2018-11-01 Meeting notes


Nov 1, 2018 – 2-3pm ET (11-12pm PT)

Held via Zoom; 45 participants

Call in info

Here are the details of joining the call:


Discussion items







Let's talk about:

Where are the "how to videos" that were previously available? Ex. How to create an instance.

Jacky Johnson, Miami University


How are people using reporting? Any tips or tricks?

  • Can we get a list of all collections assessed with having mold? Wrote a little script at Columbia to pull a list of all the moldy collections – Kevin Schlottman at Columbia

  • I’m not using the reports in ASpace itself. Instead we’ve got access to a read-only version of the backend database and using the software Navicat to run MySQL queries. Could also use MySQL Workbench if needed free querying software – Michelle Paquette, Smith

  • our custom reports are here: https://github.com/duspeccoll/archivesspace_reports – Kevin Clair, University of Denver

  • Here are some example SQL queries for various reports (mostly accessions related): https://github.com/duke-libraries/archivesspace-duke-scripts/tree/master/sql – Noah Huffman, Duke

  • Sarah, co-op student, is working on a custom reporting feature. Will work on enhancing the custom reports capabilities to make it easier for users to customize reports.

Anna, Texas State Library and Archives Commission


What are some recommended practices for maintaining the security of your ArchivesSpace staff interface instance? Our institution's staff interface login page is behind a VPN, but I am not sure that everyone knows recommended approaches for maintaining a secure database, especially for small, low-tech shops.

  • Hosted, but also manage local authentication – Kevin, Columbia

  • We permit staff access only from on-campus or on-VPN. The database is accessible only from the ASpace host. – Tim DiLauro, JHU

  • If institutions use LDAP, do you ever have volunteers enter data?

  • We use an XML spreadsheet as a stop gap between our volunteers and our instance. They do not have access to ArchivesSpace. We import the EAD – Danielle Moses

  • Use LDAP auth for all Duke folks, built-in authority management for Duke affiliates. But can provision an account for non-affiliates just for ASpace. – Noah, Duke

    • We do require on-campus or VPN for all users

  • I think AS does allow both local and LDAP authentications – Bin Zhang, CSU

  • At Yale, we have outside software development vendors who need access to ArchivesSpace. We make them Yale users and utilize CAS authentication for their access. – Kevin Glick

  • At Georgetown we provision accounts in AS directly, and do not use authentication. We require VPN for the staff interface. – Suzanne Chase, Georgetown

  • I would like to see some HowTos to set up CAS authentication – Bin Zhang

  • The staff side has a really low attack surface since you can't get to anything w/o a login. – Blake Carver

Lydia Tang, Michigan State University

Can you help me with:

Syncing with Preservica - managing what constitutes an archival object so the ingest process is less time-consuming

Sarah Ponichtera, Seton Hall University


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Francesca Pitaro, Associated Press


Advice on project planning, especially as it relates to dealing with legacy metadata or locations.

  • Dealing with massive amounts of data, trying to get it into ASpace. Where to begin, what we need to be doing, what steps, what order? Would be nice to know what mistakes have been made, and what advice people have?

  • Migration at Columbia. Helped to understand the data before migrating. Took marc records and into xml database. How they were using them, does it actually map to the imports. Using 100 different marc tags in legacy data, but only 30ish tags imported into ASpace. Was important to know before getting that data in. The more you know about what you’re starting with, the better the process will go.

  • For those that have worked with legacy metadata, how much time did you spend on which tasks?

  • Took about 5 months to do that process at Columbia. Started with trying to figure out who to ask that data. Asked colleagues/different units to find out what was relevant. Mainly just planning meetings, making decisions. Actual data work was not where most of the time was spent.

  • I haven’t done much actual ingestion of legacy metadata, but am planning on devoting significant time to initial cleanup PRIOR to import, using tools like OpenRefine – Michelle, Smith

  • Data clean-up post migration. Some fields in previous system that didn’t exist in ASpace yet. it was v1.0. Actual implementation of the move took a weekend. Data cleanup was about 3.5 months figuring out how custom xml from previous system worked. And converting from xml to json and all. Working on user defined fields setup now, deed of gift status related to accessions. A lot of clean up happening now – Kevin Clair, DU

    • 900 resource, 35 accessions, approx 125,000 records moved from old system

Anna, Texas State Library and Archives Commission

I have an idea!

I would like a webinar on the different resources/documentation on ArchivesSpace. I see the GitHub pages and can be pretty overwhelmed on where to begin or how to utilize what others have created.

  • Laney/Christine Kim are working on a GitHub overview.

  • ASpace is also working on a new themed format to showcase the work across organizations. Lightweight, open-house/demo style, short 5-10 minute overviews of how different orgs are using ASpace, or where they’re at in terms of implementation

    • Some post migration data clean up in the API etc. would be an awesome helpful topic.

    • digital objects for sure.

    • +1 to all of those but especially the API data cleanup

    • Lightweight talks is a good idea

    • +1 to API data cleanup yes

Anna, Texas State Library and Archives Commission


Let’s chat about the upcoming ASpace Online Forum coming this Winter 2019. Just want to get a general sense of interest, ideas, comments, feedback.

  • timezones permitting (Hawaii will be 5 hours behind EST in winter)

  • Would it be open to non-members but are consider to implement AS?

    • Not sure yet, but we should discuss this!

Christine Kim, ArchivesSpace

Other topics, on the fly!