Office of the Vice President for Global Communications

Monday, April 9, 2012

M+Box accounts now available to faculty and staff at Ann Arbor campus

M+Box, U-M’s enterprise version of Box, a commercial data storage solution, is now available to Ann Arbor faculty and staff. U-M is the first university officially to introduce the service, which is a result of an agreement between Box and Internet2, a consortium of leading U.S. research and educational organizations.

 

What Does 15GB Get You?

• About 1 million document pages -- enough to cover 10 football fields (including the end zones)
• A shelf of books 450 feet long
• 15 hours of standard video
• 3,300 images

Resources

M+Box Project Site
Cloud Computing and Information Security
NextGen Michigan
• Article: U-M adding new online file storage system

“M+Box is a cloud-based service that allows individuals and teams to store, share, and discuss files,” says Bill Wrobleski, who heads up the project. “For example, you can upload a Word document, share the link with your colleagues, then check their comments and edits from your mobile device.”

Staff and faculty currently are eligible for a 15GB account. Those wishing to sign up or who want to learn more about the service can do so at box.it.umich.edu/info. A broader announcement about the service to students, and the Flint and Dearborn campuses, will take place this fall.

Wrobleski says the addition of Box will complement existing collaborative tools such as Google Apps for Education (the set of email, calendaring and collaboration apps that made its campus debut in early March), Microsoft Office and CTools. However, like Google, Box is not appropriate for storing restricted data such as Protected Health Information (ePHI-HIPAA).

“We want to establish U-M as a leader in providing a campus IT environment that helps advance the university’s academic, administrative and engagement activities,” says Laura McCain Patterson, chief information officer. “M+Box is another addition to that toolset that we are confident will help us achieve that goal.”

The new service is part of the NextGen Michigan program, a strategy for changing the university’s IT service approach and investing in the “next generation” of computing technologies. In addition to U-M, other universities participating in the Box/Internet2 partnership include: Cornell University, Indiana University, the University of Notre Dame and the University of California, Berkeley, among others.