Google Workspace Storage Project

Please review our Google Workspace Storage Quotas knowledge article for details about individual storage quotas.


Storage Project Timeline and Milestones

2024 November Google to enforce NC State’s domain storage quota.
NC State prepared to purchase additional storage depending on the status of domain storage by November 2024.
2024 January through October Storage cleanup will continue. Data will be moved or deleted. Google Service Team provides updates (ongoing).
Decision on purchasing additional storage and how much (recommendation #6) as we continue with domain-wide data “cleanup,” review of data, and other tasks.
2023 September through December Oct:
Sept: Begin working with selected departments, colleges or units to understand what types of data are in their Google accounts.
Sept: Continue to offer workshops, improve and enhance storage KB’s and other documentation for campus.
Sept: Provide ongoing updates via OIT News.
2023 June through August August: Storage quotas announced to campus.
July: Presented revised, final recommendations to the CITD.
July: Workshop scheduled on IT Reporting Tool (slides from presentation)
July: Released [My] Drive inventory tool (Beta/Test version. Must have the link. Not searchable from Google Marketplace) & Labeling Project for “to be deleted” files to CITD forum for testing.
June: Meeting with CITD to present recommendations and receive feedback.
June: New student orientation: Quotas announced to new students 15GB.
June: Update provided to campus in OIT News.
June: Storage Finder released for general availability.
2023 March through June April: Task Force released its report and recommendations on Google’s changes to “unlimited storage”. CITD presentation by Dr. Hoit

  • Review Storage Working Group’s Dec. 16, 2022 report.
  • Identify any gaps.
  • Determine the best path forward for campus storage options.

April: Implementation Steering Team formed to address recommendations from Task Force; team meeting bi-weekly.
April: IT Reporting Tool enhanced to provide IT staff with sorting by 2, 4 or 6 digit OUC and exports to a CSV file.

2023 January through March GST continues to pull together data on our environment as we prepare for the Strategic Task Force report

  • Review options for end users to more easily identify these files.
  • Labeling Pilot project starts in May; feedback is due in mid-June.

Review management tools for Shared Drives & current storage usage.

Continue to improve reporting assets in IT Reporting Tool (formerly Google Reporting Tool)

Added ability to search by 2, 4 or 6 digit OUC and export to a CSV file.

2022 Fall Storage Working Group

  • Reviewed use cases.
  • Identified appropriate storage offerings (November).
  • Provided report to Strategic Task Force on Dec 16, 2022.

Google Service Team provides updates (ongoing).

2022 Summer Update in OIT News August 2022.
Storage Working Group formed with persons from multiple colleges and other campus units, including OIT. Led by Eric Sills of OIT Shared Services. Group inventories the current storage offerings and creates a list of storage use cases.
Google Storage Changes (July 2022 session recording).
Update in OIT News July 2022.
Google updates and tools are available.
Google Service Team provides updates (ongoing).
2022 Spring / Summer Update in OIT News May 2022.
Google Service Team provides My Drive quota information to IT staff (CITD) and other governance groups.
Awaiting Shared Drive tooling from Google.
2022 Winter Google provides updates and tools.
2021 Fall Google provides incremental updates and storage management tools.
OIT and Google Service Team announce storage reduction.
Quotas and implementation dates remain unknown.
NC State signs agreement for Google Workspace Plus (October)
2021 Spring / Summer Continuing to assess impact to NC State’s domain; at this time quotas and implementation dates for reduction remain unknown.
2021 February OIT announces storage reduction to campus.
2020 December Google announces storage reduction.

Project scope

  • At the end of  2020, Google announced the end of unlimited storage and the impact would be substantial on our campus. Throughout the spring of 2021 and 2022, OIT began laying the framework for how to approach this project. A Storage Working Group and Task Force reviewed storage usage on campus, including research storage options and identified current options and gaps; seven recommendations were made (see below), including short-term and long-term recommendations. In 2023, A Storage Implementation Steering Team was charged to review data and make recommendations regarding how best to handle storage changes for our domain. Quotas will be announced to the campus in the summer of 2023.

Users and files affected

  • All students, faculty and staff who currently use Google Workspace at NC State.
  • Google generic accounts.
  • Accounts of separated employees and graduated students or students who are no longer active.
    • These will be suspended and moved to 0 quota, which may impact files and research data.
    • Will work with current active users to make sure that no needed research data is lost (Drive Label Pilot is one such endeavor.).
  • All files and research data stored in Google Workspace (e.g., Gmail, My Drive, Photos and Shared Drives).

Strategic Task Force on Storage

The Strategic Task Force on Storage had seven recommendations for storage on campus, which are listed below. For the full report, see Final Strategic Storage Task Committee Report.

  1. Improve usability of OIT Research Storage
    1. Usability improvements are multifaceted and include items such as: ease of access, ease of moving data into it, etc.
    2. Consider use of focus groups and coordinate with users already using research storage and new users to gather additional information and understanding
  2. OIT and College IT offices will work with the heaviest users of Google storage to optimize use.
    1. These people can help define and improve research storage (possibly form the focus group)
    2. This will be a good source of information for use cases that don’t clearly fall in the desired Google Storage or Research Storage services.
  3. Implement Google storage quotas for all faculty, staff and students by August 1, 2023.
    1. Initial quotas will not affect any user or account as we work through the process. Everybody will start where they are now with regards to storage usage
    2. Goal of at least a 30% buffer to make sure everybody can continue work unimpeded
    3. Allows us to “stop the growth” by having incoming accounts under a quota
  4. Develop a communications plan.
  5. Develop a long-term plan for the broader campus community to reduce its usage of Google storage and increase Research Storage.
  6. Make short-term purchases of storage from Google to support the implementation timeline.
  7. Develop a long-term storage strategy for NC State.

Storage Implementation Steering Team

Based on the Storage Task Force’s recommendation, the Implementation Steering Team is tasked with implementing the reduction of Google Storage use and improving Research Storage. The team’s goals include:

  • Initial quotas for faculty, staff and students will be rolled out by August 1 (Recommendation 3) and will not require any user to reduce their storage. This approach allows our campus to slow down our storage growth while we review what’s being stored in Google along with alternative solutions if necessary.
    • Over the next twelve to twenty-four months (Recommendations 2 and 5), IT staff and members of the Google Service Team will work together with users who have large storage needs and consider alternatives for storage locations.
  • No files in Google storage at NC State will be moved or deleted until the campus community has more information on storage options for large data users as well as a chance to review any files slated for deletion.

Storage Allocation Background

Please review our Google Workspace Storage Quotas knowledge article for details about individual storage quotas.

Google-allocated storage quota for NC State: ~1.4PB

For details about

  • Basis for our storage quota:
    • Workspace for Education Plus agreement with Google.
    • Additional storage for signing a four-year contract.
    • Student licenses purchased (40,000), providing one faculty/staff license for every four student licenses.
  • Google storage usage as of March 2023: ~5.5PB
    • Multi-year effort to reduce usage by ~4PB
    • Time needed for reduction: At least one year
    • Reduction schedule: To be determined.
    • Alternative storage options: To be determined.
    • Deadline: November 2024
  • Failure to meet quota deadlines will impact applications in Google Workspace;
    • Gmail will continue to send and receive email as normal.
    • OIT is prepared to purchase additional storage for the first year after our November 2024 deadline.

Stay informed