Digital preservation strategies

At the moment, primarily migration and emulation may be identified as relevant digital preservation strategies. Refreshing has to be rated as a supplementing strategy.
The approach to set up a "hardware museum" seems to be hardly suitable to provide a long-term perspective or strategy for digital preservation.

Refreshing:
Approach: Copy data to new data carriers (of the same or other type) when data carrier failure is threatening.

Advantages:
+ The risk of "data carrier failure" is dealt with.
+ The risk of "availability of reproducers" is dealt with.
+ Relatively inexpensive to implement
+ Relatively easy to implement

Drawbacks:
- Problem of dependence on software not solved
- Problem of format ageing not solved
- Not sustainable without combination with other dp strategies

Hardware museum:
Approach: Collect hardware and software from different generations to enable data to be accessed in its original environment.

Advantages:
+ Data can be read on original devices and with original software.
+ Older software (if available) can be installed and used.
+ Obsolete formats can be read. 

Drawbacks:
- Not a solution for permanent preservation of data
- Difficult maintenance of old machines due to lack of replacement parts
- Knowledge of how to operate hardware and software components required
- Relatively costly and expensive

Migration:
Approach: Store formats in an up-to-date format before they become obsolete.

Advantages:
+ The risks of "availability of operating systems" and "availability of software" are dealt with.
+ The risk of format ageing is dealt with.
+ The information is preserved in a new, contemporary format.

Drawbacks:
- Very expensive due to assessment of formats and observation of the development of formats
- Continuous task which needs to be repeated on a regular basis
- As a stand-alone procedure, it does not protect against obsolescence of devices and data carriers.
- Information may be lost during migration.

Emulation:
Approach: "Imitate" old hardware and software environment by means of an emulator.

Advantages:
+ The risks of "availability of operating systems" and "availability of software" are dealt with.
+ The risk of format ageing is dealt with.
+ Data can to a great extent be used as originally. 

Drawbacks:
- Very costly and expensive
- A large number of different emulators are required (depending on formats and required software).
- It is not certain that emulators will run on future operating and file systems.

Goportis is currently pursuing the strategy of migration.