Overview of options for storing, sharing, and collaborating on documents at IU

At Indiana University, you can use the Box at IU, Google at IU, and Office 365 services to store files, and to share and collaborate with others. Each has features that make it best suited to certain use cases; see below for a detailed comparison. For storage services that meet other types of needs, see At IU, what options do I have for storing files?

Important:
The services described here are administered by IU, and are distinct from any personal accounts you may have with Box, Google, or Microsoft, which are not appropriate for any institutional data. Also, never use any other third-party online storage solution (e.g., Dropbox or iCloud) to store or share institutional data of any classification level.
Note:
For quick, temporary file sharing, you can also use Slashtmp.

On this page:


Basic features

Box at IU Google at IU Office 365
Best for... Collaborating on documents, spreadsheets, presentations, web pages, etc., with people at IU and elsewhere; general purpose file storage and sharing for individuals and groups Storing, sharing, and collaborating on Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides with people at IU and elsewhere; also, a Google at IU groupspace provides a template consisting of a Group, Calendar, and Site, giving you a collaborative platform for projects, committee work, organizations, and group activities Storing, sharing, and collaborating on Microsoft Office documents, spreadsheets, and presentations with people at IU and elsewhere
Cost No charge No charge No charge
Storage allotment Unlimited Unlimited 1 TB
Maximum file size 15 GB 5 TB 10 GB
File types Any Any Most; some exceptions (e.g., .asp)
Accessible off campus Yes Yes Yes
Most sensitive institutional data classification allowed Restricted
Protected health information (PHI) is permitted, but only in Box Health Data Accounts 1
Restricted University-Internal
Accessibility to individuals with disabilities Box provides an accessible interface (https://a.box.com/) that may be easier for individuals with disabilities to use, but it offers only a subset of features available on the main interface. For more, see Using A.Box.Com For Accessibility. Poses accessibility concerns, and takes considerable time to master. 2 For more, see Google Accessibility. Poses accessibility concerns, and takes considerable time to master. 2 For more, see Accessibility in Microsoft Office 365.

File access

Box at IU Google at IU Office 365
Upload methods Drag and drop
Web widget
Box Sync
WebDAV or FTPS
Cloud Storage
Box mobile apps
Drag and drop
Sync
Drag and drop
Web widget
Sync
WebDAV
Download local copy Yes Yes Yes
Web access Yes Yes Yes
Preview file content in browser Yes, for over 100 file types Yes Yes
Sharable web links Yes; create links with access control:
  • Unrestricted (anyone with the link can access the file)
  • IU only (authentication using IU Network ID credentials is required for access)
  • Collaborators in the folder
Advanced functions allow you to create custom URLs, set link expiration dates, prohibit file downloads, password-protect the link, and share direct-download links
Yes; create links with access control:
  • Unrestricted (anyone with the link can access the file)
  • Google at IU only (only Google at IU users can use the link to access the file)
  • Specific individuals (only individuals you specify can use the link to access the file)
Files can be made web-searchable
Yes; create links with access control:
  • Unrestricted (anyone with the link can access the file)
  • IU only (authentication using IU Network ID credentials is required for access)
  • Specific individuals (only individuals you specify can use the link to access the file)
Links are not web-searchable; advanced functions allow you to create custom URLs, password-protected links, and direct-download links
Edit files in browser Yes; Office Online for Microsoft Office files Yes; edit Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides, or use Office Compatibility Mode (OCM) to edit Microsoft Office documents, spreadsheets, and presentations Yes; edit Microsoft Office files with Office Online
Offline access Yes (using Box Sync) Yes (after enabling offline access) Yes
Mobile access Yes; mobile apps are available, or you can access the Box mobile site from the browser on your mobile device (see Using IU Box on mobile devices) Yes Yes
Desktop access Box Sync in Windows or OS X; for Linux options, see Using Box under Linux
Cloud Storage
WebDAV or FTPS
Yes (after installing Google Drive for Windows or OS X) Yes (for Windows and OS X)
Email to folder Yes; see Uploading Files to Box with Email No No

Collaboration

Box at IU Google at IU Office 365
IU group accounts Yes Yes No
Grant access to... Anyone Anyone Anyone
Collaboration via ADS groups No Yes No
Invite collaborators Yes; invite collaborators to share individual Box Notes and folders Yes; invite collaborators to share files or folders Yes
Permission levels Co-owner
Editor
Viewer Uploader
Previewer Uploader
Viewer
Previewer
Uploader
See Collaborator permission levels for details.
Can edit (others can edit the file, comment on it, and share it with others)
Can comment (others can view the file and comment on it)
Can view (others can view the file)
Full control
Design
Edit
Contribute
Read
Permissions controlled by... Owner, co-owner, or editor; editors have limited ability to change permission settings Owner or editor; editors have limited ability to change permission settings Owner
File ownership Files are owned by the owner of the folder in which they are stored. Files belong to the account holder who either created the files in Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides, or uploaded them to Google Drive. Files are owned by the owner of the folder in which they are stored.
Transfer ownership Yes; owners can transfer ownership of folders to anyone, including:
Yes, owners can transfer ownership to users with Google at IU accounts (see Managing ownership in Google at IU) No
Commenting Yes Yes; if you have permission to edit or comment on a Google Doc, Sheet, or Slide, you can add comments, reply to comments, and close comments for discussions that are finished (to comment on a Microsoft Office file, you must save it as a Google Docs, Sheets, or Slides file) No
Version control Yes (retains the 100 most recent versions in file's history) 3 Yes (continuous history stream) Yes (for Microsoft Office files)
Real-time, simultaneous editing Yes (in Box Notes and Office Online) Yes (for Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides) Yes (using Office Online to edit Microsoft Office files)

Other features

Box at IU Google at IU Office 365
Search Yes; search for folder and file names, metadata, or the contents of most common file types. See Search Overview and FAQs. Yes; search file names, metadata, and file contents, filter results by file type, ownership, or application, or use advanced search to refine your search using specific phrases and commands (see Find files in Google Drive) Yes
Video preview Yes; preview several types of image, audio, and video files in your browser. 4 Yes Yes; see Video formats you can play on the OneDrive website
Virus scanning Yes Yes Yes
Usage statistics Yes; track totals for downloads and previews of your files No Yes
Bookmarks Yes; save bookmarks within your Box account to link to Box files, Box searches, and external websites No No
Custom file metadata Yes No Yes
Integration Via Box and third-party apps as well as API With Google Apps Yes
Integration with Canvas Yes Yes No
Partner apps and add-ons Yes Yes Yes

Notes:

1 UITS strongly recommends using a Box Entrusted Data Account (BEDA) for storing institutional data classified as Restricted in Box. A Box Health Data Account (BHDA) is required if you plan to store data containing protected health information (PHI) regulated by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA). Although BDHAs are appropriate for storing PHI (which is classified as Critical), BHDAs are not appropriate for storing other institutional data classified as Critical. Consequently, "Restricted" is listed above as the most sensitive institutional data classification allowed in Box at IU. For more, see Protecting sensitive data in Box. If you need help determining the most sensitive institutional data classification allowed on any UITS service, contact the University Information Policy Office (UIPO).

2 While UITS endorses the use of Google Apps and Office 365, they can pose accessibility issues, and can take considerable time for individuals with disabilities to master. Therefore, it is best to offer additional options for completing course requirements.

3 Box for Office Online automatically saves your file as you work on it. Each auto-save creates a new version and stores it in Box as part of the file's version history. Because IU Box retains only the 100 most recent versions, using Office Online to work on a file for an extended period of time may cause you to unintentionally lose earlier versions of your file due to an excess accumulation of auto-saved versions.

4 Content preview in Box is limited to files 500 MB or smaller, except for video files, which can be up to 3.5 hours long. Also, Box cannot preview Excel sheets that have more than 100 columns or 100,000 rows. For more, see What file types and fonts are supported by Box's Content Preview? on the Box Community website.

Note:
The information here is based on work done by Information and Technology Services at the University of Michigan.

This is document aghw in the Knowledge Base.
Last modified on 2017-02-03 12:53:39.

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