Guidance

This section provides advice on specific topics related to the preservation and management of digital records. It also provides links to other resources available for information about digital preservation.

Archives Sector – Preserving digital collections

These Archives Sector pages provide guidance for any institutions or bodies which are looking at preserving digital collections.

Digital Preservation Handbook

The Digital Preservation Coalition has produced the Digital Preservation Handbook. The handbook provides an internationally authoritative and practical guide on the subject of managing digital resources over time and the issues in sustaining access to them. A key knowledge base for digital preservation, the handbook is peer-reviewed and freely accessible.

Digitisation

An outline of the standards and requirements for the digitisation of paper and microform records at The National Archives.

Digitisation at the National Archives (PDF, 0.45 MB)

Redaction Toolkit

Guidance on redacting sensitive information from paper and digital documents.

Redaction toolkit  (PDF, 0.22 MB)

Acceptable file formats

This page sets out the current range of acceptable digital file formats that The National Archives can preserve in the long term.

How to research and develop signatures for file format identification

Guidance on file format research for signatures for inclusion into PRONOM

DROID: How to use it and how to interpret your results

Guidance for using DROID and making use of the results

Technical papers

DROID automatic format identification documentation (including XML schemas)

This technical report describes an identification method developed by The National Archives, which uses automated analysis of the binary structure of a digital object, and comparison with predefined internal and external ‘signatures’ for specific formats. The report can be accessed here: DROID automatic format identification documentation

PRONOM Technical Registry Unique Identifiers

The PRONOM Unique Identifier (PUID) is an extensible scheme for providing persistent, unique and unambiguous identifiers for file formats.

See PRONOM Technical Registry Unique Identifiers documentation