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Digital Long-term Preservation

Digital long-term preservation at the Bavarian State Library

For the Bavarian State Library as a state and archive library, ensuring the long-term availability and usability of its digital holdings is a central part of its overall mission. In addition to the retro-digitized 2D and 3D versions of cultural assets, the digital holdings also include genuine electronic publications.

The Bavarian State Library is a founding member of the national competence network for long-term archiving “nestor e.V.” and also participates in the development of innovative concepts and solutions in the context of long-term archiving (e.g. DIN standardization).

Rapid technological change in hardware and software, particularly in data carriers and file and data formats, can jeopardize the availability and usability of digital resources. These risks must be countered with appropriate organizational, technical and library measures. The Bavarian State Library has been using long-term archiving methods to ensure the quality and availability of its digital resources since 1997.

The tasks of digital preservation include:

  • Identification, specification and use of long-term data and file formats for the various media types

  • Quality check and validation of digital objects before archiving as well as selection and development of suitable tools

  • Use of suitable metadata (e.g. technical, bibliographic, structural, administrative) to ensure the integrity and authenticity as well as the quality of the data throughout the entire life cycle and use of persistent identifiers for the secure provision of permanent access

  • Secure management and redundant storage of data on different storage media at different locations as well as sustainable management of storage infrastructures

  • Documentation of all changes to the data and metadata in the life cycle of the digital objects

  • Risk assessment and initiation of long-term archiving measures if required, e.g. migration to a more up-to-date file format

Selective web archiving

Since 2012, the Bavarian State Library has been collecting, indexing and archiving selected websites for which explicit archiving and usage permission has been granted or which can be permanently stored by the BSB as electronic official publications in accordance with the Bavarian State Government's announcement of December 2, 2008 (in German Language) (PDF).

The websites archived by the Bavarian State Library can be found via its catalogs.