The method used (OneDrive for Business, Sharepoint or SFTP) to share files depends on the number of files, the file sizes and who and how many people you wish to share them with.

Please note there is no service provided by the College to share files anonymously (e.g. via a weblink) - they can only be shared to individuals with email addresses.

File exchange was decomissioned by the College on 1 December 2022.

Sharing files accordion

I want to share files with College and external staff - use OneDrive for Business

The College provides each individual with a OneDrive for Business account with upto 5TB of cloud-based storage.

You can share small and large files with individuals who work at the College and those who are external. You are able to change individuals' permissions so they can view files in read-only made, or edit them if you wish to work collaboratively.

To find out how to share files using OneDrive for Business, you can visit our OneDrive for Business webpage or watch a Microsoft video which details the steps you need to take.

You can find out more about using OneDrive for Business and how to make the most of using it on our dedicated webpage.

I want to share a very large number of files with users at the College - use SharePoint Online

SharePoint Online is a cloud-based storage and collaboration service which allows you to store and collaborate on files with other individuals across the College.

A single SharePoint site can store up to 25TB of data and there is no restriction on the number of sites a department can have. The maximum size of a single file that can be stored in Sharepoint is 250GB.

To find out how to create and build a SharePoint site, and for making the most of using SharePoint, visit our dedicated webpages.

If you want to request a new SharePoint site, please complete this form.

I want to share very large amounts of data with external users - use Secure File Transfer Protocol (SFTP)

At the College, Secure File Transfer Protocol (SFTP) is commonly used as a way of collaborating with other universities and colleagues in the field who wish to exchange very large amounts of data - in term of large file size or large number of files or both, and where there is regular two-way data flow.

These cases include organisations where Imperial College staff are in a location that block access to external file sharing servers/services. In addition, it also makes it easier for collaboration to happen with certain sensitive locations (e.g. NHS sites). There is also a number of external health data suppliers who want to use SFTP to transfer data, and require Imperial College to store the data internally on campus.

Technical Details:

  • All users of this service will need to have an Imperial College user account (including guest account).
  • Access to this service is granted upon request only.
  • Users will need to have an SFTP client to connect to this service.  if you need assistance.
  • Users (both internally and externally) will need to connect to the following location to use this service SFTP.IC.AC.UK
  • Typically for most users they will connect as follows, sftp [IC username] e.g. sftp
  • After the users login they will upload to their designated group area, where there will be a [ Group name ]-incoming folder where they should place their files (or pull their files from if they are downloading it)

 Other Key Points:

  • Service will be resilient across two servers
  • The service provides encryption in transit by default.
  • Customers can rent encrypted storage if they need the data to be encrypted at rest (please contact ICT for further discussion)
  • A default 100GB quota per group on a shared storage volume.
  • 10 day retention period with automatic deletions.
  • Messages will be provided at logon time to communicate with users regarding the service and retention period.
  • Auditing of access will be enabled.
  • SFTP protocol only for ingress and egress of data