Research Data Store

The RDS is a central storage service for ‘active’ research data.  The RDS is built on an enterprise storage solution, which allows us to present your data to your PC/Mac on campus as a local drive.

Access Overview

Space on the RDS is allocated to projects and managed accordingly.

Applications should be submitted by Principle investigators (PIs) via the Service Desk. Once approved, up to 3TB of storage will be allocated by default to the Project though additional capacity may be purchased (see below for further info). Once the storage has been allocated the PI will be asked to list project users entitled to use this storage. The list will form the security group controlling access rights (read, write or both) to the project folder in the data store.

The PI will be given a network share in the form of \\RDS\Year\user-project1, which can be mapped from their computer on a University IP address. This will be in the form of a CIFS share, which can be presented to Linux, MAC or Windows operating systems. See the 'How To' section (below) for further information to get started.

Please bear in mind that the RDS is not a place to put your data for long term archive and that data should be regularly reviewed and cleaned up, removing unwanted files or archiving data which is of value but not currently used.


The solution has been created to be highly resilient and is hosted in two Data Centre's on campus. If there is a major issue at one data centre, the service will continue to operate from the other.  Most predictable failure scenarios have been addressed, notably:

  • Single disk failures
  • Enclosure failures
  • Inter-site link failure
  • Site (single Data Centre) failure

How to Apply

To request access to an existing RDS store, contact the owner directly who can grant or revoke access to their own RDS filestore.

Application for a new RDS share should be made through the Service Desk service catalogue ( After logging in, select 'Make a Request', then under the 'Advanced Research Computing Service' menu select 'Register a BEAR/CaStLeS Project' , then check the box for RDS.


The PI must complete the Application Form, detailing the number of TB required and giving a brief description of what the project is about, its duration and funding source. Data sensitivity or specific security requirements must also be identified here.


Currently, the default quota of 1TB (or up to 3TB on request) is free of charge. This default service includes the replication of data between data centres and standard back up to tape.

Storage capacity above 3TB and up to 10TB can be purchased, provided the Research Group can meet the costs. See ‘BEAR Research Data Storage Costs and Guidance’ for current pricing.  If you require more information or have an exceptional requirement (i.e. above 10TB), please contact us to discuss solutions and pricing at

When applying for grant funding, please include the cost of your storage (and archive) requirements as you can usually recoup the costs from your grant funder.  See ‘BEAR Research Data Storage Costs and Guidance’ for suggestions on what to include in your application.

Backup & Retention Policy

Storing your research data in a data repository ensures that your data is stored safely, preserved for future use and re-use (when required). We have a 'Backup & Retention Policy' for further guidance.

Data Considerations

The data repository should be used to keep your working data, however please note that you should not be storing any kind of  patient identifiable data. If you need to store data that is patient identifiable, medical or NHS data then please contact your local College IT team first, for advice.  Other data may be encrypted, however please ensure that your key is placed somewhere safe as it can be be recovered; to assist you please review the IT policy and procedure webpages

How To's 

Further documentation on how to use and administer the research data store can be found in these How To pages.

Last Modified: 16 April 2018