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FL-Islandora Guide

A guide for FL-Islandora users.

Collection Set-up

To create a new collection you must be logged into a FL-Islandora site through an authorized account with appropriate credentials.

To create a top-level collection, click the "Manage" tab on the home page list of collections.  Otherwise, navigate to the collection which will be the parent of your new collection and click the "Manage" tab. 

Within the Manange tab, Click “+ Add an object to this collection”. Be sure to select the Collection content model. You will get a form with prompts for information about the collection:

  • Collection Label: Supply the name of the collection as it should appear on the site.
  • Collection PID: Supply a reasonably mnemonic PID for the collection. Be sure to use the correct namespace prefix for your site. This namespace is part of the site URL (ie. https://[namespace] (Do not use the “islandora” namespace.) By policy, the name part of the pid for a collection object must begin with an alphabetic character (“inst:football55” is a valid collection name; “inst:55” is not) and must be alphanumeric (alpha characters and numbers only). The PID is case-sensitive. NOTE: do not accept the default collection pid that Islandora creates when the Collection PID field is left blank: that creates a numeric PID that will be easy to confuse with the numeric PIDs created for content objects.  You may never change the PID of a collection.
  • Inherit collection policy checkbox: This portion of the setup defines the Content Models of objects allowed within the collection you are creating. If checked, the new collection will allow the same content models as the parent collection. (Note that in the FL-Islandora implementation this means that it will allow only collection objects. Check “Inherit collection policy” if you will be creating subcollections in the current collection.) If you uncheck this box, you will get a list of all available content models, and you can check off the ones you want to allow in the new collection. Uncheck this box if you are creating the lowest level collection that will contain digital objects.  NOTE: by policy, a collection object can only hold sub-collections or content objects, not both. In other words, only the lowest level collections may hold content objects.
  • Inherit XACML policy from: This is a pull-down menu that allows you to set the Object Viewing policy (XACML Restrictions) on your new collection based on the policy in its parent collection. For example: if you are creating a new collection that should not be visible to the public and the immediate parent collection has restrictions on object viewing by selecting the parent collection from the "Inherit XACML policy from" pull down your new collection will have the same restrictions as its parent.  NOTE: If your new collection is created under a collection with an Object Viewing Policy, accepting the "None" default for "Inherit XACML policy from" will likely result in a collection and child objects that are retrievable by the public. (The "None" option means: do not create an Object Viewing / XACML policy on this collection object, regardless of the parent collection's policy.)

Note that in the list of available content models, there are some you should not check.

  • To include newspapers in the collection, check the Newspaper Content Model “newspaperCModel” but do not check the Newspaper Page Content Model or the Newspaper Issue Content Model.
  • To include books in the collection, check the Internet Archive Book Content Model “bookCmodel” but do not check the Page Content Model.
  • To include serials in the collection, check the Islandora Serial Object Content Model, but do not check the Islandora Serial Object Intermediate Category Content Model or the Islandora Serial Object Intermediate Content Model

As of early 2017, New Collection Objects Now Admit MODS: When creating a new collection, users will be required to select a MODS form to enter the Title of the collection. This title is now responsible for creating a Label of the new collection. If no title is provided in the MODS, the collection object will be labeled “New Collection Object”. Users can still re-label the object under “Properties”. Users looking to change the name of their collection with the MODS form should do so by editing the title field in a MODS form. Users may provide extended metadata for their collection with the Full MODS form but Florida Library Services has provided an abridged version with a limited element set so that you may create a collection quickly as in previous versions of FL-Islandora.

Next, you will be taken to the Form selection screen. Choose the Form you would like to use to create the MODS datastream for the collection.

The name of your collection will be derived from Title. You can change this later by editing a collection's MODS datastream with this same form. At this time no other fields are required and no other metadata about the collection will publicly display.

Once you've provided your collection with a Title, select Submit to complete ingesting the collection object.

Collection Management


The collection label/title displays to the public and may be modified after the collection is created. For example, let's say you have a collection called “North Carolina Maps” and you decide to expand the scope to maps of all southern states. You could change the label from “North Carolina Maps” to “Maps of the South”.

To correct or change a collection label/title, navigate to the collection you want to rename. Click the "Manage" tab then select “Datastreams”. Locate the MODS datastream from the table on this tab. Click the 'edit' link from the operations column in the MODS row and select the form you wish to use to edit the MODS. Once you are in the form simply change the 'Title' field and Submit the form to change the collection name. NOTE: You may also change the label of the collection from the Properties tab but this is not advisable as it will be overwritten by any updates to the MODS datastream.


By default, Islandora will provide a folder icon as the thumbnail for new collections. You can provide a more attractive thumbnail by deleting the default thumbnail and providing a new one.

Collection thumbnails should be PNG, JPEG or GIF images of 200 x 200 pixels.

Navigate to the default thumbnail for your new collection, and click the "Manage" tab. Click “Datastreams”. You will be presented with a list of datastreams belonging to your new collection.

Next to the "TN" "Thumbnail" datastream, click "replace".‚Äč

Upload your new thumbnail, and click "Add Contents".

This will update the icon that people see and click on to get into the collection when browsing the site.


Recommended dimensions for a collection banner are 1040 x 80.

Go to the collection. Click "Manage" then "Datastreams". Click “+ Add a datastream” to get the form for adding a datastream (see section on “Change the Collection Thumbnail” above).

Datastream ID: type “BANNER” (all caps)

Datastream Label: type “Collection banner”.

Upload document: Find the image you want to use for the collection and upload it.

Click “Add Datastream”.


Go to the collection. Click "Manage" then Datastreams. Click “+ Add a datastream” to get the form for adding a datastream (see section on “Change the Collection Thumbnail” above).

Datastream ID: type “DESC-TEXT” (all caps)

Datastream Label: type “Description”.

Upload document: Find the text file that describes the collection and upload it.  Text describing the collection must been in a file with filetype extension “.txt”. HTML tags can be embedded, including links.

Click “Add Datastream”.

Note that if the collection has a description, the “Search this collection” box will display to the right of the description. Collections without a DESC-TEXT datastream will not show the “Search this collection” box.


Modal pages are stored as datastreams as part of collection objects. The page files must be created localll using a text or HTML editor to create each page file with the desired content. HTML, CSS, and JQuery can be used to structure and style the content. HTML tags are not required for the content to be rendered but you will not be able to structure or style the content without it. Save the file as HTML to preview it in a browser.  NOTE: Styles applied to your Islandora site will affect the content of your modal pages. Use inline styles or create new selectors to override existing CSS. Tip: Enclose your page in a div tag for finer control of your content and to correct overflow problems:

<div class="modal-inner">

Add finished page files to the collection object in the same manner as adding a BANNER or DESC-TEXT datastream. Select "+ Add a datastream."  For the Datastream ID enter the corresponding value in the RELATED-LINKS file. The value given to this ID and the value given to the intended page element must be identical. If the Datastream ID doesn’t match the value in your RELATED-LINKS file the page link will not work.  You can enter anything you’d like for Datastream Label, but it is best to enter something that describes the page so that you are able to reference it later (this is especially important if you are creating many modal pages for the same collection).

If you need to reference files, such as images, in your pages that are not hosted elsewhere (or files loaded as islandora objects) you may load them as supplementary datastreams in the Collection. When adding the datastream be sure to give the DSID a unique name and provide a descriptive label. After loading the file use the URL of the datastream itself as the location of the resource in your page.  Supplemental datastreams for use in pages is not limited to images. You may host any type of file as long as it does not exceed the upload limit of 2GB. Other examples include PDF, Excel documents, and audio files. You may also add an HTML file that is not linked from your related-links menu.  If you’d like to link to other modal pages from within a modal page, add it as an anchor link.  NOTE: Only use an anchor link if the datastream designated in the link is included in the menu.

If the page datastream is not included in the related-links file, link to it with either the full URL or a relative path. These pages will not open as a modal page. They will open as a separate HTML page and are not subject to any CSS that is not present or referenced within the page itself.

Information Menu

Please see this presentation: 

You can see an example of a collection information menu on the PALMM Islandora site at . The collection information menu is the menu under the slideshow on the PALMM homepage.


  • Easy to locate links remove the need for inline linking or list creation in DESC-TEXT.
  • Reduce clutter of heavy DESC-TEXT by offering alternative display opportunities, allowing more objects into users view.
  • Provide in-depth collection information without user leaving site.
  • Highlight items from the collection.
  • Display collection pathfinders.
  • Build collection “exhibits”.
  • Provide collection specific contact and provenance info at the collection level.
  • Integrate colleges and faculty with the display of departmental links and information.
  • Inclusion of files not part of formal collection.
  • Increases interactivity, opportunity to engage users.
  • Collection information datastreams stored in Fedora repository as part of collection Fedora Object.
  • Use extra area to display/sell ad space. 

Create a Related Links XML File

Related Links are located in a menu along the left hand side of an Islandora homepage. (On the page this is the menu with links for About PALMM, Advanced Search , PALMM Participants, Searching hints, Other links of interest, and FLVC.)

The RELATED-LINKS datastream lets users create the menu of links. The RELATED-LINKS database is a simple XML field and can be made with a text editor, like Notepad. The template is like so:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
 <internal-link title="INTERNAL LINK LABEL GOES HERE">/islandora/object/namespace:pid</internal-link>
 <external-link title="EXTERNAL LINK LABEL GOES HERE"></external-link>
 <page title="1st MODAL PAGE LABEL GOES HERE">PAGE_STREAM_1</page>
 <page title="2nd MODAL PAGE LABEL GOES HERE">PAGE_STREAM_2</page>

You can see in the template that there are links for:

  • external site = any URL on the Web
  • internal site = any URL on your Islandora site
  • page = a page that you make in Islandora

Adding an external site link

Format it like:

 <external-link title="EXTERNAL LINK LABEL GOES HERE"></external-link>

The link will go directly to the URL you entered.

Adding an internal site link

Format it like:

 <internal-link title="INTERNAL LINK LABEL GOES HERE">/islandora/object/namespace:pid</internal-link>

Using a forward slash, the link will be appended to the end of your FL-Islandora domain.

Adding a page link

Format it like:

  <page title="PAGE LABEL GOES HERE">PAGE_STREAM_#</page>

Adding the Menu

Once the related-links xml file is populated, and any pages and desired supplemental files are loaded to the collection, it may be loaded to the target collection as a datastream. Creating the menu and associated collection content first on a test site is recommended.  Run through the following list to be certain the file is ready.

  • Every element* has a title attribute with the name of it’s link.
  • The type of tag corresponds to the enclosed text.
  • The file starts with <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?> and is saved with an .xml extension.
  • The XML is valid. You can find many utilities online to validate your XML. Please validate your XML. An online validator is available at and to use it, you only need to cut and paste.

Add the validated XML file as you would any other datastream. Be sure the the ID is RELATED-LINKS. The label value can be anything but does require input.

Maintaining the Menu

There is currently no utility in place to make edits to the collection information datastreams. If changes are needed the datastreams must be downloaded to your local machine for editing. After editing, the collection datastreams may be replaced with the updated files in the datastream management tab.

Collection Policies

If you want to add or modify the content models you are able to use within a collection, it will be necessary to make changes to the "Collection Policy". From the collection, select the Manage tab and navigate to the Collections tab. Select 'Manage collection policy' from the menu now on the left (it should be the first option). You should see a list of all available content models. To enable one for your collection, simply select the checkbox next to the appropriate Content Model. You may select as many as you would like but please familiarize yourself with the Content Models before use.

When enabling content models for usage inside of your collection, be sure that the namespace selected next to the content model name always matches your institutional namespace, ie "fsu" should have "fsu" as the namespace.


A feature to change the label of content models presented upon ingest of an object was introduced in Islandora 7.x-1-6. This option is available under Manage Collection Policy. This new label will be presented to a user as a choice when selecting a content model for a new object within that collection in place of the default content model label. It does not change the functionality of the relabeled content model. If the prompt feature is used and the label of a content model is changed, it will only affect the collection policy of THAT collection. The collections parent and sibling collections will not have the new label. However, if a subcollection is created with the collection with a modified prompt and the Collection Policy is inherited, that subcollection will have also have the labels of its parent.

Pictured above: Manage Collection Policy tab with new ‘Prompt’ field.

Below: Content Models and their associated ‘Prompt’.

Below: The name of Islandora Large Image Content Model is changed to “Real Big Photos!”

Below: Creating a new object within this collection will now provide “Real Big Photos!” as a choice of content model for islandora:sp_large_image_cmodel in place of “Islandora Large Image Content Model”.

The Prompt feature is not likely to be useful for seasoned Islandora users. It may be useful for new users or student assistants working as Submitters who may not need to familiarize themselves with the concept of Content Models.