Archives and the cloud

The National Archives, UK (TNA), have undertaken to look at the issue of cloud storage for digital and digitised archives. Their report, Guidance on cloud storage and digital storage (, showed up in my twitter stream a few weeks ago, and I have been revisiting it every week or so, to try and pull out the details.

In the report, TNA looked at questions such as ‘why cloud storage’ and the very broad ‘digital preservation’.  They looked at service providers, costs, benefits and challenges, and provide six really interesting case studies. In addition, they considered questions of ownership and of security, and identified that the main commercial cloud providers, are probably doing as well or better at protecting the data than can be done in house.  That said, they do not dismiss questions of sovereignty and access, but argue instead for archives to weigh these issues in the balance.  The need for clearly defined objectives and a thoroughly researched business case is strongly underlined.

I was particularly taken by the Wales Digital Preservation Consortium study which looked at the challenges of digital preservation using Archivematica, which is usually partnered with ICA-AtoM, while they were using a different archives management system.

The language of the report is clear and concise, and the messages well delivered and easily accessible.



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Archivist, historian, avid reader

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