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Washington State Digital Archives. Presented by: Adam Jansen Digital Archivist Washington State Archives 360-586-4893 ajansen@secstate.wa.gov. As defined in RCW 40.14

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washington state digital archives

Washington StateDigital Archives

Presented by:

Adam Jansen

Digital Archivist

Washington State Archives



public records
As defined in RCW 40.14

ANY records that have been made by or received by any agency of the state of Washington in connection with the transaction of public business

Public Records
records retention
Any destruction of official public records shall be pursuant to a schedule approved under RCW 40.14


The foundation of democracy in America is government accountability to the people

Records Retention
what the digital archives is not
Not mass storage for active business applications & data

Not remote back-up for state & local government networks & data

What the Digital Archives is not
the digital archives will
The Digital Archives will:
  • Preserve electronic records with long-term legal, historical and/or fiscal significance
  • Assure platform-neutral retrieval 50, 100, or more years from now
  • Provide security back-up of certain permanent electronic legal records (courts, vital records, land records, etc.)
business need
Comply with statutory & regulatory mandates

Avoid loss of legal & historical records

Manage risk (avoid litigation losses)

Preserve rare paper records

Centralize access to permanent electronic records for government

Improve access for citizens

Business Need

8 Requirements for Preservation


  • Readable
  • Retrievable
  • Intelligible
  • Encapsulated
  • Reconstructible
  • Identifiable
  • Understandable
  • Authentic

* From Authentic Electronic Records by Charles Dollar



File Format


Content Management

file formats
Digital Archives Multi-pronged approach:

Maintain native format, wrapped

Render XML formatted version, wrapped

Acquire original hardware and software

File Formats
phased implementation
Phase I – SAN Roll-Out with OSOS & one local government record series as beta test

Phase II – Four to 6 state & local government agencies

Phase III – Agencies with electronic records of high archival value

Phase IV – All remaining state & local government agencies as they are ready

Phased Implementation
management issues
Authenticity of record

Chain of custody


File naming conventions

Corporate Culture

Start with e-mail, web page

Use existing retention schedules


Shift AWAY from desktops

Management Software is a must!

Management Issues
DoD 5015.2-STD compliant system

Wrap original file in native format

Wrap XML copy

Apply metadata & XML for indexing, searching & retrieval

Provide chain of custody & authenticity

‘Content Management’

content management
Microsoft Solution

Custom Coded .Net front end

SQL Server back end

BizTalk translation utility

SSH Tectia for secure transport

‘Content Management’
ingestion process
Microsoft BizTalk 2004

Transforms, adds metadata based on business rules

Creates ‘deep storage’ copy wrapping original file in XML, with Hash

Creates ‘web’ version of original file

Ingestion Process
deep storage xml schema
Deep Storage XML Schema

Record Common

  • Who
  • What
  • When
  • Where
  • Original File
  • ‘web’ file
  • Security
  • Fixity

Vital Records

  • Type


  • Date of
  • Father, Mother
  • Hospital
front end
Developed in VB.Net by Microsoft/EDS

Web based solution

Allows uploading of documents, searching and ordering of certified copies

Front End

Web Design Wire Frame


back end
SQL Server 2000

Multiple databases, similar construction to XML schema

Record Common

Record series specific

Security Roles

Locks at office, agency, global level

Record Series, Record Field or Record

Back End
web archiving
Custom Built Solution

Saves binary streams and BLOBs into SQL Database

Multiple streams, Assist with Archiving

Allows predefining of internal fragments, levels, maximum file size, secure authentication

Command line interface

Can be used to ‘spider’ email

Web Services allows current architecture for retrieval

Web Archiving
admin pages
Allows viewing of confidential information

E-Transmittal process

Viewing of open orders

Admin Pages
risk management quality assurance
Strong executive sponsorship & involvement

Regular weekly project team meetings

Outside expert: GlassHouse Technologies

Targeted recruitment & training of staff

Proof of concept testing

External Quality Assurance during procurement, installation & testing

Phased implementation

Competitive procurement process among high-quality, experienced prime vendors

Risk Management& Quality Assurance
proof of concept tests
97% of legacy file formats tested were successfully converted to XML with no change in format, feel or function

Top-four levels of OSOS web site (5,015 files & 250 MB) were spidered remotely in 8 minutes

E-mail on Novell GroupWise & Microsoft Exchange servers was successfully archived onto a remote server

Proof of Concept Tests
The Digital Archives is essential to meet statutory & regulatory mandates to preserve & make accessible legally & historically significant electronic records.

The Preferred Alternative is the best solution for a stable, cost-effective, long-term storage & retrieval system.

The project has a high probability of success by using proven technologies & experienced vendors.

Ready to proceed to the procurement phase

digital archives eastern washington university cheney washington
Digital Archives Eastern Washington University, Cheney, Washington

Adam Jansen

Digital Archivist