Frequently Asked Questions


General

 

What is dPlan?
Who can use dPlan?
What is the difference between dPlan in Depth and dPlan Lite?
How do I create an account?
I created an account, but I can’t log in—what do I do?
I forgot my login and/or password – what do I do?
My email address has changed – do I need to change my login?
What are the system requirements?
What security features are provided?
What if I have a question/problem with dPlan that isn’t covered here?

 

Data Entry

 

How do I choose dPlan in Depth or dPlan Lite? Can I switch between the two?
How do I enter data?
How do I move from one data entry page to another?
How do I save the data I’ve entered?
How long will it take me to enter data into dPlan?
What does “I am finished with this page” mean?
Can I allow other users to enter data into parts of my plan?
Can I print out the data entry pages to make it easier for me to collect data offline?
Can I change data that I have already entered?
Can I copy the data in my plan if I want to create a plan for another building/branch within my institution?
If I have more than one plan with the same login and password, how do I choose a plan to work on?

 

Viewing, Printing, Saving, and Updating

Do I have to enter all my data before printing my disaster plan?
Can I view my plan without printing it?
How do I print and/or save a copy of my disaster plan?
How do I decide between PDF and RTF when printing my plan?
How do I create a table of contents in the RTF version of my plan?
If I have made changes to the RTF version of my plan, what happens when I update my data online in dPlan?
Will NEDCC remind me to update my plan?

 

 

General

 

What is dPLAN?

 

Collecting and pulling together information to create a disaster plan can be overwhelming. dPlan is a free online tool that simplifies the process of writing a disaster plan for your collections. dPlan provides a comprehensive fill-in-the-blank template into which you enter information about your institution. Data entered by the user is stored on a secure server and output in a standard format, resulting in a customized disaster plan that can be regularly updated.


dPlan was prepared by Northeast Document Conservation Center (NEDCC) and the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (MBLC). The development of the template was funded by the National Center for Preservation Technology and Training (NCPTT) and the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).

 

Who can use dPLAN?

 

Currently dPlan is only available to non-profit organizations such as libraries, museums, archives, historical societies, and city/town clerk offices that hold cultural collections (e.g., books, maps, documents, artifacts). dPlan cannot be used by for-profit corporations at this time. To use dPlan, institutions must submit institutional information to NEDCC and be approved for a dPlan account.

 

What is the difference between dPlan in Depth and dPlan Lite?

 

There are two ways to access data within dPlan: dPlan in Depth and dPlan Lite. dPlan in Depth displays all of the data entry forms in dPlan and creates a comprehensive disaster plan that covers disaster prevention, preparedness, response, and recovery. dPlan Lite displays only those data entry forms that are most important in preparing a plan for disaster response.

 

Since prevention and preparedness are crucial to avoiding disasters and minimizing their effects, we strongly recommend that institutions use dPlan in Depth. However, institutions with limited staff and resources or institutions whose highest need is a response plan may want to begin with dPlan Lite and move on to dPlan in Depth as time and resources permit.

 

Any data that a user enters into dPlan Lite will also appear in dPlan in Depth, and data that has been entered into dPlan in Depth is not lost if the user switches temporarily to dPlan Lite. Users choose either dPlan Lite or dPlan in Depth each time they login.


How do I create an account?

 

On the dPlan home page, choose New User and enter the information requested. The login for your account must be a valid email address. We suggest using a general email address associated with your institution that does not change frequently. Provide contact information (including an email address) for the primary contact person for your dPlan account, as well as for an alternate contact person. All emails from NEDCC regarding your dPlan account will be sent to these email addresses.

 

You will be asked to create a password for your account. Be sure to keep a record of your login and password for future reference. If you forget your password, see I forgot my login and/or password – what do I do?

 

To submit your information, click on the Submit button at the bottom of the New User page.
New dPlan accounts are processed Monday-Friday. Within 48 hours an e-mail message confirming approval will be sent to the primary contact person’s email address. This message will contain a record of the login and password you have chosen.


I created an account, but I can’t log in—what do I do?

 

Account approval is not immediate. Accounts are processed Monday-Friday, and approval may take up to 48 hours. An e-mail message confirming approval will be sent to the primary contact person’s email address. If your account has not been approved after 48 hours, your institution may have filtered out the automated reply that confirmed your account. After 48 hours, first try logging in with your login and password. If you are still unsuccessful, contact us.

 

I forgot my login and/or password – what do I do?

On the dPlan home page, choose Login and click on Forgot your login and/or password?. If you have forgotten your password, you can type your login and your password will be mailed to the primary contact person’s email address. If you have forgotten both your login and your password, contact us for assistance.


My email address has changed – do I need to change my login?

 

Yes, if you no longer use the email address originally associated with your dPlan account, please contact us to arrange for your new email address to be assigned to your existing account. It is very important to keep your login and other email addresses current, since periodic reminders to update your disaster plan will be automatically emailed to you.

 

What are the system requirements?

 

The following browser requirements are supported by dPlan:


Compatable browsers include:

 

Internet Explorer 6.0 or higher.
Mozilla Firefox 1.5 or higher.
Netscape 6.0 or higher.
and most browsers that support JavaScript, cookies and Secure Socket Layer protocol (SSL).

dPlan requires the following browser settings:

 

Cookies and JavaScript MUST be enabled.

Text Size

The site is best viewed with the original default text size setting.

Proxy Connection

If your Internet connection requires a proxy server, you need to ensure that your browser settings are set up for both HTTP and secure sites.

Monitor Display Settings

dPlan requires a resolution of at least 800 x 600 pixels using small fonts. 1024 x 768 is recommended.

Printing Requirements

Adobe® Acrobat® Reader® 4.05 or higher must be installed to view and/or print your disaster plan. Download Adobe® Acrobat® Reader® now.



What security features are provided?

 

For your protection, dPlan is equipped with a security time-out. You are automatically required to log in again after 20 minutes of inactivity. Access to the site is by authorized use only, via a password provided upon application to NEDCC.

 

What if I have a question/problem with dPlan that isn’t covered here?

 

If you have questions or problems that are not addressed in the FAQ, please contact us at info@dplan.org or 978-470-1010 for further assistance.

 

 

Data Entry

 

How do I choose dPlan in Depth or dPlan Lite ? Can I switch between the two?

 

Each time you login to dPlan, you will choose whether to access your data using dPlan in Depth or dPlan Lite (see What is the difference between dPlan in Depth and dPlan Lite?). Simply click the desired choice on the Login page. Once you are logged in, the main menu will appear differently depending on which version of dPlan you are using.

 

You can switch between dPlan in Depth and dPlan Lite by logging out of dPlan and logging in again. All data you enter and save will be stored on the secure server no matter which way you choose to access it. Data you enter into dPlan Lite will appear when you change to dPlan in Depth. Data entered into dPlan in Depth will not be lost if you switch temporarily to dPlan Lite.

 

How do I enter data into my plan?

 

Once you have a login and password (see How do I create an account?, choose Login from the main menu. Enter your login and password, and choose either dPlan in Depth or dPlan Lite (see What is the difference between dPlan in Depth and dPlan Lite? ). If you have more than one plan under the same account, choose which plan to work on from the drop-down list.

 

One you are logged in, the Welcome to dPlan page will list the name of your institution and plan and indicate whether you are using dPlan in Depth or dPlan Lite. Use the main menu to navigate between data entry pages. As you choose each main section in the menu, it will expand to show the sub-pages relating to that section.

 

The dPlan in Depth menu has seven main sections, with numerous sub-sections:

 

Institutional Information
Prevention
Response and Recovery
Supplies and Services
Scope and Goals
Staff Training
Distribution/Review/Updating

 

The dPlan Lite menu has six main sections, with fewer subsections:

Institutional Information
Prevention (general facilities information and emergency shut-offs only)
Response and Recovery
Supplies and Services
Scope and Goals
Distribution/Review/Updating

Data entry follows generally accepted conventions. Use the Tab key to move between fields. Most fields have a capacity of 100 characters, although fields with a scroll bar have a much larger capacity. “Tell Me More” buttons throughout the forms provide links to additional information about the topic(s) being addressed.


Data you enter is NOT automatically saved. To save the data you have entered on a page, you MUST click the “Save Changes” or “Submit” button BEFORE moving on to another page. These buttons are found at the top and bottom of each page. If you move to another page without saving your changes, you will lose the data you entered. When entering data on longer pages, we recommend saving your work frequently to guard against accidental loss of data.


On many data entry pages, you will create lists of data (e.g., names of staff, locations of smoke detectors). To add a record to a list, choose Add Record. A blank record will appear at the bottom of the list. Enter the appropriate data, then click Save Changes. To delete a record, click Delete Record.


How do I move from one data entry page to another?

 

Use the main menu to move from one data entry page to another. Be sure to save your changes before moving to another data entry page. When you click on a main section in the menu, it will expand to show the sub-headings relating to that section (e.g., Prevention expands to show Assessing Risks, Preventive Maintenance, etc.). In some cases the menu has several levels (e.g., if you click on Assessing Risks, it expands to show Natural, Industrial/Environmental, etc.). Some of the menu levels are headings rather than actual pages (for example, Prevention and Assessing Risks), so a new page will not appear on the right until you move far enough down in the sub-headings.

How do I save the data I’ve entered?

 

Data you enter is NOT automatically saved. To save the data you have entered on a page, you MUST click the “Save Changes” or “Submit” button BEFORE moving on to another page. These buttons are found at the top and bottom of each page. If you move to another page without saving your changes, you will lose the data you entered. When entering data on longer pages, we recommend saving your work frequently to guard against accidental loss of data.


How long will it take me to enter data into dPlan?

 

Even though dPlan is designed to ease the process of creating a plan, the user must still collect detailed data and input it into the database. You will need to collect information and come back to dPlan a number of times before you are ready to generate a complete disaster plan. The View/Print Options section of the site includes data collection forms in a PDF file. You can print all or part of this file to use as data collection sheets. See Can I print out the data entry pages to make it easier for me to collect data offline?

What does “I am finished with this page” mean?

 

As you enter data on each page, you will see a check box labeled “I am finished with this page” at the top of the page. Once you feel that you have entered all appropriate data on a page, check this box. When you check the box and choose Save Changes, dPlan places a checkmark next to the name of the page on the Check My Progress page (accessed through the main menu). The Check My Progress page provides a map of the data entry pages to track how much data entry you have completed.

 

It is your responsibility to indicate when a page is complete, since all of the data fields on any given page may not apply to every institution.

Can I allow other users to enter data into parts of my plan?

 

Yes, the Plan Management page (accessible to the main user/administrator for your account when you are logged in) allows you to add or delete additional users and to specify which additional users have access to which parts of your plan. Adding additional users can streamline the process of collecting and entering data into your account, but you may wish to limit the access of some users to certain parts of the plan, for security or other reasons.

 

DO NOT use the Plan Management page to make any changes to your own (e.g., the main user’s) access to the plan, or to the main user’s password. If you do so, you may be unable to access your dPlan account. The Plan Management page should be used ONLY to provide information about additional users.

 

If you have more than one plan on the same account (e.g., same login and password), each plan will have a separate plan management page that can be accessed once you log in to the plan. Detailed instructions for adding/deleting users and changing access to sections of your plan are provided on the Plan Management page.

 

The Plan Management page also allows you to set your display preferences, such as keeping the left-hand menu position fixed when you scroll down a data entry page.

Can I print out the data entry pages to make it easier for me to collect data offline?

 

Yes. Choose View/Print Options on the left-hand menu. Then choose View/Print Data Collection Forms. Click on the PDF document to open it (you will need to have Adobe® Acrobat® Reader® 4.05 or higher installed—Download Adobe® Acrobat® Reader® now). Clicking on the PDF document opens it, but does not automatically print it.

The Data Collection Forms document is 127 pages long. To print all the forms at once, click the printer icon at the top left within the PDF document, then click OK. To print a specific section, use the Data Collection Forms table of contents to determine the page or page range. Click the printer icon, specify the page or page range (e.g., 1, 3, 5-12) in the Print dialog box, then click OK.

 

To save a copy of the Data Collection Forms document to your computer, click on the Save a Copy icon at the top left within the PDF document, or choose File/Save As. In the Save a Copy dialog box, specify where to save the file on your computer, then click OK.

Can I change data that I have already entered?

 

Yes. Return to the data entry page using the menus, make the necessary changes, and click Save Changes or Submit to save your data. Then enter additional data into other forms as needed. When you are finished, choose View/Print Options to view and/or print all or part of your updated plan.

Can I copy the data in my plan into a second plan for another building/branch/unit within my institution?

 

Yes. A “clone” of your original plan can be created so that you do not have to reenter data that applies to both buildings/units. For example, a secondary building/unit might be a branch library, an offsite storage building, or another library within a university library system.


First, complete the data entry for your main disaster plan. Log out of your plan, choose New User from the home page, and fill out the New User page. You have two options:

  1. Use the same login and password for your additional plan(s). On the New User page, enter a different institution name and a different plan name (e.g., Riverside Public Library East Branch for your second plan vs. Riverside Public Library for your first plan). DO NOT use the same institution and plan name as your main plan. Enter the same login and password you used for your first plan. Enter the appropriate address and contact information for your additional building or branch, then click Submit. If you choose this option, you will see a drop-down menu listing all of your plans each time you log in to your dPlan account.

  2. Use a different login and password for each additional plan you create. This will require you to maintain a careful record of which login/password matches which plan. We also recommend that you choose different but related institution and plan names for each plan. In this case, you will enter a new login and password on the New User page.


Once you have created your new plan(s), contact us so that NEDCC staff can copy the information from your original plan to your new plan(s). Once this has been done, you can log in to your new plan(s) and change the data as needed to customize it for the second building/unit. As with account approval, copying information to your new plan(s) will not be immediate, but it will be done as soon as possible.


If I have more than one plan with the same login and password, how do I choose one of my plans to work on?

 

When you enter your login and password on the Login page, dPlan will provide a drop-down list of the plans associated with your account. Choose a plan from the list and click Submit.

 

Viewing, Printing, and Updating

Do I have to enter all my data before printing my plan?

 

No. It is not necessary to complete all the data entry pages before printing your plan. You may wish to work on only a portion of your plan at once, or information on some of the pages may be inapplicable to your institution. Data that has not been entered will be missing in your printed plan, but the standard text designed to accompany it will still be generated. There are several options for printing all or part of your plan. See How do I print my disaster plan? [link] below.

Can I view my plan without printing it?

 

Yes. You can view a section of your plan in PDF (portable document format), or you can view your entire plan in RTF (rich text format) or PDF. To view the PDF versions, you will need to have Adobe® Acrobat® Reader® 4.05 or higher installed—Download Adobe® Acrobat® Reader® now).

 

To view a portion of your plan, use the main menu to navigate to the page containing the data you want to view, then choose View/Print Section in Progress under View/Print Options on the main menu. A PDF file showing that portion of your plan will be generated. You can print this PDF file, save it to your computer (click on the Save a Copy icon at the top left), or use your browser’s Back button to return to data entry without printing. See also How do I print my disaster plan?

 

To view your entire plan, choose View/Print Entire Plan under View/Print Options on the main menu. Choose either the PDF (portable document format, which cannot be edited) or the RTF (rich text format, which can be edited) version of your plan.

 

If you choose PDF, a PDF file showing your entire plan will be generated in your browser window. You can print this PDF file, save it to your computer (click on the Save a Copy icon at the top left), or use your browser’s Back button to return to data entry without printing.

 

If you choose RTF, you will see a File Download dialog box. To view the plan only, click Open; the file will open in your browser window. When you are finished viewing, use your browser’s Back button to return to data entry. If you want to save a copy of the RTF file, choose Save instead of Open. You will see a Save As dialog box; choose a location and file name, then click Save.

How do I print and/or save a copy of my disaster plan?

 

Print all or part of your disaster plan, or save a copy to your computer, by choosing View/Print Options on the main menu. You can print/save a section of your plan in PDF (portable document format) or print/save your entire plan in RTF (rich text format) or PDF. To access the PDF files, you will need Adobe® Acrobat® Reader® 4.05 or higher—Download Adobe® Acrobat® Reader® now.

 

To print a portion of your plan:


Use the main menu to navigate to the page containing the data you want to print, then choose View/Print Section in Progress under View/Print Options on the main menu. A PDF file showing that portion of your plan will be generated in your browser.

 

To print a portion of your plan from the PDF file, click the printer icon at the top left within the PDF document, then click OK.

 

To save a copy of this PDF file to your computer, click on the Save a Copy icon at the top left within the PDF document, or choose File/Save As. In the Save a Copy dialog box, specify where to save the file on your computer, then click OK.

To print your entire plan:

Choose View/Print Entire Plan under View/Print Options on the main menu. Then choose either the PDF or RTF version of your plan. See How do I decide whether I want PDF or RTF output? [link]

 

If you choose PDF, a PDF file will be generated in your browser. To print this file, click the printer icon at the top left within the PDF document, then click OK. To save a copy of the PDF file to your computer, click on the Save a Copy icon at the top left within the PDF document, or choose File/Save As. In the Save a Copy dialog box, specify where to save the file on your computer, choose a file name, then click OK. The PDF version of your plan cannot be edited.

 

If you choose RTF, a File Download dialog box will appear. Choose Save, and the Save As dialog box will appear. Choose a location to save the file on your computer and choose a file name, then choose Save. We strongly recommend that you open the RTF file in a word processing program and view/edit it before printing, since the RTF output requires some formatting edits. You will also need to create a table of contents, since the RTF process does not do this. See How do I create a table of contents in the RTF version of my plan?

How do I decide between PDF and RTF when printing my plan?

 

If you will want to alter the content or the format of your plan after you generate it, choose the RTF version, which can be edited in Microsoft Word or any similar word processing application. This allows you to change formatting in-house, add additional information, and delete any information in the plan that does not apply to your institution. The RTF output is not as polished, however, and some edits/corrections to table and paragraph formatting will be needed. You will also need to create a table of contents, since the RTF process does not do this. See How do I create a table of contents in the RTF version of my plan? [link]

 

If you do not plan to edit your disaster plan after it is generated, choose the PDF version. This provides a more polished output, but PDF files cannot be edited or changed.



How do I create a table of contents in the RTF version of my plan?

 

Once you have saved the RTF file to your computer, open it in Microsoft Word or another word processing application. The following procedure is for Microsoft Word:

Choose Toolbars on the View menu. Click on the Outlining toolbar to make it visible.

 

In the RTF document, highlight the word “Contents” on the table of contents page. On the Formatting tool bar, apply the “Normal” style.

 

Place the cursor below the word “Contents” and click “Update TOC” on the Outlining tool bar. This will insert a table of contents.

If I have made changes to the RTF version of my plan, what happens when I update my data online in dPlan?

 

When you return to dPlan to update your data online in future, any changes you made to the original RTF file after you downloaded it to your computer will NOT be reflected in the new RTF file that you generate. It is your responsibility to track any changes you have made, and to reproduce them in the new RTF file.

 

Will NEDCC remind me to update my plan?

 

Yes. Once you have entered all the data you feel is needed to complete your plan, check the box on the Check My Progress page labeled “I consider my plan complete.” NEDCC will email a reminder to the login email address and to the primary and alternate contact people on your dPlan account. The decision to check the “I consider my plan complete” box is left to your judgment, since some sections of dPlan may not be applicable to all institutions.

 

You can change your data and update your plan at any time. Be sure to redistribute the updated plan to all appropriate staff members.

 

If you generated your disaster plan as a PDF file, you should regenerate and reprint it each time you make changes to your data.

 

If you generated your disaster plan as an RTF file, it is your responsibility to track and replicate any changes you made to that file after it was downloaded. When you generate a new RTF file after updating your dPlan data online, it will not include any changes that you made to the original RTF file after it was downloaded.

 

 

Copyright © 2006, Northeast Document Conservation Center (NEDCC)

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This online disaster-planning template was prepared by the Northeast Document Conservation Center (NEDCC) and the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (MBLC). The development of the template was funded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) and the National Center for Preservation Technology and Training (NCPTT).
   dPlan
The Online Disaster-Planning Tool for Cultural and Civic Institutions