User FAQ

More questions answered soon!

Are you experiencing slowness in any of the applications? Some slowness at specific times of the day (lunch time!) or year (grades need to be entered), but if the slowness is persistent, please complete this form which will provide the necessary information to diagnose slowness problems.

SOAR circulation

Q: How do I log in to SOAR circulation?

A: In order to be able to log in to SOAR circulation, the principal must have designated you as a librarian or library assistant in ODA. Once the principal has assigned you to this role, contact the Department of Libraries to be granted permissions to the school catalog. Once these permissions have been assigned, you can log in using your CPS credentials. Your userid must be preceeded by the domain (either instr or admin), e.g. instr\jdoe.

Q: Why can I no longer log in to SOAR circulation?

A: Make sure that you are including the domain as part of the userid and that they are separated by a backslash and not a slash, e.g. instr\jdoe.
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Q: I am unable to access SOAR circulation from home.

A: You need to first log on to the CPS VPN. If you do not see library listed on the pop up window, you will need to request access
  • Fill out this form (https://secure2.cps.k12.il.us/WebForms/RemoteAccess_Request.aspx). Be sure to include your supervisor’s name in the Manager field. In the “Default remote access” field, click the check box and in the comment field enter the group:~ DG-VPN-Library_Instr. Your supervisor will then receive an email and must approve the request after which you will then be added to the group.

Q: How do I manually add an item?

A: In circulation, click on the "Staff Services" tab. Select "Titles and items". Change the search field (in the drop-down menu) to ISBN and search for the ISBN of the title. If there are no results, uncheck the "Home location only" button. If there is a result, select the item to bring up the record. Click on the "Add Item" button at the bottom of the page (NOT the "Add OTF" button). Enter the Item ID (unique barcode), collection, call number, and any other desired information and click the "Save and check-in item" button.

If there is not a result, click the "Add OTF" button. In the left column, enter the title, author, publisher, year, and ISBN, as well as selecting the format. In the right window, enter the Item ID (unique barcode), collection, call number, and any other desired information and click the "Save and check-in item" button. A nightly process will run to upgrade the item to a full MARC record if one is available.
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Q: How do I mark an item missing?

A: Select Special Status on the Check In screen.
Enter the Item ID or title of the book.
If searching by title, you will need to select the correct barcode from the list
Choose Missing: Staff Action in the pop up and click OK
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Q: How do I upload vendor records from file or disk?

A: Insert disk or save file to local computer. In circulation, click on the "Staff Services" tab. Select "Upload & Merge". Click the "Browse" button next to the dialog box. Locate the file, usually named "microlif.001" and click "OK". Click on the "Save" button. Depending on the number of records in the file, this process may take a few minutes. You do not need to stay on this tab during the process.

Q: I added an item as an OTF. Why has it not been upgraded with the full MARC record?

A: The upgrade process runs every night. If the process is unable to process all of the items in the queue, those items will be upgraded in the next evening's process. If the record has not been upgraded after a few nights, it may be because we do not have access to a MARC record for this item. Contact the Department of Libraries to discuss options for manually cataloging the item.

Q: How can I add photos of my students to SOAR circulation?

A: Send the disk or file of photos to the attention of Joe Horning at the Department of Libraries, GSR 38.

Q: What are the keyboard shortcuts for navigating circulation?
A: F1 - Help
F2 - Check Out screen
F3 - Check In screen
F4 - Titles and Items screen
F6 - Requests screen
F7 - Messages screen
Esc - Will clear the borrower infromation when on the Check Out screen
F2 and F6 will take you to the Borrower Services tab if a borrower is not currently loaded

SOAR OPACs


Q: I added an item in SOAR circulation, why is it not appearing in the OPAC?

A: Once an item has been added, the OPAC indexes need to "catch up". This process happens on a regular basis. The item should appear in the OPAC no later than the next day.


Q: How do I get a list of students' usernames and passwords?
A: Instructions for obtaining students logins can be found in this document


SOAR Reports


Q: In Chrome, I get the message "Your report is ready and will download to your Web browser in a few moments.", but the report never shows up.
A: The current version of Reports Manager does not work well with the built in PDF viewer in Chrome. Either use a different browser or disable the plugin. If you choose to disable the plugins, after running the report you may see a message in the lower left that this type of file can harm your computer ... Choose Keep and then click on the PDF
Disabling the PDF plugins in Chrome:
In the address bar enter chrome://plugins
Click the disable link for Chrome PDF Viewer and Adobe Acrobat (if it is listed)

Q: A student returned an overdue book today, why are they still showing on the overdue report?
A: The overdue reports are gathering data from a overnight process to minimize system lag during peak hours. It does not take into consideration check-ins performed after the process was run.

Q: I cannot find a spine label report that works with the labels that I use, can you create one?
A: Yes, please mail a sheet of the label stock to the attention of Joe Horning at the Department of Libraries, GSR 38.

Q: Can I schedule a report to run every week?
A: Yes, reports can be scheduled to run on a reoccurring basis.



SOAR Real Time Inventory


Q: How do I perform an inventory?
A:

Q: Do all checked out items needs to be returned to the library before starting an inventory?
A: No, the inventory process will take into consideration any items that are checked out.

Q: Do I need to stop circulating books?
A: No, the inventory process will take into consideration any items that are checked out.



Hardware




Q: I have a Gryphon scanner and am unable to scan the item barcodes.
A: The Gryphon scanner does not read Codabar out of the box, this is the default encoding for CPS barcodes. Download and print the following PDF and scan "Enable Codabar" and "Codabar Start/Stop Transmit Disable" located on the second page.