Departmental Data Storage (Q:)

All faculty and staff are given access to a shared departmental data storage area on the university network. To access your Q: drive, you must log in to the Tufts network or Tufts VPN with a valid Tufts Username and Tufts Password.

Sometimes referred to as your departmental share, your Q: drive is a data storage area on the Tufts network that is accessible by other staff or faculty in your department. When you're connected to the Tufts network (or logged into Tufts VPN), you can drag and drop files to your Q: drive, create folders, and use it as a “Save as …” location the same way you work with files and directories on your computer’s C: drive, an external hard drive, or USB thumb drive.

Your Q: drive is an excellent location for sharing project, reference, or collaborative documents and images that need to be edited or retrieved from multiple locations with other members of your department. Benefits of Q: drive storage include:

  • Nightly backup of all data located on the Q: drive
  • Accessible from any Tufts network location or via Tufts VPN
  • Only members of your department or those who have been granted access can access your departmental Q: drive (To restrict access to files on the Q: drive, a folder can be created and secured to ensure that only authorized individuals are able to access the information.)

Get Started

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Access on Windows Computers

Windows computers automatically connect and “map” your Q: drive whenever you log in to the Tufts network with your Tufts Username and Tufts Password. To open it and store or retrieve files, open (My) Computer and select Q:

If you're working off-site and need to map a Q: drive, you can find step-by-step instructions for mapping drives on a PC.

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Access on a Mac

Unlike Windows users, Mac users don’t automatically mount (map) their Tufts network drives when they connect to the network, so Mac users need to have the path to their network drive added to the Favorite Servers list.

Example of saved network drives on a Mac
Your IT Support organization may have added your drive locations when you received your new Mac. To check, open the Finder and select Go > Connect to Server.

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Access via Tufts VPN

Tufts Virtual Private Network (VPN) provides secure access to all of your network drives from any location with an active Internet connection.

  1. Browse to and log in with your Tufts Username and Tufts Password.
  2. When the Tufts VPN Home page opens, locate and click the link for your department.

Not all departments post their Q: drives in Tufts VPN. If you don't see your Q: drive listed, follow the instructions in the Tufts VPN AnyConnect User Guide to create your own drive shortcut or place a request for help with the TTS Service Desk by calling 617-627-3376 or emailing

To learn more about Tufts VPN and the more robust mini application, VPN AnyConnect, see Tufts VPN.