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More About Shared U-M Box Accounts

Shared U-M Box accounts are available for departments, projects, student groups and other functions requiring collaborative storage. Shared accounts allow files to stay with the group or function, even when individuals move on.

Shared U-M Box accounts are available at no charge to the unit.

Note that Box Sync is not available for Shared accounts. However, folders in shared accounts can be synced by individual accounts that are invited as collaborators with editor or co-owner permissions.

While you can log in to the shared U-M Box account as the account owner, it is not required. Shared U-M Box accounts are set up with a standard folder that is shared among co-owners. The standard shared folder appears in the co-owners' individual U-M Box accounts, allowing the co-owners to manage it without a separate login. Files placed in shared U-M Box account folders are owned by the shared account and count against the quota of the shared account, not the users' individual accounts.

Owners and Co-owners

Because there are only a few activities that require being logged in as owner, you can do most of the shared account management from your individual account as co-owner of the shared account. There are a few activities that require being logged in as owner.

Activities requiring owner login

How to log in as an owner

  1. Open a Chrome incognito window or a different browser.

  2. Go to box.it.umich.edu

  3. Enter the name of the MCommunity Group account (e.g. its-opscon)

  4. Enter the account’s UMICH password

Note: if you have a Box shared account created before August 1, 2016, and you do not have a UMICH password, contact the ITS Service Center.

Moving Content Between Accounts

There are are two ways to change box ownership, Move Folder and Change Folder Owner.

Move Folder

Users can also use the following method to move content between accounts:

  1. Create (or ask the account owner to create) a folder in the account that you will be moving files to (the destination account). ITS recommends creating a folder specifically for moving documents (e.g., "Files from uniqname"). You can also use an existing folder, such as the standard shared folder.

  2. Make sure the account that currently contains the files you want to move (the source account), has been invited as a collaborator with editor permissions to the folder created in step 1 in the destination account.

  3. Log in to the source account (e.g., your U-M Box account).

  4. Use the checkboxes to the right of the file names to select the files and folders that you need to move to the "Files from uniqname" folder within the destination account.

  5. Note: Use the checkbox at the top to select all files and folders.
    Tip: Use the advanced search in Box to more easily find the folders or files that you want to move. searching for all files that you own.

    Use the advanced search in Box to more easily find the folders or files that you want to move. searching for all files that you own.

  6. To move the files, click the Move/Copy button (looks like a stack of papers).

    To move the files, click the Move/Copy button (looks like a stack of papers).

  7. From the menu that appears, select the folder you want to move files to (e.g., "Files from uniqname"). Note: If you are moving files to a personal Box account:

  8. Click Move to move the files from the source account to the new folder. These files now belong to the owner of the destination account. The source account will have editor privileges to the files as long as you have access to that account.

Note: Only move files and folders that you own. Disable Box sync on folders that you would like to move.

Change Folder Owner

  1. Click on the appropriate folder. You must be the Owner of the folder.

  2. Click on the Collaborator's name in the list of Collaborators in the right pane of the folder.

  3. Click the Role drop-down and click Owner.

    Click the Role drop-down and click Owner.

  4. You will see a pop-up window where you will need to confirm this action. Click Okay to confirm.

Note that changing folder ownership to a Shared Account causes that folder to appear as a new top level folder in the account. To place the folder inside the standard shared folder, use the method above.

Additional Resources

Good Practices for Shared Accounts

Notifications for the shared account

By default, notifications are on for a new U-M Box account. However, for a shared account, this can be a nuisance since the notifications are sent to every member of the MCommunity group the account is based on, so shared accounts created after November, 2014 have all notifications turned off.

To change account notifications, log in as the account owner and use the Notifications tab in the Account Settings. This way individual collaborators can control the level of notifications they receive on the shared folder.

Use the standard shared folder

The standard shared folder is set up on account creation to provide you with the simplest way to manage your shared account. Co-owners are automatically assigned and more co-owners can be added and removed by current co-owners, allowing for great flexibility.

Keep in mind that even though you are conveniently managing the contents of the folder from your individual U-M Box account, the files stored there are owned by the shared account, NOT your individual account.

Keep permissions simple

Invite collaborators to the standard folder. Then, by creating a sub-folder structure within this folder you will present an organized view of the files to your collaborators. Permissions applied to a folder apply to all files and folders within it. You can add new collaborators to subfolders without giving access to the parent folder, but keep in mind that the sub-folders shared in this way will appear at the root of your collaborator's U-M Box account.

Only log in as the owner of the shared account when necessary

Most activities can be done as the co-owner of the shared account standard folder. This is the simplest way to manage your shared content. For activities that cannot be accomplished as co-owner:

  1. Open a Chrome incognito window

  2. Navigate to box.it.umich.edu

  3. Log in with the MCommunity group name and UMICH password (contact the ITS Service Center if you need your password reset)

See Owners and Co-owners for more information.

Remove collaborators when access is no longer needed

To maintain the security and privacy of the data, remove collaborators when they no longer need access to files or folders. This is particularly important when people move on and no longer have responsibilities that require access to the files. Removing users as collaborators on shared U-M Box accounts should be a standard off-boarding activity.

Always use the web browser to manage the files and folders, not Box Sync

While Box sync is a convenient way to access your own files stored in Box on your desktop, it is not recommended for shared accounts such as these. Multiple users syncing the same collection of files increases the possibility of problems with sync.

Always have at least two co-owners of shared U-M Box top level folder

Multiple co-owners ensures that when a co-owner should no longer have the authority to manage the files in a shared U-M Box folder, another authorized person retains the ability to manage them.

Tips for Using a Shared U-M Box Account

A shared U-M Box account enables teams or groups of users to store, share and collaborate on files - both on and off campus.

Use your Shared U-M Box Account to: