Storing Your Research Data

University Active DataStore

The University Active DataStore provides a centralised, secure, supported data storage facility for electronic data, with ongoing access for the life span of a project.

Only store what you need to keep.

Selecting what data to keep and what to bin

It is best practise to keep 3 copies of crucial data.  The Active Data Store provides three copies by default.

Data Management: The 3-2-1 Rule (University of Wisconsin)

The Active DataStore can be used for all data arising from research projects.

Requests to use the DataStore should be made via the button on the right. Your application will be forwarded to your line manager for approval, before automatically passing to the RDM team to process.

1TB of storage is available per project, free of charge. If you require more than this, there is a reasonable additional charge per TB which lasts until the end of your project. Details can be found on the application page.

You can use the Active DataStore for any research data but it is of particular use if your data meets any of the following criteria:

  • Personal data covered by the Data Protection Act (for example, personal data related to staff, students or research participants).
  • Sensitive data or information covered by legal, commercial and/or contractual restrictions (for example, research output from commercially funded project), unless this is explicitly allowed for by contractual documentation.
  • Data which is confidential and/or proprietary to the University.

If you opt not to use the University's Active DataStore the following key questions should be addressed when considering alternative storage solutions.

  • Is the alternative storage that you propose to use dependable and reliable? What level of risk is there that data may be lost?
  • Is the data replicated and backed up to a different location?
  • Are backups made with sufficient frequency so that you can restore in the event of data loss?
  • Is the data secure? Is data integrity protected?
  • Is access for use and re-use assured?
  • Does the storage meet the requirements of the university, the funder and legislation?

Best practice

  • It is good practice to store only what you need to keep but to keep at least three copies of crucial data.
  • It is recommended that data is stored in the University’s Active DataStore which provides three copies by default for the lifespan of the data.

Summary of alternative storage options

Departmental Storage

It is important that any storage system managed within the department follows the same principles in place for the University central storage.

For example, multiple copies of data should be stored in separate physical locations to guard against any environmental issues such as water leak or fire.