Library of Congress

Digital Preservation

The Library of Congress > Digital Preservation > Partners > The Archive Ingest and Handling Test

Partners: Johns Hopkins University, Sheridan Library; Harvard University Library; Old Dominion University Department of Computer Science; Stanford University, Libraries and Academic Information Resources

The Archive Ingest and Handling Test was designed to be the first practical test of interfaces specified in the architectural model for National Digital Information Infrastructure and Preservation Program. It was designed to test the feasibility of transferring digital archives in toto from one institution to another.

The purpose was to test the stresses involved in the wholesale transfer, ingestion, management, and export of a relatively modest digital archive, whose content and form are both static. The test was designed to assess the process of digital ingest, to document useful practices, to discover which parts of the handling of digital material could be automated and to identify areas that require further research or development.

AIHT utilized a test corpus of data from the George Mason University September 11 Digital Archive (external link).


  • Validate the idea that large-scale digital preservation will require continuing participation of many entities.
  • Explore the need for regular and ongoing comparative testing of preservation tools and technologies.
  • Explore how to reduce the cost of sharing the preservation burden.