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I`m adding some layers in geoserver and I noticed that there is a place to put a metadata link. It also says that it should be according to FGDC or tc211.

What can I put in this metadata link field? The url for the geonetwork metadada page? Or a xml file with the metadata?

Also, how can I use the information from that field i.e. query the metadata?

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Good question, not something I've ever thought to use or even bother asking about! –  Rob Quincey May 24 '13 at 7:58
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The link field should be used to add a link to a metadata document (iso19139/dc/fgdc) in for example a metadata catalogue like http://geonetwork-opensource.org. The WMS/WFS getcapabilities document will then list the link with the layer. The usecase is that your favourite viewer will pick up the link from the capabilites document and present it to the user as a metadata link (in for example a layer context menu). Unfortunately there are not that many viewers out there supporting this type of functionality. Note that a DC/iso-to-Html xslt should be applied to make the document human readable. Some regulations like Inspire already require a metadata link like this to be present in the capabilies document to facilitate the mentioned usecase in near future.

An example of a viewer supporting this type of usecase: https://github.com/flamingo-mc/flamingo

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Examples would be; from http://www.fgdc.gov/metadata/documents/workbook_0501_bmk.pdf: "Identification Title? Area covered? Themes? Currentness? Restrictions? Data Quality Accuracy? Completeness? Logical Consistency? Lineage? Spatial Data Organization Indirect? Vector? Raster? Type of elements? Number? Spatial Reference Projection? Grid system? Datum? Coordinate system? Entity and Attribute Information Features? Attributes? Attribute values? Distribution Distributor? Formats? Media? Online? Price? Metadata Reference Metadata currentness? Responsible party?"

An example would be to use the field to register the horizontal accuracy of a Digital Ortho Quarter Quadrangle GeoTIFF or BIL image and the currency of the image such as the date it was taken or date reprocessed for updating of attributional accuracy.

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Lewis, thanks for the link. It's allways good to get good references. But I understand the idea of metadata. My question is more related as to what the metadata link should point to. And how is it used. Should I point to a standard XML metadata file? Or to a link in a metadata catalog (geonetwork)? –  Daniel May 27 '13 at 12:02
    
it could point to rows of an internal table of your rdbms –  lewis May 28 '13 at 18:58
    
but it's asking for a url. Do you use that field in your geoserver applications? –  Daniel May 29 '13 at 19:56
    
If it is asking for one I would expect so. Must be an rest like API I would think, though, I'm thinking XML or UXML. Maybe you would need a translation to create database object to the database on the server backend. –  lewis May 30 '13 at 15:05
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