I’m not sure what the motivation for this is, none was given in the announcement.
The historical data contained in the 3200 directory will remain on ftp3 for a limited time.
This mirrors the removal of other datasets, such as USHCN1, from NCDC’s servers. Why not leave it in place? Older data has value, particularly when one wants to compare what has changed over time. Disk storage is cheap, particularly when dealing with numeric data. The datasets could fit on any hard drive with room to spare, so cost of storage isn’t an issue. My advice? Grab it now.
From NCDC’s whats new page:
March 23, 2011
Effective March 11, 2011 the Summary of the Day, 3200/FTP Subscription product has been discontinued.
There are major changes being implemented to the Summary of the Day/3200 dataset. Beginning with the January 2011 data month, the existing 3200/FTP product data (containing 3200, 3201, 3202, 3206) in the ftp3 area is being replaced with the GHCN (Global Historical Climatology Network)-Daily data. All users will have access to directories for ftp/ghcn/ and ftp3/3200 & 3210/ data at no charge. For more detailed information on the transition of the 3200 FTP Subscription data please see ftp://ftp3.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/3200/IMPORTANTINFO.pdf. The GHCN-D web site at http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/oa/climate/ghcn-daily/ provides detailed information on the dataset.
Also coming in the next few months: the Surface Data, Daily (3200/3210/3205/3206) accessed via the Climate Data Online (CDO) system, will be replaced with the GHCN-Daily dataset. Also a new interface for the Climate Data Online (CDO) system will include new Dynamic maps and many more updates and features… More information will be coming in the next few weeks.
Here is what is in the PDF
Important info for ALL who access this data:
There are major changes being implemented to the DS3200 data. Beginning with the January 2011 data month, the existing 3200 data (containing 3200, 3201, 3202, 3206) in the ftp3 area is being discontinued and being replaced with the GHCN (Global Historical Climatology Network)-Daily data. The 3210 data will continue to be updated. The historical data contained in the 3200 directory will remain on ftp3 for a limited time.
GHCN-D is a database that addresses the critical need for historical daily temperature, precipitation, and snow records over global land areas. Like its monthly counterpart, GHCN-Daily is a composite of climate records from numerous sources that were merged and then subjected to a suite of quality assurance reviews. The archive includes the following meteorological elements:
- Daily maximum temperature
- Daily minimum temperature
- Temperature at the time of observation
- Precipitation (i.e., rainfall and snow water equivalent)
- Snowfall Snow depth
- Other elements are reported by selected stations
The format of the GHCN-D data is different from the 3200 dataset and may necessitate some changes for users who are downloading data electronically. The format documentation and list of country codes can be found in the GHCN-Daily ReadMe file on the ftp server (http://www1.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/ghcn/daily/readme.txt) The data files are located on our ftp server at ftp://ftp.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/ghcn/daily/
The format of the ghcn-d file is arranged similar to the 3200 format with each row containing the station identifier, the year and month, the observation type, followed by 31 days of observations and flags. There is NO “Time of Observation” (TOBS) contained in this file. The GHCN-D data are currently available to ALL users at no charge. (Note: the current files are entire period of record for each station, updated daily, and are extremely large files).
We will be creating directories on the ftp server, within the /ghcn/ directory, that will contain subsets of the GHCN-D data in a year/month file and will be updated daily. The year/month file will be formatted so that every observation is on a new row, so its arrangement will be station identifier, date, observation type, observation, and time of observation. These files should be available in the near future. Separate documentation for this file format doesn’t exist; however, the definitions of element, flags, etc will be the same with the exception of time of obs.
All users will have access to directories for ftp/ghcn/ and ftp3/3200 & 3210/ data at no charge.
For detailed information on this new dataset visit the GHCN-Daily web page at http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/oa/climate/ghcn-daily/
Please email questions/concerns to firstname.lastname@example.org