Office of Information Technology Service Catalog

Research Data Storage (R:Drive) FAQ

Updated 04/09/2011

Will the Health Care ID (used at Windows login) be the primary authentication?
Yes, R drive will be accessible by UI Health Care ID only.

Who is responsible for responding to the request?
Heath Davis will work with departments initially to get folders and permissions set up on the R Drive. Once departments are set up and using the R drive, the department contact will submit requests through the HCIS Help Desk.

Does the request need to come from the folder owner?
To provide centralized management, each department will have a contact person within their lab/department. We expect to get requests for changes to the R drive from the person identified in each department.

Will the R drive be mapped for everyone or just people who have rights?
The R drive is mapped for everyone with a UI Health Care ID and staff will be able to view only folders they have permissions for.

 How does the folder structure work?

 R Drive Folder Structure

Permissions can be set on the Lab folder and on 'Lab sub-folders.' In the example above, the Jones-T-Lab folder would be open to everyone in the lab and the sub-folders would be secured to a specific group of users within the lab. No spaces are allowed in the folder names. Naming convention for the lab folders is LastName-FirstInitial-Lab.

What can I use R drive for? What type of data can I store on the R drive?
R drive space is a low-cost data storage option for research data in the College (see File Storage Grid).

What does this cost the department/lab?
The College of Medicine will cover the costs of an initial 50TB for the first three years.
Allocations have been made to departments based on number of research faculty.
Additional space will be available at a cost of $270/TB/year for three years payable by departments or labs.
After two years we will review usage and costs to make a determination about long range funding models for data storage. For more information, contact Heath Davis at

How will allocations be managed?
Allocations will be managed by the departments.

Will customers call the HCIS Help Desk if lab staff need to be added/removed from the permissions list for each lab?
The department contact can submit a request to the HCIS Help Desk once they are set up on the R drive.

Will there be a 'point' person for each lab to verify who needs access to each root-level folder?
Each department will be asked to identify a contact person.

How do I get my data to the R drive?
When we create the folders on the R drive, we can work with individuals to move folders from their current H and S drives. You may also cut and paste content to the new location.

How can we help departments/labs manage space/quotas?
HCIS has some reports we can share on space usage and permissions.

How is this data backed up?
There are two main components in the R Drive backup system. Microsofts Volume Shadow Services (VSS) will be the primary mechanism for retrieval of files/folders for end users. VSS runs three times a day and each copy is retained for approximately 14 days. VSS will be end user accessible through Microsoft's Previous Versions on Windows systems. People on Mac OS can retrieve files through a remote desktop (Citrix). VSS is not a replacement for regular back ups, since these copies are kept on the same disc as the original data. In the case of a disc failure, all data is lost, including Shadow copies. Shadow copies are a good addition to regular back ups.

The second component of the back ups could be thought of as disaster recovery back ups (i.e. we have multiple disc failures). These back ups consist of two parts: First, there are snapshots that will be taken on the primary storage server and second, some of these snapshots will be replicated to a second storage server in Lindquist Center.

Other back up related information:
There are no tape back ups. The ITS Security Office has indicated this exceeds institutional data back up requirements.

How do I get to the R drive with a Mac?

See R Drive Instructions for Mac  

How do I get to the R drive from off-campus?

I accidentally deleted my file(s) from the R drive. Who can I call to get my file(s) back?

I deleted my files from the R drive. How long will it take to get my file(s) back? I need them for a meeting this afternoon.
Customers will retrieve files through Microsoft's Previous Versions on Windows systems when needed.

What kinds of files can I store on the R drive? My outlook .pst and archive files? Word, Excel, Powerpoint, .pdfs, etc?
See File Storage Grid.

Can I install this small software package that runs a SQL database? The hardware requirements say it will run on XP and it will only take up 50GB of space. The security office does not want me to install it on a desktop.
No, you will need to contact Heath Davis and explore other available options.

I need to store my data on this Windows workstation. Can I back up my Windows workstatin to the R drive folder? I am too busy to do this myself, so will you do this for me?
We are currently exploring solutions. Please contact Heath Davis with questions.