System Emergencies

How To Handle System Emergencies

system emergency is a situation in which Minerva, URSUS, or MILS become inoperable for circulation, cataloging and/or the public access catalog, at a particular participating library site. Follow these steps in analyzing and reporting the situation.

1. Assess the situation:

a. Test general Internet access by trying to reach the following sites:

If none of these are reachable, you probably have a telecommunications (internet/network) problem and should contact your provider directly and immediately report the problem.  MSLN sites can reach technical help toll-free at 1-888-FOR-MSLN (1-888-367-6756).  If you use another provider, that firm doubtless maintains a help desk as well.  If you have established that the network connection is the problem, you probably don’t need to follow this procedure any further.

b. Check whether the web OPAC is available for your system at:
Minerva —

2. Contact the System Administrator.

Call James Jackson Sanborn at 207-866-0240, and explain the nature of the emergency. Report what you discovered in the diagnostic steps described above and how long the system has been down.

If he is not immediately available, leave a brief voice mail message describing the nature of the failure, the steps you’ve already taken to diagnose the problem, how long the system has been down, and your contact information.

Generally an announcement of problems and fixes is made to the Minerva, URSUS or MILS listserv, as well as the Maine InfoNet Twitter account (@MaineInfonet).

3. If James is not immediately available,…

…a designated person from your library may contact the appropriate party directly.  This is to be done only as a last resort.  Contact the iii helpdesk by going to the CSDirect website and using the toll-free # on the left side of the screen.

a. Where the system is accessible (the OPAC works) but not processing transactions, contact Innovative Interfaces.

As libraries go live on the system, someone from each should be added to the list of those authorized to initiate support calls:

(Contact James to designate a different Innovative contact person for your library.)

b. Where the server is completely unresponsive, contact UNET, the University of Maine System’s computing and telecommunications service.  First, try John Grover at 561-3510. If he is unavailable, try MSLN support at 1-888-FOR-MSLN (1-888-367-6756). As a final resort, contact UNET user support at 561-3587.

Note: Please open a ticket at to let us know if you have contacted either III or UNET.

4. Watch for Outage Report.

Subsequent to the event, an Outage Report will usually be posted on the Minerva-L, URSUS, or MILS mailing lists explaining what happened. Additionally, notifications will be posted via our Twitter account (@MaineInfonet).

For suggestions for improvements in this procedure, contact us.