Z39.50 Configuration Guide for OCLC Z39.50 Cataloging

This Configuration Guide contains technical specifications for connecting a Z39.50 client to the OCLC Z39.50 server to use the OCLC Z39.50 Cataloging service.

The OCLC server implements Z39.50-1995 (version 3 of the protocol).

Please configure your client and test it on our test server. You need a test authorization to access the test database. To obtain a test authorization or to ask questions, contact OCLC Support.

For information describing MARC record structure, character sets, and exchange media formatting, see OCLC-MARC Records .

Internet Addresses and Hours of Availability

Database Names

OLUCWorldCat
OCLCAuthoritiesLC
OCLCInstitutionRecords

Production Server

Communication Method Libraries Address
Internet or OCLC Dial TCP/IP communications All libraries Domain name: zcat.oclc.org
Port: 210

Hours

Hours
Z39.50 is regularly available 24 hours daily, Monday through Sunday.
OCLC occasionally performs maintenance on this system, which is typically completed on a Sunday from 2am - 6am. OCLC usually provides advance notice about this maintenance activity.

Test Server

Communication Method Libraries Address
Internet or OCLC Dial TCP/IP communications All libraries Domain name: zgate-test.oclc.org
Port: 7210

Note: The Test Server may not be available on Monday mornings. Otherwise, every effort is made to keep it available when the Production Server is available but we cannot guarantee this availability.

Z39.50 Services Supported

The OCLC Z39.50 server supports the following services:

Initialization Service

  • Protocol Version - Z39.50-1992 (Version 2)
  • Options Supported
    • Search
    • Present
    • Scan (From Version 3)
    • Extended Services (From Version 3)
  • Preferred Message Size - OCLC will accept the client's proposal for Preferred Message Size up to a limit of 105000 bytes.
  • Maximum Record Size - OCLC will accept the client's proposal for Maximum Record Size up to a limit of 105000 bytes.
  • ID Authentication - OCLC supports ID/authentication as prescribed by the standard. We recognize the userId and password fields; the groupId field is ignored. The service patron password is the password that must be used.
  • Character set negotiation - OCLC supports both MARC-8 and UTF-8 (OID 1003.15.1 and 1003.15.3) character sets. The default is MARC-8. Character set is specified in the otherInfo field.
    Note: When the MARC-8 default is retained, characters that cannot be converted to MARC-8 are displayed as hexadecimal numeric character references per MARBI proposal 2006-09 ( view example).
  • userInformationField - On the Init Response message, we return the OCLC_Information Record in the userInformation field. The OID for this is 1.2.840.10003.10.1000.17.1

    OCLC-UserInformation ::= SEQUENCE {
       motd [1] IMPLICIT VisibleString,
       dblist SEQUENCE OF DBName,
       failReason [3] IMPLICIT SEQUENCE {
          diagnosticSetId OBJECT IDENTIFIER OPTIONAL,
          code [1] IMPLICIT INTEGER,
          text [2] IMPLICIT VisibleString OPTIONAL
       } OPTIONAL
    }

    DBName ::= [2] IMPLICIT VisibleString

  • otherInformationField (Request) — On the Init Request message, OCLC supports 1.2.840.10003.15.1   and 1.2.840.10003.15.3 character set negotiations for UTF-8. Language set negotiations can be included, but are ignored.

    otherInfo {
          externallyDefinedInfo {
             OID: 1 2 840 10003 15 3
             externallyDefinedInfo choice
             {
                proposal {
                  proposedCharSets {
                    iso10646 {
                      encodingLevel OID: 1 0 10646 1 0 8
                    }
                  }
                }
             }
           }
       }
    }
  • otherInformation Field (Response) — On the Init Response message, we return the externallyDefinedInfo field for a successful character set negotiation. If a language set negotiation was included, it was ignored and NOT returned.

    externallyDefinedInfo{
       OID: 1 2 840 10003 15 3
       externallyDefinedInfo choice
       {
         response {
           selectedCharSets {
             iso 10646 {
                collections OID: 1 0 10646 1 3 1 3
                encodingLevel OID: 1 0 10646 1 0 8
             }
           }
         }
       }
    }

Search Service

  • Database-Names - OLUCWorldCat or OCLCAuthoritiesLC (case-insensitive)
  • Result Set Name - The server maintains any number of named results sets during the Z-association.
  • Element Set Names - Please see the section on Element Set Names Available.
  • Query - Type-1 & Type-101 are supported.
  • Attribute Set ID - Bib-1 only is supported.
  • Operand - The Result Set ID (i.e., "default") can be used in the Operand (for qualifying searches).
  • Operators Supported
    • AND
    • OR
    • AND-NOT

Present Service

  • Additional-ranges - This feature is not implemented by our server.
  • Result-set-id - The server attempts to find the named result set. If the result set is not found, the server returns an error 30. If the Result-set-id is not supplied, the server gets records from the last result set created.

All other fields behave exactly as prescribed by the standard.

Scan Service

  • Database-Names - OLUCWorldCat or OCLCAuthoritiesLC (case-insensitive)
  • Step-size - The OCLC server always uses a step-size of 0.

All other fields behave exactly as prescribed by the standard.

Record Syntaxes Supported

USMARC

Value Description
10 USMARC

Element Set Names Available

Value Description
F* Full
FD Displays default** holdings data
FA Displays all holdings data
B Brief

*Additional element set names are supported for non-Latin data.

**Default holdings. When you choose default holdings, the default is determined as follows:

If... Then...
More than 20 libraries hold the item and 10 or more of them are in your location (U.S. state, Canadian province, other country, or other continent). The system displays holdings information for libraries in your location.
More than 20 libraries hold the item and fewer than 10 of them are in your location, but 10 or more of them are in your region. The system displays holdings information for libraries in your region. For more information about regions, see Regional Groupings in Library Holdings Display.
20 or fewer libraries hold the item or more than 20 libraries hold the item, but fewer than 10 of them are in your location or region. The system displays all holdings information.

Recommended Searching Combinations for the OLUC WorldCat Database

The following guidelines help you construct sample author, title, subject, standard number, and music number searches for bibliographic records with local Z39.50 clients. Remember that OCLC Z39.50 Cataloging supports only the Use Attributes Supported listed in this guide and only the default option for several attributes.

Author search (word)

The following sample uses a word search for the author Scott Adams.

Use attribute: 1003 (author)
Relation attribute: 3 (equal)
Position attribute: 3 (any--default)
Structure attribute: 2 (word)
Truncation attribute: 104 ( Z39.58-1992)
Completeness attribute: 1 (incomplete subfield--default)
Search term: adams <and> scott

Author search (word list)

The following sample uses a word-list search for the author Scott Adams.

Use attribute 1003 (author)
Relation attribute: 3 (equal)
Position attribute: 3 (any--default)
Structure attribute: 6 (word list)
Truncation attribute: 104 ( Z39.58-1992)
Completeness attribute: 1 (incomplete subfield--default)
Search term: adams scott 1957

Author search (phrase)

The following sample uses a phrase search for the author Scott Adams. Because right truncation is used, The search retrieves author entries for adams, scott with and without dates.

Use attribute: 1003 (author)
Relation attribute: 3 (equal)
Position attribute: 3 (any--default)
Structure attribute: 1 (phrase)
Truncation attribute: 1 (right truncation)
Completeness attribute: 1 (incomplete subfield--default)
Search term: adams scott

Title search (phrase)

The following sample uses a phrase search for the title Angela's Ashes..

Use attribute: 4 (title)
Relation attribute: 3 (equal)
Position attribute: 3 (any--default)
Structure attribute: 1 (phrase)
Truncation attribute: 1 (right truncation)
Completeness attribute: 1 (incomplete subfield--default)
Search term: angelas ashes

Subject search (phrase)

The following sample uses a phrase search for the Library of Congress subject heading computers and women.

Use attribute: 21 (subject heading)
Relation attribute: 3 (equal)
Position attribute: 3 (any--default)
Structure attribute: 1 (phrase)
Truncation attribute: 104 ( Z39.58-1992)
Completeness attribute: 1 (incomplete subfield--default)
Search term: computers and women

Standard number search (ISBN)

The following sample uses a word search for the ISBN 0679429220 (assigned to Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil).

Use attribute: 7 (ISBN)
Relation attribute: 3 (equal)
Position attribute: 3 (any--default)
Structure attribute: 2 (word)
Truncation attribute: 104 ( Z39.58-1992)
Completeness attribute: 1 (incomplete subfield--default)
Search term: 0679429220

Music number search

The following sample uses a word search for the music number D2-24935 (assigned to Yodeling the Classics).

Use attribute: 51 (music number)
Relation attribute: 3 (equal)
Position attribute: 3 (any--default)
Structure attribute: 2 (word)
Truncation attribute: 104 ( Z39.58-1992)
Completeness attribute: 1 (incomplete subfield--default)
Search term: d224935

Use Attributes Supported

Refer to Searching Tips for OCLC Z39.50 Cataloging for a complete list of attributes supported.

Relation Attributes Supported

The OCLC server supports the following relation attribute values for cataloging purposes. The default value is equal.

Value Description
1 Less than (as of 12/16/2001)
2 Less than or equal to (as of 12/16/2001)
3 Equal
4 Greater or equal (as of 12/16/2001)
5 Greater than (as of 12/16/2001)
104 Within

Position Attributes Supported

The OCLC server supports the following position attributes. If no attribute value is sent, our implementation performs searches as if the value were any.

Value Description
1 First in field (only with structure= 1 or 4)
3 Any

Structure Attributes Supported

For any Use attribute where we specify that word is a valid structure attribute, the values of word list (6) and ordered word list (7) are also valid. We implement word list as "AND" within a field. We implement ordered word list as "AND" with a proximity of 1 with order being important. Date (5) is implemented much like word with the most useful difference being it allows for ranging of dates (i.e. 1987-1993 will only hit on records between 1987 and 1993 inclusive.)

Value Description
1 Phrase
2 Word
3 Key
4 Year
5 Date (normalized)
6 Word list
7 Ordered word list
101 Normalized

Truncation Attributes Supported

The OCLC server supports the following truncation attributes. The default value is attribute 104.

Value Description
1 Right truncation
100 Do not truncate
104 Truncation as defined in Z39.58-1992:
# Represents a single character
? Represents from 0-9 characters; you may specify a number after the ?
If no truncation character is present, do not truncate.

Completeness Attributes Supported

The OCLC server supports the following completeness attributes. If no attribute value is sent, our implementation performs searches as if the value is incomplete subfield.

Value Description
1 Incomplete subfield
3 Complete field (only with structure = 1 or 4)

See also Z39.50 Database Update Implementation for OCLC Z39.50 Cataloging: Extended Service Definition

Returning Non-Latin Data in Response Records

To select an option for display of non-Latin data Z39.50 clients may use either of these requests:

  • Init (groupID field)
  • Search/Present (ElementSetName)

The non-Latin values in groupID and ElementSetName are not case sensitive. No white space is allowed around the equal sign in the Init strings. Use of ElementSetName in Search/Present requests is preferred because it is more compliant with the Z39.50 standard.

If neither type of option is specified, the default is to include non-Latin data in 880 fields (Option 1 below). If a valid non-Latin option is found in both the Init and in a Search/Present requests, the OCLC Z39.50 server uses the option in the Init request, overriding any option found in a Search/Present request. Note: Any unrecognized value found in groupID or in ElementSetName is ignored.

Authentication. The OCLC Z39.50 server does not currently process the groupID field for authentication. The server will recognize the optional Init request substrings anywhere in the authentication groupID field, so a non-Latin specification does not need to be the only data in the groupID field.

Options:

Option Description ElementSetName Init request

groupID field
1 Include all data, with non-Latin scripts in the 880 fields F 880level=show
2 Include Latin script only, no 880 fields F2 880level=suppress
3 Include all data, with Latin script in the 880 fields F1 880level=switch
4 Include non-Latin scripts only, no 880 fields F3 880level=special