What's a Link in Record collection and how do I manage it?


What's a link in record collection?

education magazine link in record collection

  • These collections are identified in Alma by Full Text Linking in CDI = Link in Record. 
  • They include journal or film or other title records that include links right in the record, like an 856 on a MARC record, but the records live in the CDI and you can't see them in Alma so it's hard to tell what's included.
  • The contents can also overlap CZ collection portfolios, and what's in the CZ portfolio list is not usually a one to one match with what's included in the link in record title list.
  • They're usually OA collections but can also be subscription like Films on Demand or Britannica, and there can be OA/non-OA mix (Datacite).

Why do you need them?

  • Some vendors only provide their title lists and links via search records and not via CZ collections. So, the only way to get a working title list with links may be to activate a link in record collection.

How do you activate them?

  • Make sure that you have CDI operator role.
  • For a link in record collection that doesn't have any portfolios in the CZ, like Films on Demand, you don't need to activate the database. You just need to:
    • Find the collection in the CZ
    • Choose Activate for Search in CDI
    • Go to IZ and choose CDI-only full text activation so that the collection publishes as available in Primo and shows up in your full-text search. Database bib record comes in as suppressed (which is good)

link in record how to activate

cdi only full text

  • For collections that are link in record for linking but also have portfolios in the CZ (like many OA packages):
    • It doesn't hurt to activate the collection/portfolios, as these might provide good links on OA articles
    • Activate for CDI search and activate CDI-only full-text option
    • Note that even if you don't activate the CDI-only full-text option, the portfolios in the collection will still publish as available in your holdings file and if a non-OA article comes up from this collection, the link in record link is that one that will be used. As of May 2022, you can show both link in record and link resolver links on your search result by checking the Display all links in View Online section box on the Edit View general tab in Discovery Config.
  • If it's a subscription package, make sure to check the Configuration->Discovery->Other->Custom Linking for Central Index Databases (as of Dec 2020 release - used to be stored in Other Settings) table to see if the vendor has an entry in the table where you'd need to add your location id. Infobase or Westlaw are examples of vendors listed in the table. Without your customer id, the links may not work because they won't be authorized.

central index id codes

How do they work in Primo?

  • Link in record collections, because they include links, are automatically considered available, and will come up in your unexpanded search, as long as you've activated them correctly.
  • Patron does a search and the link in record records, like other CDI search records, match on the search and come up in the results list.
  • When you open the record, the live Alma look-up happens and the system sees both the link in record link AND any matching Alma portfolio links.
  • The current functionality for the View Online list is to display EITHER link in record links OR portfolio (link resolver) links, not both. Initially, link in record links were taking precedence over link resolver links for all search results, but Ex Libris responded to negative customer feedback and changed the fulfillment behavior. As of May 2022, you can show both link in record and link resolver links on your search result by checking the Display all links in View Online section box on the Edit View general tab in Discovery Config.
  • Articles marked as OA will use the link resolver links in the View Online but if the article isn't marked as OA, if there's a subscription link in record link that matches, that will show in the View Online list and the Alma link resolver (portfolio) links will be hidden. If you add &displayCTO=true to the URL for the article, you'll be able to see the hidden link resolver links.
  • Can identify link in record links because they start with "view record in" and there are no coverage dates like you see in Alma portfolio links. Note that as of February 2021, you can change the link wording in the Full Display label table in the fulldisplay.Access_content_in code.
  • Supposed to show name of collection that it’s coming from, but you may still see “view full text in collection” or a generic collection name like "view full text in Proquest," rather than the specific Proquest collection that's active for link in record.
  • Link in record links won’t show up in a link resolver record coming in from outside of Primo because it's only searching Alma, not the CDI, for View Online 

How do you test them?

It will take 2-3 for them to show up in your system. After that time, you can either:

  • Perform a direct search in your database (not in Alma or Primo) to find a title to test in your Primo
  • or, you can search for records from that collection in Primo by doing a DBID search. Note that this search doesn't always work, but it's worth a try: e.g. https://suny-alf.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/discovery/search?query=DBID,contains,ADCHV&tab=Everything&search_scope=MyInst_and_CI&vid=01SUNY_ALF:01SUNY_ALF&offset=0&pcAvailability=true (change the Primo ALF code to your local code). You can find the collection DBID on edit Collection, CDI tab: 

collection id

  • If you want to do this kind of DBID testing regularly, Nancy Babb pointed out that you can copy your standard Primo widget and change this link in the script from any, contains to document.getElementById("primoQuery").value = "DBID,contains," + or you could set up a bookmarklet using this code: javascript:(function(){dbcode = window.prompt("DBID: "); qregex = /(query=.+,.+,.+?)(&|$)/;%20location.href=location.href.replace(qregex,%27query=dbid,contains,%27+dbcode+%27$2%27);%20})();
  • Note that this kind of search currently works for collections where the full-text rights are calculated at the collection level, meaning that you've activated the "CDI-only full-text" option, or you've said that you subscribe to all of the contents of the collection on the CDI tab, or you've left the collection level bib unsuppressed. Ex Libris says that DBID searching will be available for collections where the full-text rights are based on portfolios/titles ("we subscribe to only some content" = yes) by the end of 2020.
  • You can also do an everything search by CDI record id prefix, such as cdi_skillsoft_books* if you know the CDI record group and want to find more results from that group.

Anatomy of a Link in Record collection:

cdi record

  • Provider coverage: Are the records from the vendor?
  • Active for Search in CDI: Will these CDI records be searched in your expanded search?
  • CDI-only full text activation: Will these records show up as available in an unexpanded search?
  • Search Rights in CDI: Do you need a subscription even to search? (e.g. Artstor: need to be logged into Primo to search and see results)
  • Full Text Rights in CDI: Do you need a subscription for the links to work?
  • Full Text Linking in CDI: Is it Link in Record (links come from CDI), or link resolver (links come from Alma link resolver), or hybrid (mix of link types)?



  • Last Updated Aug 21, 2023
  • Views 4288
  • Answered By Michelle Eichelberger

FAQ Actions

Was this helpful? 11 0