10 Apr 2023

National Archives reboots problematic search system

12:27 pm on 10 April 2023
Archives New Zealand, Archives building, 10 Mulgrave Street, Wellington

Photo: Wikimedia Commons / Nick-D / Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported

Archives NZ says it has set up a new team to work on its breach-ridden main search system.

The high-tech replacement for its main Collections search software went badly wrong last year.

The $4 million Swedish system exasperated researchers, lawyers and other users with multiple shutdowns, security breaches, delays and slow searches.

Chief archivist Anahera Morehu said they were now working with users to test-drive improvements to the system.

The team's work was "anticipated to deliver significant benefits to users".

"It will provide a better search experience for users and enable easier access to the information and data in the system, support business process optimisation, and focus on training and change management," she said in a statement.

Morehu did not give a timeframe for it all to be bedded in or say if extra funding was needed - "the department is currently in discussions around arrangements", she said.

Archives listed eight outages of parts of the search system since November - when the last major breach shut it down for almost two weeks - most a few minutes but one for four hours.

All but one of the eight were to the internal search system, not the Collections search tool the public uses.

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