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Value Storage: Frequently Asked Questions

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What is Value Storage?

Value Storage is an economical way for researchers to store large amounts of data remotely. It is offered in terabyte increments (1,024 gigabytes), and is intended for use with large numbers of files and substantial data sets. It offers performance similar to a local disk without the burden of maintaining the drive locally. Value Storage offers flexibility, as you can upgrade the size of your share at any time. It also includes a disaster recovery component, where a snapshot of your data is taken every 24 hours for disaster recovery purposes. Snapshots are stored on another server and can be recovered in a disaster, though snapshots are not intended for restoring deleted files.

What is Value Storage Lite?

Value Storage Lite does not provide a disaster recovery option and is available at a significantly lower price. This solution is not intended for the preservation and analysis of critical research data. Customers are advised to create copies of their data sets using media of their choice. In case of data loss, ITS will not be able to provide assistance and cannot be considered responsible.

What is replication?

Replication is the form of disaster recovery that is built into the Value Storage service. The replication service takes a snapshot of your data every 24 hours. Snapshots are stored on another server and can be recovered in a disaster, but snapshots are not intended for restoring deleted files.

Which platforms are supported?

Value Storage is supported on the following operating systems:

See the support page for more information on system requirements and installation procedures.

How much does each offering cost?

Value Storage and Value Storage Lite are billed in monthly increments based on the number of terabytes ordered. A ShortCode is required to order the service. Please see the pricing page for the current rates for each service.

What types of data are appropriate for Value Storage?

Value Storage is a good choice for data that, if disclosed to the general public, poses little or no risk to the University's reputation, resources, services or individuals.

Value Storage should not be used to maintain data that is classified as sensitive or critical to the operation of the university.

For more information about data classification, see ITS's Safe Computing web site.

What steps can my IT staff take to improve security for my data in Value Storage?

For more information on the security of the underlying protocol of Value Storage (NFSv3), see redhat.com's Securing NFS.

What steps can researchers take to secure data?

Network security always begins with the individual. Always keep passwords secure and never share it with anyone. Shared accounts (where multiple users share one account and password) should not be used. The following safeguards should be in place inside the local computing environment to protect availability and integrity of data, as well as to prevent IP spoofing:

If our group were to sign up, how would we go about setting up the service?

When requesting Value Storage, the staff member submitting the order enters billing details, the desired size of the storage space, and a bit of setup information:

Once the form has been submitted, the Value Storage team e-mails the requestor with information and instructions on how to mount the newly-created share.

The primary administrator (the person whose UID was submitted) then mounts the share on the designated machines and adds permissions to other users who need access (if necessary).

After this setup, the share will appear to users as a drive on their computer, and they will be able to save files to and retrieve them from their Value Storage space as if they were using a local disk.

Where can I find additional information about this service?

Please see the Service Level Agreement for all the details about Value Storage.

How do I modify my Value Storage?

Once you have completed your order for storage, you can make changes by modifying your request form with updated information. View your list of instances and update the appropriate form to include the updates.

How do I discontinue my service?

In order to cancel your service, you will need to begin by removing all your files from your storage instance. After the files have been removed, modify your request form to reduce the number of terabytes to zero. View your list of instances and update the appropriate form to reflect this change. Once the request has been processed, the storage team will contact you with a notification that the instance has been deleted.


If you have other questions, see our Support/Help page.