Related product Link Resolver (SFX)

SFX Navigation

Reporting Errors in the SFX Knowledgebase

The ability of the SFX system to link to the information a user wants is only as good as the information that SFX contains within its knowledge base.  Inaccurate information in that knowledge base will mean frustrated users and frustrated librarians. Ex Libris is constantly updating the information needed to link to resources. Ex Libris depends on the various electronic resources’ vendors to provide them with accurate lists of titles and especially issns. Ex Libris has also made a valiant attempt at gathering information from the vast and ever expanding number of free journals available worldwide. However, the incredible amount of information now available and how quickly that information changes makes this task of providing the SFX system with up to date and accurate information nearly Sisyphean. Ex Libris recognizes that it cannot possibly do this by itself and therefore has included within the SFX Admin site a way to report errors. Librarians are in fact ideally placed to report errors and inaccuracies for journals and other resources. Librarians use electronic resources on a daily basis and therefore know almost immediately when a vendor has changed its content and url or when a specific free resource is not actually free. Librarians are also knowledgeable about the metadata behind resources such as issns and the nuances of title changes. By providing methods to report errors by users of the system, Ex Libris is essentially crowd sourcing the upkeep of the SFX knowledge base in a way similar to how Wikipedia maintains the accuracy of its information. Local administrators can help this process by encouraging reference librarians to report errors and to have them encourage users to click the “Did a link fail?” option on the SFX results screen if they are having issues accessing full text. The resulting feedback form sent to the administrator is invaluable for reporting errors to Ex Libris.

Two Methods of Reporting Errors

Method 1

There are two ways to report errors to Ex Libris. The first method is to use the link available on the Home screen of the SFX admin page. Under the “Troubleshooting” heading on the far right of the page is a link titled “Knowledgebase Requests”. Here is screenshot of where the link is on the admin page:


Clicking the link results in the following screen:


There are six required fields:

  • Contact name – Usually the institution name and the only choice
  • Importance – Four choices from a drop down menu: System Down, High, Normal, Low. Default choice is Normal.
  • Subject – A short description is best such as “Wrong ISSN” which happens frequently, especially if the EISSN is confused with the print ISSN
  • Target – A drop down menu of all targets available to the system
  • CRM Category – A drop down menu of the four levels of the SFX system: Object, Object Portfolio, Target, Source.
  • CRM SubCategory – Each level has a drop down menu of what broadly needs to be corrected. For example, the Object level gives you the choice of Update, Add, Delete

It is very important that the reporter of the error be very accurate as to what needs to be done. Therefore care should be taken when choosing the CRM category and subcategory. If you are unsure, please contact CARLI for assistance. Finally, there is a description field that is not required but should be filled out in as a detailed manner as possible.

After you submit the report, you will see a screen that thanks you for submitting the report and also gives an incident number. Here is a screenshot of that page:


The form also generates an automatic email to the administrator which recapitulates the form. It looks like this:

********************************************************Please do not reply to this automatic message. If you need to contact us, please do so via our support web site:

or directly to your Ex Libris representative office.

Thank you, Jane, for using our self-service support site.
Incident #:16384-224433 is New

Category: Object (SFX KB)
Subject: Add (Object)

Support Incident Name:

Support Incident details:
There is an issn change for this title. SFX has the current issn as 0893-8202 and an eissn of 1940-1345. The issn 0893-8202 is for the previous title which changed in 2004. 1940-1345 is not an eissn but is the print issn for the newest edition. Could you please add a new object for the issn 1940-1345? The link from our a-z list goes to the old title and not the new one and makes it appear as if we did not own the current issues.

OBJECT ID : 954921408294
ISSN  : 0893-8202
TITLE : National Underwriter. Life & Health

TARGET_ID : 110986400596329

SERVICE ID : 110986400596330
SERVICE NAME : getHolding
SERVICE PARSE PARAM : url= & use_isbn_OR=Y
SERVICE THRESHOLD : ($obj->need('ISSN') || $obj->need('journalTitle') || $obj->need('@abbrevTitle'))

 [ <Jane > ]

Please do not reply to this automatic message.
If you need to contact us, please do so via our support web site:
 or directly to your Ex Libris representative office.

Ex Libris Customer Support Team

This same form is also sent to CARLI. That is why a detailed explanation is really important. CARLI will also review the issue and correct it if it can be done at the CARLI level. When Ex Libris corrects the information, the administrator will be sent an email resembling the following:

Please do not reply to this automatic message. If you need to contact us, please do so via our support web site:
or directly to your Ex Libris representative office.

Dear Jane,

Please find below Ex Libris' answer to your Support Incident specified in the subject line.
The answer has been added to the Incident with the status of Closing.
The information is enclosed for your convenience (full details can be found in our system).

Incident name: LOCAL_CATALOG_EXLIBRIS_VOYAGER                 Status: Closing

Dear Jane,
Thank you for contacting the SFX Knowledgebase team and for providing us this information.
We split the two objects as recommended.
The update will take place in the 5th revision of November for SFX 4 customers, and for SFX 3 customers in the January revision.

Best Regards,
SFX Knowledgebase Analyst
Please do not reply to this automatic message.
In case you need to reopen this Incident, please click on the 'add activity' link, and add the new information.
Please note that if no response is received within the next 10 days, the Incident will be automatically closed.

Ex Libris Customer Support Team

Method 2

The second method for reporting errors is done by clicking the “Send to Ex Libris” link from the Edit Portfolio and New Portfolio dialog boxes. The “Send to Ex Libris” link is found immediately below the “Internal description” field at the bottom of the Edit Portfolio Screen. Here is a screenshot of where its location is:


Once you click the link, you are presented a screen resembling the following:


The screen is the same as when done from the Admin page except that SFX automatically populates the form with specific information derived from the SFX Knowledge Base and directly related to the resource that has an error. The form will also have the Subject field also automatically filled with the Target name. The reporter can change the subject to something more specific. The reporter will also need to choose a CRM Category and SubCategory. Finally, there is a Description field that though not required should be filled out in as much detail as possible. Once submit is clicked, the reporter will receive the confirmation screen and the confirmation email as with the form submitted from the admin page. This method is potentially an easier and more effective way to do an error report as it can be done immediately while the administrator is evaluating the issue at the local level and because SFX automatically provides the Knowledge base information that is crucial to enabling both Ex Libris and CARLI to correct the record.