Library Staff Toolbox

A quarterly report of items with a price field higher than $2500.  Should be reviewed by staff for errors. Click ->Item Cost Report

A report run twice per year to reveal renewals that exceed the renewal limits for review. Click ->Items Renew Report

Items in repair for more than 4 months to be reviewed by staff for updates.

Item Repair Report

A report created twice a year to reveal items in transit for over 3 weeks.  Click ->In Transit Report

To receive a copy of this report, please open a ticket.  We will no longer post patron data to our website for security reasons.  Requested copies will be provided within 2 working days.

MHLS tech support can reset your password M-F 8:30-4:30.   Please ask your library director to open a ticket by emailing   For emergency instances when MHLS is closed, your Director may have a generic login in place or you can use the login of another staff member.   Anyone who shares a login should immediately change their password , once your login has successfully opened.  Please keep your password confidential and secure.

In most cases the issue with Sierra is related to the internet access.  If your Sierra  application does not start.  Follow these steps to troubleshoot:

  1. Is internet access available:   Open an internet browser and search for “time and date”.   If the results show the correct time and date, your internet is likely working to some degree.  Close all Sierra attempts that may be in progress and start a new session.
  2. If you have internet, you have the option of using the Sierra web based client .  The web client will be exactly like using Sierra from your desktop.    If you don’t have internet access you will need to contact your Internet Service Provider (ISP) and skip to #3.
  3. Offline circulation is an option if the first two options are not successful.

All ports in use means that the licenses assigned to your library are all currently in use or hung up because of a internet service blip or some other interruption in the Client/Server connection.  Within 10 minutes, the port should reset itself.  M-F 8:30 -4:30 MHLS tech-support can reset the port for you in less time if you call 845-471-6060 X240.    System wide there is no longer a shortage of licenses, the limitation will always be related to the number of available licenses owned by your library.   It may be that another staff member is using more licenses than you are aware of by running create lists searches or having multiple sessions open.  Please check with colleagues to ensure that an available license should be accessible.

There is not much that MHLS staff can do to help you if your internet service is down.   Once you have tested a few sites and are certain you have no access to the internet, you should contact your provider to see if there are outages in the area.

While your service is down, you can use offline circulation.  Once your service is restored, you can upload your transactions, delete the transactions after your upload is sent, and go back to the regular Sierra Desktop Application.

Your Director can provide emergency contact information for your Internet Service Provider.  Most can access your account to check the service using your primary telephone number.

Tagging your collection

If you have ever thought that things should be easier to find in Encore, you might consider tagging items in your collection.  Tags are indexed access points that can be used to find items in Encore and even curate them into collections.  Those curated collections could be a permanent solution, or simply serve a temporary need.  Tags can also provide natural language access to items, where Library of Congress subjects fall short.  

Tagging in Encore has always been available, but only few libraries have taken advantage of it so far.  So far, it has only been made available to staff, but some libraries choose to open it up to patrons too.  Any user who is authorized may add a tag while viewing the full record in Encore.    The tags must then be “approved” to be live in Encore by MHLS staff , who have administrative access.  Tags can later be turned off too.   Once enabled, tags can be used as a search term in Encore.


How have tags been used at MHLS?  Mostly, to group items into curated collections.  

Curating collections: Click the titles to view in encore.  

The Phoenicia Jerry Bartlett Memorial Angling Collection
The Phoenicia Public library was one of the first libraries to use tagging to curate a collection.  In their community fishing is HUGE!  They have an amazing collection devoted angling, which they highlight on their website, but when it came to finding these items in Encore, there was no way to pull them together…until they tagged their collection!   Today Today 727 items are included in this collection, which patrons can search in Encore from anywhere.