File Storage Services

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UW Tacoma students, faculty, and staff have access to a variety of options for storing, sharing, and collaborating on files. When selecting the storage solution that best fits your needs, please keep in mind whether your data falls within the requirements of securing institutional data or is considered personal & non-confidential.

Institutional Data Solutions

Anyone working with institutional data is expected to follow all Federal, State, and University of Washington Policies and Laws. For more information on what constitutes as institutional data, please review our University Privacy Policy and the Laws outlined by the UW Privacy Office. Below are recommendations for storing institutional data using University of Washington - Tacoma approved solutions. For users who will be storing HIPAA data, please refer to the File Sharing Services Matrix to determine which solutions are HIPAA compliant. Additionally, please contact the Information Technology department to ensure all HIPAA measures are configured correctly.

Area of Interest

Institutional Data File Storage Options*

File Storage and Collaboration •    UW Tacoma Shared (S:) Drive
•    Microsoft OneDrive for Business
•    Microsoft Teams
•    UW Google Drive (Education Suite)
•    UW Google Shared Drive (Education Suite)
Research Computing Data Storage

•    UW Tacoma Home (H:) Drive
•    UW Tacoma Shared (S:) Drive

•    UW Tacoma Home (X:) Drive
•    Microsoft OneDrive for Business
•    UW Google Drive (Education Suite)
•    UW Google Shared Drive (Education Suite)
•    REDCap
•    SQLShare
•    Lolo Archiving & Collaboration
•    AWS
•    Azure

Teaching and learning Storage

•    Canvas
•    UW Tacoma Home (H:) Drive
•    UW Tacoma Shared (S:) Drive

•    UW Tacoma Home (X:) Drive
•    Microsoft Teams
•    Microsoft OneDrive for Business
•    UW Google Drive (Education Suite)
•    UW Google Shared Drive (Education Suite)

*If HIPAA compliance is required, please contact Information Technology to set up your network storage

 

On-Premises vs. Cloud Solutions

UW Tacoma offers both on-premises and cloud-based solutions. 

On-Premises Storage

UW Tacoma's primary on-premises storage solutions are network drives called Home (H:) and Shared (S:). For UW issued computers, DO NOT USE the computer's local hard drive (C:\ drive). Files placed on the local hard disk are not backed up, will eventually be deleted and are not recoverable.

The H:\ drive, your home folder

  • The H:\ drive is your secure, personal space. No one else has access to this space, so it is not appropriate for sharing files.
  • Space on the UW Tacoma servers is limited and you will be notified by email if your storage exceeds the quota. If you are over the storage limit, you will be unable to save additional files until your usage is below the quota. In this situation, you will be asked to move or delete files you no longer need.

The S:\ drive, for shared use

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The student S:\ drive is an open-access location used to temporarily store files that can be accessed by all students. This location is not secure, and all files in this location may be deleted five days after the end of every quarter. Recovery options for files located on the student S:\ drive are limited.

Can I access my files off-campus?

Yes! Visit the Network Access page for information on how to get Remote File Access.

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The employee S:\ drive is for open-access collaboration within groups and departments. Access to subfolders on the S:\ drive is limited by your campus roles. If you need access to a departmental share folder, contact your department administrator.

Can I access my files off-campus?

Yes! Visit the Network Access page for information on how to get Remote File Access.

Cloud Storage

Cloud Services offer useful features such as cloud-based applications for word processing, presentations, spreadsheets, online storage, collaboration and more. Using a third-party online storage solution such as Dropbox and Box is not recommended for institutional data unless a law-binding contract with UW is approved and abides by institutional laws & policies.

UW Microsoft OneDrive & Teams

  • UW OneDrive for Business - UW OneDrive for Business is the University of Washington subscription to OneDrive for Business, a Microsoft online service that provides resources for file storage, collaboration, and communication with other UW users. OneDrive for Business lets you update and share your files from anywhere and work on Office documents with other UW members at the same time. UW's OneDrive for Business instance is FERPA and HIPAA compliant when used in respects to UW Privacy Policies. The OneDrive for Business service, aimed at enterprise users, is not the same as the OneDrive service offered by Microsoft to individuals. For information on the differences, see How is OneDrive for Business different from OneDrive? on the Microsoft Office Web site. For more information and to get started visit the "UW OneDrive for Business" page.

  • UW Teams - Microsoft Teams is a collaboration portal that is a part of UW Office 365. It brings together Microsoft services and other third party applications into one unified hub. Teams offers remote collaboration, communication, and file storage. Within the Teams application, UW members can create different Teams for classroom & research collaboration, department work, professoinal interaction, and more. To create a Team within the application, you must submit a request via the Request the creation of a Microsoft Team form. However, you can use Microsoft Teams to schedule meetings, chat with other UW members, and make video & voice calls regardless if you setup a Team or not. Teams is FERPA and HIPAA compliant when used in respects to UW Privacy Policies. For more information and to get started review the webinars below or visit the "UW Microsoft Teams" page.

  • For more information on UW Office 365 applications, please visit the "UW Office 365" page.

UW Google Drive & Shared Drives

  • UW Google Drive - Access files from all your devices anywhere, anytime!
  UW Google Drive is a free web-based office suite containing tools for word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, drawings, and online forms. Users can create new documents or upload existing Microsoft Office documents to edit and share in UW Google Drive with others. Your files are always waiting for you at drive.google.com, but you can also get them straight from your computer, smartphone, and tablet.

  • UW Google Shared Drives - Google Shared Drives is a great collaboration space for those who utilize UW Google Drive. Shared drives are owned by the Team and not an individual. So when creating a UW Google Shared Drive, make sure at least one UW account is associated to the drive at all times.  If all the UW accounts withdraw from the particular Shared Drive, the last UW person should close this Shared drive, discontinue all the external Shared Drive members, and/or transfer the content to another Google Shared Drive (perhaps owned by another university). Otherwise a UW Shared Drive could end up with only external members with no UW connection. For more information on Team drives, please visit the UW Google Shared Drive website.

  • For more information on UW G Suite applications, please visit the "UW Google G Suite for Education" page.

Other

Other local and removable drives such as personal laptops, flash drives, CDs, or DVDs are appropriate only for storing personal, non-confidential files. If institutional data is to be stored on devices such as these, please contact the Information Technology department to ensure proper encryption measures are put in place.

 

Data Backup and Recovery

Files and folders saved on the H:\ or S:\ drives are backed up by Information Technology. However, the availability of files for restoration is subject to time and backup media space. If you need assistance recovering a lost file or folder, notify IT as soon as possible. Do not store data on your computer's local hard drive (C:\ drive). Files placed on the local hard disk are not backed up so they will eventually be deleted and are not recoverable. If you will be leaving UW Tacoma and/or graduating, you are responsible for backing up any files you create before your account is disabled or deleted. If you have files and folders saved on UW Google Drive and UW OneDrive that need to remain with a UW member/Team, make sure to move those files over to a department drive.

GRADUATING AND DEPARTING STUDENTS

  • Access to UW services including UW storage solutions will be discontinued for graduating and departing students. These students will recieve an email notification on the 10th day of the second quarter in which they are not registered as a UW student. This email will warn the departing student that their access to UW services will expire in 14 days and all data will be deleted. 
  • Any files you plan to keep should be migrated over to a personal storage solution. For school work, the Information Technology department recommends using Portfolium to store and showcase your work. Portfolium is a free online e-Portfolio application that is free to all UW Tacoma students and provides unlimited storage, even beyond graduation. For more information please visit the UW Tacoma Portfolium page.
  • Any official UW records should not be migrated to a personal storage solution. For these files, please work with your department or unit to safely discard or migrate official UW records to an active account, taking care to preserve UW records according to records management guidance and the General Records Retention Schedule or the UW Medicine Records Retention Schedule.

Seperating Employees and Upcoming Retirees

  • Departing employees will lose access to UW services after 30 days of their departure date. All data will be deleted so please migrate any personal files to a personal storage solution.
  • Any official UW records should not be migrated to a personal storage solution. For these files, please work with your department or unit to safely discard or migrate official UW records to an active account, taking care to preserve UW records according to records management guidance and the General Records Retention Schedule or the UW Medicine Records Retention Schedule.

For more information, please refer to the Computer use guidelines.

 

 


File Sharing Services Matrix

Data Storage Options

UWT File
Service
FERPA
Compliant
HIPAA
Compliant*
Off-Campus
Availability
Synchronous
Editing
Self Service
Access Control
External
Access (Non-UW)
Storage Eligibility Comments

UW-Tacoma Home (H:) Drive

UW-Tacoma Home (H:) Drive

YES

N/A

Via RFA or Remote Desktop

N/A

N/A

N/A

25 GB**

Faculty, Staff, Students, Researchers, Shared UW NetIDs

 

UW-Tacoma Shared (S:) Drive

UW-Tacoma Shared (S:) Drive

YES

N/A

Via RFA or Remote Desktop

N/A

N/A

N/A

200 GB per Dept.**

Faculty, Staff, Students, Researchers, Shared UW NetIDs

 

Microsoft OneDrive for Business

Microsoft OneDrive for Business

YES

YES

YES

YES

YES

N/A

1 TB

Faculty, Staff, Students, Researchers, Clinicians, Shared UW NetIDs

 

Google Drive

Google Drive

YES

N/A

YES

YES

YES

YES

Unlimited

Faculty, Staff, Students, Researchers

 

Google Shared Drive

Google Shared Drive***

YES

N/A

YES

YES

YES

YES

Unlimited

Faculty, Staff, Students, Researchers

Note: If the last owner leaves shared drive, all remaining users retain their access. Including external users.***

Other research services that are not just data storage specific

UW Service

FERPA
Compliant

HIPAA
Compliant*

Off-Campus
Availability

Synchronous
Editing

Self Service
Access Control

External Access
(Non-UW)

Storage

Eligibility

Comments

Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams

YES

YES

YES

YES

YES

N/A

Unlimited

Faculty, Staff, Students, Researchers, Clinicians, Shared UW NetIDs

Specific features are dependent on integrated apps

Open Science Framework (OSF)

Open Science Framework (OSF)

N/A

N/A

YES

YES 

YES 

YES 

Unlimited

Faculty, Staff, Students, Researchers, Shared UW NetIDs

Specific features are dependent on third-party add ons

REDCap

REDCap

YES

YES

YES

N/A

YES

N/A

Unlimited

Faculty, Staff, Students, Clinicians, Researchers, Shared UW NetIDs

Main purpose of tool focuses on survey creation and initial data collection

SQLShare

SQLShare

YES

N/A

YES

N/A

YES

YES 

Unlimited

Faculty, Staff, Students, Researchers, Shared UW NetIDs

Some SQL knowledge is required

External sharing with valid UW and Google Emails

lolo: Data Archive

Lolo Archiving & Collaboration

YES

YES

YES

N/A

N/A

N/A

Cost: TB/Month

Faculty, Staff, Students, Clinicians, Researchers, Shared UW NetIDs

 

AWS & Azure Cloud Sevices

AWS & Azure Cloud Sevices

YES

YES

YES

N/A

N/A

YES

Cost

Faculty, Staff, Students, Clinicians, Researchers, Shared UW NetIDs

 

The Dataverse Project

Dataverse

N/A

N/A

YES

N/A

YES

YES

1 TB

Faculty, Staff, Students, Researchers

Open Source: Public Data Hosting and Sharing

* If HIPAA compliance is required, please contact Information Technology to set up your network storage.

** Upon approval, UW Tacoma IT can increase the individual H: drive storage. Storage on S: is shared by entire department or College. Users need to gauge existing use of storage by their own department to determine available capacity.

*** Team drives are owned by the Team and not an individual. So when creating a UW Google Team Drive, make sure at least one UW account is associated to the drive at all times.  If all the UW accounts withdraw from the particular Team Drive, the last UW person should close this Team drive, discontinue all the external Team Drive members, and/ or transfer the content to another Google Team Drive (perhaps owned by another university). Otherwise a UW Team Drive could end up with only external members with no UW connection. For more information on Team drives, please visit the UW Google Team Drive website.