System preferences

System preferences control the way your Koha system works in general. Set these preferences before anything else in Koha.

  • Get there: More > Administration > System preferences


Only staff with the manage_sysprefs permission (or the superlibrarian permission) will have access to this section.

System preferences can be searched (using any part of the preference name or description) using the search box on the ‘Administration’ page

System preferences search box in the main page of the administration module

or the search box at the top of the administration module or system preferences pages.

Menu and search bar at the top of the page in the administration module, the system preferences search option is selected by default, other options are checkout and search catalog

When editing system preferences a (modified) flag will appear next to elements that were changed until you click the ‘Save all … preferences’ button.

Screenshot of the Features system preferences for the Accounting section. There is a (modified) flag next to AutoCreditNumber and a button at the top of the table 'Save all Accounting preferences'

After saving your preferences you’ll get a confirmation message telling you what preferences were saved.

Screenshot of the Features system preferences for the Accounting section. There is an overlaid message reading 'Saved preference AutoCreditNumber'.

Each section of system preferences is sorted alphabetically by default. Clicking the small ‘up’ arrow to the right of the word ‘Preference’ in the header column will invert the sorting.

Screenshot of the Features system preferences for the Accounting section. Preferences are in reverse alphabetical order.

If the system preference refers to monetary values ( maxoutstanding, for example) the currency displayed will be the default one set in the currencies and exchange rates administration section.


For library systems with unique URLs for each site the system preference can be overridden by editing your koha-http.conf file. This has to be done by a system administrator or someone with access to your system files. For example, if all libraries but one want to have search terms highlighted in results, set the OpacHighlightedWords system preference to ‘Highlight’, then edit the koha-http.conf for the library that wants this turned off by adding SetEnv OVERRIDE_SYSPREF_OpacHighlightedWords "0". After restarting the web server, that one library will no longer see highlighted terms. Consult with your system administrator for more information.