OAIS Terms

Open Archival Information System: a type of archive consisting of an organization of people and systems that has accepted the responsibility to preserve information for one or more designated communities. OAIS differs from other uses of the term archive based on the specific responsibilities laid out in OAIS Reference Model.

Open Archival Information System (OAIS) Model diagram

The role played by those persons or client systems that generate or provide the information to be preserved

The entity that contains the services and functions needed to control the operation of the OAIS on a day-to-day basis.

The role played by those persons or client systems that interact with OAIS services to find preserved information of interest and to access that information in detail.

Designated Community
An identified group of potential consumers who should be able to understand a particular set of information. The Designated Community may be composed of multiple user communities.

Archival Information Package (AIP): An information package consisting of the digital object and associated Preservation Description Information (PDI), which is preserved within an OAIS.

Submission Information Package (SIP): An information package that is delivered by the producer to the OAIS for use in the construction of one or more AIPs.

Dissemination Information Package (DIP): The information package, derived from one or more AIPs, received by the consumer in response to a request to the OAIS.

The role played by those who set overall OAIS policy as one component in a broader policy domain.

This entity provides the services and functions that support Consumers in determining the existence, description, location and availability of information stored in the OAIS, and allowing Consumers to request and receive information products.

Archival Storage This entity provides the services and functions for the storage, maintenance and retrieval of AIPs. Archival Storage functions include receiving AIPs from Ingest and adding them to permanent storage, managing the storage hierarchy, refreshing the media on which archive holdings are stored, performing routine and special error checking, providing disaster recovery capabilities, and providing AIPs to Access to fulfill orders.

Data Management
This entity provides the services and functions for populating, maintaining, and accessing both Descriptive Information which identifies and documents archive holdings and administrative data used to manage the archive.

Descriptive Information
The set of information, consisting primarily of Package Descriptions, which is provided to Data Management to support the finding, ordering, and retrieving of OAIS information holdings by Consumers.

This entity provides the services and functions to accept Submission Information Packages (SIPs) from Producers (or from internal elements under Administration control) and prepare the contents for storage and management within the archive.

Preservation Planning
This entity provides the services and functions for monitoring the environment of the OAIS and providing recommendations to ensure that the information stored in the OAIS remains accessible to the Designated User Community over the long term, even if the original computing environment becomes obsolete. Preservation Planning was not a component of the original OAIS recommendation produced by CCSDS.