Language and Culture Archive Recondition for FLEx Databases

The following is the Language and Culture Archive's recommendation for archiving FLEx databases as of Dec 03, 2013 03:55 PM.


This How-to is intended for: End User, Curator

recommendations for submitting FLEx backup data to REAP
It is recommended that users archive their full FLEx backup (capturing all the data as well as project related settings). Archiving various outputs from FLEx (dictionary, lexicon, interlinearized text, data notebook) is fine, but these formats aren't comprehensive in capturing all project data. Starting with Version 7, FLEx uses an XML based file (.fwbackup) to backup data. Backups from older versions (.bak) are acceptable but not recommended (please consider upgrading to the newest version of FieldWorks before archiving).

Users may archive FLEx data in REAP as often as is necessary to protect a project or meet entity policy. It is generally suggested that you archive it at significant stages of the development of the work. But it is recommended that you definitely archive a FLEx backup at the following times:

  1. Whenever a product from the database is published, such as a dictionary. Along with the dictionary output files (pdf, html, etc.), archive the backup of the entire project as a source file.
  2. In anticipation that the project will finish or shut down

Here are some suggestions to follow when filling out the metadata.

  • Include in the title that this is a FLEx backup, the language name (or code), and the date; e.g. “FLEx backup of [xxx] project 2012-02-26. The date will make it easier to distinguish this backup from later versions you may submit with the same title.
  • Choose “Wider Audience” for Broad Type if using RAMP.
  • Choose “Machine Processing/Dataset” for Mode.
  • When archiving a FLEx backup file there will likely be multiple components at various stages of completion. Choose the Work Stage that best describes the general state of the entire database.
  • Choose “primary data” for Scholarly Work Type.
  • The Extent field will ask for number of records/entries in the dataset. Qualify each type of record to whatever degree is reasonable, e.g. “750 lexical entries, 50 interlinearized texts”.
  • Academic Domain will be Linguistics and perhaps Anthropology as well.
  • Software Requirements: specify FieldWorks as required software
  • Access to FLEx backups should never be public (neither metadata nor attached files)
  • A FLEx backup file would be considered a Source file
  • Do not password protect the backup to be archived

Note to curators:

If you don’t have FieldWorks installed on your computer, you won’t be able to verify the attached file. You can, however, save the .fwbackup file to your hard drive and then unzip it to verify the integrity of the zip file. Once unzipped, you should see some settings folders and a .fwdata file. These can be opened with any text editor (such as Notepad) although you are not expected to be able to decipher the contents! If you can get this far, assume the backup file is good.
Screenshot of FLEx Backup file

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