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Collecting files for your collection

Once you have a new collection you need to get some files into it. These may come from your ordinary file space, from previously downloaded files, or from other Greenstone collections. Some may already have attached metadata. This section describes how to import files.

The Gather View

This section introduces the Gather area that you use to select what files to include in the collection you are building. The Librarian Interface starts with the Gather view. To return to this view later, click the glidict::GUI.Gather tab directly below the menu bar.

The two large areas titled "Workspace" and "Collection" are used to move files into your collection. They contain "file trees" that represent files and folders.

Select an item in the tree by clicking it. (There are other ways; see below.) Double-click a folder, or single-click the switch symbol beside it, to expand (or collapse) its contents. Double-click a file (or right-click and select glidict::Menu.Open_Externally) to open it using its associated application program (see File Associations).

The Workspace file tree shows the sources of data available to the Librarian Interface – the local file system (including disk and CD-ROM drives), the contents of existing Greenstone collections, and the cache of downloaded files. You can copy and view these files but you cannot move, delete, or edit them, with the exception of the downloaded files, which can be deleted. Navigate this space to find the files you want to include in the collection.

The Collection file tree represents the contents of the collection so far. Initially, it is empty.

You can resize the spaces by mousing over the grey bar that separates the trees (the shape of the pointer changes) and dragging.

At the bottom of the window is a status area that shows the progress of actions involving files (copying, moving and deleting). These can take some time to complete. The "Stop" button stops any action that is currently in progress.

Two large buttons occupy the lower right corner of the screen. "New Folder", with a picture of a folder, creates new folders (see Creating Folders). "Delete", with a garbage can, removes files. Clicking the Delete button will remove any selected files from the Collection file tree. Alternatively, files can be deleted by dragging them onto the Delete button.

To select several sequential items, select the first and then hold down [Shift] and click on the last – the selection will encompass all intervening items. Select non-sequential files by holding down [Ctrl] while clicking. Use these two methods together to select groups of non-adjacent items.

Creating A Shortcut in the Workspace Tree

Certain folders – such as the one containing your own web pages – sometimes have special significance. If you like, the Librarian Interface can map them to the top level of the file tree. To do this, right-click the desired folder. Select "Create Shortcut", and enter a name for the folder. To remove an item, right-click the mapped folder and select "Remove Shortcut".

Creating Folders

Use folders in the Collection file tree to group files together and make them easier to find. Folders can be placed inside folders. There is virtually no limit to how many folders you can have or how deeply they can be nested.

To create a new folder, click right in the Collection Pane (or click right on an existing folder in the Collection Tree to insert the new folder in it) and click on the New Folder option. The new folder appears within the selected one, or at the top level if none is selected. You are prompted for the folder's name (default "New Folder").

Folders can also be created by right-clicking in the Collection Tree, or over a folder, choosing "New Folder" and proceeding as above.

Adding Files

Files can be copied into the collection by dragging and dropping. The mouse pointer becomes a ghost of the selected item (or, if more than one is selected, the number of them). Drop the selection into the Collection Tree to copy the files there (if the source was the Workspace Tree) or move them around within the collection (if the source was the Collection Tree).

When copying multiple files, they are all placed in the target folder at the same level, irrespective of the folder structure they occupied originally. When you copy a second file with the same name into the same folder, you are asked whether to overwrite the first one. Respond "No" and the file will not be copied, but the others will be. To cancel all remaining copy actions, click the "Stop" button.

Only the "highest" items in a selection are moved. A folder is higher than its children. You cannot select files within a folder and also the folder itself.

When you add a file, the Librarian Interface searches through the source folders for auxiliary files containing metadata previously assigned to the added file and, if it finds one, begins to import this metadata. As the operation proceeds, you may be prompted (perhaps several times) for extra information to match the imported metadata to the metadata sets in your collection. This process involves many different prompts, described in the Importing Previously Assigned Metadata section. For a more detailed explanation of associating metadata with files read Chapter 2 of the Greenstone Developer's Guide – Getting the most out of your documents.

You can also add a "dummy" document to the collection by right-clicking in the Collection Tree or on a folder, and selecting glidict::CollectionPopupMenu.New_Dummy_Doc. This will create a new empty file to which metadata can be assigned. The file can be replaced with a "real" file later on.

Renaming and Replacing Files

Files can be renamed by right-clicking them and selecting glidict::CollectionPopupMenu.Rename from the list. Enter the new name at the prompt and click "OK".

Files can be replaced in the collection by right-clicking the file to replace and choosing glidict::CollectionPopupMenu.Replace. A file browser will open up: navigate to the new document and click "Open". The new document will replace the old one in the collection, and any metadata will be transferred to it. This is particularly useful for replacing dummy documents by their real ones.

Some file types are converted to HTML by third-party software during import, for example, Word, Excel, PDF etc. The HTML produced during import may not be very well formatted. These documents have a further right-click option: glidict::Menu.Replace_SrcDoc_With_HTML. Selecting this option will replace the original file in the collection with the HTML version, which can then be edited.

Removing Files

There are several methods for removing files and folders. You must first indicate what items to remove by selecting one or more files and folders as described in The Gather View.

Once files have been selected, click the "delete" button to remove them, or press the [Delete] key on your keyboard, or drag them from the collection to the delete button and drop them there.

"Exploding" Metadata Files

Metadata database file types, such as MARC, OAI, CDS/ISIS, BibTex, Refer and ProCite, can be imported into Greenstone but their metadata cannot be IMMEDIATELY viewed or edited in the Librarian Interface. However, you can "explode" the file in the Librarian Interface and view or edit the metadata afterwards. Alternatively, particularly if you are maintaining a master external application, you can go back to the program that created the file, make your corrections, and reimport.

"Exploding" a metadata database file splits it into individual records, with viewable and editable metadata. This process is irreversible: the original metadata file is deleted.

Explodable files have a green icon in the Collection tree. To explode one, right click it and choose glidict::Menu.Explode_Metadata_Database. A popup window shows options for the exploding process. The "plugin" option specifies the plugin to be used for exploding. In most cases, only one plugin will process a particular type of file, but in some cases, where different file types share the same filename extension, there may be two Document Plugins that both process files with that extension. The "input_encoding" option can be used to specify the encoding of the database. The "metadata_set" option specifies the metadata set to which the new fields generated by exploding should be added. If none is specified, you will be prompted for what to do with each new field in the database: add it as a new element to an existing metadata set, merge with another element, or ignore.

When a file is exploded, a new empty document is created for each record, and the metadata from the record is assigned to the document. These are named using numbers such as 000001.nul, 000002.nul etc. If the "document_field" option is set (to a database field name), the value of this field, if present, will be used for the filename. The exploding process will also try to download the file and use it instead of an empty file. The "document_prefix" and "document_suffix" options can be used to make a valid URL or file path from the document_field value. The "records_per_folder" option can be used to group exploded records into sub-folders. If the database is very large, using this option will accelerate subsequent metadata editing.

Explodability is determined by file extension. In some cases, files may be incorrectly labelled as explodable if they have the same file extension as an explodable file. For example, the ProCite plugin processes files with a .txt extension, but most .txt files are plain text files, not ProCite files.

Filtering the Trees

"Filtering" the collection and workspace trees allows you to narrow down the search for particular files.

The "Show Files" pull-down menu underneath each tree shows a list of predefined filters, such as "Images". Choosing this temporarily hides all other files in the tree. To restore the tree, change the filter back to "All Files". These operations do not alter the collection, nor do they affect the folders in the tree.

You can specify a custom filter by typing in a pattern to match files against (Librarian and Expert modes only). Use standard file system abbreviations such as "*.doc" ("*" matches any characters).