Systems Librarianship

Author: C. Sean Burns
Date, version 2: 2024-04-01
GitHub: @cseanburns


The goal of this book is to provide a technical introduction to the basics of systems librarianship using Linux. The book is used alongside a course on systems librarianship that the author teaches.

The course and book goals include:

  1. how to use the Linux command line in order to become more efficient computer users and more comfortable with using computers in general;
  2. how to use cloud computing resources and create virtual machines;
  3. how to manage projects using Git and GitHub;
  4. how to create a LAMP server, websites, and create a bare bones OPAC;
  5. how to install and configure content management systems, and;
  6. how to install and configure an integrated library system.
  7. to foster self-efficacy with computers and an enthusiasm for foundational computer technologies

About This Book

The Systems Librarianship course is a brand new course (2023). I created the course to help future and current librarians become proficient in the kinds of technology used to manage and provide electronic resources.

Since I use this book for my Systems Librarianship course, which I will likely teach each spring semester, this book will be a live document. Each semester that I teach this course, I will update the content in order to address changes in the technology and to edit for clarity when I discover some aspect of the book causes confusion or does not provide enough information.

A small part of this book will draw from my course on Linux Systems Administration, which I teach in the fall semesters.

This book is not a comprehensive introduction to systems librarianship. For example, this book does not cover software coding nor managerial duties, like issuing requests for proposals for software products, or budgeting. It is designed as an entry level course in the technical aspects of systems librarianship, and it is meant to go hand-in-hand with other courses taught in our program. That includes my course on electronic resource management but also other courses that my colleagues teach.

I am using mdBook to build this work. Please use the search function on this site to search for specific topics or keywords. If the reader desires a PDF copy of this work, the printer icon at the top right of the page will print to PDFs.

The content in this book is open access and licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 license. Feel free to fork it on GitHub and modify it for your own needs.