Dear Sir,
Both methods are adequate to serve the purpose. The hanlde goes with the item and not with the bistream,
so you can easily create items without bitstreams and when the bitstreams are available you can add them
I would go for the second method that you describe below, i.e. add the items without bistreams and when the pdfs
are available add them as well. However, in order to do that you have to be using a new version of Dspace, (1.5, or later),
where in its dspace.cfg you will be able to initially disable the "bitstream required" flag in order to add the items without bitstreams
and then re-enable it. That option in the dspace.cfg file is the webui.submit.upload.required parameter, which
when it is set to false, the user that will be inserting a new item, will be given the option to skip the bitstream addition when she/he reaches this step
in the submission process.
Later on, via the "edit item" menus in the collection administration environment of the dspace you will be able to add the bistream to the item.
Hope to have helped,
Best regards, 
Message: 1
Date: Thu, 12 Nov 2009 10:58:08 -0500
From: Marvin Weaver <>
Subject: [Dspace-general] Import metadata without items
Message-ID: <>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1; format=flowed

I crosslisted this in both general and technical as I don't know which
it really belongs to.

We are planning to develop a Dspace repository for our faculty
publications.  Initially, all we will have is the metadata.  The plan is
to use grad assistants to acquire pdfs and  research the rights for each
article or object and add these to the repository.  The metadata is to
be extracted from several databases and  imjested into Dspace so we at
least have a complete bibliography in one place.

Should a standard pdf, e.g., "No pdf available at this time" be added as
the bitstream object at time of creation so a handle can be created and
reserved or should the metadata be imported with no object and the
object and handle be created when the object becomes available?  Or is
there another way to handle this situation?

Thank you
Marvin Weaver
Saint Joseph's University
Philadelphia, PA 19004
Filippos Kolovos
Software Systems Analyst & Engineer
M.Sc. (Eng.) in Data Communications
Automation & Networking Department
University of Macedonia Library
Egnatia 156, P.O.Box 1591
540 06 Thessaloniki, Greece