Adlib is a flexible and customisable collections management system which can be adapted to all collections from the simplest through to the most complex and high profile.

Adlib software is renowned for its flexibility and the ease with which it can be tailored onsite by the customer. Specialised versions are available for archive, library and museum collections, as well as fully integrated solutions for any combination of these.

Minimum hardware requirement

For server:  

  • Processor: Intel dual core Pentium
  • RAM: 4 GB
  • Disk space: 100GB depending mostly on digital assets
Operating system(s)

Server: Windows 2008R2 Server and later

Workstation: Windows  7 or later;  Current web browser versions

Database architecture

Microsoft SQL Server

Public access support

Adlib Internet Server

The Adlib Internet Server is a flexible web application which can easily be adapted to suit the design requirements of any organisation, offering an easy way to get your collections on-line.

Key features include support for user generated content such as comments and tagging, configurable search and display options, three levels of search tool, email/data download function, multi-lingual interface. Open Archive Initiative (OAI) harvesting supported (e.g. for Europeana, APEx).

Adlib API  

The Adlib API is a command library that can be used to interact with Adlib databases or a 3rd party application such as a DAM/MAM/PAM. Using this API you can easily build your own applications through one of the three available methods: Url requests, Adlib.Data Windows dll or jQuery plugin.


TheCollectionCloud offers you and your target audience an affordable, integral experience via website or app. The website brings a joint overview of numerous collections, building bridges between them, offering knowledge and resources in one place. The app for mobile devices increases visitor engagement even more and offers an unlimited exposure to a worldwide audience. The app is available in relevant app stores, at no charge.

Backup support

Adlib systems are designed to run in ‘real-time’. System backup is achieved using standard Microsoft techniques depending on the platform in use, including transaction logging for recovery purposes. Adlib systems work with the minimum of disruption to availability. This can be enhanced by taking advantage of the features offered by Microsoft SQL Server database to give a high level of resilience to the system, including database mirroring, clustering or replication.

The recovery facility is available in Microsoft SQL Server management studio. Every field within a record maintains an audit trail of all previous contents.  For each edit that is made, the user name, date and time and previous content is recorded.  Some field contents are linked from other databases, and in these cases, the audit trail is maintained in the linked database.  Using either the standard system reporting tools, or Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio, reports about the database and its users can be generated.

Adlib systems are designed to work with the minimum of disruption to availability. Adlib support will assist as far as possible, with the possibility of temporarily hosting a copy of the customer’s application if needed.

Data auditing and cleaning

Within the Adlib application we offer a number of ways to audit data. In real time when entering data, the thesaurus will allow input or validate against standards in use, ensuring correct data entry. The global search/update functionality allows an extensive data audit.

By e.g. search and replace, data can be mass cleaned as well as individually, throughout the application.

Single user cost

Adlib Standard, Local db/SQL Express: GBP 1,750

Adlib Standard, SQL Server: GBP 2,275

SLA level 1: 18%

Five user cost

Adlib Standard, Local db/SQL Express: GBP  8,635

Adlib Standard, SQL Server: GBP 10,250

SLA level 1: 18%

Additional pricing notes

Adlib Internet Server; unlimited users: GBP 3,550 per server

Adlib software’s flexibility is unrivalled. From Standard to XPlus (Archive, Library & Museum combined), we cover all aspects of collections management. Adlib licenses are per concurrent user and does not necessarily restirct the number of unique users accordingly.

We offer the following add-ons:

  • Library loans / circulation
  • Library acquisitions
  • Library Serials
  • Reading Room
  • Workflow
  • Axiell Move (mobile tracker)
  • Ingest
  • Office Connect
  • SDI

Please contact us for an offer that fits your needs.


A range of courses are available in the UK; both as regularly-scheduled classroom sessions and on-site training at a date and venue to suit you.

View upcoming scheduled training courses here

Technical support

Our top priority is providing the support you need to keep your Adlib system fully operational, and this important task is fulfilled by our support department. Customers with a support SLA are entitled to the following services:

  • Online answers to frequently asked questions.
  • The  Service desk – open every working day.
  • Documentation – all system documentation is available online.
  • Upgrades – download the latest Adlib update from our support portal.
Special features

We keep innovating, with and for our customers we continuously improve our products and create hands-on tools, with a focus on user feedback. We remain flexible by adapting to specific requirements, updates in the market place and technological changes.

Some unique features Adlib offers:

  • Office Connect: work with your collection directly from within your Microsoft Office programs
  • Axiell Move iOS App: to track your collection item’s movements using barcodes or RFID on- & offline
  • Upload button: directly upload (part of) your collection to the cloud and still be able to edit or remove at your convenience
  • Adlib Ingest: tool for bulk media ingestion into Adlib Databases. Extracts meta data from media files. Handles multi-media files and other documents.

Additional features: 

  • Audit Trails – As standard
  • Password authentication – As standard
  • Picklists – As standard
  • Thesaurus for data entry – As standard
  • Thesaurus for retrieval – As standard
  • Screen designer – As standard
  • Report writer – As standard
  • Modifiable data structure – As standard
Image formats
  • BMP
  • TIFF
  • WMF
  • JPEG
  • PNG
  • GIF

Any format supported by Windows Media Player (varies according to Windows version), including additionally installed codecs.

In addition any other format can be supported by a direct link to open the file in the appropriate external viewer.

Media formats
  • ASF
  • AVI
  • WMF
  • MP4
  • MPEG
  • WAV
  • AAC
  • AIFF
  • MP3
  • WMA

Any format supported by Windows Media Player (varies according to Windows version)

In addition any other format can be supported by a direct link to open the file in the appropriate external viewer.

Are image and media formats configurable?
Integrated DAMS

Yes. Core digital media management functions are included as standard, but a fully-fledged DAMS is also available as an option.

Support for integration with other DAMS

Yes. We have integrated with these DAMs:

  • Portfolio by Extensis
  • Cumulus by Canto
  • Preservica by Tessella
  • Imagen by Cambridge Imaging
  • Picturae
Business process automation

Yes. Adlib offers a flexible workflow application: Adlib Workflow. This application can be configured to support the business processes flows as they exist in an organisation.

Digital rights management

Yes. All Spectrum rights fields are implemented, and access controls can be applied to digital media within the system.

Mobile support

Adlib offers a variety of mobile solutions already, amongst which the Mobile Tracker and TheCollectionCloud app. Besides these readily available mobile offers, our API is available to developers and allows for high end mobile development.

Remote thesauri

Yes. Adlib supports integration with online thesauri/authority files via web services. Adlib can be flexibly configured to store additional metadata, such the URI and source details, from the external thesauri in the local Adlib system. Linked Open Data is fully supported.

User generated content

Through the Adlib Internet Server, we offer the standard possibility to comment (including media upload) and tagging. This content is stored in a database linked to the collection catalogue. The Internet Server platform can also serve as a crowd sourcing interface.


Yes. Our API is open and fully documented:

Functions for import are included in the user interface, while the administration interface offers more advanced features including data mapping and attachment of scripts for data manipulation. A number of standard data formats are supported, such as; tagged ASCII, delimited text, (grouped) XML. Others available by arrangement.

Functions for export are included in the user interface, while the administration interface offers more advanced features. Users can install XSLT scripts to transform XML export to suit any desired schema for data export or reporting purposes. A number of standard data formats are supported, such as; tagged ASCII, delimited text, (grouped) XML.

Ready for Europeana Connection Kit (ECK)

OAI-PMH - Standard

SRU-CQL - Standard

REST - Standard

SOAP - Purchase

RSS - Standard

ATOM - Standard

Linked Data/SPARQL - Standard

jQuery and Adlib.DLL

  • DC
  • MARC
  • RDA
  • RDF
  • LIDO
  • EAD
  • EAC
Museum / heritage standards
  • Spectrum
  • CIDOC CRM Core
  • ICOM Documentation Guidelines
  • CDWA
  • LIDO
  • CCO
  • CHIN Data Dictionaries
  • EDM

In regards to schema, it is easy for the Adlib data schema to be adapted to meet any data standard.

Spectrum procedures
Object Entry (primary)
Acquisition and accessioning (primary)
Location and movement control (primary)
Inventory (primary)
Cataloguing (primary)
Object Exit (primary)
Loans In - borrowing objects (primary)
Loans Out - lending objects (primary)
Documentation planning (primary)
Condition checking and technical assessment
Collections care and conservation
Insurance and indemnity
Damage and loss
Deaccessioning and disposal
Rights management
Use of collections
Bibliographical records

Yes. Adlib supports full bibliographic cataloguing and functions such as acquisition, circulation management and serials management.

Bibliographic / library standards

Adlib supports:

  • RDA
  • ISBD
  • AACR2
  • MARC XML/exchange format
Archival records support

Yes. Adlib supports full archival cataloguing and functions such as accessions, retention schedules and reading room management.

Archival records standards

Adlib Archives supports ISAD(G), ISAAR (CPF), EAD and EAC.

Integration with other library and archive management systems

Integration with other library and archive management systems can be achieved using the Adlib API. Adlib includes an SRU server and is also an SRU client.

Client URLs

For an overview of Adlib client websites:

Contact postal address

Barclay House
35 Whitworth Street West
M1 5NG

Software developer name
Axiell ALM BV
Software developer contact name
Rene van den Heuvel
Software developer contact address

Postbus 1436
3600 BK Maarssen

Software developer email
UK users and sites

Adlib applications are used by over 300 organisations in the UK and Ireland. We currently serve 275 organisations using Adlib in the UK, and about 1100 users.

View UK client list:

International users and sites

Over 1600 institutions including the British Film Institute, Van Gogh Museum and the Vienna Technical Museum.

View the full list:


The British Film Institute Case Study can be viewed here:

A video interview with Durham University can be viewed here:

Integration associate with the URL of the digital asset
Other software
Publish records online
Previous URLs