Migrating to KOHA. University of Macedonia Library Experience

Filippos Kolovos & Kostas Zontanos – University of Macedonia Library, Greece


In this article we will describe our experience during the transition from the Horizon (v. 7.3) to the KOHA (v. 3.2) Integrated Library Systems. At first we will talk about the technical and the managerial steps that were followed, in order to prepare the environment for the system installation and the data migration processes. We will also refer to the problems that we faced during the data migration from the Horizon system, such as the number of times that were needed in order to complete the data migration, the tests that were carried out each time, in order to verify the correct transfer of the data and the most critical errors that were discovered in each migration iteration.

Furthermore, we will talk about the user experience of the system’s staff and public catalogue interfaces. Concerning the former, we will give an overview of the experience from all the Library’s departments, concerning the ease of use, the lack or addition of capabilities comparing to the previous user interface and of any critical problems that each department faces in the day to day use.

As far as the public catalogue interface is concerned, we will refer to the general experience that we had from our users from the everyday use of the search and the personalized user environments. How easy it is for the users to locate the desired items, to navigate through their personalized area for renewing, or making a hold request for an item, or in general to get information concerning their account, such as the total books that they have checked out, any pending fines, renewals, etc.