December 5, 2005 - Athens, OH and West Hartford, CT - LibLime, the recently formed company that is marketing and supporting Koha, the world's most widely used Open Source library management system, and Index Data, the eleven year old library software development company that specializes in Open Source information retrieval toolkits and end user applications, announced today that the next release of Koha will use Index Data's Zebra database server.
In early 2005, the Koha project development team began looking at ways to improve MARC support and overcome scalability limitations in the Koha 2.x series. After extensive evaluations of the best of the Open Source textual database engines--including MySQL full-text searching, PostgreSQL, Lucene and Plucene--the team selected Zebra.
"Zebra completely eliminates scalability limitations, because it can support tens of millions of records." explained Joshua Ferraro, LibLime's Technology President and Koha's Project Release Manager. "Our performance tests showed search results in under a second for databases with over 5 million records on a modest i386 900Mhz test server."
"Zebra also includes support for true boolean search expressions and relevance-ranked free-text queries, both of which the Koha 2.x series lack. Zebra also supports incremental and safe database updates, which allow on-the-fly record management. Finally, since Zebra has at its heart the Z39.50 protocol, it greatly improves Koha's support for that critical library standard."
Although the bibliographic database will be moved to Zebra, Koha 3.0 will continue to use a relational SQL-based database design for the 'factual' database. "Relational database managers have their strengths, in spite of their inability to handle large numbers of bibliographic records efficiently," summed up Ferraro, "We're taking the best from both worlds in our redesigned Koha 3.0.
Koha is a full-featured Open Source library management system developed initially in by Katipo Communications Ltd in New Zealand and first deployed in January 2000 for Horowhenua Library Trust. It is currently maintained by a team of software providers and library technology staff from around the globe. Several companies around the world support Koha, providing libraries with a full array of vendor services including installation, migration assistance, data integrity testing, staff training, software maintenance, and development of new features. To learn more about what services are available visit koha.org/support.
About Index Data
Index Data, a software development and consultancy firm, with offices in Copenhagen; London; Keene, NH and Middletown, CT, is the world's leading distributor of Open Source library application software. It's flagship product is the Keystone Digital Library Suite, which includes content management and metasearch facilities. Other products include the YAZ family of toolkits and applications for information retrieval and interlibrary loan; Zebra, an XML/MARC/text indexing engine with a Z39.50 front end; and YakPac, a young people's search interface. For more information, visit www.indexdata.com or call 860-389-1568.
LibLime's mission is to make Open Source software accessible to libraries across the globe. To that end, LibLime develops and markets affordable and customizable Open Source library technology solutions like Koha ILS. LibLime also provides full vendor services on these software products including: migration assistance, staff training, and software maintenance, support and development. For more information, visit www.liblime.com or call 888-KOHA-ILS (564-2457).