CEDARS: A multi-site UK project to create exemplars in Digital Archiving

David Holdsworth / Leeds University

Link to DADs info in Leeds


A sub-title
Some Tales from the Backwoods
      both a pun and an indication that we have been quietly operating archival activities for many years.


CEDARS is a very new project, and has not yet formed truly collective views. This presentation focusses on experiences from building in-house systems for digital preservation, and relates these both to the OAIS model and to the needs of research libraries.

My personal perspective comes from decades of dealing with data storage at the University of Leeds, where we have a history of in-house systems which have been taken up elsewhere.


CURL, the Consortium of Research Libraries is the project owner. There are three lead sites: Oxford, Cambridge and Leeds. These are the sites with existing preservation systems in service.


The following are some issues which I perceive as important.

UK perspective

Personal perspective

A Librarian's Perspective

From Peter Fox, Librarian at Cambridge University
What I as a librarian want is:
I see Peter's last comment as indicating an archival store which would have simple access control, but in front of that an access facility that knew all the complex rights of access, and was allowed access by the archival store.

The Oxford System

The Cambridge System

L ow-cost
E ver-lasting
E xtensible
D ata
S tore

The LEEDS File Archive

A network file archiver written at Leeds University



formulated by a nationally based working group of 47 UK universities in November 1990.

A university has a large floating population of computer users who own many files It is in the nature of academia that there is much data whose value is not known.

The major points were:

The actual list of requirements and their rationale are available on the Web.

Overview of concepts in LEEDS system

I suspect that this is much too much for a slide, but the concepts would be covered by talking. Many of the properties which I plan to use in the CEDARS demonstrator map well onto OAIS.


Well only partly. One can identify traces of OAIS concepts such as

What can we feed into the OAIS debate?