Quick Start

Available to: Faculty, Researchers, Staff, Departments

Cost: See cost details, below.

Network File Storage provides a secure, centrally-managed, storage environment for University data. The base allocation of Network File Storage can be expanded for a nominal fee. The service is protected via periodic snapshot and replication policies and monitored on a 24/7 basis.


Leveraging a central network file storage service, rather than operating independent file servers, decreases risk; improves security and efficiency, and lowers University operating expenses. High capacity and low operating costs ensure that affordable space is available to meet changing needs. High availability, achieved by replicating stored information across multiple data centers, ensures ready to access data. Choosing this service relieves departmental administrators of the responsibility, labor and expense to physically administer and maintain shared file server(s).

Key Features

Network File Storage offers a number of features that help ensure a high degree of availability, security, and reliability:

  • The service is hosted in secure, professionally managed data centers.
  • It’s monitored on a 24/7 basis via automated tools, and support staff are notified of any equipment or service issues.
  • In the event of an outage at the primary site, clients can access a read-only replica of their data.
  • The service supports access from Windows, Macintosh, and Linux/UNIX platforms. The storage can be presented as either a Windows Share (CIFS/SMB) using Microsoft Active Directory (AD), as an NFS export, or an S3 bucket.
  • Access control can be self-managed
  • This service is approved to store Restricted Use data for CIFS/SMB only, but additional licensing fees may be required in order to ensure compliance. See Permissions Management & Data Loss Prevention for licensing information to protect Restricted Use data.
  • Data presented as Windows Shares or NFS Exports is protected by a periodic snapshot and replication policy, enabling recovery from inadvertent file deletion. Data is asynchronously replicated to a secondary, remote data center.


Snapshot Replication
Interval Retention Interval
6 Hours 36 Hours 15 Minutes
Daily 7 Days
Weekly 12 Weeks
  • Data stored in an S3 bucket is protected by Erasure Coding (EC) and stored across two separate data centers.

What to Expect


Client responsibilities:

  • Network File Storage must use endpoints that comply with the Minimum Security Standards for University data. This includes installing and maintaining endpoint protection (e.g. CrowdStrike – available for IS&T and IT Partner managed systems, and non-managed personal computers of BU personnel.)
  • Confirm with IS&T or your local IT professional that both space available and performance will meet your needs.
  • File storage above the base allocation will require an additional charge. Submit an Internal Service Request (ISR) to IS&T Systems Operations for the desired amount of storage and associated charge.
  • If you have acquired additional storage above the base allocation, you must renew your agreement each year.
  • Manage permissions in conjunction with your local IT professional for subscribers using Active Directory (AD).
  • Restricted Use data storage requires additional licensing fees to ensure compliance. For licensing information to protect restricted use data,  visit our Permissions Management & Data Loss Prevention page.  Off-campus access of Restricted Use data requires use of the BU two-factor VPN with Duo Security.
  • Inadvertently deleted files can be recovered through a self-service option. The procedure is described in the Frequently Asked Questions. Or, you can submit a ticket for assistance.
  • Exporting data to removable media must comply with the Minimum Security Standards for all University data.
  • Contact the IT Help Center if you have any questions on these requirements, to report issues or need help submitting a new request.



Category Fully subsidized base allocation Additional fee for storage beyond base allocation
School/Colleges (to be sub-allocated by School administrators to that School’s departments) 10 Terabytes $50 per Terabyte/Year
Other Academic Units (Division, Center, Program, Section, Lab, Association, Group) 1 Terabyte
Administrative Units (Departments, Offices, Buildings) 1 Terabyte
Projects (registered with IS&T Research Computing) 1 Terabyte

Getting Started

  • After consulting your local IT professional regarding the storage options that are available, submit a request for Network File Storage. If you need additional information or consultation concerning your request, please click on the HELP button on this page.
  • Upon submission of a service request, you will be notified via the service ticket when your file share is ready for use.