Digial Asset Managment - Open source


ResourceSpace is a fully featured  PHP/MySQL DAM system.  ResourceSpace provides a wide range of facilities and uses purely open source based tools such as FFMPEG, ImageMagick and OpenOffice.  A range of plugins add further functionality, including LDAP integration and other features to enable enterprise or large-scale use.  The metadata capabilities of ResourceSpace are highly developed and they have taken some bold (but in our view correct) decisions such as to eschew the folder metaphors that a number of other systems use.  The implication of this is that on ResourceSpace, you don’t reproduce your shared drive with some extra features thrown in to make the digital asset management task more bearable, but instead re-orientate towards a search-centric perspective that mirrors how end users of assets will probably be looking for your assets.

A number of commercial providers also offer services around ResourceSpace in addition to more advanced facilities (which you may have to pay for).  More enterprise end users are becoming open to LAMP based platforms.  Cloud hosting (which is effectively a form of outsourcing) has contributed to making underlying platform distinctions less significant for end users who care less about whether or not it is compliant with their IT department’s policies and more whether their DAM is running or not and what it can do. 

Summary: Still a good option for not-for-profit organisations and libraries that are looking for a lot of features without high cost but increasingly also by larger organisations who have the flexibility to support a LAMP based solution.  Also a good choice for website developers who may prefer a PHP based system rather than complexities of Java or .NET.

Licence: BSD
Download link: http://www.resourcespace.org/download.php
Technology: PHP and MySQL
Website: http://www.resourcespace.org


Phraseanet by French vendor, Alchemy, was formerly a licensed product costing 7,500 Euros. They have a longer track record in the DAM sector than almost any other featured vendor here apart from Daydream (having been operating since 1996).  Phraseanet is PHP & MySQL based.  The features provided are impressive and demonstrate just what a powerful challenge open source DAM now presents to proprietary alternatives.  Phraseanet has  support for images, video and documents (using the usual combo of ImageMagick, FFMPEG, OpenOffice etc. for processing) and includes an impressive searching capability as well as lightboxes (favourites).  Other features include a thesaurus, live folders and Flash based file uploaders, an LDAP integration module is also available.  Alchemy have definitely put themselves back on the map by electing to take Phraseanet open source and it’s well worth checking out.  Alchemy themselves also provide a range of development and support services as well as a Software as a Service (SaaS) option.

Summary: Ideal for PHP developmers and a possible alternative to ResourceSpace.  Built by a vendor with a long track record in DAM.

Licence: GPL3
Download link: http://www.phraseanet.com/en/download/
Technology: PHP & MySQL
Website: http://www.phraseanet.com/