It is critical to manage, store, backup, and archive your data. Here are our recommendations and guidelines on how to achieve all five.
By creating and utilizing data documentation, or metadata, you and other researchers can easily understand, find, use, and properly cite your data. There are various metadata standards available for specific disciplines and file formats, as well as the general guidelines below.
- Note of all file standards and naming conventions associated with your project, how the data is organized, and how it was collected and generated
- Note all codes, abbreviations, or variables used in file naming conventions
- Title: Research project or dataset name
- Creator: Name and contact information for data owners
- Dates: Project begin and end dates, data release date, time period for data collection
- Funders: Agencies or organizations that funded the project
- Rights: Any applicable IP information
- Location: Where and how the data is stored and archived
- Methodology: How you collected and/or generated the data including any special software or tools used
Store, Backup, Archive:
There are several important steps in ensuring data is accessible, secure, and accurate. It is paramount that backups of your research data are created and maintained. This can be accomplished through the use of local backups, departmental or university servers, or cloud providers. Always regularly test your backups to ensure they remain operational and recoverable. We also strongly recommend more than one backup in different locations. Please refer to the list below for some options for each phase of your research.
- Active storage and processing
- CometSpace/Box provided by UT Dallas
- Departmental/OIT provided file shares
- High Performance Computing resources