CyVerse logo

Home_Icon Learning Center Home


Quickstart: Using CyVerse for a Shared Project


Learn the basic steps for setting up a collaborative project using CyVerse.


Downloads, access, and services

In order to complete this tutorial you will need access to the following services/software

Prerequisite Preparation/Notes Link/Download
CyVerse account You will need a CyVerse account to complete this exercise CyVerse User Portal


The following CyVerse platform(s) can be used in a collaborative project:

Platform Interface Link Platform Documentation Quick Start
Data Store GUI/Command line Data Store Data Store Manual Data Store Guide
Discovery Environment Web/Point-and-click Discovery Environment DE Manual Discovery Environment Guide

Input and example data

No example data are required for this quickstart.

Get started

  1. Any project members who will be using CyVerse should take a look at the Data Store Guide and the Discovery Environment Guide. You may also want to review the Atmosphere Guide.
  2. Be sure that all project members register for CyVerse accounts at the CyVerse User Portal. See Creating a CyVerse Account.

Sharing data with project members

For projects that are part of a single lab, we recommend that the PI create a CyVerse account and share it with lab members. Specific sub-directories can be shared with specific lab members as desired.

For projects that are collaborations among multiple labs, one person should be create a project folder to share with all collaborators. Collaborators must decide among themselves who will host the main folder and who has read, write, and own permission for all folders.


Anyone who has own permission on a folder can delete it or rename it!

The sharing functionality the CyVerse Data Store can be used to share data among project members. This can be done through the Discovery Environment via the data sharing feature or on the command line using iCommands. Project members also can upload and download data using the desktop application Cyberduck, but Cyberduck cannot be used for setting sharing permissions.

According to the CyVerse Data Policy, all users receive a default allocation of 100GB. Shared data is counted as part of the allocation of whoever owns the folder that contains it. To request an increase to your allocation, should that become necessary, use the allocation increase form. We expect that users hosting shared directories will need to request larger data allocations.

If your project needs a shared folder for data that that going to be public during the active research phase of the project (e.g., you want to share transcriptomes or draft genomes as they are created, before publication), you can request a Community Released Data Folder. Community Released folders are intended for public data, not for shared projects that are kept private among collaborators.


If your project is image based (i.e. you are sharing a lot of images), you may want to use BisQue to manage the data. If so, see the page on Managing a shared Bisque project.

Managing data in a shared project

We strongly recommend that a single person be in charge of data management. There should also be a single person (generally the PI) who has ownership of the project folders and who sets read and write permissions for others. This ensures continuity when people move on. The PI can give ownership to a data manager for setting permissions, but should maintain their own ownership as well.

The owner of a folder has the ability to delete or rename the folder and any of its contents. If project members are given write permission to the project folder, they will be able to create their own sub-folders which they will own. In this way, project members can control access to their own data.


Before beginning your project, make a plan for how to name files and organize folders. Agree on which metadata are needed for each type of file, and set up protocols for adding metadata when files are uploaded.

Publishing data from a shared project

When you are ready to publish the results of your project, you should also publish the data to an appropriate repository. For sequence data, that is one of the INDSC repositories, such as NCBI’s SRA. Other data types can be published to general scientific repositories or to the CyVerse Data Commons. See Publishing your data through the CyVerse Data Commons.

Group projects that are using a Community Released Data Folder to share data pre-publication are encouraged to transition to fully published data (with a DOI) when the data are stable. At that point, data can move into the Data Commons repository in its own folder, or it can remain within the shared project folder, but project members will lose edit access to the dataset. For more questions on this option, contact

Sharing tools and analyses with project members

Projects can use CyVerse analysis platforms to develop and share analysis tools and workflows.

The Discovery Environment (DE) contains hundreds of application that can be used by projects. Apps can be chained together to form workflows in the DE. It is now possible for CyVerse users to integrate their own applications or any open source application into the DE, using Docker containers. Projects may create private apps and workflows, to be shared only with project members, and then make those apps public when they are ready.

In the DE, you can create a team (add link to documentation) and share apps with your team.

Atmosphere can be used to set up a virtual machine (VM) with project software, which can then be used by all project members. The VM can later be imaged (made permanent) and published along with the project.

If your project includes a lot of computationally intensive analyses, you should consider requesting an XSEDE allocation (for the U.S. national super-computer infrastructure) and setting up HPC workflows using tools such as Pegasus.

Additional information, help

Search for an answer: CyVerse Learning Center or CyVerse Wiki

Download Cyberduck

Fix or improve this documentation

Home_Icon Learning Center Home

<a href=”” target=”blank”>Bisque</a>