MARC Records

MARC records (bibliographic records provided in standardized form) are vital for the integration of books in libraries. desLibris provides MARC records for every book or document available in the main Book and Documents collections. These records contain the urls/hyperlinks needed to link the record to the book or document in the library collection.

MARC Record Management

The system provides library administrators with the tools needed to download these records in sets corresponding to their holdings. The MARC module the Library Dashboard Library members of desLibris have access to a MARC order module which allows administrators to select or customize sets of records for loading to OPACs or library catalogues. This helps libraries filter or direct users to only those records which conform to the library’s subject field or audience.


There are two ways of ordering MARC sets for desLibris accounts: Standing Collections and Custom Orders.

Standing Collections

Frequently-used collections are supplied on the Standing Collections page as sets.

You may use these links to obtain complete sets of MARC records corresponding to the main collections in desLibris. These sets are built and updated on a regular monthly basis. For convenience, the current complete set and previous months' updates are included..

To download any set, click on the hyperlink. Each zip file contains the MARC records (in a .mrc file) as well as a .list (in a .txt file) of the 001 of the titles included in the set.

While this is a convenient means of acquiring a set of records, the best way to insure that you have a complete and continually updated set of records is to set up a Custom Order with automatic updates as described below.

Setting up Custom MARC Orders

On the MARC Records Management panel in the LIbrary Dashboard are the tools for creating custom MARC sets and setting up regular deliveries of new records. This panel might be described as the control centre for MARC ordering.


1  Click here to create a new search/order

2  Name the search/order

3  Click to activate automate delivery when new records meeting the search criteria are added.

4  Frequency of delivery

5. Click to see delivery history

6. Click to view titles covered by order

7. Click to generate an order. (This will work even if automated deliveries are scheduled.)

8. Click to revise the selection criteria used for the order

9. Click to delete the order




When "Add a new search" is clicked, the window below appears.


1 - Create a search to include desired titles. Search may range from "All Publications" to specific subjects.

2 - Name the search.

3 - Set email address to which the records will be sent.

4. To set up regular deliveries, check "Activate automatic MARC delivery."



SAVE will add this search set to the MARC Records Management panel,  and will activate the first delivery of records to your email address.

To get a "starter" set of MARC records, you can use the Standing Collections page. But auto-delivery is a more effective way of keeping abreast of new records as they appear.

Every desLibris Account has access to CELARC, the MARC archive. Here all records in the system are available for query or review.

CELArc is open to the public for search of all books and documents in desLibris. It also provides several MARC support functions for institutions subscribing to the service. Using CELArc, subscribers may export and download records customized for their institutional OPACs. And they may report errors and request corrections from SLC, the MARC supplier for CEL.

This option is available to Library Administrators only on the More Details panel.

It provides an easy way to acquire a single MARC record for any title.

Most library books are discovered through the library catalogue, or OPAC. Thus a key feature of desLibris is its integration with the OPAC through the MARC records we provide.

Any desLibris subscriber may order or obtain MARC records. For subscription or growing collections, new records are delivered monthly throughout the life of the subscription.

The key element in the record is the 856 field, which contains a link to the book url. This allows direct access from OPAC to online books.

MARC Standards and Policies

desLibris MARC records all have English access points (including title GMD), subject headings, and genre heading. Records for titles in English have English notes. Records for titles in French have French notes, French subject headings added, and French genre term added. French access points (where different from the English) are in 9XX so that a Francophone library may flip them. If you receive a record for a French item with English notes or collation, please report to so that it can be corrected.

The 856 field, the url/link, is currently provided only in English. Francophone libraries may want to create a script to translate the $z phrase "An electronic book accessible through the World Wide Web; click to view."

MeSH and NLMC: Medical subject headings and National Library of Medicine (NLM) call numbers are provided to records for medical materials.

The MARC Processing Routine

All materials are catalogued as electronic publications, without the earlier 533 describing the item as a reproduction. The 260 imprint is enhanced to describe the source of the electronic version:

It is recommended that the Delete file be run before the Addition file each month.

MARC record replacement

From time to time for various reasons MARC records for previously released titles are revised and reissued. When this happens, the replacement records are deposited in the CELArc database, overwriting the previous versions. This means that new customers will receive revised & reissued records, but previous deliveries may need to be replaced.

This monthly review is not a routine matter. It will happen only in exceptional cases, and desLibris customers will be notified when there is any requirement to re-download and replace monthly batches.

Sample records

MARC records from desLibris can be viewed online in the CELArc site

Username: guest
Password: guest

Sample records in .mrc format may be downloaded on the Standing Collections page.