Creating Snapshots & Requesting DOIs


Dockstore users can create snapshots and Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs) for their workflows. The ‘Snapshot’ and ‘Request DOI’ actions can be found on the versions tab of a workflow on the ‘My Workflows’ page. These features are specific to individual versions of a workflow entry.


Connect Zenodo Account

Dockstore uses Zenodo as its DOI provider. A Zenodo account is required to request a DOI for a workflow version. By using Zenodo credentials, a user is also able to fine tune their entries directly on Zenodo. Link your Zenodo credentials to your Dockstore account on the accounts page. Requesting a DOI on Dockstore will create a public entry on Zenodo and upload associated files.


Create Snapshot

A snapshot is a point-in-time capture of the descriptor(s), test parameter file(s), and metadata associated with a workflow version. Snapshotting a version will also make the version mostly immutable, with exceptions for some Dockstore metadata like verification status, DOIs, and whether a workflow version is hidden. Users will be prompted to confirm before generating a snapshot. Taking a snapshot cannot be undone.


What are the requirements to snapshot?

  • The workflow version must have non-empty files.

  • For workflows hosted on an external source control repository, only versions associated with releases or ‘tags’ can be snapshotted. For example, users cannot snapshot a version associated with a Github branch, but can do so for a Github tag.

  • Each version of a workflow hosted on can be snapshotted (must have non-empty files).

  • We highly recommend following best practices before creating a snapshot.

What is included in a snapshot?

The snapshot will contain the same files collected when selecting ‘export as zip’ on the info tab of the workflow version’s landing page. The inclusion of imports in the snapshot is limited. Valid local file path imports specified in the primary descriptor will be included in the snapshot. Imports specified using http(s) paths are not included in the snapshot.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

A DOI is a permanent identifier that can be used in publications to identify the exact version of a workflow or tool. The workflow version must be snapshot before a DOI can be requested. This snapshot, including associated descriptor, test parameter files, and metadata, will be included in the entry upload to Zenodo.


The user will be prompted to confirm before creating a DOI, we strongly recommend following the best practices for workflow descriptor language before generating a DOI.


A workflow version with a DOI can no longer be hidden on the public view of the workflow, but the whole workflow entry may still be unpublished. The version snapshot and DOI on Dockstore can’t be changed, however metadata editing may be allowed directly through Zendo, but this is limited. A Dockstore DOI request cannot be undone, however you can contact Zenodo directly about changing or removing published records here.


What are the requirements to request a DOI?

  • You must link your Zenodo account to your Dockstore account

  • A snapshot of a workflow version is required before a DOI can be issued

  • The workflow must be published and the version must not be hidden

Snapshot and DOI Best Practices

Before taking a snapshot, we recommend adding a description and metadata to improve searchability and usability of your workflow.

We also recommend including at least one test parameter file to your workflow. These test parameter files are example input JSON (or YAML) files for running the given workflow. It should be easy for a user to run your workflow with the test parameter file(s) in order to see an example of your workflow. For this reason, we encourage using publicly available inputs whenever possible.