • The template in this article only represents a simple working example. The HTML, form, javascript, and Deep Link parameters may be customized as needed, including adding or removing Deep Link parameters.
    • To make "expand beyond library collections" enabled, add this parameter to the form: <input type="hidden" name="pcAvailabiltyMode" value="true">
    • <input type="hidden" id="bulkSize" name="bulkSize" value="10"/> allows the library to set a different default number of results returned form the default defined in the Views Wizard.
    • Add this to the "Customizable Parameters" section (optional).
    • Additional functionality and parameters for Primo Deep Links are documented in Ex Libris Developer Network:


    • Article last edited: 3-Mar-2015
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