New options for downloading OCLC records from 17 November

In late August, Libraries Australia put in a change to the Z-Gateway, to improve the importing of non-Roman scripts from OCLC WorldCat. As part of this change, the record character set returned from OCLC via the Z-Gateway was in Unicode format, whereas previously it had been in MARC-8.

Shortly after implementing this change, we became aware that several Libraries Australia members were running systems in which Unicode diacritics do not display correctly. To resolve this, we will re-implement a MARC-8 port on the existing OCLC WorldCat settings, and provide access to Unicode records through a separate port. This change will come into effect on Wednesday morning.

We anticipate that the OCLC WorldCat port will be unavailable between 8am and 11am on Wednesday 17 November 2010, while this change is implemented. You may need to change your settings after this time to successfully download records.

We will send a message to the list when the change is completed.

If your library has experienced problems with the display of diacritics in OCLC WorldCat records downloaded to your system via the Libraries Australia Z-Gateway, the reversion to MARC-8 records should remedy this. If you wish to keep downloading Unicode records, which offer a wider range of correctly displaying scripts, you will need to change your port settings.

It's important to note that the connection to the Libraries Australia bibliographic database via the Z-Gateway can still be in either Unicode or MARC-8. The connection to OCLC WorldCat through the Z-Gateway is a separate connection. This is the only setting that is changing, the rest remain the same.

What do I need to do?

If you wish to download MARC-8 records from OCLC WorldCat:

  • If you have not changed your Z39.50 settings in the last 3 months you do not need to do anything. Your connection should continue to work as it did before early August.
  • If you have changed your OCLC Z39.50 settings in order to ensure the Unicode is displaying correctly, then you will need to adjust your settings again. The existing settings will not produce correct results. You can do this by changing the record character set setting in your local Z39.50 software (which may be your ILMS) from Unicode to MARC-8. The rest of your settings should remain the same. If you need help with this, please contact the Help Desk.

If you wish to download Unicode records from OCLC WorldCat:

  • You will need to change your settings for OCLC to the new port that has been established, in accordance with the link above. The Help Desk can assist you with this if necessary.

If you do not know which records you want from OCLC WorldCat:

  • If you have not changed or noticed any differences since early August, you can leave your settings as they are now and the service should continue to work. As always, please call the Help Desk for any assistance.


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