Abstract Two typing systems were used to conduct an epidemiological study of Acinetobacter and to establish their relationship to antibiotic resistance phenotypes. Biotyping was performed with biochemical tests according to the new definition of Acinetobacter baumannii (18 biotypes). Phage typing included two complementary systems: 125 phage-types and 25 subtypes. Resistance phenotype analysis included 11 antibiotics. The results of the study showed that: (1) nine phage-types or subtypes (67%) and two groups of atypical phage-types (5%) or of untypable strains (28%), could be defined; (2) all strains that were resistant to carboxy/ureido-penicillins and cephalosporins (62%) belonged to biotypes 6 or 9; among them 70% belonged to phage-types 17 or 124; (3) imipenem resistance was observed in five isolates of biotype 9 and one of biotype 6; (4) a phenotype including resistance to third generation cephalosporins (but not carboxypenicillins) and to amikacin (but not tobramycin) represented 8·5% of the isolates; 90% of them belonged to biotype 1 and were not phage-typable; (5) 15% of the isolates were not identified as A. baumannii; among them five Acinetobacter haemolyticus strains all had the same resistance phenotype: amikacin-tobramycin-kanamycin-netilmicin resistant; they were however, susceptible to beta-lactams and to gentamicin. There was a clear relationship between biotypes 6 and 9 and phage-types 17 and 124 which were the strains most resistant to beta-lactams and aminoglycosides and were predominant in the survey. The three typing systems were complementary but it seems that antibiotic resistance phenotypes and one of the two other typing systems would be required in parallel to provide suitable information for epidemiological purposes.