During our lives, we generate a lot of personal information such as photos, music, text documents and videos which link us with our past. This data that used to be tangible is now digital information stored in our computers, which implies a software dependence to make them accessible in the future. Technology, however, constantly evolves and goes through regular shifts, quickly rendering various file formats obsolete. The need for accessing data in the future affects not only home users but also organisations. In Europe, the legislation requires that organizations retain their digital information for periods ranging from few months to several years. These organizations must ensure access to all data for several reasons: audits, access to past legal documents or scientific data, records of different events, etc. Digital preservation (DP) represents the management of digital information over time to guarantee their accessibility and preserved quality. It includes processes and activities that ensure access to information and all types of records, scientific and cultural heritage that is stored in digital formats. Digital preservation offers guarantee the accessibility of our personal documents in the future. In a digital environment, a reliable preservation plan and the ability to adapt to fast changing technology are essential for maintaining data collections in the long term.
The DURAFILE project aims to offer a novel software solution preserving both personal digital information and the digital information generated by small and medium organizations. As a standalone application installed on personal computers, DURAFILE will regularly scan all files – working in the background – similarly to anti-virus programs detecting obsolete files or files at risk of obsolescence. The software additionally, will provide specific solutions with high security requirements for those organizations that need to preserve automatically the integrity and accessibility of large, catalogued and searchable archives. As an easy to use tool, DURAFILE will facilitate the preservation of valuable information, and will provide a long term access to data for organizations and individual users.
DURAFILE will improve the competitiveness of the European economy in several ways:
1) Tapping into a huge market potential due to the vast potential user list and exponential growth of digital data.
2) First-mover advantage in comparison to non-European countries that are not using DURAFILE.
3) First Software solution for home users and small-medium size companies