Open Preservation Foundation to provide sustainable home for JHOVE

The Open Preservation Foundation (OPF) has started the process of taking over stewardship of JHOVE, the widely-used open source digital preservation tool.

JHOVE (JSTOR/Harvard Object Validation Environment) provides functions to perform format-specific identification, validation, and characterisation of digital objects. It was originally developed by Harvard Library and JSTOR in 2003.

OPF will be working with Portico, a member organisation, to carry out the transfer. The JHOVE project, comprising source code and documentation, will move to the OPF software portfolio which will provide a sustainable home. OPF will put continuous integration in place with testing and reporting in line with the OPF Software Maturity Model. This will facilitate development and release of patches and new modules. Portico will be contributing code improvements that they currently use internally as part of this process.

The findings from our member survey show that JHOVE is the most important digital preservation tool to our members,” explains Ed Fay, Executive Director of OPF. “Our adoption of JHOVE is a practical example of our strategic priority to build confidence in currently available tools and approaches.”

OPF will be consulting with its members and the community in the coming months to gather requirements and roadmap future development to ensure that JHOVE is robust and actively maintained.

We are happy to see JHOVE transition to a community-supported model through the OPF,” says Andrea Goethals, Manager of Digital Preservation and Repository Services at Harvard Library. “We think that this is an important step towards sustaining the core digital preservation tools many of our organisations have come to rely on.”

Portico is very happy to see JHOVE formally established, with JHOVE2, within a sustainable framework for community source,” says Sheila Morrissey, Senior Researcher at Portico. “We look forward to sharing the enhancements and extensions we have developed with JHOVE’s very extensive community of practice and use.”

We’re very pleased to see this transfer of stewardship responsibility for JHOVE to the OPF,” says Stephen Abrams, Associate Director of the University of California Curation Center at the California Digital Library. “It will ensure the continuity of maintenance, enhancement, and availability between the original JHOVE system and its successor JHOVE2, both key infrastructural components in wide use throughout the digital library community.”

I’m very glad to see that JHOVE, which I supported for years, will continue to be in good hands.” comments Gary McGath, original developer and active maintainer of JHOVE.

JHOVE2, an open source digital preservation tool that carries out format-aware characterisation of digital objects, has already been moved to opf-labs in the OPF GitHub portfolio. As with JHOVE, OPF will be stewarding the software in line with its maturity model and coordinating roadmapping and future development activities.


Harvard Library


University of California Curation Center

Gary McGath



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