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Course Archive Defined

You should archive your Blackboard course at the end of the semester.

Each Blackboard course can be archived and stored offline to be restored to Blackboard at a later time, if necessary.  A Course Archive can serve as a permanent record of a course including all the content and user interactions. Archived courses are saved as .zip files. The archive package can only be accessed by either restoring it or importing it to Blackboard (do not open the ZIP package as this will corrupt the contents).  Archiving a course does not delete it from the system.

Other options for archiving data from your Blackboard courses:

Why you need to make an archive

Since Blackboard courses are NOT archived centrally we urge all instructors to make their own course archive for all of their courses at the conclusion of the semester.  While the courses will remain on Blackboard for two years after the semester, it's advisable to maintain an archive offline.  It's important to note that the regular course backup process executed by Information Technology Services is run only for the active and future semesters.  Course backups are NOT made after the end of the semester.

How to make a course archive

Note: For combined sections, make an archive of the parent course where all course content and activity resides.

  1. From the Control Panel of the course, click Packages and Utilities > Export/Archive Course.

  2. Click Archive to create a new archived course ZIP file.

  3. Select the check box for Include Grade Center History to add this file to the archive.
    If the Grade Center history is extensive, the file size of the archive increases as well as the processing time.

  4. Select the radio buttons
    - Copy links and include copies of the files in the course default directory
    - Copy links and include copies of the files outside of the course default directory

    Copy links

  5. Click Submit.

    You will receive an email message (at UAlbany Mail address) when the archive is complete. 
    After you receive the confirmation email:

  6. From the Control Panel of the course, click Packages and Utilities > Export/Archive Course.

  7. Download the ZIP file via the link provided.

    How to handle the course archive package (ZIP file)

    A course archive package will be available for download as a ZIP file.  Please note the following guidance for handling this package:

    1. Do not open the .zip file as it can corrupt the file and make it unusable for future use. 
    2. You may re-name the .zip file, but please do not open or change anything inside the .zip file.  The standard naming convention for the .zip file is ArchiveFile_Course_ID_date/time_stamp.zip
    3. Curiosity got the better of you?  OK - you can make a COPY OF THE ZIP packages if you absolutely must explore it's contents.

  More about Exporting and Archiving 


Need more help? Contact the ITS Service Desk.