IUPUIScholarWorks Format Support Policy

IUPUIScholarWorks wishes to provide support for as many file formats as possible. Over time, items stored in IUPUIScholarWorks will be preserved as is, using a combination of time-honored techniques for data management and best practices for digital preservation. Some specific formats, however, are proprietary in nature and make it impossible to guarantee future usability. Put simply, our policy for file formats is:

  • Everything put in IUPUIScholarWorks will be retrievable. “Retrievable” means “the file can be downloaded from IUPUIScholarWorks ”.
  • IUPUIScholarWorks will automatically recognize as many files' formats as possible and assign the appropriate Support category.
  • IUPUIScholarWorks will support as many known file formats as possible based on current data management and digital preservation standards and best practices.

When a file is uploaded to IUPUIScholarWorks , it is assigned one of the following Support categories:*

  1. Supported
    • IUPUIScholarWorks fully supports the format. "Support" means "every reasonable effort will be made to maintain future usability through whatever techniques (such as migration, emulation, etc.) is appropriate given the context of need".
    • For supported formats, IUPUIScholarWorks might choose to bulk-transform files from a current format version to a future one to maintain usability. “Usability” means the file can be opened, viewed and/or executed. But IUPUIScholarWorks cannot predict which services will be necessary in the future, so will continually monitor formats and techniques to ensure IUPUIScholarWorks can accommodate needs as they arise.
  2. Known
    • IUPUIScholarWorks can recognize the format, but cannot guarantee full support as previously defined.
  3. Unsupported
    • IUPUIScholarWorks cannot recognize a format; these will be listed as "application/octet-stream", aka Unknown.

* File formats, and format Support Category assignments, will be annually reviewed. Adjusted may be made based on technical and resource considerations or needs.

IUPUIScholarWorks can choose to "support" a format if IUPUIScholarWorks can gather enough documentation to capture how the format works. Documentation and format information collection includes file specifications, descriptions, and samples. IUPUIScholarWorks lists format Support category assignments in the IUPUIScholarWorks Format Reference Collection below.

Proprietary formats for which these materials are not publicly available cannot be supported in IUPUIScholarWorks (e.g. Microsoft). IUPUIScholarWorks will preserve these files, maintain “retrievability” and will provide Communities with guidance on converting files into supported formats (e.g. PDF). It is also likely that for extremely popular but proprietary formats (such as Microsoft .doc, .xls, and .ppt), IUPUIScholarWorks will be able to help make these formats usable in the future simply because their prevalence makes it likely tools will be available. Even so, IUPUIScholarWorks cannot guarantee this level of service, so will still list these formats as "known" - not "supported".

What to do if your format isn't recognized

IUPUIScholarWorks understands that there are always more formats to consider, and would appreciate your help in identifying and studying the suitability of support for formats you care about. If IUPUIScholarWorks can't identify a format, it will be recorded "unknown", aka "application/octet-stream"; but IUPUIScholarWorks would like to keep the percentage of supported format materials within the repository as high as possible. We encourage Communities to contact us with any questions or concerns.

IUPUIScholarWorks Format Reference Collection

In the table below, MIME type is the Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions (MIME) type identifier; for more information on MIME, see the MIME RFCs or the MIME FAQ. Description is what most people use as the name for the format. Extensions are typical file name extensions (the part after the dot, e.g. the extension for "index.html" is "html"). These are not case-sensitive in IUPUIScholarWorks , so either "sample.XML" or "sample.xml" will be recognized as XML. Level is IUPUIScholarWorks's support level for each format:

MIME type Description Extensions Level
application/marc MARC marc, mrc supported
application/pdf Adobe PDF pdf supported
application/postscript Postscript ps, eps, ai supported
audio/x-aiff AIFF aiff, aif, aifc supported
image/gif GIF gif supported
image/jpeg JPEG jpeg, jpg supported
image/png PNG png supported
image/tiff TIFF tiff, tif supported
text/html HTML html, htm supported
text/plain Text txt supported
text/richtext Rich Text Format rtf supported
text/xml XML xml supported
application/mathematica Mathematica ma known
application/msword Microsoft Word doc known
application/sgml SGML sgm, sgml known
application/vnd.ms-excel Microsoft Excel xls known
application/vnd.ms-powerpint Microsoft Powerpoint ppt known
application/vnd.ms-project Microsoft Project mpp, mpx, mpd known
application/vnd.visio Microsoft Visio vsd known
application/wordperfect5.1 WordPerfect wpd known
application/x-dvi TeXdvi dvi known
application/x-filemaker FMP3 fm known
application/x-latex LateX latex known
application/x-photoshop Photoshop psd, pdd known
application/x-tex TeX tex known
audio/basic audio/basic au, snd known
audio/x-mpeg MPEG Audio mpa, abs, mpeg known
audio/x-pn-realaudio RealAudio ra, ram known
audio/x-wav WAV wav known
image/x-ms-bmp BMP bmp known
image/x-photo-cd Photo CD pcd known
video/mpeg MPEG mpeg, mpg, mpe known
video/quicktime Video Quicktime mov, qt known
application/octet-stream Unknown (anything not listed) unsupported