Box Cloud Migration Unites University of South Florida’s Three Campuses

University of South Florida moves 300TB and 8,500 users to Box cloud.

16,000 faculty and staff members. Composed of three campuses—Tampa, St. Petersburg, and Sarasota-Manatee—USF is regarded as one of the best public research institutions in the state and is ranked the 44th best public school in the nation by U.S. News and World Report. Sharing research, skill sets, and knowledge is not only a high priority for USF—ranked 19th for “technology transfer” by the Milken Institute in 2017—but essential to their continued success. To maintain this incredible momentum, USF needs to be able to collaborate and store tremendous amounts of information efficiently and safely.

The Challenge

The USF migration required the transfer of 300TB of data and roughly 8,500 users to a cloud environment. The school’s goals were to depreciate costly legacy storage systems and increase ease of collaboration, quickly and securely.

The USF team knew that Box was the right platform for their content and data storage needs and, at first, decided to undertake the migration themselves with a basic FTP-based tool. They quickly realized that their proposed solution wouldn’t scale and was rife with tedious syncing issues. As a result, they started looking for a helping hand. The IT team developed rigorous success criteria to help find the right partner, which included the ability to:

  • Translate usernames, groups, and permissions from source to destination
  • Handle and automatically retry tasks and supply robust post-transfer reports
  • Modify file names to conform to the requirements of the destination system
  • Identify and remediate permissions conflicts
  • Introduce parallel loading to circumvent ingest limits

The IT team at USF reached out to Box and received several recommendations for companies that assist with enterprise-level migrations. They quickly began vetting vendors against their success criteria. It didn’t take long for USF to see that Cloud FastPath was the only viable choice.

“Cloud FastPath literally helps me sleep at night. With FTP, I was spending my nights and weekends trying to figure out the errors and sync source systems to Box.” –Randy Mothershed, Support Specialist, University of South Florida

The Solution

After analyzing USF’s specific needs, Cloud FastPath developed a simple, fast, and secure solution that helped USF achieve an unparalleled migration performance. Through a protected TLS protocol, USF was able to stream their data to Box using a direct-to-source architecture safely and quickly. Additionally, built-in WAN optimization, compression, and streaming protocols automatically mixed the transfer of small and large files. This optimized both the network bandwidth and the ingest rate limit of the Box platform. In short, Cloud FastPath was able to maximize the efficiency of data transfer across networks, resulting in a migration that took only a fraction of the time other solutions were promising.

Further, in addition to saving money by moving away from on-site storage, USF’s new Box content management and file sharing solution introduced USF to many new collaboration features, including:

  • Mobile access to files
  • File permission management
  • Edit, upload, and versioning access
  • A comprehensive project management console
  • Ironclad security protocols
  • Reduced need for third-party applications and software solutions
  • Real-time sharing

The Results of the Migration

By partnering with Cloud FastPath, USF was able to reallocate time fixing bugs and errors to planning a thoughtful and comprehensive migration. The results were efficient and graceful, and the USF team was thrilled. With the right solution, USF’s migration experience is easily within reach of any university or business. Powerful analytics and reporting tools, a comprehensive project management console, and Cloud FastPath’s ability to automatically scale to handle large amounts of data are just some of the features that help USF achieve their migration goals. With Cloud FastPath, migration isn’t a roadblock—it’s the path to a bright future.


300TB+
of files and content
70,000+
employeesA Preeminent Research University located in the heart of Tampa Bay, the University of South Florida is dedicated to empowering students to maximize their potential for lifelong success.
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