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Frequently Asked Questions

If you are unable to find the answers you need in this FAQ, you can submit a support request to the IT Help Desk by emailing [email protected], please include as much detail as possible in your email. Alternatively, you may contact the Help Desk by clicking on the Chat blue circle (located on the bottom right-hand corner of this page).

What are network drives?

Network drives are storage devices that live on-premise at the Lab.  You may know network drives by other names like CIFS, 

Why are documents in network drives being moved to Google Shared drives?

Documents in network drives are stored in hardware that lives at the Lab.  Although measures are in place to provide access to these drives and their contents during power outages (for instance, during PSPS), this is not a guarantee.  Network drives also incur maintenance, backup, and hardware costs to the Lab.  The Lab's license agreement with Google gives Lab staff with unlimited Drive storage.  This storage is securely maintained, stored, and accessible on Google's servers.  Moving documents to Google Drive reduces the hardware and backup costs of the documents and gives you unlimited access to storage on the Cloud.

Google Shared drives

What is Google Shared drives?

Google Shared drives are part of Google Drive.  The main difference is that files stored in Google Shared drives are owned by a group and not an individual. 

How do I access Google Shared drives?

You can access Google Shared drives by visiting and clicking on Shared drives or by visiting

Do I need VPN to access files stores on Google Shared drives?

No, you don't need to connect to VPN to access your files on Google Drive like you currently do when accessing your files from home.

Do I need a Windows Active Directory account to access Google Shared drives?

No, you only need your Lab credentials (just like when you login to Gmail) and your multi-factor token to access your files.

Google Drive for desktop

What is Google Drive for desktop?

Google Drive for desktop is an application that gives you access to Google My Drive and Google Shared drives files directly from your Windows or Mac computer.

How does Google Drive for desktop work?

With Google Drive for desktop, you stream your Drive files directly from the cloud to your Mac or Windows computer, freeing up disk space on your computer. Because Drive files are stored in the cloud, any changes you or your collaborators make are automatically updated everywhere. You’ll always have the latest version.  You can also make Drive files available for offline access. These cached files sync back to the cloud when you're online, so the latest version is available on all your device

How do I install Google Drive for desktop?

Visit this Google support article and follow the instructions to install Google Drive for desktop.

How do I access Google Drive for desktop on my computer?

Follow these instructions to access Google Drive for desktop after you have installed it on your computer.

My G: Drive has changed after I installed Google Drive for desktop

Google Drive for desktop mounts all network shares by default to drive G: on your Windows Explorer.  If G: was already mapped to point to another location, you should change Google Drive for desktop to use a different letter using these instructions.

What type of files do you not recommend storing in Google Drive?

We do not recommend storing live Thunderbird local mail archives, Outlook .pst files, databases, or other highly-transactional files in Google Drive. Instead, these types of files should be stored on your local computer where Druva inSync can back them up if you are concerned about data loss. If you need assistance copying and reconfiguring your Thunderbird archives from local network storage or Google Drive to your local computer and reconfiguring your mail client, then please contact [email protected]

Common Issues

Updating Links in Microsoft Excel

Documents that have links to other documents may lose the connection to the original links.  This is usually common within Excel spreadsheets which reference data in other Excel spreadsheets.  Use these instructions to update the links in Excel documents.

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