This video provides guidance about how to create top containers and what they do.
This screencast provides information about assigning locations, barcodes, and container profiles to containers.
There are a few areas where particular local practices may result in errors modelling containers. We're keeping a running list here, and welcome any further contributions.
The following assumptions are absolutely necessary to make your data work in the container management module. In order for your repository to make the most of this plug-in, your data must conform to the following:
If you have a box and folder associated with a component (or any other hierarchical relationship of containers), you will need to add identifiers to the container element so that the EAD importer knows which is a top container. This XSLT transformation file will add those for you -- just run it before import. If you previously used Archivists' Toolkit to create EAD, your containers probably already have container identifiers.
The container management plug-in treats every container as its own entity that can be linked to from many archival objects (components), resource records, or accession records. This functionality allows you to do many exciting things, like making bulk changes, assigning locations in bulk, making bulk deletes, and entering a series of barcodes rapidly. However, container ranges that migrate over from Archivists' Toolkit or Archon will be presented as a range. For the most part, this is fine, although it will reduce your ability to assign locations with any degree of granularity. You'll also need to atomize the boxes in that range if you want to assign barcodes to each box.
If you're importing EAD, this XSLT transformation file (which you should run on your EAD before import) will separate box ranges into separate boxes. Problem solved!
If you're already in ArchivesSpace, here's a report that will tell you all of your box ranges. You may decide to remediate these over time or leave them as they are. We're eager to find partners to write a script using the API to break out individual containers from a range.
This plug-in lets you disambiguate containers by series (in other words, if you renumber boxes at each series, the system will understand each of these as a separate container). You'll be able to view which series your container is in. In order to do so, the display looks at the level attribute and the component unique identifier.
In the example above, the level attribute is repeated in the Component Unique Identifier. This means that your container view will look like this:
In order to avoid this, you will need to update your component identifiers. If you're still in Archivists' Toolkit, you can run a SQL script against your database (provided here) to move the strings "Series" and "Subseries" out of your identifiers. This may have cascading effects for your stylesheets, so be sure to check all downstream serializations.
If you're already in ArchivesSpace, you can run this SQL script against your databse to do the same thing.