Content from Introduction to MarcEdit

Last updated on 2023-04-25 | Edit this page

Estimated time: 10 minutes



  • What is MarcEdit?
  • What can MarcEdit do?


  • Explain what the MarcEdit software does
  • Explain how the MarcEdit software can help work with library bibliographic data and library MARC files

What is MarcEdit?

MarcEdit is a suite of tools created and maintained by Terry Reese. The tools together form the MarcEdit software. These tools provide numerous functions which can be used to create, edit, and manipulate library metadata, particularly, though not limited to, records in a variety of MARC formats and standards. In this way, the MarcEdit software is MARC agnostic and can work with Unimarc or MARC21. MarcEdit can be used to:

  • make small, single, edits to individual MARC records
  • make edits across many MARC records at a single time
  • automate common edits/processes
  • validate your data against defined MARC rules
  • convert data between different formats
  • enhance your data
  • pull data from external sources

The features offered by the suite of MarcEdit tools continue to evolve, with new features added as the software is updated by Terry Reese. A comprehensive list of features is available on the MarcEdit website.

Although the ability to create, view and edit MARC records is built into many pieces of library and bibliographic management software, MarcEdit is particularly flexible and powerful for manipulating MARC data in bulk. With MarcEdit’s wide-ranging functionality and integration into other library software and services, it is a very powerful toolkit for anyone working with bibliographic data.

MarcEdit’s Primary Features

Profiling MARC Data

Before working with any data file, it is advantageous to understand that data. MarcEdit can help you answer common questions you might have of your data, such as: How many records are in the file? Does the file contain MARC data that describes only books, and are those books print and/or electronic? Do the records follow national metadata standards and best practices needed for your local systems?

Getting a profile of the MARC data in your file can help you make a plan on what changes need to be made to the file. Further, it can help you automate some of the changes if this type of file is one that you work with often.

Manipulating MARC Data

MarcEdit is like the Swiss army knife for MARC data. You can perform single (one record) or global (all records) edits such as adding or deleting MARC fields, subfields and indicator values. Other edit functions include building fields using MARC data from other fields, or changing the case of data in a field. You can also run functions that update your MARC data to the content standard Resource Description and Access (RDA) or assign OCLC’s FAST subject headings to records in the file.

Tasks and Automation

If you have a list of changes to make, MarcEdit allows you to package these together to be run one after another in Tasks. These packages of changes can then be saved for future use. This is one of the ways to automate your work, making manipulating your MARC data easier and quicker.


MarcEdit can integrate with OCLC’s WorldCat and Ex Libris’ Alma library system platform. Thanks to these integrations, you can retrieve records from external services, manipulate the records, and then push the changes back to the system integration of your choice.

Using MarcEdit you can harvest OAI or Open Archives Initiative for Harvesting Metadata Protocol Dublin Core or MARC21 records. Though not necessarily an integration, harvested records can also be manipulated.

Regular Expressions

MarcEdit allows for the use of regular expressions in many of its MARC data manipulation features. Regular expressions are a sequence of text to identify a search pattern. This is a powerful tool that allows greater flexibility when manipulating MARC data.

Getting help

If you encounter problems installing MarcEdit or using a MarcEdit feature, a good source of support is the MarcEdit mailing list. The MarcEdit website has a list of places where you can get help using the software including:

Key Points

  • MarcEdit is a tool for working with bibliographic metadata, specifically in the MARC format
  • MarcEdit can be used to open, review and edit MARC files
  • MarcEdit provides advanced features and integrations to support the manipulation of MARC files

Content from Getting Started with MarcEdit

Last updated on 2023-09-22 | Edit this page

Estimated time: 23 minutes



  • How is MarcEdit organized?
  • What are the top level features?
  • Where are the top level features located?


  • Locate top level menu features
  • Explain the top level menu features

Getting Started with MarcEdit

Top Level Menu Features

When you launch MarcEdit, the main window opens. From here, you can access the suite of MarcEdit tools, features, plug-ins, quick links, or help.

MarcEdit Main Window: Top Level Menu

In the main window top level menu, there are three options: Tools, Plug-ins, and Help.


The Tools menu allows you to access a number of different basic and advanced features. Features to highlight include:

  • Preferences
  • The MarcEdit regular expression store
  • OAI Harvester
  • Export either MARC records or records reformatted as a text delimited csv (comma separated value) or tsv (tab separated value) file
  • MARC Processing Tools: MARCsplit, MARCcompare, MARCjoin, MARCmerge, find duplicate records, RDA Helper, or MARCValidator
  • Delimited Text Translator
  • Utilities that include a verify URL tool

One thing you’ll notice is that there are both shortcuts, linked icons, and menu options that lead to the same features or tools. For example, to update your preferences, you can go to Tools → Preferences, use the keyboard shortcut of Ctrl+Shift+P, or click on the gearbox in the upper left hand corner of the main window.


In MarcEdit, Preferences allow you to configure the main window and various tools, such as the MarcEditor (the tool used to manipulate MARC data). For example, you can change the font, font size, or select your most frequently used tools to display as shortcuts in the main window. In Preferences, you can also configure settings for other tools beyond the main window menu such as the MarcEditor where you can update the default character encoding for records that are opened in this tool (such as MARC8 or UTF-8) , integrations with OCLC, or accessibility settings.

Let’s add a shortcut to our main window

  1. Click on the gearbox in the top left corner or go to Tools → Preferences
  2. Select “Main Window” in the Preferences window in the left hand pane
  3. In the right hand pane, select RDA Helper
  4. Click Ok

Name three other tools or features that can be changed in Preferences.

  1. Click on the gear icon in the main window or go to Tools → Preferences
  2. In the left hand pane, look at the names there
  3. Tools or features that can be changed in Preferences: Main Window, Bibframe, MarcEditor, MARCEngine, Ease of Use, File Associations, Language, Locations, Other, Updates, Configure Watcher, ILS Integration, OCLC API Integration.


There are a number of useful plugins that can be added to MarcEdit to extend its functionality. An example is the MARC to KBART or Knowledge bases and related tools converter. You can find more information on plugins on the MarcEdit Plugin page.


This top level menu Help allows you to find information on updates, about your current MarcEdit installation, and links out to video tutorials or online help.


MarcEdit remembers what you did last. You can see this history in the Quick Links section which is a drop down of features and tools you frequently use. Although not related to a history of what you did last in MarcEdit, the “What would you like to do?” box in the upper right hand corner is convenient for quickly finding tools and features in MarcEdit.

Key Points

  • MarcEdit offers the ability to add shortcuts to the main window
  • MarcEdit allows you to set preferences for features and tools such as the main window or the MarcEditor
  • Preferences can be accessed using the gearbox icon and selecting Tools → Preferences, or by using the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+Shift+P

Content from Working with MARC files

Last updated on 2023-09-22 | Edit this page

Estimated time: 21 minutes



  • What is a MARC binary file?
  • What does it mean to break and make a MARC file and how do I open a file of MARC records in MARCedit?
  • Why is encoding important?
  • How does the MarcEditor display MARC records?


  • Explain the difference between mrc and mrk MARC file formats
  • Successfully break and open a file of MARC records in the MarcEditor
  • Explain character encoding and its importance
  • Understand how to read a MARC record in the MarcEditor

Working with MARC files

MARC file types

MarcEdit recognizes the following MARC file types:

File type File extension Usage
Binary MARC file mrc File format typically used in an ILS or LSP. Other file extensions provided by vendors (ex. marc, dat, bin) are equivalent. Binary is format consisting of a series of sequential bytes, each of which is eight bits in length.
Mnemonic MARC Text File mrk File format used by MarcEdit that is a human readable version of the binary file.
MARC UTF-8 Text File mrk8 Legacy file format for MARC mnemonic files saved with UTF8 encoding.
MARCXML file xml A MARC file expressed in the eXtensible Markup format or a text-based format for representing structured information.

To work with a MARC file in the MARCEditor your file needs to be in MARC mnemonic format. If you only have a binary file, then that file needs to be converted to the mnemonic format.

MARC Tools

To work with MARC data files or convert between metadata formats for library bibliographic data recognized by MarcEdit, click on the MARC Tools icon that has the crossed hammer and spanner in the upper left hand corner of the main menu. The available features are:

  • MarcBreaker: This “breaks” the MARC binary file into a readable (mnemonic) format that can be edited in the MarcEditor.
  • MarcMaker: This takes the readable (mnemonic) format MARC data file and creates the MARC binary file.
  • MARC21 to MARC21XML: This converts a MARC21 file to MARC21XML.
  • MARC21XML to MARC21: This converts a MARC21XML file to a MARC21 binary file.
  • MARC to JSON: This converts a MARC21 file to a JSON file.
  • JSON to MARC: This converts a JSON file to a MARC21 file.
  • JSON to XML: This converts a JSON file to XML.
  • XML to JSON: This converts an XML file to JSON.

The conversions from one encoding standard to another, as in MARC21 to MARC21XML, rely on eXtensible stylesheets. MarcEdit comes with several default stylesheets which come from those maintained by the Library of Congress. If you are familiar with stylesheets, you can also create your own.

Character Encoding

To ensure the integrity of your data you need to select the correct character encoding for your dataset. MarcEdit does not automatically detect character encoding, however, UTF8 is set as the default encoding scheme. You can update the encoding scheme when using the MarcBreaker, or you can update the default in Preferences → MarEditor → Default Encoding. For more information on character encoding and translating from one encoding to another, see The MarcEdit Field Guide

Break a MARC Binary File

To transform our binary MARC file (.mrc) into MARC mnemonic human readable format (.mrk), you use the MarcBreaker.

Break a MARC (.mrc) file to use in the MarcEditor
  1. Launch MarcEdit and from the main window click on the MARC Tools Icon.
  2. In the MARC Tools window, Select Operation → MARCBreaker.
  3. In the field, Select Data to Process, click the file folder image to the right of the Open box to browse for the sample MARC data file (.mrc). Double click the found file to select it.
  4. Next, you will need save your file in the MARC mnemonic format (.mrk) by clicking the file folder to the right of the Save As box. Select the location and name you would like to give your new file.
  5. Under Character encoding select UTF8 as default character encoding.
  6. Click execute.
  7. Once you click execute the newly created .mrk file will be available to open in the MarcEditor. Under Results at the bottom of the window you will see a count of the records in your file. Click Edit Records to open the .mrk file in the MarcEditor.

Note: When you break a .mrc file and create a new .mrk file for editing in the MarcEditor, you are making a copy of your data in a new file format. As a result, any edits you make to the .mrk file in the MarcEditor will not automatically be reflected in the original .mrc file. We will cover saving and compiling (using the MarcMaker) to create an updated .mrc file in an upcoming lesson.

MARC Record layout in the MarcEditor

You should now see the MARC records from the file displaying in the MarcEditor:

MarcEditor screen with file open

The MarcEditor displays the records in what is called the ‘Mnemonic MARC Text File’ format (file extension *.mrk). Each line in the file represents a field in a MARC record:

=245  14$aThe Lord of the Rings /$c J.R.R. Tolkien.

This example breaks down as follows:

= Each line/field starts with the ‘=’ sign.
245 The ‘=’ is followed immediately by the three character MARC field code.
[two spaces] The MARC field is always followed by two spaces.
14 The field indicators follow the spaces if the field has indicators. When an indicator is not coded a \ is used. For the control or fixed fields where no indicators are used, the field content starts directly after the spaces.
$aThe Lord of the Rings /$c J.R.R. Tolkien. The field content contains the subfields (indicated using the $ symbol) and the text. Because the subfields use the $ symbol, any real occurrences of the dollar symbol (e.g. for currency) is shown as [dollar] instead. Unlike in some cataloguing applications, there are no spaces between subfield codes and the subfield text.

Records in the MarcEditor display are separated by a blank line.

MARC syntax in the MarcEditor

Understanding the layout of MARC data in the MarcEditor is key to using the program’s tools successfully. For instance, in some tools it is important to specify a field’s indicators directly preceeding the first subfield. Throughout this workshop we will highlight how different tools rely on this syntax to apply edits.

The MarcEditor divides a file of MARC records into ‘pages’ of 100 records. You can scroll up and down the page of MARC records using the scroll bar as usual, but to see the next 100 records you need to use the Next/Previous page controls which are at the bottom left of the screen. The MarcEditor can handle very large files of MARC records, because it never tries to load all the records at the same time.

Setting MarcEditor Preferences

You can adjust the number of records displayed per ‘page’ through the MarcEditor preferences which can be accessed through the Edit → Preferences menu option from the MarcEditor, or through the ‘Settings’ icon on the opening screen of MarcEdit.

Within the MarcEditor preferences you can adjust the font and font size within the MarcEditor. You can also set your character encoding defaults. If you navigate to File Associations within the Preferences window, you can select Associate (*.mrc) files with the MarcBreaker and Associate (*.mrk) files with the MarcEditor. Setting these file associations will make it easy to break .mrc files and edit .mrk files.

If you change your preferences for the MarcEditor, the tool used to work with MARC data, you can always go back to the default settings.

Reset settings for the MarcEditor in Preferences

  1. Click Edit → Preferences
  2. Select “MarcEditor” in the Preferences window in the left hand pane
  3. In the right hand pane, select Set Defaults for either font or font size
  4. Click Ok

Key Points

  • MarcEdit can work with a variety of file formats
  • The MARC Tools Icon allow you to convert data from one file format to another
  • The MarcEditor works with a MarcEdit specific mnemonic format of MARC records (.mrk)
  • It is necessary to break a MARC binary file to work with that MARC data in the MarcEditor. The extension of these easily readable MARC files are .mrk rather than the binary extension of .mrc
  • Understanding the layout (syntax) of MARC records in the MarcEditor is key to working with the records.

Content from Layout of the MarcEditor

Last updated on 2023-04-25 | Edit this page

Estimated time: 10 minutes



  • What is the MarcEditor?
  • How are MARC files organized in the MarcEditor


  • Explain what the MarcEditor does
  • Explain how the MarcEditor features can help work with MARC files

The MarcEditor

The MarcEditor is a discreet utility within MarcEdit that enables you to work with your MARC data in an easily human and machine readable format.

MarcEditor Top Level Menu

The MarcEditor has a robust set of features available via the top level menu. Features can be accessed through the menu or through shortcut keys. The shortcut key for a feature appears next to it in the menu.

MarcEdit top level menu

MarcEditor Top Level Menu Features

Each top level menu heading contains so many gems. Below are some highlights of those features that are frequently used when working with a set of MARC data.


  • Save, Save As, Open, Recent: This is where you’ll find those important functions of saving, saving as, opening up a recent file, or opening a new file.
  • Select Records for Edit: This is where you can select a subset of your data to work with.
  • Compile File: This is the same function as MarcMaker, meaning that the readable MARC data file (.mrk) being edited in the MarcEditor will be converted to a MARC binary file (.mrc).


  • Find and Replace: You can find or find and replace just on the current page or in the entire file.
  • Edit Shortcuts: This is where you can change the case, find records that have a missing MARC field or duplicate MARC field, or find fields with a missing word.
  • Jump To: You can use this to jump to a record in the file.
  • Insert/Edit 006 or 008: This will open a form to easily insert or edit these fixed fields.
  • Delete Record: You can delete one or more records in a range or based on invalid encoding characters.

Fonts If you need to change the font and size for the current MARC data you are working on in the MarcEditor, this is the place to do that.


  • Create a custom report
  • Get a count of all the MARC Fields in the MARC Data
  • Get a count of the records based on type (book, serials, video recordings, etc.)
  • MARCValidator


  • Add/Delete Marc Fields
  • Edit subfields
  • Edit Indicators
  • Build a new MARC field
  • RDA Helper
  • Sort By

OCLC WorldCat: Requires OCLC Integration Setup

  • Search WorldCat
  • Add/Delete/Update OCLC Bibliographic Data
  • Create/Update Bibliographic Data
  • Update Holdings

Key Points

  • MarcEditor is a tool to work with MARC data in an easily readable format
  • The MarcEditor can be used to perform a number of different functions such as adding, deleting MARC fields or subfields, building MARC fields, running reports, or checking the validity of MARC data
  • The MarcEditor can be used to perform one task at a time or automate a set of tasks for particular types of MARC files

Content from Profiling Your MARC data

Last updated on 2024-07-11 | Edit this page

Estimated time: 15 minutes



  • How do I use different reports to get an overview of my MARC file?
  • How do I locate errors in my records?
  • How do I use the Edit Shortcuts tool to identify and fix common errors?


  • Access reports for getting an overview of your MARC data
  • Find tools to locate errors in your MARC records by using the MARCedit Edit toolbar

Profiling your MARC data

The MarcEditor provides multiple reporting options and tools to help you profile your MARC data and understand the contents of your file. Reports are located under the Reports tab.

Overview reports

The Material Type Report can be used to identify the types of resources described in your MARC file. This report is helpful when you’re uncertain of what resources are represented in your file, or to locate potential errors.

Run Material Type Report

To run the Material Type Report

  1. Click Reports
  2. Select Material Type Report
  3. Click Generate Report

If we expect our MARC file to contain only book records, we can easily locate and review records with other material types by using the Find Records by Type Report.

Run Find Records by Type Report

To run the Find Records by Type Reports

  1. Click Reports
  2. Select Material Type Report
  3. Select material type of records you want to review from the drop-down list. For this exercise select Continuing Resources. A window will open displaying the Leader of each record. Double click on a result to be brought to that record in the MarcEditor.
  4. Click Close to exit the results window

The Field Count Report can also be used to profile your data. The Field Count Report lists each field found in your records, the number of times each field occurs in the record set, and the total number of records each field occurs in. While high level, the results can tell you about the cataloguing standards used (260 vs. 264) and identify potential errors (repeating non-repeatable fields), missing fields, local fields, etc.

Run Field Count Report

To run the Field Count Reports

  1. Click Reports
  2. Select Field Count

Locate errors using the Field Count Report

  1. What do the field count results tell us about our records?
  2. Looking at fields 100-300 do any of the results indicate errors in our records?
  1. Field count outlines each field found in our records, the number of times it occurs, and how many records it occurs in. Field count can also tell us the number of records in our file (536).
  2. Non-repeatable field 245 occurs more times than the number of records it’s found in. At least one record contains multiple 245 fields. Field 245 appears in one less record than other required fields.

Edit functions

Other useful tools for profiling your data can be found under the Edit tab.

Like many applications, the MarcEditor provides a Find function. Find is particularly useful for locating and reviewing all instances of a MARC field within your data, or locating a particular text string within your data.

We can use Find to locate and review the 245 field.

Run Find Function

To use the Find function

  1. Click Edit
  2. Select Find (*Ctrl+f will also launch the Find function)
  3. In the “Find what:” dialogue box enter =245
  4. Click Find All

Note: When using Find to locate instances of a specific field, make sure to include the preceding = before the field number. Including the = ensures only matches on field number will be returned.

The Find results list is organized by record number, displaying the matched field content on the left, and the record number the field belongs to on the right. We can see from our results that Record # 8 appears twice, signaling that this record contains two 245 fields. By double clicking on “Jump to record #: 8” we could go directly to the record in our file to edit it. However, next we will show you a set of tools that can be used to locate and fix common errors like duplicate fields.

The Find Records With Duplicate Tags function allows us to easily locate records with a duplicated field.

Run Find Records With Duplicate Tags Function

  1. Click Edit
  2. Select Edit Shortcuts
  3. Select Field Edits
  4. Click Find Records With Duplicate Tags
  5. In the dialogue box enter 245 and click OK

The results list includes two records with duplicate 245 fields, # 8 and # 28. Click on Jump to Record # to be taken to the record in the MarcEditor. Once on the record you can manually delete the incorrect 245 field.

The Find Records Missing Field function allows us to easily locate records with a missing field. To run this function

Run Find Records Missing Field Function

  1. Click Edit
  2. Select Edit Shortcuts
  3. Select Field Edits
  4. Click Find Records Missing Field
  5. In the dialogue box enter 245 and click OK

The results list will show one record missing a 245 field. Click on Jump to Record # to be taken to the record in the MarcEditor.

Correct the missing 245 field

  1. What’s the issue with this record? Is the 245 formatted correctly?
  1. The 245 field number is formatted incorrectly. The MarcEditor relies on a standard format to identify and take actions on fields. Remove the rogue space and update the field number to correct this record.

Key Points

  • MarcEditor provides many different tools and reports to profile and edit your MARC records

Content from Manipulating MARC data basics

Last updated on 2023-10-12 | Edit this page

Estimated time: 46 minutes



  • How can MARC data be manipulated?
  • How can fields, subfields, and/or indicators be added, changed, or removed?
  • How can fixed fields be manipulated?
  • What is the difference between save and compile?


  • Explain how to find, find all, and replace
  • Explain how to add, update, and remove fields, subfields, indicators, and fixed fields
  • Explain the difference between save and compile
  • Successfully manipulate MARC data
  • Successfully save your MARC data
  • Successfully compile your MARC data

Manipulating MARC data

We’ve seen how we can manually and individually edit records in the MarcEditor, however, MarcEdit provides a number of more powerful ways to manipulate our MARC data. Fields, subfields, indicators can be added, removed, or changed. Fixed fields can be corrected. Fields and subfields specific to RDA can be added while AACR2 conventions are removed. It is possible to work with a subset of MARC data and then incorporate those changes into the original whole MARC data set. The variations sometime seem endless and give more weight to the nickname of MarcEdit, the swiss army knife of MARC data.

Find, Find All, and Replace

Like many other applications, the MarcEditor offers the ability to Find, Find All, and Replace.

Find: Find will search as a keyword what you enter into the Find window search box. This option will only search the current page in the MarcEdit. Remember that the default settings splits the MARC records into 100 for each page. Find will only search those records on the page you are currently on.

Find All: Find all will search for your search terms entered in the Find window search box over all the pages, or all your MARC records.

Replace: Replace works alongside Find or Find all. You have the option to Replace just those on the page or Replace all where the replace occurs on all pages in all records.

If you want to Find or Find all a MARC field, you will need to include the equals sign before the MARC field. For example, if you type in the search box 856, Find or Find All will search for 856 as a keyword anywhere. If there is a title such as “The Jourey of the 856 people”, this will then show up in your search results. If you search for =856, it will find anything with that string. If for example there is a title with “… =856 …” then this will also appear in the search results. Typically the equals before the MARC tage will bring up that MARC tag.

Find, Find All, and Replace using the MARC field 856

  1. Go to Edit->Find (or CTRL+F)
  2. In the search box in the new window, type in 856
  3. Click Find
  4. What results to you see?
  5. Close that window
  6. Go to Edit->Find (or CTRL+F)
  7. In the search box in the new window, type in =856
  8. Click Find All
  9. What results to you see

Add a proxy to the MARC field 856

  1. Find those MARC fields 856 where there is a subfield 3 for Full text follow by a subfield u
  2. Add this proxy
  1. Click Edit->Replace
  2. In the search box for Find, type in =856 40$3Full text:$u
  3. In the search box for Replace, type in =856 40$3Full text:$u
  4. Undo those changes.

Find and Replace

Remember to always verify that the search results of the Find or Find All. Find or Find all will search that exact phrase or string that you put into the search box either on that page (Find) or in every record (Find all).

Add/Delete a MARC field

To add or delete a MARC field, go to Tools in the upper menu in the MarcEditor and select Add/Delete Field. This will open a new Batch Editing Tools window. The Add/Delete Field functions are on the same menu level and you will need to select the action of either add or delete using the buttons on the right hand side.

In the top middle section of the window, there are two data entry fields: Field and Field Data. Enter the MARC field number you want to add or delete in the Field dialogue box. Then enter the indicators, subfields, and data in Field Data dialogue box. Remember to include the dollar sign to indicate a subfield.

MarcEdit empty Add/Delete Field dialogMarcEdit completed Add/Delete Field dialog

To add the field, click the Add Field button and to delete any matching fields, click the Delete Field button.

For both the Add Field and Delete Field functions there are a number of different options that can be applied to control the updates.

The options to Add a Field include, if the field you are adding already exists, it can be inserted first in the list of those MARC fields or last. MARC fields can be added only if that MARC field is not already present in that record or based on the presence of other criteria found in other MARC fields. For example, a MARC field 655 \4$aElectronic books can be added to only those records that are eBooks based on the data in the LDR or 008.

The options to Delete a Field include removing duplicates, removing MARC fields based on field position, removing MARC fields that do not match what is entered in the Field Data, or removing invalid UTF-8 MARC fields. For example, to ensure that only the field 655 \4$aElectronic books. is present in the MARC data, the option Remove if field data does not match can be selected.

Add and then delete a MARC field

  1. Add a 655 for electronic books with first indicators blank and second indicator 4 to the MARC data.
  2. Delete that 655 that you just added.
  1. Go to Tools in the upper menu in the MarcEditor
  2. Select Add/Delete Field (F7)
  3. In the Field box enter 655, in the Field Data box enter \4$aElectronic books.
  4. Click Add Field. You can also preview this change by clicking on the arrow on the right of Add Field and selecting Preview in the 7.5 version of MarcEdit
  5. Check your MARC data. Was this MARC field added?
  6. To delete this field, go back to Tools and select Add/Delete Field (F7)
  7. In the Field box enter 655
  8. In the Field Data box enter \4$aElectronic books.
  9. Click on the Delete Field button. You can also preview this change by clicking on the arrow on the right side and selecting Preview in the 7.5 version of MarcEdit

Metacharacter syntax in the MarcEditor

Within the batch editing tools, MarcEdit uses the X metacharacter to represent a numeric range for selecting and editing fields. For example, if you enter 24X, that edit will act on fields 240-249; if you enter 5XX, that edit will act on fields 500-599.

Delete a range of MARC fields that begin with a number

  1. Verify your data contains multiple 9XX fields.
  2. Delete all 9XX fields.
  1. Verify your file has multiple 9XX fields by using the Field Count report (Reports → Field Count), or by using Find (Edit → Find “=9” → Find All)
  2. Go to Tools in the upper menu in the MarcEditor
  3. Select Add/Delete Field (F7)
  4. In the Field box add 9XX
  5. Click on the Delete Field button. You can also preview this change by clicking on the arrow on the right side and selecting Preview in the 7.5 version of MarcEdit

Add, Delete, or Change information for a subfield in a MARC field

To edit subfield data within a given field, go to Tools and select Edit Subfield Data. A new Batch Editing Tools window will open (notice that this is the same window that opened for Add/Delete a field, you can also navigate between the MarcEdit Batch Editing Tools using the labels on the left hand side of the window). From here you can add a new subfield, delete a subfield, or replace text in a subfield. Set your desired subfield edit conditions by selecting the appropriate option(s) from the Search Options list.

To add a subfield, enter the MARC field and then the subfield. The text you would like to add in that subfield is entered in Replace With box. Select New subfield only from the Search Options below and then click Replace Text. Even though you are adding a subfield, you still click Replace Text. For adding a subfield, the information that goes in that field doesn’t go in the box called Field Data, see the example below.

To delete a subfield, enter the MARC field and then the subfield. Select Delete Subfield from the Search Options and then click Remove Text.

To replace text in a subfield, enter the MARC field, the subfield, the text (or information) that needs to be changed in the Field Data box. Enter your updated text in the Replace with box. Click on Replace Text.

MarcEdit empty edit subfield dialogMarcEdit completed edit subfield dialog

Ability to Preview and Special Undo

As of version 7.5, you can preview all of these changes before making them. If you complete a batch edit that produces unexpected or undesirable results, you can perform a Special Undo by selecting Edit → Special Undo. This will only on your most recent batch edit. If you perform an action after your batch edit, Special Undo will not undo your batch change but the action you just performed. Undo and Special Undo are different. Undo undoes a manual edit whereas Special Undo undoes a bulk edit.

Add and then Delete a MARC subfield

  1. Change the $5 for the MARC field 500 from FU to your own Library of Congress Organization Code. If you are unsure of your Library of Congress Organization Code, update the code to XYZ.
  2. Delete that $5 that you just changed.
  1. Go to Tools in the upper menu in the MarcEditor
  2. Select Edit Subfield Data (F9)
  3. Add 500 in the Field box, 5 in the Subfield box, FU in the Field Data box, and your LC Organization Code in the Replace With box
  4. Click on the Replace Text button.
  5. Check your MARC data. Was FU changed to your LC Organization Code?
  6. To delete this subfield, go back to Tools and select Edit Subfield Data (F9)
  7. Enter 500 in the Field box, 5 in the Subfield box
  8. Click on the Remove Text button.

Change one or both indicators in a MARC field

Sometimes it is necessary to change one or both indicators of a MARC field. To edit field indicators, go to Tools and select Edit Indicators. This will open a new Batch Editing Tools window. Enter the MARC field and the indicators that you would like to change. Enter the new indicators you want in the Replace With Indicators box. Here you will want to be careful of the combinations of indicators. If you leave the Indicators box blank and add indicators in the Replace With Indicators box, all the indicators for that MARC field will be changed to the indicators entered in the Replace With Indicators box.

MarcEdit empty edit indicators dialogMarcEdit completed edit indicators dialog

Change an indicator for a MARC field in your MARC data

  1. Change the first indicator of the MARC field 050 to 1 for those MARC fields 050 that have a first indicator blank and a second indicator 4.
  1. Go to Tools in the upper menu in the MarcEditor
  2. Select Edit Indicators (F8)
  3. Add 050 in the Field box, \4 in the Indicators box, and 14 in the Replace With Indicators box. Leave the Field data box blank
  4. Click on the Replace button.
  5. Check your MARC data. Were the 050 \4 updated to be 050 14?

Working with MARC fixed fields

Working with fixed fields can be difficult. In the MarcEditor, you can edit one fixed field at a time using the easy editing window. If you put your cursor on that fixed field, such as an 008 or 006, then go to Edit and select Field 006 or Field 008. This will open up a window where you can edit the fixed field for that specific MARC record. To add one fixed field, put your cursor on the line where you want that fixed field inserted, go to Edit and then select Field 006 or 008. In the window, edit the fields for that specific record.

MarcEdit fixed fields editor

Batch Editing Fixed Fields in Multiple MARC Records

Sometimes it is necessary to change a fixed field for all records in your MARC data. You can use the Edit Field function. For this, you will need to know the position of the fixed field. For this, you can consult the OCLC Bibliographic Standards and Formats or the Library of Congress Bibliographic Marc Standard. This is also possible using the Replace function and regular expressions which will be covered in Lesson 09.

If you need to add a fixed field, you can use the Tools and select Add/Delete. You will need to have the 006 already formed. For example, you can add one 006 using the method explained above, copy that, and then use the Tools, Add field, to then add the 006. Remember that fixed fields don’t have indicators.

Saving, Compiling and Version Control

The MARC data that you manipulate in the MarcEditor is in a human and computer readable mnemonic .mrk file format that was broken from the original binary .mrc file. You will notice that the file name of the file you’re working on, displayed at top of the MarcEditor, has the file extension .mrk. If you look at the file in your file directory, the file icon color is blue whereas the binary .mrc MARC file icon is purple.


When you save in the MarcEditor, you are saving your latest changes as a .mrk file. Using File → Save will save edits into your current .mrk file, overwriting the original. To keep a copy of your original .mrk data, select File → Save As and choose a new file name for your edited records.


To save your edited records back into a MARC binary .mrc file (the file format typically required to load MARC records in external systems such as your ILS or LSP) use the compile feature. Select File → Compile File into MARC. Choose a new file name for your edited .mrc file. Using the same file name as your original .mrc file will overwrite the unedited file.

Records can also be compiled outside of the MarcEditor using the MarcMaker tool. To use the MarcMaker, from the Main Menu select MARC Tools. In the MARC Tools window, under Select Operation choose MarcMaker. Under Select Data to Process, in the Open box, select the .mrk file you’d like to compile. In the Save As box, specify the location and file name for your new .mrc file. Set the character encoding options as required, and then click Execute. Once compiled, you will see a message under Results specifying the number of records in the new .mrc file.

Key Points

  • MarcEdit can be used to edit any part of the MARC data including the Leader, fixed fields, fields, indicators, subfields and the content in those fields.
  • MarcEdit comes with an array of tools to manipulate data and validate MARC.

Content from Manipulating MARC data advanced

Last updated on 2023-10-13 | Edit this page

Estimated time: 28 minutes



  • How can Build New Field be used to combine elements from existing MARC fields into a new field?
  • How can the RDA Helper be used?
  • How can Select Records for Edit be used to manipulate a subset of your MARC file?


  • Explain Build New Field, RDA Helper and Select Records for Edit advanced functions

Build New Field

Building a MARC field

Sometimes it is necessary to create a new MARC field based on the content of existing MARC fields. This is possible using the function called, Build New Field.

Build New Field Window

Let’s build a new 035 9\$a using the data from the 001 and static data

  1. Go to Tools → Build New Field
  2. In the new window, in the field box, type in =035 9\$a(LCMarcEdit){001}
  3. Select the box to “Always add this field”
  4. Click Process

Use the Build New Field to add a proxy to the 856$u

  1. For eResources, it is sometimes necessary to add your institution’s proxy information to the url in the 856$u. Add prefix to the url in the 856$u.
  1. Go to Tools → Build New Field
  2. In the new window, in the field box, type in =856 40\$u{856$u}
  3. Select the box to “Replace Existing Field”
  4. Click Process

RDA Helper

Records aren’t created equal in that we encounter MARC data that follows different descriptive cataloging standards. There are a number of records cataloged according to the AACR2 standard or even AACR or earlier. Sometimes it is necessary to make sure these records follow the current RDA descriptive cataloging standard. MarcEdit lets you do this through the function called RDA Helper.

To run the RDA Helper, go to Tools and select RDA Helper. In the window that opens, you can pick and choose how you would like to transform your records to align better with the RDA descriptive standard. For example, you can add the RDA fields 336, 337, and 338 for content, media, and carrier types. You can update the MARC field 040 to include the $e rda and delete the GMD statement. You can also evaluate the 260/264.

MarcEdit RDA Helper

Run the RDA Helper on your MARC data

  1. Run the RDA Helper with these settings: Add 336, 337, 338; Modify the 040; Evaluate the 260/264; Always use the copyright symbol; Expand abbreviations; Remove the GMD.
  1. Go to Tools in the upper menu in the MarcEditor
  2. Select RDA Helper
  3. Check off the settings listed above
  4. Click the OK button.
  5. Check your MARC data. Do you see the changes?

Select Records to Edit

There are times when you need to work on a subset of your MARC data. The Select Records for Edit function allows you do this.

Before using the Select Records for Edit function, save your file to capture recent edits.

Go to File and click on Select Records for Edit. In the window, you will see Display Field in the lower right hand corner. This is where you enter the MARC field you want to see displayed once you import your file. You can enter a MARC field and subfield or just a MARC field. The MARC field and/or subfield that you add in this box will provide the criteria you need to select records you want to edit. Once you have entered the Display Field, click on Import File. This will import the MARC (.mrk) file that you are currently working on. You can select another MARC (.mrk) file in the box Source MARC file.

MarcEdit empty Select Records for Edit dialog

To select only the records you want to edit, enter your criteria in the Search box and click the magnifying glass icon. Records in your file where the contents of the selected Display Field match your search criteria will be selected. Click on Export Selected to export these records and edit them.

MarcEdit completed Select Records for Edit using the MARC field 245 dialog

When saving the exported records you can choose to save the file as a new record subset (Save As), or merge the edits back into your complete record set (Save).

Let’s add cutters to call numbers in the 099

  1. Go to File → Select Records to Edit
  2. In the new window, type in 099$b in the Field Display
  3. Click on Import File
  4. In the search box, type in “Display field not found” to locate all records missing 099$b
  5. Click the magnifying glass icon. A pop up window will indicate the number of records selected that match your criteria. Click OK.
  6. Click on Export Selected. A pop up window indicate that your selected records have been extracted. Click OK.
  7. A new MarcEditor window will open. Note the temporary file name at the top of the editor window indicating this file is distinct from your main file. In the new MarcEditor, go to Tools → Call Number tools → Cuttering Tools → Generate Cutters.
  8. In the field box enter 099 and click Process
  9. Check your results by using Find All =099
  10. Select File → Save. A pop up window will indicate your extracted data with edits has been saved back into your main file. Click OK.

Key Points

  • Advanced reports and functions are available in MarcEdit to apply global and selective edits
  • MarcEdit comes with an array of tools to manipulate data and validate MARC.

Content from Tasks and Automation

Last updated on 2023-10-05 | Edit this page

Estimated time: 22 minutes



  • What are tasks?
  • How do you manage and create new tasks?
  • How do you run tasks?


  • Explain how to create, manage, edit, and run tasks
  • Successfully create and run a new task

Tasks and Automation

When working with MARC records regularly, you will likely encounter record sets where the data needs the same or very similar approach. A good example is electronic resource records where the resource URL in the 856 field will require the addition of an institution-specific proxy stem. Another example is adding RDA content, carrier, and media terms and codes to your records. Because MARC records typically need to meet cataloguing community standards and local best practices, it is necessary to manipulate MARC data to fit these standards and practices. In the previous lessons learned how to apply one change at a time. In this lesson, we will learn how to string together and automate these changes so they can be re-used in the future.

In the MarcEditor, tasks are the tool that enable such automation. A task is a series of changes to MARC data that occur in the sequence they are entered in the task. One can think of tasks as a mini script of sorts that string together different MarcEditor functions that manipulate MARC data in some way. All tasks are created, managed, and run in the MarcEditor. In this way, tasks are another way to manipulate your data and are an extension of the other tools offered in the MarcEditor.

What are Tasks?

A task is a series of MarcEdit functions to manipulate data. In the previous lessons, we ran one function at a time. Tasks string a set of functions together so you can run them as a group. Tasks run each function one after another. As such, it is important to think about how you order the functions in your task. For instance, if you want to add your institutions’ proxy and the MARC data already has a proxy that you need to delete, your task has to account for that and remove the old proxy before adding a new one.

Tasks are managed through the Task Manager in the MarcEditor. To access the Task Manager, go to Tools and then Manage Tasks in the top level menu. This will open the Task Manager window.

In this window, you will see any tasks that you have created previously. You will see the name that you gave those tasks, the path to where those files are saved on your local computer, a shortcut, and a description. At the bottom of this window you will also have two options “Task Actions” and “Manage Existing Tasks”.

Task Actions include:

  • New Task: This will create a new task.
  • Clone: This will duplicate an existing task.
  • Delete: This will remove a task.
  • Edit: This will allow you to edit an existing task.
  • Rename: This will let you assign a different name to an existing task.

Manage Existing Tasks include:

  • Assign to Group: This will let you put tasks into different categories or groups.
  • Assign keystrokes: This will let you assign shortcut keys to tasks.
  • Backup all tasks: This will let you backup your tasks to your local computer.
  • Delete Task Group: This is to remove an existing group.
  • Export Task File: This will save a selected task to your local computer for reuse or sharing.
  • Import Task File: This will bring in a task from your local computer.
  • New Task Group: This will allow you to create a new group.
  • Relink tasks: This will allow you to relink tasks.
  • Remove From Group: This will let you remove a task from a group.
  • Rename Group: This will allow you to rename a group.

The difference between these two actions lists might seem confusing at first. Task Actions allow you to work with a particular task in terms of creating and managing one specific task at a time. The Manage Existing Tasks menu allows you to create and manage groups, exporting and importing, and assigning keyboard shortcuts to tasks.

Tasks don’t have to be categorized in groups or be linked to keyboard shortcuts. This is up to the users and their preference for how they organize their task workspace.

Create a New Task

To create a task in the MarcEditor, Go to Tools in the top level menu and then Manage Tasks. In the Task Actions menu, select “New Task” from the dropdown menu and then click Select. In the dialogue box, enter the name of your task and click OK. This opens the Edit Task List window where you will see the name you gave your task, a description, tasks, and actions.

Please note that though the Task List Name box allows you to change the name, these changes will not save. To change the name of a task, you need to go to Task Actions and select Rename task.

You can add or update a description in this task list window. The box in the middle will list the functions (or tasks) for this particular task. If there are none, this window will be empty.

Actions include:

  • Add: Add a new function or task
  • Copy: Clone a function or task already in the list
  • Delete: Delete a function or task
  • Edit: Change an existing function or task

You can add a new task by clicking on the plus button. You can add any type of function available in the MarcEditor Tools and Edit Shortcuts menu options. This includes the RDA Helper, build a new field, change the case of a MARC field, or generate cutters. You can even include a list of functions (tasks) from another Task.

Click on save at the left bottom corner of the Task List window to save your Task. From there you can close the Task Manager window. To run a task, go to Tools → Assigned Tasks → Current Tasks.

If you have created many Tasks, it does help to assign them to groups to more easily find what you need. If you don’t use Groups, the Task Manager will list all of your Tasks in alphabetical order and it might be difficult to see them, especially on small screens such as laptops.

Create and run a new Task that runs the RDA helper and removes 9XX fields

  1. Go to Tools in the upper menu in the MarcEditor
  2. Select Manage Tasks
  3. In the Task Manager window, in Task Actions, select New Task
  4. Click Select.
  5. Name your Task
  6. In the Task List window, you can describe this task.
  7. Click on the plus button and add RDA Helper.
  8. Click on the plus button and add a new Add Delete Task Field
  9. In the new window to delete a field, add 9XX and click on Delete field.
  10. Save Task
  11. Close the Task Manager
  12. Go to Tools, then Assigned Tasks, and select your task that you just created
  13. Check your MARC data. Are the 9xx gone? Does every record now have the appropriate RDA fields?

Managing your Tasks

To edit an existing task, go to Tools → Manage Tasks. In the Task Manger select the task you want to edit, this will highlight the task. Under Task Actions choose Edit Task and click Select. This will open the Edit Task List window. Just like when creating a new task, you can add, delete, or edit functions in your task. Use the up and down arrows to the right to reorder your functions.

Add a proxy to the 856 40$u in your Task

  1. After you run your Task, your MARC records should have your institution’s proxy before the URL. Remember to check your data first to see if there are any proxy stems present. You will need to remove any existing proxies before running your Task. If the MARC data has different types of electronic URLs (resource, related resource, etc.) as noted in the MARC field 856 indicators, you will need to account for that in your Task.
  1. Go to Tools in the upper menu in the MarcEditor
  2. Select Manage Tasks
  3. Select the Task you just created. The selected Task will be highlighted.
  4. In Task Actions, select Edit Task and click Select.
  5. Select the plus button and select “Add a Replace All Task”
  6. Replace the 856 40$u with 856 40$u[your proxy]. Remember to add 2 spaces after the MARC field.
  7. Save
  8. Close out of the Task Manager
  9. Run your Task again
  10. Check your MARC data. Do you see the changes?

Copying Functions to Tasks

It’s possible to copy many functions run in the MarcEditor to a Task for easy reuse. To copy a function, look for the “Copy Task” button in the Batch Editing Tools and Replace Text windows. By clicking “Copy Task” after you’ve designed and run a function successfully, you can save that function. To add the function to a Task, go to Tools → Manage Tasks. In the Task Manger, under Task Actions choose New Task and click Select. Once in the Edit Task List window, right click and select “Paste Task Action”. You can also add the function to an existing Task by selecting Edit Task, instead of New Task.

Key Points

  • MarcEdit tasks are a way to automate a series of functions
  • Tasks can consist of any type of function among the MarcEditor tools

Content from Integrations

Last updated on 2023-10-05 | Edit this page

Estimated time: 10 minutes



  • What are integrations?
  • What work can integrations support?


  • Explain what integrations are
  • Explain how integrations support advanced record actions


MarcEdit has the ability to interface (or integrate) with other applications. Integrations with other cataloguing utilities, such as vendor ILS and LSP systems and OCLC WorldCat, support advanced actions which can include downloading records, pushing new records or record updates, and setting holdings (OCLC WorldCat). Currently, MarcEdit can integrate with the ILS Alma, Koha, or a local ILS if you are able to connect to the host database. MarcEdit can be set up to integrate with OCLC’s APIs for metadata and connect to OCLC or the Library of Congress (either UTF-8 or MARC8) Z39.50 services.

For the ILS integrations you will need one or some of the following:

  • Host URL of the database
  • Username and password
  • Token

If you are setting up an integration to your ILS, it is recommended to touch base with those who have already done this. For example, for Alma, you can reach out to the Alma listserv to get guidance.

For the OCLC API integration, you will need to request an API key with OCLC. You will need the Registry API, Metadata API, and Search API. It is recommended to consult OCLC’s help page on setting up MarcEdit OCLC integration as well as Terry Reese’s information from his blog.

For the Z39.50 integration, you will need to enter your username and password in the settings. For OCLC, this is your Connexion number and password. For the Z39.50 search for OCLC, there are options for the types of searches performed and translating records to UTF-8.

Key Points

  • Understand what integrations are and why they’re useful
  • Understand where to set up an integration

Content from Regular Expressions

Last updated on 2023-10-05 | Edit this page

Estimated time: 35 minutes



  • What are regular expressions?
  • Where and how can you use regular expressions in the MarcEditor?
  • What types of edits can you accomplish with regular expressions?


  • Understand what regular expressions are and how they can support advanced editing in the MarcEditor

Regular Expressions

Regular expressions, often referred to as regex, are a tool you can use to match, capture and manipulate data across your MARC record file. Regular expressions are comprised of a sequence of literal characters and metacharacters which are formulated to match a particular pattern found in your data that you want to manipulate. A detailed introduction to working with regular expressions can be found in the Library Carpentry lesson Introduction to Working with Data (Regular Expressions). In this lesson we will focus on the application of regex in the MarcEditor.

Regular Expressions in MarcEdit

MarcEdit uses the .NET regular expression syntax. Visit the .Net Regular Expression Language - Quick Reference for a breakdown of the syntax used for regex metacharacters in MarcEdit. You can also download the .Net Regex metacharacter reference sheet to support the creation of your own regular expressions in MarcEdit.

Many MarcEdit functions support the use of regular expressions for data selection and manipulation. They include: Find and Replace, Edit Field, Copy Field, Swap Field, Build New Field, Delete Field, Record Validation, and both the Extract and Delete Selected Records tool. The intent of this lesson is to demonstrate where and how you can leverage regular expressions to work with your MARC data.

Edit Field Data

With regular expressions you can easily locate variations in your data and replace them with a single value. In our file the OCLC identifier in the 035 field uses the prefixes on, ocn, and ocm, but our library formats the OCLC with the (OCoLC) prefix. Instead of running three Edit Field Data functions to update these prefixes, we can use a regular expression in the Edit Field Data tool to replace these prefixes with the (OCoLC) prefix in a single edit.

Update 035 OCLC prefixes

  1. Select Tools → Edit Field Data
  2. Enter the following values: Field: 035 Find: on|ocn|ocm Replace: (OCoLC)
  3. Check Use Regular Expressions box
  4. Click drop down menu → Preview Results
  5. Verify your results look as expected, close preview tab and then click Process In this regular expression we use the pipe (|) metacharacter to specify that we are looking for the string on OR ocn OR ocm. We then replace the captured string with (OCoLC).

Knowing your dataset

Regular expressions are a powerful tool, but using them can sometimes lead to unexpected and undesirable results if you do not know your dataset. In the Edit Field Data exercise above, any 035 field containing the string on, ocn, or ocm would have had these values replaced with (OCoLC).

For example: =035 \\$a(SFUonline)638023 would have become =035 \\$a(SFU(OCoLC)line)638023

Reviewing your dataset before employing regular expressions is a good best practice. The MarcEditor Preview Results feature also supports trial and error.

Find and Replace

The Find and Replace tool is another useful way to identify and manipulate data in the MarcEditor with the support of regular expressions. In our file the local call numbers in the 090 field are formatted without a space between the class and subclass (ex. LD1780 and not LD 1780). To update the call number to follow our local policy we need to isolate the components of the call number so we can add a space between them. We can do this with a regular expression by employing groups.

Add a space between 090 class and subclass

  1. Select Edit → Find
  2. Enter =090 in the Find box and click Find All Review the list of 090 fields, what observations can you make about the call numbers in this field? Review shows us that not all call numbers begin with letters. We do not want to add a space to these call numbers and need to account for this in our regular expression.
  3. In the Find window, click Replace to bring up the Replace Text functions
  4. In the Find box enter the regular expression (=090 \\\\\$a[A-Z]+)(\d.*) This regular expression uses two sets of () to capture groups and then manipulate them.
  • Broken down, the first group (=090 \\\\\$a[A-Z]+) will match the literal string =090 \\$a (the additional backslashes are used to escape the regex metacharacters \ and $ so that they will be read as literals) followed by any single capital letter in the range A to Z ([A-Z]) one or more times (+). By specifying that the regular expression must locate a capital letter at the start of the call number, the regular expression will not edit the call numbers that begin with a digit.
  • The second group (\d.*) will match any digit (\d) followed by any character (.) zero or more times (*)
  1. In the Replace box enter $1 $2 This regular expression refers back to the groups we defined and captured in the Find box. $1 refers to the group defined in the first set of brackets, and $2 refers to the group defined in the second set of brackets. If we had defined additional groups they would be referred to chronologically as $3, $4 etc. The regular expression $1 $2 will output the contents of the two captured groups with a space between them.
  2. Check the Use regular expressions box
  3. Click drop down menu → Preview Results
  4. Verify your results look as expected, close preview tab and then click Process

Select Records for Edit

The Select Records for Edit tool, introduced in lesson 6, allows you to isolate and then work with a subset of your records. Regular expressions can be a powerful tool to help you isolate the subset of records you want to work with.

In this example we want to add the electronic journals genre form (655 \\4$aElectronic journals) to our electronic continuing resource records.

Working with fixed fields, where character position and coded values impart specific meaning, can be difficult for the human eye. However, regular expressions make it easy to specify the position of a character in a text string in order to find, select or update that data.

Isolate continuing resource records

  1. From the top level menu select File → Select Records for Edit
  2. The file you are working on will be selected by default in the Source MARC file box. To import the Leader for review, enter LDR in the Display Field Box and Click Import.
  3. To isolate continuing resource records we find any records where LDR/07 = i or s. In the Find box, enter the regular expression .{7}[is].{16}
  • This regular expression looks for any 7 characters (.{7})(Leader positions 0-6), followed by the character i OR s ([is]) (Leader position 7), followed by any 16 characters (.{16})(Leader positions 8-23)
  1. Check the Use Regular Expressions box and then click the magnifying glass. A popup window will let you know how many records were selected based on your criteria.
  2. Click Export Selected. You will get a popup will let you know the records have been extracted. Click OK.

Inverting your selection

When using the Select Records for Edit tool you can use the Invert Selections option to select all records that DID NOT meet your criteria. This option can be helpful when you want to select all records except for those that meet a specific criteria.

Edit selected records

Now that we’ve isolated our continuing resource records, we can add a field for the electronic journals genre form (655 \4$aElectronic journals) to the electronic records in our subset.

  1. From the top level menu select Tools → Add/Delete Fields
  2. In the Batch Editing window, enter 655 in the Field box and enter \4$aElectronic journals in the Field Data Box. Under General Options select Use Regular Expression, and under Add Field Options select Add Field If Present/NOT Present.
  3. To add our 655 field to electronic records only, we need to specify what should be present in the record for the new field to be added. What are some fields and values we might look at to determine format? For this example we are going to use a regular expression to look for the presence of an 856 link or a the carrier type online resource. Enter the regular expression =856|=338.+online resource in the Find What box.
  • This regular expression looks for the string =856 OR the string =338 followed by any character (.) one or more times (+), followed by the string online resource
  1. Click Add Field. Review your data, were the new fields added correctly?

After editing your subset of records, you can either save the edits back into the original file, or save the subset of records to a new file.

To save the edits back into the original file, select File → Save (Ctrl+S). You will get a dialogue box indicating that your records have been saved back into the original file.

To save your subset of records separately, select File → Save As. Specify the name and location of your new file and click Ok.

Key Points

  • Regular expressions are a powerful tool for selecting and editing your data in the MarcEditor
  • Regular expressions can be used in many functions and tools in MarcEdit and the MarcEditor
  • Knowing your data is essential to ensuring your regular expressions are working as intended