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embARC (Metadata Embedded for Archival Content)


embARC is a free, open source application that enables users to audit and correct embedded metadata of a subset of MXF files, as well as both individual DPX files or an entire DPX sequence, while not impacting the image data. MXF, short for Material Exchange Format, is an object-based file format that wraps video, audio, and other bitstreams ("essences"), optimized for content interchange or archiving by creators and/or distributors, and intended for implementation in devices ranging from cameras and video recorders to computer systems. DPX, short for Digital Picture Exchange, is a pixel-based (raster) file format intended for very high quality moving image content with attributes defined in a binary file header.

embARC, short for “metadata embedded for archival content,” is in active development by the Federal Agencies Digital Guidelines Initiative (FADGI) to support two major guideline projects:


Digital Picture eXchange

  • Import DPX files to support FADGI’s Guidelines for Embedded Metadata within DPX File Headers for Digitized Motion Picture Film as well as required SMPTE 268 metadata rules.
  • Audit and correct internal metadata of both individual files or an entire DPX sequence while not impacting the image data.


Material eXchange Format

  • Import and inspect MXF files.
  • Audit and correct internal metadata of one or more MXF files at a time.
  • Download embedded text based and binary based data.

Building and Running from Source Code

Project Setup

Import the source code into eclipse or the IDE of your choice. Import MAJ and DROID projects and include alongside embARC. Include droid-core, droid-core-interfaces, and maj as projects in the build path.


There are separate tests for each supported file type (DPX & MXF) included in the src/tests folder. Tests include reading, writing, and file format detection.


Set up a run configuration with embARC as the target project and com.portalmedia.embarc.gui.Main as the main class. Include Java 1.8 or equivalent in project execution environment.


Use gradle tasks to build embARC. See launch4j/createExe and macappbundle/createApp to build for Windows and MacOS, resepectively.