Posted by: acoss | January 20, 2010

UPEI Robertson Library and Evergreen ILS Software

UPEI Robertson Library migrated to Evergreen in only one month.

At the University of Prince Edward Island, Robertson Library has been meeting the information resource needs of its roughly 4000 students since 1975.  The Charlottetown located facility maintains a stock of over 300,000 books and other media as well as extensive electronic and online materials. The library prides itself for its evolving use of new technologies to provide the most current information access for its patrons.

In 2008, University Librarian Mark Leggott and the Robertson Library team started the IslandPines project to move the library away from the proprietary Sirsi Unicorn Integrated Libary System (ILS) to the open source Evergreen ILS. Evergreen is an open source system developed by the Georgia Public Library System (PLS) in the US. The Georgia PLS developed the system when they could not find a commercial system that met their needs to handle their 270 public libraries in the state. It was released in 2006 and is managed by a commerical company called Equinox.

The Robertson Library team believes strongly in advancing the use of open source software. When they reviewed the Evergreen system in May of 2008, the work quickly began to move their operations to the system. Incredibly, with the help of Equinox, the library team and the open source community, they completed the migration in only one month. By June 4, 2008, the new IslandPines ILS system was online for the library patrons at UPEI. Besides the benefit of using an open source solution they can control and mold to their needs, they also projected the library would save $20,000 in 2008 by the migration.

Evergreen isn’t the only open source software that Robertson Library uses. They also make use of other systems such as Fedora and SLES Linux, Drupal, Dbase, Moodle, and many others.

Visit Mark Leggott’s blog Loomware here. He regularly updates with information about open source software and library systems. You can read the migration updates from 2008 starting here.

Visit the Robertson Library’s Evergreen based web interface at

*Image from the University of Prince Edward Island website.



  1. I read about University of Prince Edward Island.This university so good.

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