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New Google Storage Limitations

Google previously announced an end to unlimited storage for the academic community, and the new storage model will provide CU Boulder with much less free storage than the campus consumes today. In order to ensure that the free storage allocated to CU Boulder is being used for mission-critical functions, the campus’s new quota will be pooled and shared in a manner that prioritizes Google for collaboration with the primary focus being on teaching and learning.

To ensure we can keep within the new quota, we will be making some significant changes to our service, including eliminating Google Photos and setting individual quotas for Google Drive. Most of the Google storage space is currently consumed by non-Google file types (e.g., Microsoft documents, PDFs, videos, photos, etc.). In the coming weeks and months, OIT will directly email users of Google Photos, Google Drive, and Shared Drives to provide guidance on how to download and relocate the files you wish to keep and how to best utilize OIT's recommended storage options.

Review and save files in Google Drive

Files that are owned by ineligible users (former employees, alumni, students that left CU Boulder and retirees) will be deleted on June 14, 2023. To ensure you don’t lose any important files that were owned by these individuals, please review your Google Drive and make copies of the files before June 14. OIT recommends several steps to review your data including

  1. Review Recent files and folders to save your most used documents.
  2. Review your Shared with Me section for all files you have access to. 
  3. Use Google Drive search to find files from specific users you know have left CU.
  4. Check folders you own and frequently collaborate in to make sure that data won't be lost. 

Visit our review and save page for step-by-step instructions, or check out the video about the review and save process on the OIT YouTube channel


Alternative Storage Options

Visit the File Transfer, Storage, and Infrastructure page for more guidance on types of data and storage options for each option. Depending on the type of data you need to store and the amount of storage you need, there are several options supported by OIT, including: 

Microsoft 365

Microsoft 365 offers a number of applications that can be leveraged for storage including OneDrive, SharePoint, and Teams.

  • OneDrive allows users to keep all files in one location in Microsoft's cloud environment, with the ability to access from a phone, tablet or computer. Use OneDrive's desktop or mobile applications to access up to 5 TB storage quota with 250 GB maximum file size, version history, and integration with other Microsoft 365 products. Please note: Storage levels are subject to change based on Microsoft's recent announcement about a move toward pooled storage.
  • SharePoint Online is a Microsoft 365 application that allows users to easily create websites for sharing information and tracking and collaborating on projects.
  • Teams is a collaboration platform that also facilitates organization of your team’s work, files, and key resources using channels.

Learn more about OIT's recommendations for the type of data each application can store on the File Transfer, Storage, and Infrastructure page, or visit the service pages to get started with OneDrive, SharePoint, and Teams.


The PetaLibrary is a University of Colorado Boulder Research Computing service supporting the storage, archival, and sharing of research data. It is available at a subsidized cost to any researcher affiliated with the University of Colorado Boulder.

Learn more about PetaLibrary.

UCB Files

UCB Files is OIT's file server providing on-campus, backed-up storage for faculty, staff, and student groups. Some features include Shared file storage spaces for collaboration, daily data backups, security permissions for your data restricted to your department or university affiliates you authorize, compatibility with macOS, Windows and Linux.

Learn more about UCB Files.

Please note: OIT will continue to support Google Workspace Apps for collaboration, communication and more, but we want to broadly discontinue using Google for storage.

Migrate Content From Google Photos

Google Photos is no longer available for newly created accounts, accounts that had not previously used Google Photos and current Staff, Faculty and Students. Alumni and Retirees will lose access in groups and each group will receive email notifications about the timeline of the service retirement. OIT recommends all users download and move their photos/videos to another location. Visit the Google Photos FAQ for more information about the migration.