ISO ILL interoperability with LADD

The ISO InterLibrary Loan Protocol (ISO ILL)* is the international standard for interlibrary loan. It allows libraries to conduct ILL with other ISO ILL compliant systems as seamlessly as if both libraries were using the same system.

LADD can interoperate with other ISO ILL systems (e.g. OCLC’s 'VDX system' or Relais International’s Relais system or Ex Libris' Aleph system) and allows ILL transactions to be sent from one ILL system to another via the LADD Gateway.

To continue to support the development and interoperability of new systems coming into the ILL marketplace, Libraries Australia established a set of ISO ILL Minimum Standards for Vendor-to-Vendor Testing. Intended to guide interoperability testing between systems and provide a framework that will ensure new systems are able to respond to the current ILL environment, the minimum standards include ISO ILL messages required for a full cycle of a copy and a loan request.

ISO sites that currently interoperate with LADD include New Zealand’s Te Puna libraries and the commercial supplier Infotrieve. See our ISO sites page for the full list of ISO ILL sites that interoperate with LADD.

* The protocol is described and defined in 2 standards: ISO 10160 - Interlibrary Loan Application Service Definition and ISO 10161 - Interlibrary Loan Application Protocol Specification.


ISO ILL Interoperability dramatically reduces work for ILL staff because internal requesting (e.g. between campuses) and all other ILL transactions can work on a single system.

All ILL transactions will be logged in LADD and libraries using ISO ILL compliant systems can take advantage of our LADD Payments Service and reports.

Example of an ISO site requesting from another ISO site via the LADD Gateway

Flinders University LADD La Trobe University
ILL staff at Flinders University create a request on their own ILL system (VDX) to La Trobe University. Request is sent via the LADD Gateway to La Trobe University LADD Payments Service will debit Flinders University and credit La Trobe University.
La Trobe University use their ILL system(VDX) to ship the item to Flinders University.

How to begin Interoperating with LADD using your own ISO ILL system

To begin using an ISO ILL system with LADD you need to purchase an ISO ILL compliant system that is able to interact with LADD.

Once you have installed and learned to use your ISO ILL system you MUST meet the following conditions before your ISO ILL system can interoperate with LADD:

  • Have your software supplier confirm completion of vendor to vendor testing.
  • Be a member of Libraries Australia Document Delivery.
  • Test interoperability with LADD in our test environment (as outlined below).
  • Sign a Memorandum of Understanding on ISO ILL Interoperability with LADD.

ISO ILL Interoperability Testing

Please submit a 'Request to begin ISO ILL Interoperability testing' form available from our contact page.

  • Members wishing to test ISO ILL interoperability with LADD must meet criteria above.
  • All testing of ISO interconnection will be conducted using the LADD test system and not the production system.
  • The LADD Administration staff will establish an ISO location within the test system and will supply an account on the test system to test transmission to/from LADD. Details of the test system including ISO ILL IP/email addresses will be supplied.
  • It is the shared responsibility of Libraries Australia and the ISO ILL System Administrator to ensure that ISO interconnection from their system to LADD and vice-versa is fully tested and is functioning correctly.
  • Before establishing the external system as a Location in the production system LADD Administration staff will verify the ISO ILL System Administrator's test results. The ISO ILL System Administrator will be required to supply copies of appropriately documented test results. The System Administrator will also be required to exchange a number of ILL requests with a designated LADD account and vice-versa to confirm ISO ILL connectivity and messaging.
  • Subject to successful completion of the above tests LADD Administration staff will establish an agreed ISO location in the LADD production system.
  • The National Library will attempt to meet all reasonable requests for access to the LADD test system for the purposes of interoperability testing but cannot guarantee the availability of systems or staff to support testing. The National Library reserves the right to reschedule or postpone testing in accordance with its business requirements.

Testing the LADD Payments Service:

  • Testing of access to the LADD Payments Service will be dependent on the prior successful completion of the testing of ISO interoperability between the ISO ILL system and LADD.
  • All testing of access to the Payments Service will be conducted using the LADD test system.
  • Libraries Australia will establish a test payments service account in the LADD test system on request.

ISO ILL Interoperability Memorandum Of Understanding

In recent years the ISO ILL environment in Australia has become more complex, as an increasing number of libraries choose to use their own interlibrary loan systems to interoperate with LADD. It is important to ensure that requesting between ISO compliant interlibrary loan systems runs smoothly, that there is a suitable environment for interoperability, and that appropriate actions are taken to minimise any system problems that may occur.

Libraries Australia has drawn up a Memorandum of Understanding, with the objective of:

(a) setting out the relationship between ISO ILL partner libraries and LADD and our responsibilities when interoperating with each other using the ISO ILL protocol; and

(b) clarifying the actions that ISO ILL partner libraries and LADD should each be taking.

All libraries interoperating with LADD via the ISO ILL protocol are asked to sign this Memorandum as an adjunct to their existing Libraries Australia User Agreement.

For further information, please contact the Help Desk.

ISO ILL Thesaurus

There are current 3 systems which interoperate with LADD: VDX, Relais and Aleph, each of which uses different names for different fields. Below is a list of the different field names for each of these 3 systems. (Note: the information below is specific to the LADD Gateway environment).

OCLC: VDX (Virtual Document eXchange)

Relais International: Relais

Ex Libris: Aleph (Integrated ILL)

Supplier Record

Partner = a location the Aleph can supply to

Potential Supplier = a Partner to whom Aleph can also request from

Note: all Potential Suppliers are Partners but not all Partners are necessarily Potential Suppliers.

Naming Authority
Registration Source
no such field in Aleph.
Supplier Code
Institution Symbol (includes Naming Authority e.g. NLA:ACT or NLNZ:ACT)
Long Description
Supplier Name
Partner Name
Suspension i.e. Will be Skipped When Rota Moves on (VDX 3.2.1) or Suspended No Requesting (VDX 4.1.2)
Supplier (can be Active or Inactive)
Status (can be Foreign, Domestic, Active, Inactive)
ILL No (VDX 3.2.1) / Our Number (VDX 4.1.2)
Request Number
Borrowing Request Number
TGQ (VDX 3.2.1) / Their Number (VDX 4.1.2)
External Number
Lending Request Number

Service Levels

LADD uses the Australian Service Levels which are mapped toIPIG (ILL Protocol Implementors Group) Service Levels as follows:

Australian Service Level

Australian Service Level Code

IPIG Service Level

IPIG Service Level Code


Normal (Local Search)

Rush (Local Search)
Express (Local Search)

Known Issues & Workarounds for Requests from ISO Locations

A request cannot be found from an ISO location

Occasionally requests from ISO locations can enter an error in process status. To find these requests, we recommend that you run the report Responder (In Process) Status or Error Report. Also try searching for requests with the Last Action Status or Error Report.