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Next Gen ILS Implementation

This is for FALSC's Alma/Primo VE Implementation Project.

Premium Sandboxes or TEST Environments

Alma/Primo VE TEST Environments or Premium Sandboxes

 

OPEN Test Environments

FLVC has licensed for three open premium sandboxes and one Network Zone premium sandbox for everyone to use. The Alma premium sandboxes include a copy of each of the three institution’s configuration and data, except for the Digital Object Files loaded into Alma cloud storage. The Primo VE premium sandbox includes a copy of each of the three institution’s data and configuration from the production environment. Patron anonymization has been enabled in all three sandbox environments and user details have been scrubbed. The three open test environments were copied from the live data and configuration of Miami Dade College, Pasco-Hernando State College and University of West Florida as of August 2021, with all user data being anonymized to protect user privacy.
These three Test environments, plus the Network Zone, are open to all library staff. 

 

Links to Alma and Primo VE Open Test Environments

Alma Premium Sandbox (MDC)

https://mdc-flvc-psb.alma.exlibrisgroup.com/

Primo VE Premium Sandbox (MDC)

https://mdc-flvc-psb.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/discovery/search?vid=01FALSC_MDC:MDC

Alma Premium Sandbox (PHSC)

https://phsc-flvc-psb.alma.exlibrisgroup.com/

Primo VE Premium Sandbox (PHSC)

https://phsc-flvc-psb.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/discovery/search?vid=01FALSC_PHSC:PHSC

Alma Premium Sandbox (UWF)

https://uwf-flvc-psb.alma.exlibrisgroup.com/

Primo VE Premium Sandbox (UWF)

https://uwf-flvc-psb.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/discovery/search?vid=01FALSC_UWF:UWF

NZ Alma Premium Sandbox

https://flvc-psb.alma.exlibrisgroup.com/

NZ Primo VE Premium Sandbox

https://flvc-psb.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/discovery/search?vid=01FALSC_NETWORK:FLVC_UNION

Dedicated Test Environments

In addition, there are nine dedicated premium sandboxes or test environments. The Alma premium sandboxes include a copy of each of the nine institution’s configuration and data, except for the Digital Object Files loaded into Alma cloud storage. The Primo VE premium sandbox includes a copy of each of the nine institution’s data and configuration from the production environment. The nine dedicated test environments were copied from the live data and configuration of FGCU, FIU, FSU, SFC, UCF, UF, UNF, USF, VCC as of August 2021. 

 

Automatic Refreshes of the Test Environments

The data and configurations in the premium sandboxes are refreshed by Ex Libris from production twice a year, on the Sunday after the February and August Alma release on the production environments. The next automatic refresh will be February of 2022. 

Be aware: We have no control over the automatic refresh. FLVC cannot request a refresh before February, nor can we request a later date. When data and configuration is changed, we cannot ask to put the environments back to an original or current production state. There is no “undue” until the next automatic refresh. In the same vein, if you have config and scenarios setup for testing, they will be wiped out at the next refresh from production.

 

Recommendations for Use of TEST Environments Includes:

  • Review and testing of new releases and enhancements (updated with new release two weeks before general release to production)
  • Staff training and hands-on practice
  • Develop new workflows
  • Testing data loads
  • Testing batch changes
  • Integrations/API testing
  • Testing changes to Primo VE interface

 

Guidelines and Best Practices

  • The Alma Test environments do not include Alma Analytics. Alma Analytics runs on top of a designated data warehouse (not on top of production data), in a read-only mode. Since production data is not impacted, it is safe to use the Alma Analytics available using the production environment to test and develop new reports.
  • You are free to create your own examples.
  • Do not delete anything you did not create.
  • FLVC has provided a set of generic staff users with various role configurations.  More than one person can be logged in to a sandbox via the same staff user name at the same time. Please do not change the passwords or roles for these logins.
  • If your institution is using one of the three open sandboxes, you can request an AlmaAdmin User Account that includes all the permissions and Admin roles to change configuration. Send a message to the Help Desk requesting an account for one of the institution’s accounts with Admin roles. In your request, please specify the project or functionality you are working on. An FLVC subject area specialist will contact you to discuss the project and setup the temporary account with a unique password.
  • Do not use your institution’s login credentials (SSO); these environments are not configured for SSO logins.  Instead, use the credentials (Alma username and password) provided by FLVC to your institution’s ILS Coordinator.
  • The sandbox environments do not match the production environment in sizing/strength and cannot be used to benchmark/time batch loading of records or performance of API calls.
  • The sandboxes are not intended for load testing and have size limits and restrictions. You may perform data imports, but please limit the size of these files to a set of records that you can review for quality assurance.
    • Up to 100K more patron records may be loaded beyond what is in production.
    • Up to 500K more bib records may be loaded beyond what is in production.
  • Data loaded from production is enriched (classification and headings), additional data is not.
  • Limited to 30 active/distinct users who may log in.
  • Email services disabled by default.
  • You can use the Community Zone, but will not be able to make changes or contribute material to the Community Zone from sandbox environments. The sandbox environments will not include any Community Zone updates for activated Community Zone content.
  • The automatic scheduling of jobs is unavailable. You can run jobs manually on demand by selecting Run Now (when available) on the profile configuration page, or by selecting Run Now for the job in the Scheduled tab on the Monitor Jobs page (Administration > Monitor Jobs).
  • FLVC has the ability to switch the dedicated premium sandbox institutions up to once per year and will need to notify Ex Libris of their intent to switch at least thirty days prior to a sandbox refresh date.
  • If you encounter an error while using the sandboxes, contact FLVC Help Desk with a description of your actions and the error message(s) you received. Whenever possible, include screenshots (pasted into Word documents) or video captures (e.g., screencasts), HAR files and/or performance tracking files.