Soprano Blog

Archive for November, 2017

Soprano release preview 23-Nov-17 supplement

This post supplements the release notice of 23rd November to tell you about more features that are included in the version of Soprano that is currently available in preview.

Deferred reservation. The Reserve a Work page now includes the option to set an Effective date (the date on which the reservation will become Active). An ‘Effective’ off/on toggle at the top of the Reserve a Work page allows you to switch on the option and set a deferred effective date. This requires a recent LDS version – if you do not see it, please request an LDS upgrade.

Reservation rules. With this release Soprano uses newer web services in the LDS, which use your configured Circulation > Reservation rules rather than OPAC > Borrower Reservations.

Order Summary changes. The Order Summary now includes Order Method and Price per Copy, and no longer shows Priority. When the priority is one of the two highest then it is displayed in a label at the top of the header.

The Release Procedure described in the release notice of 23rd November continues to apply, giving details of how to access the preview and when the new version will be released to the live service.

Soprano release preview 23rd November 2017

We’re pleased to announce that the next release of Soprano is now available for preview.

This release includes:

  • Circulation
    • Scheduled down time
    • Item Sets developments
    • Borrower number update validation
    • Circulation fixes
  •  Purchasing
    • Editing an Order
  • General
    • General fixes



Scheduled down time

Sometimes a library needs to operate in offline mode when extended work is being done on the local database, typically during the data migration phase for a library implementing Soprano as a new system.

Each instance (i.e. tenancy) of Soprano now has a switch to make it operate in offline mode. When this switch is on, if you have connectivity to your local database, you can sign in as normal and then Soprano will offer you the offline options. The 48 hour limit on the offline application does not apply when this switch is on.


Item Sets developments

This release includes a number of developments for the management of item sets, which can be used for managing schools project boxes.

In Create Work you can now add intended audience information expressed as minimum and maximum age and National Curriculum Key Stage. These are stored in the created MARC record in instances of field 521. These are chiefly to support project boxes for schools.

The information displayed under the Contents tab on the Item for the set is now more relevant to the item set context. For each content item the following elements are displayed: a cover image and bibliographic description together with the item number, any age range and key stage information from the item’s work record, the shelfmark of the item, and a button to remove the item from the set.

When you return a set content item and press the Confirm button to acknowledge that it will also return the set item, Soprano no longer returns all of the set items. Now, any other items in the set remain on loan. The return transaction row gives a button enabling navigation to the set item.

On the set item a red state label alerts you that some items are on loan and those items are highlighted in the Contents list.

The new Remove from Set button allows you to remove content items:

  • when the set is not on loan, for example items remaining on loan, so that you can issue the set again
  • when the set is on loan, for example to exclude items from return when you return the set.

A confirmation of removal is displayed at the top of the set item page.

The removed item is also automatically given a message stating the name of the set of which it was formerly a member. When you visit that item’s page, the header shows that message and a concomitant button enabling you to add the item back to the set, which you might do when it is returned from loan.

You can no longer add an item to a set when the set is on loan – the Add Item To Set box is suppressed.


Borrower number update validation

Your local barcode validation rules are now applied when you change a borrower’s library ID number. If you enter the new number in an invalid format Soprano displays an alert disallowing the change.

After a successful update to a borrower’s number you can access the borrower record using either new or old number – searching by former borrower number was introduced in the last release.


Circulation fixes

Borrower Contact form close buttons. The tick and cross controls to save or cancel changes in the Borrower Contacts form are now displayed together as buttons, making it easier to see them and to tap on a touch-screen device.

Opening notification documents. We’ve fixed a problem where some borrower notification documents could not be opened to be viewed in full. This is under Borrower > Notifications where you have selected an item from the list to view the details and a content preview: the Open Full Document button now works in cases where it wasn’t working previously, to display the full formatted document.

Query Type Missing in Process Unfound. Process Unfound was introduced in the last release, allowing you to mark as missing items that were not found at the end of the pick and supply workflow – a button allows you to add a Query with Type Missing. The Query Type code that is assigned is now the standard code for the Missing type (‘MISS’) by default, and it can be changed, if required, as a configuration setting in your Soprano tenancy.

IE9 Issue Item borrower look-up. This fixes a problem in Internet Explorer version 9 when looking up a borrower in Issue Item after a failed borrower look-up.



Editing an Order

It is now possible to edit Price, Currency, Official Order Number and Item Details on a non-EDI order that is at Order Pending status (state Waiting to be processed). There is also an Add New Order Item button for adding extra copies.

The item(s) on a non-EDI order that has been sent can be edited but not any other information.



General fixes

Treating a work as a serial. Soprano no longer gives serial display treatment to some non-serials, such as monographs where the format is only the general ‘Electronic resource’.

Adding an Item Note. When you add or change an Item Note your new note displays as soon as you save the form.


Release Procedure

 To preview this release

You can preview this release by inserting ‘-demo’ into your tenancy URL after the word ‘soprano’:{your tenancy name}. Please remember that it accesses your live data.

Release to the live service

This version of Soprano will be released to the live service on Thursday 30th November 2017.

Comments and contact

If you have any comments, questions or suggestions please get in touch. You can comment here on the blog, in the Soprano Forum, or contact your Account Manager. To suggest and discuss additional features there is the Soprano Ideas Forum.


Soprano release 13th November 2017

We’re pleased to announce that the version of Soprano that has been in preview recently has been released to the live service this morning.

Details of the inclusions are given in the release notice on the Soprano blog.

If you have any comments, questions or suggestions please get in touch. You can comment here on the Soprano blog, on the Soprano forum and Soprano Ideas or contact your Account Manager or the Soprano team directly.

Soprano release preview 3rd November 2017

We’re pleased to announce that the next release of Soprano is now available for preview.

This release includes:

  • Purchasing
    • Navigation
    • Invoice changes
    • Reservation alerts
    • Item Type on Order Items
    • Donations
    • Undo Receipt
    • Split subscription between multiple funds
    • Adjust Allocation
    • Purchasing fixes
  • General
    • Re-styled footer: release notes, LDS version & report an incident
    • General fixes
  • Circulation
    • Pick and Supply workflow
    • Borrower look-up in Issue and Reserve
    • Barcode validation in Create Borrower
    • Guarantor barcode check in Create Borrower
    • Borrower former barcode numbers
    • Borrower Interests and Analyses suppressed when no list of values
    • Renewals and renewing on Borrower Loans
    • Display the value of an Item
    • Circulation fixes



If you move out of Purchasing to another area of Soprano, when you go back to Purchasing you will be taken to the sub-menu option you were previously in rather than to Orders by default.


Invoice changes

When you create an invoice there are additional fields for Net Amount (i.e. the amount payable minus tax) and VAT, which must be completed.

The amounts entered display in the totals section on the invoice page.

When you click the Add Invoice Line button, which requires Local Data Services (LDS) version 2.8.5 or higher, you see a reduced number of fields.

Data must be entered into each of the fields. Your Price should include discount, if any, and VAT should be entered as an amount or 0.00. There is an Add Invoice Charge button for adding charges. Net Amount is the invoice line total without tax and Amount Payable the total including any tax.

Please note: invoice lines for part orders (i.e. where the number of items invoiced is less than the number of items on the order) can be entered but they will produce an error when you try to pay the invoice.

When an invoice line displays, calculated values are in italics and a hyphen indicates that a value is not present in the database or cannot be calculated.

Soprano now warns you if there are cancelled or unreceipted items linked to an invoice.  When you display an existing invoice or add lines to a new invoice you will see the message ‘Checking invoice …’ next to the invoice totals, then an information box showing the results of the check.


Reservation alerts

You can now see if there are active or not yet effective reservations against the title on an order.

Clicking the button takes you to the Reservations tab for the work.

If the environment variable TAL_RES_ADD_ITEMS is set to YES, an item will be linked to existing reservations if appropriate when it is receipted. Please note that this is regardless of the status that the item is receipted to. If you receipt an item in Orders you can click the Item is reserved link to move to the Item page.

If the item is at Received status you will need to change its status to In Stock/Loanable to see the Process Reservation button.


Item Type on Order Items

There is a new Type column on the list of items on an order.

The column will be populated when you have LDS version 2.8.5 or higher.



When you add a new item there is now the option to record it as a donation.

This adds the message ‘Created as a donation’ to the item.


Undo Receipt

You can now unreceipt items at statuses other than Receipted provided they are not on loan or in transit and you are enabled to receipt items.  The Undo Receipt button displays on the Order and Item pages and when an item is receipted in Receipt Items.


Split subscription between multiple funds

You can now split the cost of an Open Order subscription between two or more funds.


Adjust Allocation

The Add Money and Transfer Money buttons on the fund page have been replaced by a single Adjust Allocation button

Clicking this brings up a new look Transfer page with the current fund in the Destination Fund field and a button for switching to the Add page.


Purchasing fixes

Display of funds on an order. Funds now display correctly when there are several copies on an order, each linked to a different fund the linked to different funds. Previously all the funds appeared against each copy with varying percentages.

Serials displaying as monographs. Some electronic resources previously displayed as monographs rather than serials with the result that the Orders tab displayed rather than Open Orders and the Add Item and Order Copies buttons appeared. These resources now display correctly.

Edit Order Supplier permission. The pencil control no longer displays on the Supplier page if you don’t have permission to edit a supplier.

Find a work to order. If you paste a standard identifier into the Search field, you no longer have to press Enter to initiate the search.

Official order number. When you click on the official order number in an order to retrieve all the orders with this number, the Order State filter is now set to All rather than Active and the search term is put in quotation marks.

Receipting in Resources. Previously an error message displayed when a user not enabled for Purchasing receipted an item in Resources, even though the receipt was successful. This has been fixed.




Re-styled footer: release notes, LDS version & report an incident

The footer elements are now displayed with more space in a horizontal arrangement under a line.

A new Release notes link takes you to the Soprano blog where you can read the latest and earlier release notices, so you don’t need to remember or save the link anywhere else.

A Request ID is displayed with a different value (a string of numbers and letters) on each page. This may be useful to give to Support when raising a case about an issue with Soprano.

Additionally, if you have the Utilities enablements, typically as a system manager, you will see the LDS version number and a notice about whether or not it is up to date – this is instead of a link to see the same information on a separate page. You will also see a Report an incident link, which generates an email in your email client to Capita Libraries Support with a subject line giving the Soprano page request number and the URL, and the beginning of a message giving your user name and the date and time. This allows you to raise or add to support cases by sending us details of an example of the problem.


General fixes

Search targets. BDSAllM21, LCAllM21 and NLMAllM21 are now being searched correctly when they are included in your list of Base search targets (specified in Cat. Auto Search Order in SetConfig).

Viewing Soprano on large monitors. We have adjusted the scaling of Soprano on extra wide screens (it changes when the window is greater than 1600px wide) to make sure text is readable on larger monitors.

Faceting on terms with non-alphanumeric characters. This fixes a problem where faceting was only using part of the selected term when it included some non-alphanumeric characters such as ampersand.

Navigate to Work Holdings as default. When you navigate to a Work from a borrower’s reservation the Work Holdings tab is now open by default instead of the Information tab.

Add Item fixed. We’ve fixed a problem in Soprano that was preventing items from being created. However, the problem may persist due to an issue in some recent versions of the Local Data Services that will be fixed in the next release (LDS 2.8.6).

Work Format: Book, PaperBack, Hardback. Soprano now assigns the correct format out of Book, Paperback and Hardback, depending on format designations found in ISBN fields in the MARC record.

Serial Holdings Summary completeness. In the Work header for a serial, all of the summary holdings statements for the current or selected site are now shown when there are more than one, rather than just one of them.




Pick and Supply workflow

We have extended the workflow for picking and supplying items for reservations or stock rotation to include a step to deal with items not found, and we have added elements to connect the stages of the workflow into a cohesive whole.

The pages for each of the three workflow steps has a workflow line at the top, showing the steps in the workflow. The first step is either Pick Reservations or Pick Stock Rotations. The other two steps are Process Items and Process Unfound. You can click/tap a step in the line to move to the page for the selected step. There are also buttons at the foot of each page allowing you to move forward or back one step.

Information from each step is passed along the workflow. The Process Items page now has a count of picked items, which decrements with each item processed. The items shown in the new Process Unfound page are selected by deduction from the activity performed in the preceding two steps. The Pick List and the activity information stored from it is retained until you generate a fresh one of the same type from the Home page.

In the Pick Reservations list the Last Seen date of each available copy is displayed in the Next Location column. If it is recent then the item may be in a returns bin if not on the shelf.

The Unfound Items page lists individual items that were deemed available in the Pick List when:

  • A request (i.e. a row in the Pick List) has been ignored (no button pressed in the Pick List and no item supplied (transited or satisfied) in Process Reservations).
  • A request has been skipped (the Skip button was pressed in Pick Reservations)
  • The Found button in the Pick List has been pressed on a request, but fewer times than the Required and Available counts – then all locally available items attached to the work are listed
  • The number of items supplied for a title in Process Reservations is fewer than the Required and Available counts in the Pick List.

The Pick reserved items task is now available in Offline mode, when you already have a pick list in progress. This means that if you leave the pick list and subsequently when without connectivity you want to return to it, you can.


Borrower look-up in Issue and Reserve

In addition to barcodes, the Borrower input box in the Issue and Reserve pages now accepts non-barcode input and gives a list of search results in context. This means that if you don’t have the borrower’s barcode to scan, you can look them up using any of the criteria available in borrower search, including name, date of birth, email address, postcode or institution ID. A single match populates the field immediately; multiple matches display in a drop down selection list showing up to the first eight results, with a link giving you the option to view all results in the dedicated borrower search results page.


Barcode validation in Create Borrower

In the Create Borrower form the barcode you enter is now validated against your local validation rules when you submit the form. If the barcode is invalid then you get an error message overlay.


Guarantor barcode check in Create Borrower

In Create Borrower, if you enter a barcode in the Guarantor field that does not match a borrower, rather than getting a general error when you submit the form you now get an overlay error message telling you that ‘The guarantor barcode provided is not registered in the database’.


Borrower former barcode numbers

When you change a borrower’s number (by editing it in the borrower header form) the old number is now kept in the database and it remains searchable. When you search using a former number it finds the borrower and displays an amber alert banner at the top of the borrower page saying ‘This borrower was accessed using an out of date barcode {number}’.

In the borrower input field in Reserve Work and Issue Item you can enter a former number and the correct borrower (showing their current number) is displayed.


Borrower Interests and Analyses suppressed when no list of values

If your library has no values configured for Borrower Interest or Analysis then, in Borrower > Information, the corresponding Interests or Analyses field is not displayed.


Renewals and renewing on Borrower Loans

In order to display accurately labelled information we’ve changed the way seen and unseen renewals are presented and actioned in the Borrower Loans page. We’ve removed the Renew As Seen check box, which determined both the type of renewal performed by the Renew Selected button and the tally and limit displayed, because the tally and limit for the Seen setting actually relate to the total renewals. Now, you have buttons to Renew or Renew As Unseen, which apply to any loans marked as selected, and two columns for renewal information, Total and Unseen, each giving the tally and limit. When a tally equals or exceeds its limit then an amber label stating Max. reached is displayed.


Display the value of an Item

When the value of an Item’s Value field is greater than zero it now displays in the Item Header, helping you with charging a customer when they lose an item.


Release Procedure

 To preview this release

You can preview this release by inserting ‘-demo’ into your tenancy URL after the word ‘soprano’:{your tenancy name}. Please remember that it accesses your live data.


Release to the live service

This version of Soprano will be released to the live service on Monday 13th November 2017.


Comments and contact

If you have any comments, questions or suggestions please get in touch. You can comment here on the blog, in the Soprano Forum, or contact your Account Manager. To suggest and discuss additional features there is the Soprano Ideas Forum.