General Questions

Box is a collaboration and file-sharing service for Montana State University students, faculty and staff. Box is a great resource for sharing and storing institutional and educational files!

Box is free for Montana State students, faculty and staff and your storage amount is unlimited. Box is designed for use by institutions such as MSU while other products are more for individual, consumer use. Box also offers features such as content and task management, online work-space for collaboration, permission levels and more.

Free cloud storage services such as Google Drive, Dropbox, etc. are storage solutions available to anyone. MSU decided to purchase and support Box as a standard storage platform to use for storing and sharing institutional and educational data.

Box is not intended to replace any of your current shared drives (such as Opal shared drive). Instead, this is an additional option that provides cloud storage and allows easy collaboration with others. Users should determine the best storage option based on the data type, storage requirements and other needs. Click here for more information on data storage requirements.

No. Box is available to students, faculty and staff at MSU Bozeman, MSU Great Falls and MSU Northern.  


Box's accessible web application and site is

The site/webapp:

  • supports the primary functions of Box (and are the same a those provided in Box's mobile app)*
  • requires the same login instructions as
  • functions with browser based accessibility programs and voiceover utilities
    (like tools included in the Read&Write Gold (RWG) software that is available at no cost to MSU faculty, staff, students.

*NOTE on functionality: while supports the primary functions of Box, it does not support all functions. For example, you cannot upload an entire folder on only folders.

For more details about the functionality the site provides visit:

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All faculty, staff and students at MSU Bozeman, MSU Great Falls and MSU Northern  

No. MSU Box accounts are available for students, faculty and staff to use if they choose. However, we believe that Box is an excellent resource for institutional and educational data and recommend using it.

Box’s robust file sharing and collaboration platform allows individual account holders to create folders that function just as a group folder or account would, making group and/or departmental accounts unnecessary.  Additionally multiple people can be given owner-level permission for the folder, which will ensure consistent access to the folder should an owner leave.   

With the ability to set different access levels for each user invited to collaborate in a folder and to any folders/files nested within it, folder owners can assign permission based on each individual's need and level of interaction required for data in that folder.   

If after reading the above information you determine that a Box Group is required, please submit a Help Desk ticket The requestor will be designated as the Admin and will be responsible for managing the Box Group moving forward.More info on management of Box Groups can be found here: 

You have unlimited storage in your MSU Box account.

No, MSU has a campus-wide license that provides Box accounts for all MSU faculty, staff, and students at no additional cost.

If you used your [email protected] email address to sign up for a box account, your account and its contents and files will automatically be migrated to a Montana State Box account.

The Montana State Box account is a great resource for the MSU Community to share and store institutional and educational data. This account will be associated with your [email protected] (or email address.

If you need to collaborate with a non-Montana State user, or would like to have an account that is not affiliated with Montana State, Box offers free personal storage accounts. Anyone can have this type of account and these are maintained by Box. The limit for these non-MSU accounts is 10GB. If you choose to create a non-MSU BOX account, associate this personal account with an email address other than your MSU email account. Please see for information on personal accounts.

  1. Invite your Montana State Box Account to be a an Editor of your folder in your personal BOX account
    • You must invite your Montana State BOX Account using your or email address
  2. Accept this invite in your Montana State BOX Account
  3. In your personal BOX account go the folder you've shared and make your Montana State BOX Account the OWNER of the folder


    • By making your Montana State BOX Account the Folder Owner, your personal BOX account becomes an Editor and no longer owns the folder.
    • Any collaborators who have been added directly to the folder will see it in their root folders
    • Any collaborators who have been added at the parent-folder level or above will no longer be collaborators

You can now leave this folder as is in your Montana State BOX Account, or move the files to new or existing folders in your Montana State BOX Account.


Your content will remain in Box for 120 days after your last active date of enrollment at MSU. During this time it is up to you to move your content elsewhere. After the 120 day period expires you will no longer be able to access your Montana State Box account.

You can create a free, personal Box account and move any personal content from your MSU Box account to it. Please note, the storage limit will decrease from unlimited to 10GB. You are responsible for moving any content you’d like to keep and any charges incurred for storing it.


IMPORTANT: Before your separation with Montana State University, it is up to you to move appropriate non-Montana State owned content elsewhere, or reassign ownership of Montana State owned content to another user.  If you have questions on what is appropriate non-Montana State owned content, please consult your supervisor. 

As part of the exit process, your supervisor will fill out the SEPARATION/TERMINATION CHECKLIST. Once this form is received and processed, you will no longer be able to access your Montana State Box account. 

You can create a free, personal Box account and move appropriate non-Montana State owned any content from your MSU Box account to the personal account. Please note, the storage limit will decrease from unlimited to 10GB. You are responsible for moving any content you’d like to keep and any charges incurred for storing it.

Other helpful FAQs:

If you have a name change please contact the UIT Service Desk to change your name and email address (994-1777 or [email protected]). Once the name and email address have been successfully changed your Box primary email will automatically be updated. The change in Box may take up to 24 hours to complete.

Your name and email address associated with Box will automatically be changed in Box settings when your email address is updated to reflect your name change. If you have questions on this process please contact the UIT Service Desk at [email protected] or 994-1777.

Due to technical requirements from the vendor the email address connected to your Box account cannot be changed once the account is created.

If you would like to receive messages at a different email account please forward emails from the primary exchange email account to the selected email address.


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Apps, Resources & Supported Systems

Box will begin phasing out Box Sync; UIT recommends that all Box Sync users transition to Box Drive as early as possible. For help, see Making the Switch from Box Sync to Box Drive .

The Box Drive installer will prompt you to safely remove any previous version of Box Sync at the end of the installation process. This is recommended over manually uninstalling Box Sync. For more information, please visit Uninstalling Box Sync Using The Box Drive Installer.

Box apps connect your Box account to other applications and services to allow seamless integration of Box into your workflow.

See Official Box Apps for a list of those available to use at MSU. 

See for more information.

Popular Box apps include:

Box Edit (Box Tools): Box Edit is an add-on feature that allows you to edit or create files directly on Box using applications installed natively on your desktop. Visit Using Box Edit for more complete details including how to install. 

Box Drive: a productivity tool that allows you to mirror data stored on Box to your desktop and easily navigate content stored on Box website through your computers native file browsing interface. IMPORTANT: You should NOT use Box Drive to sync folders that contain restricted information as this will also store a copy of the data on your local hard drive.

See About Box Drive for detailed information.

Box Drive:

Box for Office: helps you create, edit, and share your documents more effectively. Box for Office includes Box functionality for key Office products—Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook—in a single app. See Box for Office Integrations for complete details on downloading  and using.



Please see Understand the Box Policy for Browser and OS Support to learn which OS versions and browsers Box supports.  



Yes, Linux users can access Box with either Firefox or Chrome browsers. Box Drive is currently not supported on the Linux OS.
Office Online supports co-authoring and editing for .xlsx, .pptx and .docx files.
  • Any 97 - 2003 files (.xls, .ppt, .doc) cannot be edited with Office Online. 
  • File size limits apply when editing files with Box and Office Online:
    • Excel: 5MB
    • PowerPoint: 500MB
    • Word: 500MB

For files exceeding the size limit use your desktop version of Office to open.

Box allows for full-text search of the current versions of files uploaded to your account. It cannot search documents that are images or scanned copies of documents.

Box Drive does not store a copy of your Box files on your local drive by default, however, it does include the option to make folders available offline. This will store a copy of any files within the folder on your local drive. While it is ok to store restricted data in your Box account, it is not recommended to use Box Drive's "Make Available Offline" feature on any folders that contain data that is restricted. If ever in doubt, please contact the UIT Service Desk at 994-1777 or [email protected].

There are a couple different ways to unsync a folder:

Method 1:

  1. Log into your Box account at
  2. Click the name of the the folder to unsync.
  3. In the page that opens, click Details, it is located just below the Upload button in the upper right of page.
  4. Slide/click Sync to Desktop Off.

Method 2:

  1. Log into Box >  Hover over the row where your folder is located > click More options (...) button located at the end of the row next to the Share button > click More Actions > Unsync.

If you want to unsync a file and would rather not unsync the entire folder simply move the file to a new folder (outside of the synced folder). 

For more information on syncing see Box Sync 4.x FAQ.

Yes you can. 

 Visit Box Integration with Teams & Spark  to learn more about how Box can be used with each app and how to set up the integration.

Third party applications are not allowed for use with Box. Please visit the Official Box Applications site for a list of the approved apps. 

Box University is a training site from on Box features and functionality. There are both live and online delivery options. Most courses are free.  Users will be responsible to pay for courses that charge a fee. 

Box University is separate from the Montana State University Box account and requires a separate login and password. 

See also Box User Training Videos for more free training.

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File Access, Upload & Versioning

Folder owners can transfer ownership of a folder to another user thereby removing themselves as the folder's owner. See Transferring Folder Ownership to learn how.

For MSU employees, if the owner of the folder content has left MSU, and you can no longer see the content, please submit a ticket to  [email protected] with the following items: 

  • Your (requestor's) contact info: 
    • Name
    • NetID
    • Phone
    • Email
  • Name of previous content owner 
  • Folder name or document name of which you need to become the owner 
  • Written permission from the former employee's manager, verifying you are the appropriate new owner of the content 

Other helpful FAQ's 

How do I transfer ownership of a folder? 
I am no longer attending/working for MSU. What will happen to my content saved in Box? 

Only you and the people you choose to share your documents with have access to the content in Box.
System administrators can move folders at a high level and can view content you upload. The system administrators have this access in order to conduct audits (for example, content found to be a violation of the security or copyright policies).

Yes, you can use FTP, however it should only be used for bulk file uploads (or downloads) to your account and you'll need to set up an FTPS (secure) connection.  

For information and instructions, visit Using Box with FTP.

You can email files directly to Box using folder email addresses.

To enable a folder for uploads and find its email upload address:  

  1. Click the More Options icon in the row of folder you’d like to enable for receiving email uploads.
  2. Select Settings and scroll down to Uploading.
  3. Check the box next to: Allow uploads to this folder via email.
    The email address for the selected folder will be displayed. 

Choose optional upload settings:

  • If you want to only give collaborators the ability to email uploads, check the box next to Only allow email uploads from collaborators in this folder.
  • If you want files with same name to be overwritten, check the box next to Overwrite files with the same name when uploading by email or widget.

4. Copy the email address to use for uploads to the folder. 

5. Click Save Changes at the top of the page.

To upload files using folder address:

  1. Open a new email message and enter the address given to you in steps above.
  2. Attach a file and send.

You will receive a “success” email from Box when the file has been successfully uploaded.

Yes, you can.  Follow the instructions above to enable the folder for upload and to obtain the folder's email address.  Use the scan to email function on your scanner and for the destination address enter the email address for your folder. 

You can upload any type of digital file on box.   

The content viewer, that allows you to preview files within the web browser, does have some restrictions. See File Types and Fonts Supported in Box Content Preview for details.

Please refer to MSU's Data Storage Guidelines for Box to see what types of data/information are OK to store on Box. 

The file upload size limit is 15GB. Please note that uploading a 15GB file could take up to 40 minutes at 50Mbps.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Internet Explorerapplies file-size upload and download limits that supersede Box account-level upload limits. Users accessing Box through Internet Explorer versions 6, 7, and 8 can upload files up to 2GB in size. These limits do not apply if the user selects the Upload Folders option, which uses Java. Please see our Box Help article What Is the Box Policy for Browser and OS Support? for more information.

Users cannot pause or resume a large file upload during upload. If there is an error, the user will need to reattempt the upload.

PLEASE NOTE: UNLIMITED STORAGE, DOES NOT MEAN UNLIMITED BANDWIDTH. Please be aware that it still takes time to upload high numbers of files or large files to the cloud because this service still utilizes the internet download and upload speeds are subject to internet performance, traffic volume and latency. 

Every time you save a document and upload it to box, you create a new version. If you utilize BOX edit you will upload a new version every time you click the “Save” button. if using Microsoft Online Apps (Word, Excel, PPT) due to recovery settings in these online applications new versions will be saved every 1 minute while you are actively working in the document.

Deleted files are kept in the Trash folder for 30 days. Upon expiration, files are auto-deleted.

Once the content is deleted from trash, it is permanently unrecoverable by Box after 14 days.

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File Sharing and Collaboration

When inviting a person as a collaborator within a folder or file, or sending a shared link, you have the ability to set the level of access that person has to your content. 

Refer to the following chart to review the different permissions that accompany each permission level.

Be sure to review collaborators on all shared folders and files regularly to ensure permissions are correct or edit them if necessary.  Also consider whether the folder or files still needs to be shared with existing collaborators. 

Yes, with Box Presence, if you are the editor, co-owner or owner of a file you will be able see recent file activity on that file's preview page. 

On the top of the file window and to the left of the Open button as shown below, the avatars of people who have recently edited, viewed or commented on the file will be displayed.  Hover over them to see more details.  
A screenshot of the avatars displayed on the preview page of a file in Box.

For more info see: Tracking File Activity.

When searching for a user to invite them to collaborate in a folder, use their full, legal name or their email address.

If the individual is not an MSU Bozeman user (MSU Bozeman student, faculty or staff member) their email address will not come up. Please enter the full email address of the collaborator to invite them. 

This will need to be an email that the individual has associated with a Box account. If they are not currently a Box user, they can click Accept Invite on the email and create a free personal account.


This is an auto on feature. To adjust this:
  1. Login into Your Account,
  2. Click on Your Name on the Top Right Corner
  3. Go to Account Settings
  4. Click on Content & Sharing
  5. Scroll to Collaborating on Content
  6. Un check the Box
  7. Click Save

If an external collaborator would like to invite you to collaborate they must use your [email protected] e-mail address (netID or [email protected] will not work).

In Box you can “Share this Folder” either by choosing "Get Shared Link" or "Invite Collaborators".  So, what's the difference and which should you choose?

Invite Collaborators

Choose "Invite Collaborators" when you need to share a folder (and its contents) with a person or group of people for an extended period of time, and especially if they need access beyond being able to just view the folder contents.  See Collaborate By Inviting Others for complete information and instructions.

Get Shared Link

Choose "Get Shared Link" if you quickly need to share content with a person who only needs to be able to view or download it.  A shared link also allows you to share content with people outside of MSU by customizing link settings.

See Using Shared Links for complete information and instructions as well as answers to frequently asked questions.      

IMPORTANT: A shared link DOES NOT invite the recipient of the link to be a collaborator.  

Once the BOX Office App is installed users will receive this prompt when sending documents in an e-mail:
Box App Email Prompt
This functionality allows users to just send a BOX link, instead of the actual document. The recipient is then able to click on the link in the message and go directly into BOX and view the linked document as opposed to receiving it as an attachment.