# The Attributes in Database Objects

All objects in the RIPE Database have the same structure. They contain a set of ‘attribute-value' pairs in plain text. These ‘attribute-value' pairs can take different forms. Attributes are sometimes referred to as ‘keys'.

All the database content is currently in Latin-1 encoding. Any characters not in Latin-1 is automatically converted to Latin-1. Any characters without an equivalent in Latin-1 are substituted with a question mark character. One exception is that IDN domain names in email address attributes are automatically converted to Punycode.

When an object is stored in the database, the full text supplied by the user is stored as a single item as close as possible to what the user supplied. This means that the attributes and values are almost unchanged and the order is maintained. The spacing between the attributes and values may be adjusted to align the values and make them easier to read. Parts of the object are also extracted from the text and stored in separate tables and indexes along with some generated metadata to help with database functionality.

This is a list of changes that are made to the data supplied by the user:

  • Generate or change supplied values for generated attributes
  • Add missing "status:" to an aut-num object with generated value
  • Set/reset "status:" to 'LEGACY' on more specific objects to a legacy object
  • Change all attribute names to lower case
  • Change source value to upper case
  • Remove a trailing dot on reverse domain keys
  • Remove tabs and excess spaces from inetnum ranges and inet(6)num status values
  • Remove leading zeroes from inetnum ranges
  • Convert inetnum prefix value to a range
  • Convert inet6num values to canonical format
  • Remove end of line comments from primary and type attributes
  • Join up split values in primary and type attributes

In some cases an information message is added to the acknowledgement sent back to the user making the update. For example:

***Info:    Value 193.in-addr.arpa. converted to 193.in-addr.arpa