The IOOS Catalog is the master inventory of IOOS DMAC datasets and data access services. The Catalog consists of the Data Catalog, available at, which is the primary interface for the public to discover and access IOOS data products, and the Harvest Registry, available at, which can be used by IOOS data providers to manage dataset metadata sources for the Catalog to harvest.


Standards, Formats, and Protocols

Implementation Methods/Practices

WAF/CS-W Provisioning:

Datasets and data access services must be described with ISO 19115-2-compliant XML metadata, and made available in a Web Accessible Folder (WAF) or CS-W service for registration in the IOOS Catalog via the Harvest Registry

Catalog Registration:

The entry point to the Catalog is the Harvest Registry system, which will read compliant ISO metadata and publish to the Data Catalog. The Harvest Registry is a web-based system that allows data providers to login and manage their WAF and CS-W metadata sources. More information on how to use the Harvest Registry and the Catalog as a whole can be found on the IOOS Catalog documentation site.

Metadata Generation:

Automating ISO Metadata Generation for the IOOS Catalog

Community software exists that builds upon the software tools listed in the Data Access Services page that will automatically generate ISO 19115-2 XML metadata for consumption by the IOOS Catalog.  ERDDAP, for example, automatically generates ISO XML files for all datasets.  For datasets published in THREDDS, the ncISO plugin can be used to generate ISO XML metadata.

In order for the ISO XML files output from these processes to produce suitable rich, descriptive, and accurate metadata, the underlying datasets must be properly attributed and structured according to the netCDF-CF, ACDD, and IOOS Metadata Profile guidelines, and/or other standards as described in the Metadata and Data Formats page.