for Researchers & Teams

Research Data Directory

SESYNC provides a large, shared file store to host data for all projects. Project participants have access to the research data directory for their project from our compute servers, a web portal, a desktop application for syncing, and SSH.

The directory name will be based off your project’s short-title. In the examples below, we use the short title cooltrees for a hypothetical project about urban green spaces.

Note that your group’s research data directory is not the same as your personal home directory, which is only for code and software installations and has a small storage quota. The home directory is named /research-home/(your SESYNC username). See our cyber resources infographic to learn more.

For postdocs and staff at SESYNC, additional options are in our internal Wiki.

Web Browser

All research data directories are accessible from your web browser—via a portal that provides upload, download, sharing, and other common file operations. For large uploads (i.e. more than 10GB), please use a SFTP client for faster and secure data transfer. See our Quick Start guide on Bulk Uploads and Downloads by SFTP for recommendations and useage details.

  1. Log in at with your SESYNC username and password.
  2. Open the folder corresponding to your project (e.g. cooltrees-data).
  3. Upload, download, and otherwise organize your data.

RStudio and Jupyter Servers

Any research data directory you have permission to access is available in the filesystem of the server once you’ve logged in. The path will be like /nfs/cooltrees-data. Please note, these directories won’t appear within the /nfs directory unless you recently navigated there (i.e. cd /nfs/cooltrees-data will work even when ls /nfs does not show the directory). The path is the same on all our Linux systems, including virtual machines, the RStudio Server, and the Jupyter Server.

When you log into the RStudio or Jupyter server, your default working directory is your home directory. You can navigate to the research data directory either by using a symlink or, in RStudio, by clicking on the “Go to directory” button in the Files tab and typing /nfs/cooltrees-data into the dialog box that opens. See image below for the location of the tricky-to-find button, which has an ellipsis on it.

go to directory in RStudio

Windows VM

Virtual machines you access through are pre-configured with a mapped network drive pointing to your research data directory. Mapping creates a drive letter linked to \\\cooltrees-data. To re-create the map (e.g. to change the drive letter), click the file explorer icon in the task bar (folder icon). Then right-click “This PC” & choose “map network drive”. In the “folder” space, type \\\cooltrees-data.

For computers not on SESYNC’s internal network, use a sync client to keep a local folder up to date with your research data directory.

Over SSH

  1. Connect to SESYNC’s Linux gateway with any SFTP client or via SSH using your SESYNC credentials:
    • Host:
    • Username: %YOUR SESYNC USERNAME%
    • Password: %YOUR SESYNC PASSWORD%
    • Port: 22
  2. Change remote path to your research data directory with cd /nfs/cooltrees-data.