Types of Library Software Packages: The computer cannot do anything without some programme or instruction or software. Unlike the hardware, software cannot be touched but it instructs the computer what to do in a particular situation. Any type of computer programme designed to perform some kind of library activities is known as library software. It may be a simple programme to perform the job of acquisition or cataloguing or integrated library management software that will perform the job of acquisition, cataloguing, circulation, serial control and others. It may also be digital library management software which will manage the digital resources of the library or some other types, say a Learning Management System or Content Management System, etc.
There are different library software packages, and each of them has different functionability. The amalgamation of features adds a lot of difficulties in categorizing the library software packages. However for the purpose of our study, an attempt is made to categorize the library software packages into the following:
A) Based on Function Performed
a) Database Creation Software (E.g CDS/ISIS)
b) Library House Keeping / Management Software Packages (Libsys, OASIS, Sanjay, SLIM, SOUL)
c) Institutional Repository Software Packages (CDSWare, Dspace, E-prints, Fedora, Ganesha digital library, Greenstone)
B) Based on Source Code Availability
a) Proprietary software (SOUL)
b) Open Source Software Packages (Koha)
C) Based on Cost Factor
a) Completely Commercial (LibSys)
b) In-house Developed;
d) Freeware (Gratis / Libre software)
e) Open Source Software
The following paragraphs will describe each and every aspect of the library software packages. Due attention is given to list the free software packages (open source and proprietary) that can be implemented without giving much stress on library finance. Sometimes a few commercial software packages that are also well proven also listed out to have a comparative study of the trend of available functionality in both categories.