Archival Description not saving the date

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Patrick Burden

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May 13, 2024, 11:06:18 AMMay 13
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Hi all, I am testing AtoM on my local machine using the Vagrant VM.  I am going through the process to test to see if the software will work for us.  I am attempting to add a Archival Description to the system, however after I safe it I get an error that the Date field is mandatory, even when I include the date when trying to save it.  Is there something I am doing wrong with entering the dates I have tried the following formats:

2024
2024-05
2024-05-13

Dan Gillean

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May 13, 2024, 11:32:32 AMMay 13
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Hi Patrick, 

Welcome to the AtoM community! Just a few questions for clarification: 

  • When you say error, do you mean the description fails to save and throws a 500 error? Or you save the record, and a warning about a date being required is shown on the view page?
  • What description template are you using - the default ISAD(G) one, or a different one (DACS, RAD, DC, MODS, etc)?
  • What is the full version of your AtoM instance, as shown in Admin > Settings?
  • AtoM typically has 3 date fields - a free-text display date shown on the view page, as well as two controlled fields for start and end dates that expect ISO 8601 dates (i.e. like the ones you used - YYYY, YYYY-MM, or YYYY-MM-DD). Are you filling out all 3, or just some of these?


We can likely offer more suggestions with a bit more information. Thanks in advance!

Dan Gillean, MAS, MLIS
AtoM Program Manager
Artefactual Systems, Inc.
604-527-2056
@accesstomemory
he / him


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Patrick Burden

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May 13, 2024, 2:19:28 PMMay 13
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I am happy to clarify.  The error is that when I hit save on the bottom of the page I still get the red bar at the top saying that the Dates are a mandatory field.  I am using the  default ISAD(G) template for now just so that I can follow along with the defaults.  I have entered an item in the three fields.  Generally I would enter the date into the date field and see that it auto populated the results in the start and end sections.  After that did not work I then would enter the dates into all three fields adhering to the formats mentioned in the original post and still could not get the values to save.  I am currently away from my testing station but I believe it is the 2.7.3 version of the software since I get the notification that an upgrade is available for the software.  If it helps I just used the one that was included in the vagrant vm with no other changes outside of the time zone of the system.  Hope that helps let me know if you need to know anything else.

Dan Gillean

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May 14, 2024, 8:39:39 AMMay 14
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Hi Patrick, 

Thanks for clarifying. 

That does sound like incorrect behavior - the warnings should not display if all the date fields are filled. In any case, if you're just evaiuating the software, the good news is: 
  1. I can't reproduce this issue creating a test description on our public demo site
  2. In any case, the warning you are describing is ONLY ever shown to logged in users, and not to public users. 
Regarding 1

Our public demo site is currently running v2.7.3 as well (it looks like it hasn't yet been updated to the latest 2.8.1 release), but I was unable to reproduce the issue there. Hopefully this suggests that it is just an issue currently affecting your local Vagrant instance, and not a bug in the application. Would you like to try to reproduce it there as well - login credentials are on the homepage; the site resets hourly so if you or someone else makes a breaking change don't worry, it will get wiped away soon enough. Also note that for security purposes some functionality (like uploads of any kind) is disabled in the public demo: 

AtoM was originally built around the ICA content standards (e.g. ISAD(G), ISAAR-CPF, ISDF, ISDIAH) and one of its early project goals was to make it easier for smaller or under-resourced archival organizations to describe their holdings in a standards-based way and make them available online. Despite this, AtoM is purposefully designed as a very permissive application, and doesn't actually enforce any of the standards-based content validation it performs on save. By this I mean: you can actually open a blank archival description template (via Add > Archival Description) and immediately save it with no data at all added - AtoM will let you create an entirely blank description. 

Despite this, the warnings you have noted are taken from the relevant content standard (i.e. whichever description template you are using), to help users who want to follow the intended guidelines or rules for that particular standard. ISAD(g) marks just a small handful of fields as mandatory - if these are left blank,  then authenticated users (i.e. typically staff users) will be shown these warnings on the view page of the relevant description. However, there are many times when leaving such fields blank is fine or even intentional (for example, most people don't have the time to describe everything in detail down to the item level). 

That said, I think it's likely that if we go through the process of upgrading your local Vagrant instance, we might resolve the issue. Doing so will require running a number of command-line tasks. Is this something you'd like me to provide some guidance on? And if yes - do you have data in your Vagrant test instance that you want to preserve?

Cheers, 

Dan Gillean, MAS, MLIS
AtoM Program Manager
Artefactual Systems, Inc.
604-527-2056
@accesstomemory
he / him

Sinéad Keogh

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May 31, 2024, 10:43:24 AMMay 31
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We have version 2.7.1 and we get brought to the error page when we try to enter dates in any format other than YYYY-MM-DD in the start or end date fields, even though the text beneath says it will accept YYYY or YYYY-MM too. We do not get the red error line. This happens whether we are batch uploading a CSV or manually entering the dates.

Sinéad
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