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University Information Services

Google is withdrawing its G Suite for Education licence that the University has been using for the past 12 years. This licence gave you unlimited storage. It will be replaced by the Google Workspace Education Fundamentals free licence, which doesn’t give users any personal storage quota, and three paid-for upgraded licences that do include limited individual storage quotas.

The University has purchased the premium Google Workspace Education Plus licence. This will give you 20GB personal file storage available to Education users. It will also allow you to use some Google Workspace tools that are currently not available to you.

See: Comparison of Google’s new Education licences.

When your GoogleDrive storage quota will change

Your new 20GB GoogleDrive quota will come into effect in December 2022.

How this will affect you

  • If you have less than 20GB of data stored on your University GoogleDrive, you will not be affected.
  • If you have more than 20GB of data on your University GoogleDrive, you will be able to access your files after the new limit comes into effect, but you will not be able to modify them or to store more data until you reduce your usage to below 20GB.

Note that any shared drives will count towards your quota.

What GoogleDrive users need to do by December 2022

It will not be possible to purchase additional storage under Google’s Education licences, so you must ensure that your usage is below 20GB if you wish to continue actively using your GoogleDrive:

  1. Review your GoogleDrive storage usage
  2. If your usage exceeds 20GB, move some data to another storage service.

Using GoogleDrive for storing research data and backups

Some users are using GoogleDrive to store large amounts of research data or backups.

  • GoogleDrive is not a backup tool; it should not be used as such.
  • Research Data should be moved to the University’s dedicated research data storage services available via the UIS Self-Service Portal.

Alternative storage services available through the University

Personal storage

See: Cloud-based storage for individuals

Research data storage

University Information Services (UIS) provides three services that have been designed to meet the needs of Cambridge’s research community.

See: Comparison of Research Storage Services and pricing:

  • Research File Share (RFS): optimised for large quantities of unstructured data, with no upper limit on the amount of data storage you can purchase
  • Research Data Store (RDS): high-capacity storage with a high bandwidth connection to all UIS-provided data analysis platforms; it can perform large-scale analysis and interactive visualisation of stored data sets.
  • Research Cold Store (RCS): competitively priced, resilient, enterprise-grade storage that allows users to store large amounts of infrequently accessed research data.

These services can be purchased via the UIS Self-Service Portal.

The Clinical School Computing Service (CSCS) also provides server services that may be suitable for some research groups.


Details of the new Google licence will be published on the UIS website in due course and will be kept updated in light of any user queries/feedback received. If you have any immediate queries, please direct them to the UIS Service Desk at

Those responsible for IT Services within their Institution can contact their UIS Relationship Manager for further advice on storage options.


Publication date: 19 January 2022

UIS Service Desk

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