Personal Digital Archiving: Online Resources

Overview and Best Practices

How to Preserve Your Own Digital Materials (Library of Congress)

This site provides some tips to help make your personal "born digital" information last. The guidance is basic and is meant to be a place to get started.

Personal Digital Archiving (Cornell University)

This guide from Cornell University is based on the workshop “Personal Digital Archiving”. It discusses strategies and resources that will help you in managing your personal archive.

What People Are Asking About Personal Digital Archiving (Library of Congress)

Part 1:

Part 2:

Most of the questions asked at presentations related to personal digital archiving are about digital photographs and storage. These two blog posts provide answers to the most difficult questions.

Guidelines for creators of personal archives (Paradigm Project)

The tips range from making conscious decisions about naming and format when you create a file, to the deletion of low value material in order to free up storage space and make it easier to find what you are looking for. There is also advice about backing up, and administering and caring for your computers; and for safeguarding both your own privacy and that of others.

The Digital Beyond

The Digital Beyond is a blog about your digital existence and what happens to it after your death. We’re the go-to source for archival, cultural, legal and technical insights to help you predict and plan for the future of your online content.

Specific Media Types

Digital photographs

Four Easy Tips for Preserving Your Digital Photographs (Library of Congress)

Four simple steps to start you on the digital preservation path.

Keeping Personal Digital Photographs (Library of Congress)

Including how to transfer photos from your camera to your computer.

List of photo sharing websites (Wikipedia)

The list is non-exhaustive, but is limited to notable, well-known sites.


Web sites, blogs, text messages, and social media

How to Backup Your Social Media Life (Fast Company)

How can you download your stuff on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Flickr? Not all of them make it easy to get out what you put in. Here are the best ways to export and archive your social media life on the most popular networks.

Tools for archiving social websites (Your Digital Afterlife)

Many of the social websites you use probably have your content locked up in some way. These products and services can help you manage and/or archive your content so you can back it up properly. We don’t endorse these tools so use at your own risk.

How To Save A Complete Webpage For Offline Reading (makeuseof)

This article offers tips on saving webpages in Firefox, Chrome, and Internet Explorer.

Archiving Cell Phone Text Messages

Tips on how to save text messages off a cell phone.

Backup and Recovery

Make a Local Backup Of Your Gmail Account (Wired)

This wiki provides tips on storing backups of your e-mail on your local machine. The page also has links to making backups of other web-based e-mai services.

Back up your data (Archive Team)

The site offers tips, links and other information about archiving personal data.

Recovery tips (DriveSavers Data Recovery)

The site has put together strategies to ensure critical information is protected from corruption and loss as well as guidelines to avoid permanent data loss.

Online Storage

Online Storage Services Review (TopTenReviews)

Our comprehensive product reviews and articles on online storage services can help you choose the best service to disaster-proof your data.

iCloud Showdown: Apple iCloud Vs. Its Top 5 Competitors (CRN)

Comparison of top five cloud storage service providers.

Batch File Renaming


ReNamer is a very powerful and flexible file renaming tool, which offers all the standard renaming procedures, including prefixes, suffixes, replacements, case changes, as well as removing contents of brackets, adding number sequences, changing file extensions, etc.


Use Belvedere's friendly interface to create advanced rules to move, copy, delete, rename, or open files based on their name, extension, size, creation date, and more.

Bulk Rename Utility

Bulk Rename Utilityis a free file renaming software for Windows. Bulk Rename Utility allows you to easily rename files and entire folders based upon extremely flexible criteria.

Metadata Extraction

EMET: Embedded Metadata Extraction Tool (ARTstor)

EMET is a tool designed to extract metadata embedded in JPEG and TIFF files. EMET is compatible with Mac OS 10.4+, as well as Windows XP, Windows Vista, and Windows 7.

Metadata Extraction Tool (National Library of New Zealand)

This tool is designed to extract metadata from a wide variety of common file formats, including GIF, JPEG, PDF, MP3, and MS Office (Word, Excel, Powerpoint). It works on Microsoft Windows computers.

File Formats

File format description and usage (University of Cambridge)

This document describes different file formats and gives recommendations on their usage and archiving.

Standards for file formats (Paradigm Project)

The document describes file format parameters and their use and also gives advice on converting electronic documents into archival file formats.

Digital audio and video records (National Archives)

Although this resource addresses Federal Agencies, it provides useful information about audio and video formats recommended for long-term archiving.

File Format Converter Tools

Conversion Software Registry (National Archives, ISDA, NCSA, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)

Web-based tool to find software to convert files from one format to another. This web accessible application will allow you to enter the file extension of the format you want to convert from and the format that you want to convert to.

Free Online Image Editors (JISC Digital Media, UK)

This advice document looks at free-to-use online image editors which let you work on images via your internet browser. As these free image editors are web-based, you don't need to install anything on your computer.

101 Tools to Convert Video, Music, Images, PDF and More (Codswallop)

Check out this list of 101 tools that will allow you to convert just about anything.


Aid4Mail is an easy-to-use, fast, and highly accurate email conversion program.