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Frequently Asked Questions

How do I access my Box account?

To access your University of Richmond Box account, go to

Who can use Box?

All "active" students, faculty and staff with a NetID are eligible to use Box. In addition, you can share files with others within the University.

Is Box secure?

Box is deemed secure for most data and document types at the University of Richmond, including FERPA-related data.

The following is an excerpt from our Box provider's website:

"Box hosts its servers at multiple geographically separated, enterprise-grade data centers in the United States with a 99.9% network uptime guarantee, ongoing audits and 24x7x365 monitoring and video surveillance. Data is stored on a secure internal storage cluster behind an enterprise-grade firewall, with redundant connections to multiple Internet backbones. The software passes every request through a carefully audited verification code, which ensures that the user is authorized for the action requested. Box stores local snapshots of data and backs up all data daily to an additional facility in a third location.

All user data is stored in encrypted form. Keys are held by Box under strictest security. 256-bit Secured Socket Layer (SSL) encryption is used on the data between the end user and Box. Indexing of public files by search engines or robots is disallowed, and all filenames are encoded once they arrive on Box's servers.

When you upload a file to Box, it is private by default and encrypted when stored. Your files are only accessible to others if you share them or make them public. You can make any shared file private again, or modify it so a password is required to access it. If you share a file using a link, that link will contain a unique ID made up of a randomly generated combination of letters and integers so humans cannot guess the location of those files. While Box holds the keys to encrypted data, this is held under strictest physical and personnel security and is only used when permission is granted by the member institution."

What data types and file types can I store and view in Box?

Box MAY NOT be used to store or transmit files that contain credit card information. However, Box CAN be used to securely store and collaborate on practically any other type of academic or business-related information.  Box is FERPA compliant.

You can store and view virtually any file type in Box, but executable programs (e.g., Microsoft Access) cannot be previewed or "run" in Box.  To run an executable file, you must first download it to the computer or device where the application is installed.  Or, if the file is in your individual (personal) Box account and is not shared with others, Box Sync may be an option to allow you to run files natively on your computer.

For a full list of supported file types, see Box support: What file types are supported by Box's Content Preview.

Including the restricted data types listed above, there will be some storage needs for which Box may not be a good fit.  These needs may require individualized solutions and will be addressed on a case by case basis.  Examples include…

  1. Academic or research needs with especially large or specialized storage requirements (e.g., media files)
  2. Long-term document archival
  3. Publically-accessible repositories
How do I work with Microsoft Access database files in Box?

Microsoft Access databases can be stored on Box, but they can’t be previewed or "run" from Box. You still run Access from your PC, but you have to take one extra step and download the database file to your PC first.  When you are done manipulating the data, you upload it back to Box.  This extra step may add 10-15 seconds to your workflow, depending upon the size of the database.

If the Access database resides in your individual (personal) Box account and you don't share it with others, Box Sync may be an alternative that will work for you as well.

We expect this to be a short-lived inconvenience because Box is beta testing a product called Box Drive that will allow users to access their Box account as a locally attached drive (e.g., C:\).  When this Box feature becomes available, you will be able to execute files directly from Box, without having to download the files first.

If your goal is to allow multiple people to share a Microsoft Access database in a central location, please keep in mind that Access is a single-user database and is not intended to be used by multiple people at the same time.  Box facilitates this single-user design by allowing you to lock the database file so others can’t modify it while you have it open (preventing others from overwriting your changes).

Can I backup my Outlook .pst file to Box?

Yes. You are able to save a copy of your Outlook .pst file to Box. To do so, you must upload the file directly to Box's website through the web browser. Box Sync does not support uploading .pst files to Box.

What ways can I share my folders or files via Box?

Sharing (a one-way street)

  • Sharing via Box is a one-way street.  Similar to sending an attachment to someone via email, Box will allow you to send a link to a specific document or an entire folder to allow someone to review and/or download the contents of that file/folder.
  • A file or folder can be shared with anyone at the University of Richmond.
  • Time limits can be placed on how long a shared link will be active. 

Collaborating (multi-person interaction)

  • Collaborating via Box is interactive.  You can invite others (or be invited by another) to work in a folder together, essentially setting up a workspace for a project or a class.
  • Permission levels for those that you invite can be controlled by the folder owner
  • You can also create a Box Note that allows up to 20 people to simultaneously edit the same file.

More information can be found through Box Help.

Can I share my Box files with someone outside of the University of Richmond?

Yes. You can share links to your Box files and folders with non-University members by using the "People with the link" access type. This is similar to sending an email attachment because these links can be forwarded to others and anyone with the link can then access the file or folder once you send it (unless you later "remove" the link). Files and folders shared in this fashion can be viewed or downloaded by the recipient(s).

If you wish to invite external collaborators to interact within Box folders that you own, you must first request External Collaboration to be enabled for your individual Box account via the External Collaboration Request form

Files and folders that belong to a department are typically not shared outside of the University.  The reason for this is that departmental folders are intended for critical files needed to support long-term business and academic units.  These are often sensitive in nature and are accessed by diverse groups of faculty and staff.  Box makes it extremely easy for a single person to share files with others (intentionally or accidentally).  To minimize the likelihood of an accidental data exposure outside the campus community, the default configuration is to restrict collaboration for departmental folders to within the campus. If individuals wish to collaborate or share with others outside of the campus community, they are encouraged to do so via their individual Box folders. In this way, an accidental exposure outside the University would be limited to the contents of that individual's folder only. 

However, if there is a demonstrated need to create a specific departmental folder for the purpose of collaborating with non-University members, a departmental Box co-owner can make the request by filling out and submitting the External Collaboration for Departments request form. (You can determine the co-owner of a departmental Box folder by viewing the Collaborator panel on the right hand side of the departmental folder.)

CAUTION: Content placed within an externally-shared folder will be accessible outside of the University and should therefore NOT be used for the storage or transfer of confidential or restricted information as defined by the University's Data Security Policy as well as the University's External Party Data Transfer Policy.

How do I track versions of files?

You can track the versions of documents in Box natively, so there is no need to save and create tons of different versions of the same file. As you create new versions, Box will append a version number to the file automatically, and you can roll back to a previous version if you make any mistakes. This also enables you to make sure you are working on the latest version of a file.

If there has been more than one version of a document, this will be indicated by the "Vx" number under the document name, as shown below:

 box versions

To see the version history, click on the version icon: 

version history

Is there a limit to the number of versions a file will track in Box?

Yes. The version history limit is set to 100 versions per file.

Does each version of a file count against an individuals storage space limits?

No. The version history does not count against the storage limits of your Box account.

How much does Box cost?

Box is free to students, faculty and staff with UNLIMITED cloud storage space per person.

Can I access my Box content when I am traveling?

Your Box account can be accessed from anywhere by logging in to No VPN connection is required. Also, you can access your Box account on mobile devices by installing the Box app or by going to

If you anticipate working offline for an extended period of time you can mark a folder for offline access in the Box app that allows you to store a local copy of the content on your mobile device.

What forms of advanced search does Box support?

Box Search is a very easy and powerful method of finding Box content to which you have access.  The Box search field supports the following:

  • ["phrase search"] finds the exact phrase
  • [word word] -- finds files that contain both these words, in any order.
  • [full OR text] -- finds files that contain either of these two (or more) words
  • [this -that] -- finds files with "this" but not "that"
  • [air*] -- finds "air", "airplane", "airplanes," etc.

Addition tips for using the search in Box can be found on Box Help.

What happens to my Box account when I leave the university?

University network accounts, including Box access, are expired when a faculty, staff, or student's status becomes inactive.

Where can I get help with my Box account?

For help with your Box account, you can contact the Help Desk at 804-287-6400 or by email to:

Additional resources can be found through Box Help.

Why am I unable to download my Box files to my Android device?

While you are able to view your Box files on your Android device, downloading of files is restricted unless your device is encrypted. 

Information about encrypting your Android device can be found through Android's website. If you need to encrypt your device, we recommend that you contact the HelpDesk first. 

How can I check on Box's status?

If you want to check on the status of Box, you can go to this site:

Through that site, you can subscribe to updates to be notified of any outages of Box.

Can a shared folder be set up for my Student Organization?
Yes. Please contact the Center for Student Involvement to get a shared Box location created for your Student Organization.
I switched over to the new interface but really want to switch back. Is this possible?
As of August 1, 2017, users are no longer able to switch back to the old interface. 

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