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Format Support

Page history last edited by Monica 4 years, 4 months ago Saved with comment

 

The Digital Scholarship Services (DDS) team wishes to provide support for as many file formats as possible. Over time, items stored in Rice University's Digital Scholarship Archive (RDSA), found at scholarship.rice.edu, will be preserved as is, using a combination of time-honored techniques for data management and best practices for digital preservation. As for specific formats, however, the proprietary nature of many file types makes it impossible to make guarantees. Put simply, our policy for file formats is this:

 

  • Everything put in RDSA will be retrievable.

  • We will recognize as many files' formats as possible.

  • We will support as many known file formats as possible.

 

When a file is uploaded to RDSA, we assign it one of the following categories to note the level of support for its format:

 

  • Supported: RDSA fully supports the format.

  • Known: RDSA can recognize the format, but we cannot guarantee full support.

  • Unsupported: RDSA cannot recognize a format; such formats are listed as "application/octet-stream", or Unknown.

 

By "support", we mean "make usable in the future, using whatever combination of techniques (such as migration, emulation, etc.) is appropriate given the context of need." For supported formats, we might choose to bulk-transform files from a current format version to a future one, for instance. But we can't predict which services will be necessary down the road, so we'll continually monitor formats and techniques to ensure we can accommodate needs as they arise.

 

In the meantime, we can choose to "support" a format if we can gather enough documentation to capture how the format works. In particular, we collect file specifications, descriptions, and code samples, and make those available in the Format Reference Collection below. Unfortunately, this means that proprietary formats for which these materials are not publicly available cannot be supported in scholarship.rice.edu. However, we will still preserve these files, and we will provide you with guidance on converting your files into formats we do support. It is also likely that for extremely popular but proprietary formats (such as Microsoft .doc, .xls, and .ppt), we will be able to help make files in those formats more useful in the future simply because their prevalence makes it likely tools will be available. Even so, we cannot guarantee this level of service without also having more information about the formats, so we will still list these formats as "known", not "supported."

 

What to do if your format isn't recognized

 

We understand that there are always more formats to consider, and we would appreciate your help in identifying and studying the suitability of support for formats you care about. If we can't identify a format, Rice University's Digital Scholarship Archive will record it as "unknown", or "application/octet-stream," but we would like to keep the percentage of supported format materials in the digital archive as high as possible. Don't hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or concerns. Please email us with any questions at cds [at] rice [dot] edu.

 

DSpace Format Reference Collection

 

The table below describes how the Rice University's Scholarship Digital Archive (RSDA) supports each listed file type. MIME type is the Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions (MIME) type identifier. For more information on MIME, see the MIME RFCs or the MIME FAQ. Description is what most people use as the name for the format. Extensions are typical file name extensions (the part after the dot, for example, the extension for "index.html" is "html"). These are not case-sensitive in scholarship.rice.edu, so either "sample.XML" or "sample.xml" will be recognized as XML. The Level is scholarship.rice.edu's support level for each format:

 

  • Supported: RDSA fully supports the format.

  • Known: RDSA can recognize the format, but we cannot guarantee full support.

  • Unsupported: We cannot recognize a format; these will be listed as "application/octet-stream", or Unknown.

 

MIME type

Description

Extensions

Level

application/marc

MARC

marc, mrc

supported

application/mathematica

Mathematica

ma

known

application/msword

Microsoft Word

doc, docx

known

application/octet-stream

Unknown

(anything not listed)

unsupported

application/pdf

Adobe PDF

pdf

supported

application/postscript

Postscript

ps, eps, ai

supported

application/rdf+xml; charset=utf-8

RDF XML

rdf

known

application/sgml

SGML

sgm, sgml

known

application/vnd.ms-excel

Microsoft Excel

xls, xlsx

known

application/vnd.ms-powerpint

Microsoft Powerpoint

ppt, pptx

known

application/vnd.ms-project

Microsoft Project

mpp, mpx, mpd

known

application/vnd.visio

Microsoft Visio

vsd

known

application/wordperfect5.1

WordPerfect

wpd

known

application/x-dvi

TeXdvi

dvi

known

application/x-filemaker

FMP3

fm

known

application/x-latex

LateX

latex

known

application/x-photoshop

Photoshop

psd, pdd

known

application/x-tex

TeX

tex

known

audio/x-aiff

AIFF

aiff, aif, aifc

supported

audio/basic

audio/basic

au, snd

known

audio/x-mpeg

MPEG Audio

mpa, abs, mpeg

supported

audio/x-mp3

MP3 Audio

mp3

supported

audio/x-pn-realaudio

RealAudio

ra, ram

known

audio/x-wav

WAV

wav

supported

image/gif

GIF

gif

supported

image/jp2

JPEG2000

jp2

supported

image/jpeg

JPEG

jpeg, jpg

supported

image/png

PNG

png

supported

image/tiff

TIFF

tiff, tif

supported

image/x-ms-bmp

BMP

bmp

known

image/x-photo-cd

Photo CD

pcd

known

text/html

HTML

html, htm

supported

text/plain

Text

txt

supported

text/richtext

Rich Text Format

rtf

supported

text/xml

XML

xml

supported

video/mpeg

MPEG

mpeg, mpg, mpe

supported

video/quicktime

Video Quicktime

mov, qt

known

text/csv

Comma separated values

csv

Supported

text/tab-separated-values

Tab separated values

tab

Supported

 

 

 

Reference: this format policy is adopted from the DSpace community documentation.

 

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