Albin O. Kuhn Library & Gallery

Guideline 115 - E-Document Identification, Backup, File Structures and Archiving

Scope: Documents created digitally for Library business, excluding email. Library units may determine exceptions which are ephemeral or for single use. Guidelines on documents created in Wikis and other shared authorship software are in development.

Identification: All documents must identify their:

  • authorship (initials suffice)

  • date of creation and/or most recent revision, e.g. "4/9/08, rev 4/10/08"

  • location in file structure, e.g. "I:LibDocs\LEC Minutes 08\exampleV2" for a document stored on the I drive, in the LibDocs folder, LEC Minutes 08 subfolder, with the title of "exampleV2" ("V2" being one convention for distinguishing a second version of a document)

This identification must show on printed copies, as well as on any electronic copies.

Backup: Copies must be saved on a campus supported drive, i.e. a shared drive backed up routinely by the Office of Information Technology (OIT). Examples of such drives as of this guideline's creation date are:

F: for web-accessible documents

H: for individual's documents

I: for documents accessible by more than one employee

It is not recommended to keep even working copies of documents on your desktop computer hard drive.

Large data files of critical importance (slide library database, digitized works from Special Collections, etc.) must have an additional backup established, periodically updated, managed and monitored by Library Information Technology Services.

File Structures: Some file structures are more conducive than others to finding documents and archiving. It is the responsibility of each Library unit to establish and maintain their file structures for efficient retrieval and archiving. The following principles are recommended:

  1. File names: indicate file content in file names; use names that tend to group related documents together:

    e.g.: Poor: rev2 lowlevflpl
    Better: rev2 lower level floor plan
    Good: floor plan lower level rev2

  2. Folders: use subfolders within main directories; avoid large numbers of files in a single folder; create subfolders by year for files with high activity. Such subfolders will facilitate future archiving on an annual basis.

Archiving: Online documents may be deleted on the same schedules and standards as paper documents (see UMBC Policy on Records Management). Until a campus policy on the archiving of born digital documents is adopted, use the following procedures govern Library documents which may or may not be eligible for deletion. One goal of these procedures is to avoid labor-intensive processing and weeding of files.

  • Initiating the e-Archive: With the exception of Library Administrative Offices documents, an Archive folder will be created on the I drive, with a read-only snapshot of all files in the current Library folders on the I drive. After files in this structure are verified to exist, delete duplicate files in main folder. [The feasibility of alternative file structures is still being investigated by LITS; once the optimal Archiving folder(s) and methods are established, revise this section accordingly; one alternative is to establish an archive folder in each unit's directory].

  • Ongoing Archiving: Once archive folders are in place, .... [in process; place here, once finished, some future version of the "Library: Recommended Records management Guidelines for Cleaning, Organizing, and Archiving Digital Materials on the Library I Drive" from the Communications Working Group.]

created 4/10/08
posted 5/5/08

Albin O. Kuhn Library & Gallery . University of Maryland, Baltimore County . 1000 Hilltop Circle . Baltimore MD 21250
(410) 455-2232. Questions and comments to: Web Services Librarian