[Watch Now, Q&A, and more] Getting Started with Digital Preservation: A Workshop

  • 20 October 2022
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This October, Preservica was pleased to partner with the Library Journal to host a webinar and workshop for libraries (public, academic and more) on how quick and easy it is to get started with digital preservation. Thank you to Amazon Web Services (AWS), a Preservica partner and partial sponsor of the workshop.  In the hour-long session, @aubreys showed attendees how to get started and previewed new features coming soon.  We also heard from Shelby Owings at Perry Cook Library about how she took her library’s Heritage Collection from a box on a shelf to a digitized and preserved online collection enriched with metadata for her community to enjoy using Preservica Starter. 

Anyone can launch a digital collections and digital preservation program. Here are the webinar resources to explore on your own:

Webinar recording: 


View Slides:

Webinar slides


Question & Answer:



What types of things do you preserve?

Preservica supports over 2,000 file types including digital and born-digital files.  Some of our customer’s most common file types include TIFF, JPEG, PDF, MP4s, and more.  Our clients are only using about 1,400 or 1,500 of the file types Preservica can support.  If you have a format that is particularly unique, let us know.  We likely can support it already.  The list of file types we support will grow over time as technology evolves. 

Will we be able to sign up for a Preservica Starter account at a later time?

Yes.  You can sign up for a Preservica Starter account at any time by visiting Preservica Starter | Sign up.

Can you set a personalized URL for the portal?


The ability to create a personalized URL is a feature available at the Starter Plus level.  Other helpful features available with Starter Plus include additional users, bulk metadata editing, Google Analytics, and more.  If you’d like to see a full list of Starter Plus features and pricing, visit Preservica Starter | Cost of Digital Preservation Software or contact Aubrey directly at Aubrey.shanahan@preservica.com.

Can portal access be controlled?  For example, can it be configured so it is accessible only to members of an organization instead of being a fully public site?

As of right now, this capability isn’t available in Starter Plus, but it is something the technical team is discussing.  Customers have the opportunity to submit ideas for new features through the Community Hub. Customer feedback helps guide our development, and our Technical team is always open to those suggestions.  

When you have an older file format that is viewable as a PDF, is it OCR enabled?


If you upload a PDF that has already been OCR’d into Starter or Starter Plus, you would be able to fully search that document.  There are resources that are free or very low cost to run OCR on print content in PDFs or other formats.  The ability to generate OCR on print content in Preservica and other advanced features for more robust digital collection programs are available in Professional and Enterprise editions of the software.  To see a full comparison of features in each Preservica edition, visit Cloud Hosted & Local Storage Digital Preservation… | Preservica.

When you were ingesting multiple files, Aubrey showed the audience a template. Is this a resource we can share with attendees?


Paul Clark, who runs Starter trainings for customers, has done an excellent video on bulk metadata upload. That video and other helpful resources are all available on the Community Hub.

I have no experience with archives or preservation. Can you explain Dublin Core and MODS and why they are important?

We are in the process of working on a training video on this topic.  Very briefly, Dublin Core and MODS are two ways of describing details of an asset (such as format, title, date, subject, etc) so that it can be searched and easily discovered in a database.  For example, if you’re working in libraries, you’re likely familiar with MARC records, which is a standard similar to Dublin Core and MODS that most libraries use to describe all items that are listed in the ILS (searchable library catalog).  It is the descriptive details that tell visitors to your site about an individual item and that make it possible to find it again. 

Is there a way to block the public from downloading images from the portal?

Currently, there's no way to block the download of images from a Preservica public portal.   But it is a feature our technical team is considering.  

Is there a maximum size file that you can upload?

Generally, the limit for ingest (due to browser constraints) is 4GB. The larger the file, the slower the upload time will be.  The free Preservica Starter account comes with 5GB, so if you upload a really large file, you would be maximizing your account with just one file.  So that’s also something to keep in mind.

Is Preservica a good resource for long-term preservation and sustainability?

Yes.  Preservica is designed specifically for long-term preservation and sustainability.  Attendees are encouraged to visit Preservica.com, and look through some of our resources including blog posts, white papers, recorded webinars and more. Preservica recently published a Sustainability Charter that outlines seven sustainability principles for assessing the long-term durability of digital preservation providers.  That document was developed by a committee of librarians, and the committee is still very active.  They're constantly reviewing procedures around sustainability.   Also, all data that you put into Preservica is yours.  If you choose to leave the system at any time, all assets and metadata can be exported.   

Once a document has been placed in Preservica, can parts be redacted? For example, if a student submits a nursing thesis, and one of the tables has patient information, can that information be removed after the paper was uploaded?

Preservica does not have redaction capabilities in platform.  However, you can redact content outside of the platform and then upload a new version of the document in the system for public consumption.

Do the records have a persistent URL in the portal?

Yes, all records have a persistent URL. If you link to an asset, the link will take you right to that specific asset as opposed to the homepage of the site.

Can you upload Full-Text documents and video or just single documents or pictures?

The sky is the limit for what you can upload, and you can upload single-item assets, compound assets (objects that are multiple pages), and/or multiple asset folders with different file types within them.  The system is very flexible.

Are video and audio streaming available?

Yes.  If you upload audio files or mp4 files, you will be able to view and listen to them from both the administrative interface and, if you publish it to a public site, it will be accessible there as well. 

Can you have folders within folders for additional organization of files?

Yes. You are able to add folders at any point within your organizational structure, and you will see the breakdown of that structure in the overview towards the left side.

Does the public portal live on your library webpage via a link or is it somewhere else?

The public portal has its own separate URL. You’re able to link to the public portal, but we do not currently support integration with your website for Starter.

When you surpass the 5G, are you alerted prior?

You can monitor your storage levels at any time via the dashboard. Your upload will fail if you attempt to go past the storage limit.

Can public view searches be limited to a single folder of objects or is it always site-wide?

When you select a specific folder, you are able to search within that folder specifically.

How many gigabytes do you get with Starter & Starter Plus?

You get 5GB for free in Starter. There are paid capacity upgrades for Starter up to 100GB. Starter Plus begins at 250GB and can scale up to 5TB.

Is there a way to make records public but a certain field private? ie. The storage location of physical items or other private information?

Not at this time in Starter or Starter Plus.

From a library's perspective, are we able to preserve a digital copy of a rare book that is falling apart? Do you have instructions on how to obtain permission from the publisher and how to give them credit for the material?

Rights and permissions are the responsibility of each customer.  The ALA does have a helpful LibGuide with resources on this topic.

Can Preservica be used for managing the submission process for an online journal?

When external submissions arrive to Starter next month, you can request submissions from individuals or organizations via email.

Do you have best practices for getting files & metadata ready for uploads?

We have some information on preparing files for ingest as well as how to complete the bulk metadata upload in our Knowledge Base on the Community Hub.  Keep an eye out for more trainings on best practices coming soon.

How secure is the information on the Preservica cloud?

We utilize secure AWS servers to back up multiple copies of your assets for safekeeping.

When will the super-basic, just-getting-started workshop be available?  I'm brand new, to archiving but already absolutely hooked!

We are working to have additional trainings available soon, but we do have live “Getting Started with Starter” courses offered regularly. You can find a link to this training along with registration info in the events section of the Community Hub.

How much does it cost to upgrade from Preservica Starter to the more advanced system?

Costs will depend on your needs and which edition will best support your program.  Additional details on Preservica features by edition can be found here - Cloud Hosted & Local Storage Digital Preservation… | Preservica.  For information on pricing, please contact Aubrey at Aubrey.shanahan@preservica.com.


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