Eprints Institutional Repository Software: A Review

Mike R. Beazley


Setting up an institutional repository (IR) can be a daunting task. There are many software packages out there, some commercial, some open source, all of which offer different features and functionality. This article will provide some thoughts about one of these software packages: Eprints. Eprints was one of the first IR software packages to appear and has been available for 10 years. It is under continual development by its creators at the University of Southampton and the current version is v3.2.3.
Eprints is open-source, meaning that anyone can download and make use of the software for free and the software can be modified however the user likes. This presents clear advantages for institutions will smaller budgets and also for institutions that have programmers on staff. Eprints requires some additional software to run: Linux, Apache, MySQL, and Perl. This software is all open-source and already present on the servers of many institutions. There is now a version of Eprints that will run on Windows servers as well, which will make the adoption of Eprints even easier for some.
In brief, Eprints is an excellent choice for any institution looking to get an IR up and running quickly and easily. Installation is straightforward as is the initial configuration. Once the IR is up and running, users may upload documents and provide the necessary metadata for the records by filling out a simple web form. Embargoes on published documents are handled elegantly by the software, and the software links to the SHERPA/RoMEO database so authors can easily verify their rights regarding IR submissions. Eprints has some drawbacks, which will be discussed later in the review, but on the whole it is easy to recommend to anyone looking to start an IR. However, It is less clear that an institution with an existing IR based on another software package should migrate to Eprints.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.21083/partnership.v5i2.1234

Copyright (c) 2016 Partnership: The Canadian Journal of Library and Information Practice and Research

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Partnership: the Canadian Journal of Library and Information Practice and Research (ISSN: 1911-9593)