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Offsite circulation options

When considering offsite library services involving checkout, renewal, or patron registration, make sure you know the following:

  • Availability of an internet connection at the offsite location
  • Hardware available to you, including transport and set-up considerations
  • What you want to do: check out library materials that patrons will need to return? New patron registration? Both?


Option 1: Sierra Web

You’ll need:

  • Internet connection
  • Network ports 63000, 63100, 64000, 64100 open both in and out; 80, 443 need to be open outbound
  • Laptop or Chromebook running Chrome web browser
  • Barcode scanner

Sierra Web is a web-based version of Sierra that looks much like the client, and works well for “light” Sierra tasks like checkout and creating patron records.

  1. Go to: https://www.more.lib.wi.us:63100/sierra/sierraweb/
  2. Click on Connect to Sierra Service. After a moment, you will be brought to the login screen:
  3. Use the same Sierra username and password that you would for Sierra Desktop and click Login.
  4. Once logged in, features and functions will look very similar to the Sierra Desktop App. You can check out materials, search for patron records, create new patron records, search for titles and place holds

Emailing due slips

It may be helpful to temporarily change your “Default due slip delivery method” to “Email” while offsite. This will allow due slips to be emailed directly to patrons who have their email address in their patron record.

You will need to adjust this option for due slips the next time you log into Sierra in the library if you want the default to be “No Slip” or “Print.”

    1. To change the due slip default, go to Admin > Options > Due Slip tab
    2. Make sure “Email” is checked as an “Available due slip delivery method”
    3. Select “Email” as “Default due slip delivery method”
    4. OK at the bottom of the window
    5. Remember to adjust the default delivery method later if needed.

Option 2: Sierra Client

You’ll need:

  • Internet connection. The client may disconnect frequently if the internet connection is unstable, as is common with wireless connections
  • Network ports 63000, 63100, 64000, 64100 open both in and out; 80, 443 need to be open outbound
  • Laptop with Sierra loaded
  • Barcode scanner

Using the Sierra client offsite works the same as in the library, except printing options. You may want to set email receipts as default for offsite checkouts (see “Emailing due slips” above). This works for patrons with an email address in their patron record.

Option 3: Offline Circulation

You’ll need:

  • Laptop with Sierra or Millennium Offline Circulation program loaded
  • Barcode scanner

If you won’t have internet access offsite, or if it’s very unstable, you could use Offline Circ and process the transactions when you’re back at the library:¬†https://iflsweb.org/knowledge-base/offline-circulation/

This option can only be used for checkout, not check in or patron registration. Follow-up at the library is necessary to complete checkout; plan to do that as soon as possible after each instance of using Offline Circulation.