The Norwegian original is located at:

Regulation pursuant to the Archives Act of 1 December 1999 No. 1566 concerning further technical and archival provisions regarding the handling of public records, Chapter VIII:


Laid down by the Director General on 24 April 2007 pursuant to Regulation of 11 December 1998 No. 1193 concerning public records, cfr. the Archives Act (4 December 1992 No. 126) § 12.

General provisions

§ 8-1 Scope

These provisions concern government bodies. They apply to electronic registry and recordkeeping systems as well as archival information in other electronic systems which are to be preserved and transferred to The National Archives of Norway pursuant to the provisions specified in chapter III of the present regulation, § 3-20 of the Archival Regulation or specific decisions by The Director General in accordance with § 3-21 of the Archival Regulation.

§ 8-2 Definitions

The meaning of central concepts in these provisions:
a) transfer: conveyance of physical records and the ownership of these records
b) deposit: conveyance of physical records without transfer of ownerhip
c) archival version: the complete package of data content and enclosed documentation which is to be transferred or deposited
d) data extract: the data which are exported from a system to constitute the main body of content of an archival version
e) table extract: data exported from database tables or other exports of structured datawhich may be presented in table form
f) electronic document: data object in unstructured, non-tabular form
g) report: a logical join of selected data from database tables. Technically a report may be a secondary derived database table or an electronic document.

§ 8-3 Production of archival version for transfer - Obligation and method

An archival version containing an extract of the data determined to be preserved from an electronic system, is to be produced and transferred to the Archives in accordance with The Director General's decisions pursuant to Chapter V of the Archival Regulation. The Director General determines the method and the intervals to be used for the production of extracts from each particular system. The Director General determines on a case-by-case basis whether an archival version produced from a database system should include data extracts from original or derived (consolidated) tables, or one or more reports stored as electronic documents in one of the document formats specified in § 8-17. Separate provisions in §§ 8-21 to 8-25 apply to registry and recordkeeping systems.

§ 8-4 Responsibilities

Upon transfer to the Archives, the Director General seizes ownership of records material as well as responsibility for all further maintenance, cfr. § 10 of the Archives Act. When a copy of electronic records material is deposited in the Archives, cfr. §§ 3-17 and 5-2 of the Archival Regulation, the concerned body maintains ownership of as well as full responsibilities for the records material. The concerned body serves and maintains the material pending its subsequent transfer. The Archives preserve the deposited copy, unavailable for use, performing only technical maintenance. Unless a need for review has been notified by the concerned body or the Archives, the status of a deposit automatically changes to transfer as soon as the time of transfer is reached.

§ 8-5 Time, frequency and mode of transfer

The Director General determines the time and frequency of transfer of archivalversions from each system. The Director General determines whether the status of the archival version should be transfer or deposit, and may require depositing to take place prior to the time of transfer. Transfer would normally take place when the material is approximately 25-30 years old, but the Director General may also provide for transfer at an earlier or later date, cfr. § 5-2 of the Archival Regulation. If the use of a system for administrative purposes is discontinued without the data being moved to another system, or if the operation of a body is discontinued, a complete transfer has to be performed, cfr. § 5-3 of the Archival Regulation. Systems ("registers") which are subject to licensing from the Data Inspectorate, are to be transferred no later than the expiry date of the licence of the concerned body. From electronic registry and recordkeeping systems, an archival version is to be deposited as soon as a records period (usually a five-year period) is completed, cfr. § 3-17 of the Archival Regulation. Any associated electronic documents must be enclosed on deposit. Associated documents on paper must be enclosed as part of the normal transfer when the material is 25-30 years old.

§ 8-6 Archival version

Upon transfer or deposit, data are to be exported from the system database (or similar) and converted into a specific, standardized format in accordance with §§ 8-10 to 8-20. Necessary documentation of the data extract as specified in §§ 8-26 to 8-30 must be enclosed. The package of data content and enclosed documentation is to be transferred and preserved independently of the original system, as the archival version of that system. Archival versions from all electronic systems, with the exception of registry and recordkeeping systems which are based on the Noark standard [the Norwegian recordkeeping standard] must consist of the following:
a) extracts from database tables (table extracts), cfr. §§ 8-10 to 8-14,
b) any associated electronic documents, cfr. §§ 8-15 to 8-20,
c) a description of the structure and contents of table extracts, cfr. §§ 8-26 to 8-27,
d) documentation of the original system and the use of it, cfr. §§ 8-28 to 8-29,
e) information concerning transfer or deposit, cfr. § 8-30.

Letter c does not apply to archival versions from Noark systems, and letter d only requires information on the original use of the Noark system, cfr. § 8-24.

 Transfer or deposit procedure

§ 8-7 Implementation

Transfer or deposit of records material should be arranged with the Archives in advance, cfr. § 5-9 of the Archival regulation. For practical purposes, the Archives may request a sample of the archival version to be delivered prior to transfer or deposit. The costs of transfer and deposit must be borne by the concerned body, cfr. § 10 of the Archival Act. A body which transfers electronic records material, must not delete the data on which the archival version is based, until the transfer has been approved by the Archives.

§ 8-8 Approval

Upon transfer and deposit, the Archives should approve the archival version and sign for the material received. The Archives may refuse to approve of the archival version if:
a) it does not contain the components required in § 8-6 letter a to e
b) the table extracts do not contain the required information
c) errors or deficiencies in the data may be attributed to errors in the production of the extract itself
d) the enclosed description of structure and content is erroneous or incomplete, or
e) it does not fulfil the requirements with regard to archival medium, character set, formats or file and directory structures.

If the material is not approved, the Archives may require the concerned body to produce a new archival version. Alternatively, the Archives may demand reimbursement for work necessary to make the material conform to the provisions, cfr. § 11 of the Archival Act.

§ 8-9 Lending back

Transferred or deposited electronic records material may not be lent back to the concerned body. Instead, a copy of such material may be supplied on the condition that the body covers all the costs incurred in the process, cfr. § 5-10. of the Archives Regulation A copy of transferred material is supplied if this is not in breach of any provision adopted pursuant to a legal act which imposes time limits on the concerned body's access to the material.

 Format requirements for table extracts

§ 8-10 Table extraction from databases

Records from database tables have to be extracted and transferred in sequential text files. Database extracts may contain one or more files. One file may represent one table or a join of tables in the original database, cfr. § 8-3 third section. Relationships between the extracted files must be described in the enclosed documentation, cfr. § 8-26. Extracts from older network databases and hierarchical databases, where internal files may contain records of more than one type, must be normalized to relational form in the following manner:

a) Each record type must be exported to one single sequential file. The original physical pointers should be converted into logical keys (primary or foreign keys).
b) Repeated groups of fields (i.e., one or more fields which are repeated within a record) must be separated from the original record and exported as separate records in a new file with associated keys.

The three sections above do not apply to Noark systems. Archival versions from Noark systems have to conform to the provisions in §§ 8-21 to 8-25.

Upon transfer or deposit, packed and binary numerical fields are not accepted in table extracts.

§ 8-11 Character sets in table extracts

Table extracts and accompanying descriptions of structure and contents are to be transferred as text-only in an unencrypted and uncompressed form, and to use an approved character set. The approved character sets are Unicode UTF-8 (ISO/IEC 10646-1:2000 Annex D) and ISO 8859-1, Latin 1. For Sami characters, ISO 8859-4: 1998, Latin-4 is used in substitution of Latin 1. Use of other character sets require acceptance and a special arrangement with the Archives.

§ 8-12 Field lengths in table extracts

The field lengths of table extracts may be up to 2047 characters. A field which is longer than 2047 characters, must be stored as an electronic document in a text-only format, cfr. § 8-17 letter a. The document must be associated with the table extract as an independent file in accordance with the provisions of § 8-15.

§ 8-13 Text-file formats in table extracts

Text files containing table extracts may have one of the following formats:
a) Fixed format: All fields have fixed positions within the records. The length and/or initial position of each field must be specified in the enclosed description of structure and contents as specified in § 8-26.
b) Character-separated format: Records and fields have variable length, and are separated by fixed, unique delimiters. The record delimiter should be <CR><LF>. The table extract must not contain records with field names (heading). The field delimiters are to be specified in the enclosed description of structure and contents, cfr. § 8-26.
c) XML format: The format must conform to version 1.0 of the XML standard.

§ 8-14 Export of table data types to text files

During export to text files in accordance with § 8-13, the various data types of the original database are to have the following layout:
a) When a "fixed format" is used, text strings should be left-adjusted in the fields.Subsequent positions must be filled with blanks. Integers and decimal numbers must be right-adjusted without leading zeros, and the prior positions filled with blanks.
b) Negative numbers and decimal numbers must have a minus sign as the first digit. Positive numbers are not normally represented by a plus sign.
c) Decimal numbers must have a comma as a decimal separator.
d) Dates are to be laid out as YYYYMMDD (ISO 8601).

 Format requirements for electronic documents

§ 8-15 Associating electronic documents with table extracts

Except from electronic reports and similar independent documents, electronic documents must be associated with table extracts from a system for entry into records or another electronic system for registering documents, cfr. chapter IX of the present regulation [English version of Ch. IX:].

The electronic documents are to be stored as separate files and transferred together with the table extract. The table extract must contain a reference to the file name of each individual document. If file- or directory names are modified during export to the archival version, the changes must be reflected in the file references to sustain the linkage of documents to tables.

§ 8-16 OCR, security functions and digital signatures in electronic documents

Scanned documents can not be depositeted og transferred in versions where OCRread text replaces original scanned content. OCR-read versions may however follow in addition to the original scanned documents. Upon transfer to the Archives, possible security functions in electronic documents, such as passwords and encryption, must be deactivated. Electronic documents may only be transferred in an encrypted state if specific arrangements have been made for encryption. Such an arrangement must include rules for the use of decryption keys. Electronic documents may have digital signatures applied to them based on public key cryptography.

§ 8-17 Approved document formats for archival purposes

Electronic documents with text, images or graphics may be stored in the following document formats when they are transferred or deposited:
a) Text-only: UTF-8 (ISO/IEC 10646-1:2000 Annex D) or ISO 8859-1:1998, Latin-1. For Sami characters, ISO 8859-4: 1998, Latin-4 can be used in substitution of Latin 1.
b) TIFF - Tag Image File Format version 6, with the provisions specified in § 8-18.
c) XML - Extensible Markup Language version 1.0, with the provisions specified in § 8-19.
d) PDF/A - ISO 19005-1:2005, version 1a or 1b (“Conformance Level” A or B). PDF/A replaces Adobe PDF, cfr. § 8-20 third section.

For digital photographs, maps, video and audio sequences the following are approved:
a) photographs og images: TIFF version 6 and JPEG (ISO 10918-1:1994).
b) maps: TIFF version 6 and SOSI version 2.2 (1995) or later.
c) video: MPEG-2 (ISO 13818-2.)
d) audio: MP3 (ISO 11172-3), PCM or PCM-based Wave. The choice between these sound formats should in each case be appointed with the Archives before transfer or deposit.

§ 8-18 Specified requirements for electronic documents in TIFF format

TIFF documents may be "single page" or "multiple page". If "single page", each page of the document must be stored in a separate file under a shared directory. TIFF documents must not contain user-defined (“private”) tags. Lossless compression in accordance with CCITT/TSS group 4, LZW or PackBit should be used for documents in black-and-white, and LZW or PackBit for colour/grey scale documents.

Lossless Deflate/LZ77-compression and lossy JPEG-compression (ISO 10918-1:1994) are accepted in TIFF documents with photographs and maps, provided the following corrected compression values from TIFF TechNote2 (Adobe 1995) *) are applied:
a) When Deflate compression is employed in TIFF, compression 8 must be used. The older compression 32946 (80b2 HEX) in TIFF version 6 (1992) is not accepted.
b) When JPEG compression (ISO 10918-1:1994) is employed in TIFF, compression 7 must be used. The older compression 32946 (80b2 HEX) in TIFF version 6 is not accepted.

§ 8-19 Specified requirements for electronic documents in XML format

Characters sets in XML documents may be UTF-8 or ISO 8859-1/8859-4.
When XML documents have an associated DTD (Document Type Definition), an XML Schema or associated template files (e.g., stylesheets), these are to be enclosed as separate files. An associated XML Schema is to be enclosed also when XML documents are based on standards like ISO/IEC 26300:2006 - Open Document Format (ODF), Microsoft’s and Ecma’s Office Open XML-standard (OOXML) or Microsoft’s older WML-standard.
DTDs, XML Schemas and template files which are shared by a number of documents, may be stored once, at the top-level of the file structure on the actual storage device, provided sustainable file references are used. All other files or objects which are referenced from a XML document, are to be collected in a subordinate directory, cfr. § 8-33 letter b.
Section two and three above do not apply to table extracts in XML format, cfr. § 8-13.

§ 8-20 Interim provisions for other document formats

From 1. January 2008 the formats TIFF/IT (ISO 12639), SGML and HTML are no longer approved of as document formats for archival purposes. Documents which have been archived in these formats before 1. January 2008, will however be accepted for future transfer or deposit.

Case documentation collected from the World Wide Web after 1. January 2008, must be converted to an approved document format upon transfer or deposit.

From 1. January 2009 Adobe PDF is no longer approved of as a document format for archival purposes. Documents which have been archived in Adobe PDF before 1. January 2009, will however be accepted for future transfer or deposit.

Untill 1. January 2009 Adobe PDF documents should be stored with approximately the same characteristics as PDF/A documents, cfr. 8-17 first section letter d. Fonts should as far as possible be embedded. Adobe PDF documents should not have audio and video files or functions for file execution embedded. Java Script should not be used, nor PDF’s functions for schema data handling. Documents with schema data should be converted to TIFF. If desired, the TIFF version may thereafter be converted back to PDF.

Provisions for Noark systems and other registry and recordkeeping systems

§ 8-21 Common provisions for data extracts from Noark systems

Data extracts from Noark systems are to be deposited at the time and frequency specified in § 8-5 fifth section. Enclosed electronic documents can only accompany Noark version 4 systems autorized by the Director General for electronic document archiving.

From Noark systems the registry information is to be exported from the database as table extracts spanning entire records periods, cfr. the provisions for periodization and remote storage in the Noark standard, chapter 12. The extract has to include all the cases that were completed during the period as well as all the registry entries in these cases and any electronic case documents associated with the registry entries.

Enclosed with the extract, there must follow two electronic reports:
a) a complete report, ordered by case, which contains all the cases that were completed during the period as well as any registry entries associated with these cases,
b) a complete, chronologically ordered report which contains all the entries that were registered during the period, i.e.: all entries with registration date within the period.

§ 8-22 Extracts from systems based on Noark-3 (1994) and Koark (1995)

Tables containing all the completed cases from a registry period are to be extracted according to the specifications of Noark-3 (the Director General, 1994), chapter 15.5.1, option 1. I addition to the requirements from 1994 the filing-plan table is to be extracted and enclosed. The storage medium should no longer be magnetic tape, but as specified in § 8-31.

The filing-plan table should be named ARKIV.DAT and should have the following format: a fixed 16-position file code and fixed group text (code text) of 255 positions. No record delimiter should be used.

The following reports are to be deposited together with the table extract, cfr. § 8-21 third section letter a and b:
a) Final report ordered by case (see Noark-3, chapter 14.3.4).
b) Final, chronological registry report (see Noark-3, chapter 14.3.1). In order to encompass all the registry entries that were registered during the period, this must be produced before completed cases are separated from the active database at the time of reorganization.

The following electronic reports must subsequently accompany the paper-based case records when they are transferred:
a) Transfer list (see Noark-3, chapter 14.3.2).
b) Downgrading list (see Noark-3, chapter 14.2.5), if the feature downgrading is used.

All reports are to be transferred in document format, as text-only, as PDF documents or asXML documents accompanied by a DTD or XML Schema, cfr. the requirements of § 8-19.

§ 8-23 Extracts from systems based on Noark-4 (2002)

Table extracts and any associated electronic documents have to include one or more completed entire records sections. The extract is to be produced in the transfer format specified in Noark version 4-1 (the Director General, 2002)

The format of the attributes, their distribution among tables and the specific attribute and table names used in Noark-4, are mandatory during data export for transfer and deposit.

Table extracts with associated electronic documents must contain the table DOKVERSJON with references to file names for all enclosed electronic documents.

The following reports are to accompany table extracts from Noark-4-based systems, cfr.§ 8-21 third section letter a and b:
a) Case and document summary (see Noark 4.1, chapter 11.3.4)
b) Registry (see Noark 4.1, chapter 11.3.3).

When archive documents are filed on paper, the following electronic reports must be enclosed with the paper-based records on transfer:
a) Remote-storage and transfer lists (see Noark 4.1, chapter 11.3.8)
b) Records summary (only in cases where transfer or deposit includes data from several records sections, see Noark 4.1, chapter 11.3.1)
c) Downgrading list (only in cases where this feature is used (see Noark 4.1, chapter 11.3.6)
d) Disposal list (only in cases where this feature is used (see Noark 4.1, chapter 11.3.7)).

The reports enclosed with paper-based records are to be transferred as table extracts in text-only format or as electronic documents in one of the formats specified in § 8-17.

§ 8-24 Documentation requirements to data extracts from Noark systems

Data extracts from Noark systems are excepted from the requirements in § 8-26 on technical documentation and the requirements in § 8-28 on documentation of the originating system. Noark data extracts only require enclosed documentation on the originating body as specified in § 8-29 letter c, and documentation on the deposit itself as specified in § 8-30.

For extracts based on Noark-4, there should be enclosed specific documentation from the system vendor which describes the parts of Noark-4 which are included in the system

§ 8-25 Extracts from recordkeeping systems which do not conform to Noark

Registry and recordkeeping systems which are not approved as Noark systems, should produce extracts which as far as possible conform to the specifications for Noark systems.

Extracts from systems which do not conform to the Noark standard, must be adequately documented with a complete structure and content description as specified in § 8-26, and with information on the originating system and its usage as specified in §§ 8-28 and 8-29, unless the Director General has decided otherwise for an individual system.

Requirements with regard to technical documentation

§ 8-26 Technical documentation of table extracts

For all extracted tables a complete structure and content description in electronic form is to be enclosed. The description must include the tables (i.e., files/record types) and fields of the extract being transferred or deposited, not the table structure of the database from which the extract has been exported. The documentation should include:
a) File and record description. Each single table (file/record type) is to be specified. The specification requires a short description of the contents, indication of relationships between tables and a definition of primary keys and foreign keys as well as cardinality.
b) Field description. The field names of all tables (files/record types) is to be described. The data types of the fields must be specified. When a fixed format, cfr. § 8-13, is used, the initial position and length of each field must be specified. The contents of each single field must be explained if it is not apparent from the field name.
c) Code explanations. In those cases where fields contain coded values, complete code explanations are required. If the system stores the codes in separate help tables, extracts from these should be included in the archival version. The description of structure and contents must be in accordance with the format requirements in § 8-27.

A description of structure and contents is not required for Noark systems, cfr. 8-24.

§ 8-27 Format requirements to technical documentation

The description of structure and contents which is to accompany table extracts, has to be in a text-only format using an approved character set, cfr. § 8-11. The description should use XML syntax.

When XML is used to describe table extracts containing text files in fixed or character-separated format, cfr. § 8-13 letter a and b, the description is to be based on the syntax rules contained in the Director General's description standard ADMML (Archives Data Description Markup Language).

Table extracts containing text files in XML format, cfr. § 8-13 letter c, require an enclosed XML Schema. On a case-by-case basis the Director General may however decide that the documentation of table extract text files in XML format is to be based on ADMML.

Documentation files should be organised and named as specified in § 8-34 letter b.

§ 8-28 Documentation of the system from which the data extract is exported

A summary has to be provided with regard to the overall structure of the original system, including relationships between the tables and the primary and secondary keys of the individual tables in the system database. This summary may take the form of an ER diagram.The Director General may require documentation of selected screen captures and printouts to be enclosed.

In order to describe searches, data combinations and extraction methods which were used in the original system, the Archives may require that a number of SQL queries from the system be enclosed as documentation. These have to conform to the SQL-92 standard (ISO 9075: 1992) and be adapted to the table extract. The SQL statements are to be included in the description of structure and contents if the latter has been designed in XML, cfr. § 8-27.

Extracts from Noark systems do not require this documentation, cfr. § 8-24.

Requirements with regard to administrative documentation

§ 8-29 Documentation of the original system’s functions and usage

The following information is required concerning the usage of the system which has produced the data extract:
a) the purpose of the system and its administrative context
b) the main features of the system
c) the name of the records creator (originating body), possibly the multiple bodies which have had roles as records creators by updating the system. When a system has had several records creators, their different roles as such must be described
d) the system’s in- and out-data, including data exchange with other systems
e) any statutory authority for creating the system
f) manuals which describe the use of the system. These should be enclosed when they exist.

Noark-system extracts only require documentation according to letter c, cfr. § 8-24.

The documentation must be in electronic form, in one of the formats specified in § 8- 17. File names and locations of the storage medium must be as specified in § 8-34 letter b.

§ 8-30 Information on transfer or deposit

The following information regarding transfer or deposit is to be enclosed:
a) the name of the agency responsible for the transfer or deposit
b) the name and possibly the version number of the system from which the data extract originates
c) the time span of the data extract
d) the name of the records creator. If several creators have been involved, start and end-date must be specified for each of them. If the data extract is exported from a Noark system which has been shared by two or more agencies, it must be described how each of them is identified.
e) the number of records in the major tables of the extract
f) the number of storage devices enclosed
g) the name of the person responsible for the transfer or deposit.

If parts of the material are classified, subject to licensing or professional secrecy or withheld from public disclosure for some other reason, this must be made clear in the documentation.

The information should be in electronic form, as text-only in an approved character set, cfr. 8-11. File names and locations on the storage medium must be as specified in § 8-34 letter b.

Requirements with regard to storage medium and file organisation

§ 8-31 Provisions for storage media and associated file systems

Upon transfer and deposit, a physical storage medium is to be used which has been approved by the Director General. Storage media must use an approved file system which sustain the archival version’s original file names. Unless other types of media are appointed with the Archives, the following storage media and file systems may be used:
a) CD-R, with file system ISO 9660:1988, Level 1 or Microsoft Joliet. Maximal capacity should be 700 MB. Use of extra disc capacity by "overburn" techniques is not accepted. Discs should not have a physical label affixed, but be marked with a CD pen. Each disc is to be stored in a closed plastic container with an affixed explanatory label, and marked.
b) DVD-R or DVD+R, with file system UDF - Universal Disc Format, version 1.02 or later. Data must only be stored in one single layer and on one single side. The version number of UDF must be specified. Discs are to be marked and kept similar to CD-R.
c) Hard disk with USB 2.0-connector. File systems can be FAT32, NTFS or UDF, version 1.02 or later. Version number must be specified when UDF is used.
d) Memory stick with USB 2.0-connector. File systems can be FAT32 or NTFS.

§ 8-32 File locations and file names in general

If an archival copy consists of more than one storage device, a root directory bearing a unique name, e.g., ARKIV1, ARKIV2, etc., has to be created on each unit.

At the root level of the primary storage device, there is to be a file called INFO.TXT. This file is to contain the transfer or deposit information specified in § 8-30.

A file named INNHOLD.TXT must exist on level one under the root directory on each storage device. This file should provide a summary of the directory and file structure of the concerned unit.

If a data file contains a reference to another data file, it must be named and located in the directory structure in such a way that the relative references are sustained. The provisions in § 8-33 letter b-c and § 8-34 letter b may be deviated from in case this is necessary to sustain the relative references to electronic documents.

§ 8-33 Organisation of data files

The files which constitute the data extract, are to be organised as follows:
a) Table extracts are to be located on level one under the root directory of each storage device. The file names must be unique, and should include the DAT extension when a "fixed format" or "character-separated format" is used, or the XML extension when the format is XML. Table files must not be split up into several parts. A storage medium must be chosen which makes the splitting up of table files unnecessary, cfr. § 8-31
b) For electronic documents a directory named DOKUMENT has to be created on level one under the root directory of the concerned storage device. The document files are to be grouped at level two under the root directory. The files may optionally be structured into several subdirectories. If one single document contains several files, these must be grouped in one common directory with a unique name.
c) Electronic reports from the computing system are to be stored under a directory named RAPPORT on level one under the root directory of the concerned storage device. The report files are to be grouped on level two under the root directory.

§ 8-34 Organisation of enclosed documentation files

The following documentation files are to be located on level one under the root directory on the primary storage device:
a) The description of structure and content which accompanies the archival version, cfr. § 8-26. When the description is based on ADMML, this file is to be named metadata.aml.In addition the file addml.dtd or addml.xsd must be located in the same directory. When the table extract contains text files in XML format, cfr. 8-27 third section, the enclosed XML Schema is to have the file extension xsd.
b) System and usage documentation, cfr. §§ 8-29 and 8-30. A directory named SYSDOK is to be created, and the files containing the documentation are to be located on level two under the root directory.