Service Description

The filestore service provides a secure place for members of the University to keep their University work. Several types of storage are provided ranging from storage for an individual’s files to files that are shared across a unit or project team.

Where appropriate, the storage provided is replicated between data centres and backed up to a third location so that files will continue to be available in the event of loss of a single data centre.


  • Variable quotas depending on user type, requirements
  • Backed up daily
  • Highly available with an offsite mirror

The Filestore service is made up of the following components:

  1. Home folder – managed, backed-up file storage area for individuals to store data associated with their personal University activities.
  2. Shared Filestore – managed, backed-up file storage area for University units.
  3. UNIX Home Folder – managed, backed-up file storage area used across several UNIX-based services (including Web Publishing and UNIX Time Share).
  4. Research storage – managed, backed-up file storage area for University research groups
  5. Remote access to Filestore is possible in a number of ways
    • Filr (for 1 – 2)
    • Ftpfolders (service now deprecated, please use Filr)
    • Ssh (for 4)
    • Remote access for Research Storage depends on the type of storage provided and will be negotiated with the IT staff involved.


Most of the components of this service are available to all members of the University. Some are restricted or charged.

Service Hours

24 x 7 x 365

Maintenance activities will cause a disconnect for SMB connections. These activities will be undertaken outside of core business hours.

Level of Service

Storage allocated to individuals (rather than shared storage) will be deleted automatically as part of the IT account management process when staff/students leave the University. Once deleted, this data cannot be retrieved.

Home folder

All staff and students have a fixed home folder quota of 20GB. For requirements beyond this limit, customers should initially discuss options with their unit’s IT support team.

UNIX home folders

UNIX home folders are exported using NFS to “trusted” hosts only. They are backed up daily for disaster recovery purposes. The service is site resilient – it is designed to be available after the loss of one of the University’s main data centres.

Backups and data retention

On the CIFS storage services (home folder, home archive, shared Filestore) “Shadow Copy” can be used to recover previous versions of files (up to a maximum of 10 days old).

Although we make backups of these services, these are only for Disaster Recovery; they are not available for the restoration of individual files or folders. Requests to the IT Service for data restore outside the Shadow Copy window (10 days) cannot be granted. System backups are retained for three months, after which they are deleted.

Support and Documentation

Documentation is available at:

Additional support is available via the IT Service Desk on 0191 208 5999 or

All incidents relating to both aspects of this service will be handled according to the Incident Management and Major Incident Management processes.

Request Process

  1. All members of the University are automatically provided with 20 GB of space for Documents and everyday usage.  

Research projects will be provided with up to 5TB of storage upon request. Storage quotas can be increased at an additional cost of £43.20.  

To request an increase in storage quota support is available via contact the IT Service Desk on 0191 208 5999 or


User Responsibility

It is the user’s responsibility to ensure that they follow the IT rules of use: 

Users are required to carry out housekeeping in the form of removing or deleting unneeded data. 

Prohibited file types: Some of the services restrict the types of file which can be stored (because there are more appropriate places). See the online documentation at for the current list.


Research storage is charged – current rates are £43.20 per terabyte per year.