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Cuadra STAR Matrix

Page history last edited by Lisa Spiro 14 years, 4 months ago


Home Page

http://www.cuadra.com  (home page)

http://www.cuadra.com/products/archives.html (description of STAR/Archives)

Developed by

Cuadra Associates, Inc.

Developer’s Description

“STAR/Archives supports the management of archival collections of all types.  In describing your collection, you can choose an appropriate level within the full hierarchical model—collections, series, containers, and items.


With STAR/Archives you can manage the accessioning process, track donors and generate deeds of gift; describe and maintain multiple archival collections, including collections with digitized materials; reorganize the hierarchies as required; provide web-based access to your collections; search within or across collections; link images and other electronic files; and manage your inventory.


  You can also dispense with the labor-intensive process of creating finding aids by using a text editor or an SGML/XML authoring tool.  STAR/Archives dynamically creates EAD finding aids as XML files whenever you need them. STAR/Archives provides support for many standards, including ISAD (g), DACS, Dublin Core,

and EAD.”



Two options are available:  a perpetual license and a subscription to the Hosted Service

Purchasing Cost

The price depends on whether STAR/Archives is hosted by he company or on the institution’s own servers, as well as the number of simultaneous users supported and several other variables.  Training, data conversion, maintenance, and peripherals also entail separate costs.

Cost estimates are provided on request.

Maintenance Cost

Software maintenance is included in the subscription cost of the hosted solution. 


For the perpetual license, the first year of software maintenance is free.


User Support

  • Available 12 hours a day, Monday – Friday
  • Users can contact support by phone, email, or fax.
  • Web site
  • Teleconferencing
  • Web conference
  • Reputed to provide good customer service


Yes, generally delivered via teleconference, however onsite training is also available.  For teleconferenced training: 12 hours initial training, 6 hours follow-up training.  For onsite training: 3 days onsite.  System management training is in addition.

System Requirements

Varies by the operating system of the server.  The following server operating systems are supported:  Windows 2000/2003; Unix; Linux.


Users responsible for creating records and managing the application need PCs that run under Windows 2000, Windows 2003, Windows XP, or Vista. 

Technical Architecture

  1. Windows client for managing collections
  2. Web-based public search interface

Backup/ restore utility

 STAR relies on standard backup procedures that are included with operating systems and commercial third-party backup software.


STAR itself was first released in 1982.  Organizations have been using STAR to manage archival collections since 1983.  STAR/Archives was released in 2003.

Hosting Available?


Demo/ Sandbox Available?

Yes, by request


Maintained by company.

Example Users

Available on request

Unique strengths

  • Institutions without much technical support can have Cuadra host their data
  • Provides browser-based public search interface
  • Rich archival management features
  • Flexibility

Support for Importing/ Exporting Metadata[1]

Exports MARC


Exports EAD

Yes finding aids are generated in EAD as XML files. (though one user reported problems with EAD export)

Exports Dublin Core


Exports MODS


Exports METS


Exports MADS


Batch Exports EAD

Yes.  EAD files for a repository can be exported as a batch

Batch Exports MARC


Batch Export Tab Delimited Files


Imports EAD

Yes, with support from the company

Imports MARC

Yes, with support from the company

Imports Tab Delimited Files/ CSV

Yes.  Customers that have perpetual licenses can use STAR’s toolkit to filter and import such data.  For others, and for most new customers, Cuadra staff can import such data on the users behalf.

Imports Digital Image Files

Digital image files are linked to item-level records, not imported.  Cuadra links the files to the item-level records as part of legacy data conversion projects.  From then on, users themselves link the files as they enter item-level records.

Import Accession Data

Yes.  Customers that have perpetual licenses can use STAR’s toolkit to filter and import such data.  For others, and for most new customers, Cuadra staff can import these data on the users behalf.

Batch Import EAD

Yes, with support from company

Batch Import MARC

Yes, with support from company

Batch Import CSV

Yes, Customers that have perpetual licenses can use STAR’s toolkit to filter and import such data.  For others, Cuadra staff can import these data on the users behalf

Collection Management Features





Create Deeds of Gift


Prioritize Processing Order


Track Donors


Project Management


Record Condition

Yes: Includes fields for recording condition as well as conservation. 

Manage Locations


Manage Restricted Materials

Yes:  “control who can see records as well as the associated images and files”

Manage Rights

Yes: “records reproduction and other ownership rights and logs rights granted to others”

Manage Loans & Exhibits

Loans yes.  Support for exhibit management is planned.



Reference Support


Generate Reports

Yes: customizable report function

Track Repository Statistics

While the application does not yet meet the standards that are being developed by the University of Michigan, several statistical reports are included in STAR/Archives

Resource Description

Authority Control


Controlled vocabulary


Compliance to Archival Standards

ISAD(G), EAD, Dublin Core, DACS

Data Validation


Templating/ Default Fields


Support for Digital Media



Partial: supports translation of user interfaces

Flexibility of Data Model


Item-level Description


Reorganize Hierarchies

Yes: “reorganize hierarchies as required”

Dynamically generate EAD finding aids


Publish finding aids online


Administrative Functions

User Permissions


Support for Harvesting/ Syndication


Customization/ Configuration


Spell Check


Bug Reporting

Yes.  Customers are encouraged to report problems to Customer Support.  Problems are addressed as they are discovered or reported and the customers affected by any particular problem are provided with either a fix or a workaround.

Interoperability with Digital Repository Systems

 STAR includes APIs that allow other software programs to communicate with STAR.

User Interface

Web Publishing

Yes: web-based public interface that allows for searching within and across collections.




Yes: “search within or across collections”

Advanced Search



Yes: “Advanced searching allows the use of explicit Boolean operators, set combinations, date-ranging, and field selection”.  In addition, both the look and the functionality of the web module can be customized in many different ways.

Built-in Help


Link to Images & Other Files


Easy Data Entry


Other Features

  • “Manage your inventory”
  • “Track items in circulation”
  • Includes a web-based public access module that allows for searching both on and across collections.  “Smart” hypertext search links, galleries of electronic files, and a “dual” finding aid report that allows the hierarchy for a given collection to be used as a navigation aid are all part of the public access module.
  • Many capabilities are provided to help archivists enter data easily and quickly.  For instance, data can be entered in the Accessions module and then copied into the Cataloging module.
  • Legacy data conversion services are available.


[1] In addition to exporting data in formats that have been predefined, STAR includes tools for exporting data in tagged format and then filtering it into other formats. STAR also includes tools for filtering and importing data from many industry standard formats (e.g., delimited, fixed-column position, tagged, MARC, etc.) This part of STAR’s functionality is available to all customers that have purchased STAR under a perpetual license, and to those that subscribe to the premium level of service for the Hosted Service.

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