The inventory may be maintained as a simple text document, spreadsheet, or database depending on the institution’s needs and abilities. There are various platform-specific file managers such as Nautilus for Linux, Finder for Mac, or Windows Explorer for Windows, to name just a few, which can be helpful for those less familiar with command-line approaches.
For those with more technical experience, command-line programs can provide a powerful pathway to begin inventorying digital newspaper collections. For example, a local technical staff member or system administrator may use basic Unix file commands (e.g., ls, find, locate, and file) combined with shell scripts to analyze a directory listing of files and output the information in a tabular format that can be modified in a spreadsheet (e.g., txt, tsv, or csv). The various output files can then be combined and organized in report documents as needed by a curator.