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Durham University

Computing and Information Services

Frequently Asked Questions

List of FAQ categories

DU Box - Storage

+Can I have a group and individual DU Box account?

In most cases DU Box accounts should be limited to individual users. Folders and files can be shared with multiple users and therefore to a large extent mirror the working practices of a group account. It may be beneficial to have department or faculty groups and should this be required, contact the IT Service Desk. Individual research project DU Box accounts will not be routinely supported.

+Can I store my personal, home files in my DU Box account?

Box has been provisioned to support University researchers in their work activities and should not be used for personal use.

+Does this replace my current Durham University storage?

DU Box is in addition to the current offerings and is specifically for research data.

+How much can I store in DU Box?

For many users storage could be viewed as ‘unlimited’. Users can upload up to 2TB each month and for the majority of users this will more than adequately meet their needs. CIS will review usage and advise accordingly should individuals exceed the monthly limits.

For research grants requiring more than 2TB a month contact prior to submission so that appropriate storage and back-up infrastructure can be costed accordingly.

+I have a DropBox account, should I use DU Box?

The University Wide solution is DU Box, therefore personal cloud storage solutions such as DropBox should not be used as it may not offer the appropriate levels of security and protection of data.

+Is DU Box a data repository, i.e. can I use it to permanently publish data?

No. Whilst DU Box can be used to collaborate and share files and folders with colleagues and collaborators, it should not be used as a long-term data repository as access and the long-term preservation of research data cannot be guaranteed. Durham Research Online DATAsets Archive (DRO-DATA) should be used in line with the Durham University Research Data Management Policy.

+Should I store data in DU Box or elsewhere?

Box is a stable, mature and widely used product, which is in line with the RCUK Policy of Common Principles on data It has been approved to enable elements of the sustainable management of research data. This service is provided without charge to researchers to support staff with their data storage and collaboration needs. Principal Investigators are required to ensure that their own, and their group’s, data is stored and described in ways that will minimise the risk of loss, and maximise the likelihood of future discoverability and re-use.

Cloud storage is used by many Universities in the UK and throughout the world. However, Principal Investigators should check that there are no funder specific constraints on where data is stored that precludes the use of cloud storage. Occasionally funders may stipulate that the storage of data must remain within the EU, in which case DU Box would be appropriate, but if a funder specifically highlights that data must remain in the UK then DU Box should not be used. Such constraints are not common, but Principal Investigators must ensure data is stored in line with funder requirements.

Box has a robust architecture including multi-failure Disaster Recovery and contingency capabilities. However, whilst Box has obtained significant industry recognition and accolades and is a leader in cloud content management, it is perhaps good practice to ensure the most important data is held in multiple locations.

+What is the maximum size of a file that can be uploaded?

The maximum individual file size that can be uploaded is 15GB. This limit is the same whether you use the web browser, Box Sync or Box Edit.

Internet Explorer has a limit of 4GB per file - this is a known limit with the browser. This does not apply if you are using the Upload Folders option.

It is recommended that where files or folders exceed 1GB that the ‘Upload Folder’ feature available on the web browser is used as this is more reliable.

Large file uploads to Box cannot be paused and then resumed so if there is an error in the uploading process, you will need to attempt the upload again. More information regarding upload issues is available via the Box Community