A two-stage machine learning, information retrieval, approach to fold recognition. First, we use alignment methods to derive pairwise similarity features for query-template protein pairs. We also use global profile-profile alignments in combination with predicted secondary structure, relative solvent accessibility, contact map and beta-strand pairing to extract pairwise structural compatibility features. Second, we apply support vector machines to these features to predict the structural relevance (i.e. in the same fold or not) of the query-template pairs. For each query, the continuous relevance scores are used to rank the templates. The FOLDpro approach is modular, scalable and effective.