Update on Isolyzer: UDF, HFS+ and more!

12 July 2017

Earlier this year I blogged about Isolyzer, a tool designed to help the detection of broken ISO images. Today I released a shiny new beta version that adds a significant amount of new functionality. Below is an overview of the main changes, followed by some warnings and caveats.


Image and Rip Optical Media Like A Boss!

19 June 2017

Over the last months we’ve been working on the development of a provisional workflow for preserving the content of optical media in our collection. The main result thus far is Iromlab, a custom workflow application that streamlines the imaging and ripping process. This blogpost gives an overview of Iromlab, as well as the reasons why we created it in the first place.


Policy-based assessment with VeraPDF - a first impression

01 June 2017

Some four years ago I wrote a blog post that demonstrated how Apache Preflight (the PDF/A validator tool that is part of Apache PDFBox) can be used to detect features in a PDF that are potential preservation risks. A follow-up blog applied Schematron rules to the Preflight output in an attempt at doing policy-based assessments. The results of that work were quite promising, but dealing with Preflight’s multitude of (especially font-related) validation errors proved to be a challenge.

The idea of using a PDF/A validor for policy-based assessments of “regular” PDF files (i.e. PDFs that are not necessarily PDF/A) was explicitly addressed as a use case for veraPDF. With VeraPDF now having entered its “final testing phase”, I thought this was a good time for a small test-drive of veraPDF’s capabilities in this area. All test results are based on VeraPDF 1.4.7.


Imaging CD-Extra / Blue Book discs

25 April 2017

The development work on an imaging/ripping workflow for optical media is shaping up steadily, and you can expect a write-up with more information about our software and hardware setup here in the near future (you can get a sneak peek here). However, this blog is about a very specific problem that we ran into while testing the workflow with a selection of discs from our collection. This selection included a few discs that follow the Blue Book standard (also known as CD-Extra). This standard defines a method for combining audio and data tracks on one disc. A CD-Extra disc contains two sessions, where the first session holds all audio tracks, and the second session holds a data track. Blue Book was (and still is) widely used for audio CD’s with bonus videos or software.


Detecting broken ISO images: introducing Isolyzer

13 January 2017

In my previous blog post I addressed the detection of broken audio files in an automated workflow for ripping audio CDs. For (data) CD-ROMs and DVDs that are imaged to an ISO image, a similar problem exists: how can we be reasonably sure that the created image is complete? In this blog post I will discuss some possible ways of doing this using existing tools, along with their limitations. I then introduce Isolyzer, a new tool that might be a useful addition to the existing methods.



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