Cloud Storage

Several cloud storage options are available to PNW faculty, staff, and students.

Cloud storage services provide remote data storage space to subscribers, allowing them to store and access their data from any device and any location.  Purdue Northwest faculty, staff, and students have access to several services.  Each service offers a wide array of features, including security and privacy, backup and restore, collaboration tools, and integration with common desktop and mobile applications.  This guide will provide guidance on which service is right for you and your department, including the storage size capability and allowable data types for each option.

Note: Local server storage share (H:) will be retired at the end of December 2022 (read-only for all users December 2022, and disabled entirely in June 2023).

Google Drive is a file storage and synchronization service developed by Google. Google Drive integrates well with other Google services – such as Google applications (Docs, Sheets, etc.) and Google Mail (Gmail). Locally installed applications are available for Android, iOS, macOS, and Windows devices that facilitate automatic backup and sync of local files to the cloud, and between devices.

Google Drive allows for easy file sharing to other PNW users and the public. Entire folders may be shared, or individual files. Sharing can be limited to only PNW users, specific Google users, or anyone with a link to the file/directory.  Collaboration between users works very well when accessing the file from Google applications, but not as well when opening non-Google app files (such as Microsoft documents, spreadsheets, etc.)

What classification of files can be stored on Google Drive?

Google Drive can only be used to store data classified as public (not sensitive or restricted.)

How do I get access to Google Drive?

Google Drive is currently available to all PNW faculty, staff, and students.  Google Drive can be accessed by navigating from any browser, on any device, to https://drive.google.com.  Authenticate using your full email address (username@pnw.edu).  You will then be directed to the BoilerKey login page.

How do I use Google Drive?

Google has created a documentation page with instructions on using the various Google Drive services.  Please contact CSC@PNW.EDU with any additional questions.

Are there storage size limitations on Google Drive?

Yes.  Due to recent changes made by Google to academic accounts, users may be limited to 100GB or less of total storage space available.  For many users, this may be a limiting factor on choosing Drive as their primary storage location.

 

Microsoft OneDrive is a Microsoft 365 cloud storage service where you can store, share, and sync your files.  OneDrive is installed and available on all Windows devices, and has optional applications to integrate with Android, iOS, macOS devices.

Microsoft OneDrive allows for easy file sharing to other PNW users and the public.  Entire folders may be shared, or individual files.  Sharing can be limited to only PNW users or anyone with a link to the file/directory.  Collaboration on Microsoft files, such as Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, and PowerPoint presentations is seamless when sharing files on OneDrive.  Multiple users can edit these files concurrently, with changes shown to all users in real-time.

What classification of files can be stored on Microsoft OneDrive?

Microsoft OneDrive can only be used to store data classified as public (not sensitive or restricted.)  Reviews are being conducted to determine if other file types may be stored.

How do I get access to Microsoft OneDrive?

Microsoft OneDrive is currently available to all PNW faculty, staff, and students.

  • Windows users can search for the OneDrive application already installed on their computers.  If using a PNW-managed computer, OneDrive will automatically authenticate using your PNW career account (as used to sign into the computer.)  If using a personal computer, you will need to Add a Different Account in OneDrive.
  • macOS users can download and install the OneDrive application.  When prompted, authenticate using your PNW email address (username@pnw.edu) and BoilerKey.
  • Android and iOS users can download and install the OneDrive application.  When prompted, authenticate using your PNW email address (username@pnw.edu) and BoilerKey.

How do I use Microsoft OneDrive?

Microsoft has created a documentation page with instructions on using the various Microsoft OneDrive services.  Please contact CSC@PNW.EDU with any additional questions.

Are there storage size limitations on Microsoft OneDrive

Yes.  However, individual limits are upwards of 1TB+.  Most users will never come close to reaching this threshold.  If you are concerned about this limitation, please contact csc@pnw.edu to discuss your needs.

Box is a cloud-based collaboration application that allows for secure file storage and collaboration. As a cloud-based tool, Box regularly makes improvements and adds features to Box and its related applications. Box also integrates with Microsoft 365, and allows for multiple people to edit at the same time, providing a collaborative work environment.

What classification of files can be stored on Box?

Box may be used to store data classified as public, sensitive, or restricted (depending on enrollment.)  If you only need to store public classified data, follow the standard enrollment procedures below.  If you need to store data classified as sensitive or restricted, you must first request access to the REED folder on Box.  (See instructions on requesting access to REED below.)

How do I enroll in Box (for public data)?

Any actively enrolled student or currently employed staff or faculty member can use Box.

  1. Go to  https://purdue.box.com in any browser.
  2. Click Continue, and enter your career account and your Boilerkey credentials.
  3. Complete the Boilerkey process and you will see your Box folders.

If you have problems logging in, you may already have a Box account connected to your Purdue email, or you may not have an active license. If you have an existing Box account, log into it and remove your Purdue email address. If you still can’t log in, call the ITaP Help Desk at (765) 49-44000 or email them at itap@purdue.edu.

How do I request access to the REED folder in Box (for sensitive or restricted data)?

  1. Go to https://www.rcac.purdue.edu/orders/products?category=3 (BoilerKey login) and “order” the REED folder – Level 3 Data.  It is a $0 cost order.
  2. You will receive a questionnaire to complete describing the data you are storing.  Answer the best you can, marking N/A if something doesn’t apply.  If asked to sign off on who in IT is supporting your request, you can write N/A there as well.
  3. Once your REED folder is created, you will be contacted to schedule a training session on folder security, using the file request feature, etc.

How do I use Box?

To learn more about Box, including how-to-videos, data information and training documentation visit https://purdue0.sharepoint.com/sites/collaboratePurdue/box.  Please contact CSC@PNW.EDU with any additional questions.

Compare Your Storage Options

 

Storage Comparison At PNW

Storage and File Transfer OptionsPNW Network DrivesCloud StorageFile TransferWiki/Collaborative SitesPersonal Computer Hard Drive
Home (H) DriveDepartmental (R) DriveGoogle DriveMicrosoft OneDriveBoxFileLockerMicrosoft SharePointConfluence
DescriptionStorage allocated by PNW to faculty and staff, accessible through File Explorer.

To be retired in December 2022.
Storage allocated to a department. For storing files for collaboration with other members of your department.File storage and synchronization service, developed by Google. Integrates well with other Google services, providing automatic backup and sync of local files to cloud and between devices. Collaborative function that works best when accessed from Google applications.Cloud storage service through Microsoft 365. Built into PNW’s Office365 subscription.Cloud based collaboration application for secure file storage. Box integrates with Microsoft 365, allowing multiple people to edit a file at the same time.An open-sourced program from ITaP offering temporary secure storage for files and data. Allows faculty, staff and students to securely share files both on and off campus.Web-based collaboration platform for document management and workflow. Functions for wikis, blogs, and more.Web-based collaboration platform, primarily for wikis and blogs. Can be used for courses or departments, via Purdue.(including any internal or external hard drives, CDs, DVDs and USB storage devices)

Personally owned devices. In almost all instances, restricted data should never be stored on personally owned computing devices.
Requirements for useActive faculty or staffActive faculty or staff; based on department associationActive student, staff or faculty; accessible with @pnw email addressActive student, staff or faculty; accessible with @pnw email address. Must set up Microsoft MFA.To store data classified as sensitive or restricted, you will need to first request access to the REED folder on Box.Must have an active career accountDepartments must name a primary and backup administrator to manage content.

Requests for new sites, permissions, etc. can be sent to csc@pnw.edu
Request through itap@purdue.eduNone. Data users are reminded to use central and departmental servers, where Purdue authentication is required, to store Purdue system data.
Preferred Option❌ (after December 2022)
Storage limits5 GB5 GBUp to 1 TB of files or media1000 GB1 GBUp to 1 TB of files or mediaDetermined by the capacity of the device
Data retention policy30 days (for deleted users)Files and messages removed after 30 days30 days (for deleted users)
For use with sensitive and restricted data (FERPA or HIPAA)✔, if using REED folder
Access anywhere
Built in file shareOnly with those who access the department driveOnly those who have permissions for the department share site
Integrated into Microsoft 365
Uses BoilerKey or MFA to access
Available to students for use✔, in some instructional cases
For the person wanting…No access after June 2023Only to share with those in departmentA network share feelingA ‘set and forget’ feeling; hands-offSensitive or restricted data storageFTP and no long-term storageWeb based collaboration and storage; library-esque file checkoutWeb based wiki-style collaboration and storageLimited backups and security