Frequently Asked Questions

General FAQs

What Is Digital Preservation?

Digital preservation for archiving involves creating a plan that will outline the method to preserve the original documents, converting them to a digital format, and developing strategy for ensuring the digital archives are properly stored and maintained.

Do the documents contain personal or confidential information?

There are storage requirements and code of practice which involve rules that will limit access and places restrictions on storing certain types of confidential data. You should review all options that are available.

Do you have recommendations for managing the digital documents over time?

It is recommended that digital archives be saved onto new storage platforms every two to four years as technology and digital access changes over time. Also recommended is that digital archives should be stored in multiple locations on multiple storage devices to ensure that failure in one does not result in loss of the documents.

Are there guides for storing archives?

There are specific guidelines to the preservation of our digital heritage. Visit for more information.

There should be a sound development of strategy and policies for storage with complete review of options available.

Digital documents should be stored in multiple locations in case of any natural disaster. Storage rooms should be kept clean without chemicals or water and kept secure through proper locks and secure entry system.

Storage conditions should be properly maintained to ensure the safety of the digital archives. Low temperatures and low humidity ensure the best environment for storing documents. High temperatures and high humidity speeds up degradation. Avoid natural light from within the storage area.

How should I list and catalog my archives?

Just as documents have meaning in relationship to other documents and information, the same is true of digital documents. Maintaining proper cataloging and records will help preserve the relationships to other information to maintain the full meaning and impact of the photos and records stored digitally. This will facilitate quick access.

How should I preserve the original items?

Storage options are significant to maintaining original documents. Archival envelopes and boxes that meet the Photographic Activity Test (PAT) and set by the International Standards Organization (ISO) are best for long-term storage of photos. Refer to the PAT for best practices on storage options

How many backups of my archives should I keep?

Multiple backups of digital archives are recommended. One storage place for daily usage, and another copy stored on-site as a duplicate. There should also be one or more backup storages kept off-site in case of any natural disaster.

How should I organize and name files within the archives?

Utilize a system where each project is stored in its own folder. It’s often useful to create sub-folders within a project to organize the project. Sub-folders can be used to store date specific archives, or archives by person or family.

Within separate historical time periods, create different folders for different mediums, including photographs, documents, and audio files, under the main folder.

Types of Scanners FAQs

What types of scanners would work best for libraries?

When choosing a scanner for your library that will be used by the general public, students, and library staff, you need a scanner that will give you the most benefits for the lowest cost. So should you get an overhead book scanner or a regular flatbed scanner? Ideally, your library could purchase both types of scanners. A less expensive flatbed scanner would do for most libraries that are only scanning simple documents, and the more expensive overhead book scanner would be good for scanning most types of books. If you can only afford one scanner though, you will need to consider the different types of documents your library will be scanning the most of. If your library will be mostly scanning books with fragile spines, the book scanners are the way to go. Yet be aware that keeping the book open at 180 degrees can cause a lot of wear and tear on the spine. Also, you must consider the user-friendly features of each scanner. Generally, most people are more familiar with flatbed scanners, which makes them more popular among the general public. Plus, flatbed scanners typically scan at a faster rate than most overhead book scanners. Yet with a little demonstration, anyone can learn to operate an overhead book scanner. Ultimately, the type of scanner you purchase comes down to who will be using the scanner and what types of documents you need scanned.

What types of scanners would work best for state and local agencies?

State and local agencies bid or make contractual agreements to meet all statutory requirements for competitive pricing on either eventual purchasing, their best value to provide professional digital services, or to manage their documents. In this fashion they can establish the most cost effective solution to meet their needs.

What types of scanners would work best for museums and historical societies?

Museums & historical societies look foremost for clarity in a scanner and ease of use. Since more than one person operates the equipment it should have a user friendly format. The flatbed type gives both flexibility and ease of use. A computer program interface that is not overly complex is a plus with staff who will train to use the product purchased. A high optical resolution is also required in order to produce high quality results.

Some scanners can scan in an upright position and they work well to duplicate and provide maximum preservation. A really good option to look for is if scanners have an option for adjustable height or can be moved to different a different location.

Large Format Scanner FAQs

What is V3D Technology?

V3D stands for visual 3D, and is a feature of the SMA Versascan flatbed scanner series. This is a new technology that produces results that look 3D. Different lighting scenarios is the base for the process, where one area of the object is being lit by several different lighting angles, and the scanner captures those different instances. The software within the scanner then combines the separate images into one master image. As a result, paintings and other artwork that are scanned using the V3D technology offers almost perfect reproduction of nearly any surface. To learn more about this technology, please visit our page on versascan products on our website, Large Document Solutions by clicking here.

Can the large format scanner be moved for different lighting conditions?

A remarkable and important feature of any of the Versascan Flatbed scanner is that it can be easily moved around. It is built with a unique rolling mount that makes it easily transported to any part of a room or building.

Do I need to calibrate my Bookeye scanner?

If properly set up, your scanner should not need much calibration. Yet if you notice a degradation in the quality of your scans, a calibration may be necessary.

How do I calibrate a Bookeye scanner?

The Bookeye scanner allows its operators to perform most calibrations directly from the touchscreen. Within the Scan2Net application, access the setup menu by quickly tapping the time and date field 10 times or more in 10 seconds or less. Now the set up menu should be displayed.

Within the setup menu, you will see a few different tabs and options. The first option should be ‘white balance’. Follow the instructions to complete the white balance calibration. The white balance calibration is most likely the only calibration that you will need to perform from time to time.

Follow the instructions on the screen to undergo the white balance calibration. The calibration process takes around 30 to 40 seconds, so be patient with the machine. After the calibration is finished, the results will be displayed on the screen. If you see any red text, we suggest attempting the calibration a second time. You can also try deleting the white balance data in order to remove any old calibration data that is not relevant anymore. This can be done by pressing the ‘remove white balance data’ button.

If you still continue to see any errors or issues, call your local tech support. Make sure you give them as much information as possible about the issue, and include any screenshots of the display for reference.

For more information on calibrating your Bookeye Scanner, click here to view their calibration tutorial video.

Large Format Scanner Maintenance and Cleaning FAQs

What maintenance is required for the scanners?

Proper maintenance will help prevent any issues or problems with the scanner. If you are experiencing any hardware issues, cleaning the scanner can help resolve those problems. If the issues persist even after maintenance and cleaning, we advise you to call a professional for assistance.

How can I tell if the scanner requires cleaning?

If the scanner is consistently jamming once a day or even several times a day, it would be a good idea to clean it. Also, if the scanner is grabbing multiple sheets of paper at once, or if the scanner is squeaking or making any unusual noises. Lastly, if the scanned pages have visible lines appearing over the scanned images, that could be a sign that your scanner needs to be cleaned.

What happens to the scanner if I forget or refrain from cleaning it?

Most notably, the scanner will under-perform if it is not properly cleaned on a regular schedule. Refer to the question above for ways to tell if your scanner requires cleaning.

What if I clean my scanner regularly, but it still has issues and problems?

At this point, it would be best to call and talk to a professional about the issues you are experiencing.