In addition to the University-wide cloud storage options offered by ITS (see "Storage at USC"), DTS offers its own cloud storage option in the form of Dornsife network drives.
For more information and to compare the Dornsife network drives to the other cloud storage options at USC, you can view our guide, "Understanding cloud storage options at USC."
For instructions on connecting to the network drives, view our guide, "Connecting to Dornsife network drives."
Specifications of Dornsife network drives
- Available to USC Dornsife faculty and staff, as well as Dornsife graduate students and undergraduates on an as-needed basis (e.g. student workers)
- Limited storage space (shared with other Dornsife departments/units)
- Not approved by ITS for the storage of FERPA-regulated data
- Files are backed up on a nightly basis to servers both on-campus and off-campus, and backups are kept for several months
- Administered by DTS, so if you need to recover a file version from a month ago, you can simply email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Permissions are managed by DTS, so individuals cannot accidentally change permission settings
- Storage space is limited: a general rule of thumb is that departments should not exceed several GB on their G: drive and individuals should not exceed several hundred MB on their U: drives
- There isn't a way to easily access the network drives from your web browser
- There isn't a way to facilitate easy collaboration with non-Dornsife individuals
Accessing Dornsife network drives
A Dornsife account (which is separate from a USC NetID account) is required to access these drives, as well as a working Internet connection.
If you are working on a Dornsife-managed PC computer/laptop, you can simply open File Explorer on your computer, and the Dornsife network drives will show up under Network locations. Your G: drive takes you to the shared group drive for your department, while your U: drive takes you to your own user folder within that shared drive. (This is managed by an application called DirectAccess.)
If you are working on a Mac or on a personal PC, simply follow our guide, "Connecting to Dornsife network drives."
Deciding when to use Dornsife network drives
Departmental file storage
You can access your department's storage through the G: drive. Some departments prefer to use Dornsife network drives to access and collaborate on files, while other departments have migrated off the network drives and are instead using Google shared Drives. Since each department has different needs and preferences, DTS recommends simply using whichever cloud storage option is the accepted standard for your department.
Individual file storage
You can access your individual storage through the U: drive. In many cases, however, we recommend using your USC Google Drive account instead, principally because storage on the Dornsife network drive is limited to several hundred MB on the U: drive—which typically isn't enough space to back up all of your computer files.
To back up your computer files to your USC Google Drive account, view our guide, "Getting started with file storage and backup."