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wmack
New Member

Canvas Site Files and Storage

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I am a new user to Canvas and am working on setting up a template for all of our courses.  I am trying to create a few custom pages and would love to add some institutional images both there and to the syllabus, but I'm concerned that if this course and the included images are replicated 400+ times per semester, it will eat into our storage.  Is there a way to post a "site file" that I can link to in my course? 

Thanks for your help!

1 Solution

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kona
Community Coach
Community Coach

 @wmack , per the discussion at the bottom of this guide - What is my File Storage quota for my course? -  @scottdennis  stated that, "I can confirm that when you copy files from one course to another without modifying the files, Canvas doesn't create a new actual copy of the file in the underlying file structure but instead makes reference to the same file ID.  This is handy in that it doesn't load up your file storage but also you don't end up with as much complexity of links to many many copies of the same file.  When you go to delete a file, Canvas will check whether the file is referred to elsewhere.  If it is, it will delete the association to the file rather than the file itself."

Hope this helps!

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8 Replies
chofer
Community Coach
Community Coach

Hi  @wmack ​...

Each of your Canvas courses has roughly 500 MB of total storage space for files (stored in the "Files" area of each course).  You can see a percentage of the total space used for each course when you click on "Files".  This percentage will show at the bottom of the "Files" screen.

If, however, you are concerned about using too much space for images and other files in your template, what you could do is see if your school has some webspace to store files, or you could upload the files to a cloud-based service such as Dropbox or Google Drive.  In those cases, when you are building your template, you'd always have to reference those files from Dropbox or Google Drive so that the images load.  A caution with that, however, would be that if you are uploading files to a service like that where the account is under your name, if you ever deleted those files, then the images wouldn't work in your template any more.

Please let me know if I can be of further help to you, Wendy.  Hopefully this gives you some ideas of what is possible.

kona
Community Coach
Community Coach

 @wmack , per the discussion at the bottom of this guide - What is my File Storage quota for my course? -  @scottdennis  stated that, "I can confirm that when you copy files from one course to another without modifying the files, Canvas doesn't create a new actual copy of the file in the underlying file structure but instead makes reference to the same file ID.  This is handy in that it doesn't load up your file storage but also you don't end up with as much complexity of links to many many copies of the same file.  When you go to delete a file, Canvas will check whether the file is referred to elsewhere.  If it is, it will delete the association to the file rather than the file itself."

Hope this helps!

Stef_retired
Community Team
Community Team

 @wmack , this doesn't exactly answer your question, but I thought it was worth mentioning, since you're new to Canvas. We also have courses that make reference to the same pages, but our reasons for wanting a remedy were different from yours. We weren't concerned about storage (at least, we weren't at the time); our issue was that we didn't want to have to update the pages 400 (or 1000!) times whenever we had to make changes to the "master." If this is a concern for you as well, you might consider our solution, which was to create the pages in Google Docs, create a master in Canvas that included embeds of all the pages, and then populate hundreds of course shells with the master content. We designated a single person (a department chair, in our case) as the sole owner/editor of the Google Docs, and he was the only one who could make changes to them; he was also responsible for notifying all of the course owners (professors) of those changes. I'd refer you to Using Google Docs for dynamic Canvas content​ for a comprehensive discussion of leveraging Google Drive for this purpose.

Also, when it comes time to populating those courses with the content, you have choices. You can keep the course master in Canvas Commons​; or you can use the innovative ​ approach.

But: Since your concern is primarily about storage and file quotas, I wonder if you've considered storing the images on your school's server (assuming this is an option that is available to you), and linking to them as embeds in the master, instead of uploading them directly to the Canvas pages. The URLs to the images will take up no space at all. I've seen schools create entire tabbed tables with institutional content, and those tables are on all of their course home pages, but not one byte (well, maybe a byte or two) resides in Canvas itself.

Good luck! Welcome to Canvas!

This is great news! Thank you both for your help!

mnesheim
New Member

on storage capacity - I have a sales class i do in the spring that requires students to upload video's of presentations. The videos are typically fairly large. What is my limit on them for the class. Also what is the best format for them. Typically they are uploading from their iPhones etc. Is canvas Apple friendly.

kona
Community Coach
Community Coach

 @mnesheim ​, I recommend checking out the information on this discussion - Is there a size limit for file uploads for assignments?. It should answer your question about video. As for Canvas being iOS friendly, yes, especially if student download and use the Canvas mobile app.

I do not see an answer?

kona
Community Coach
Community Coach

Per the discussion I directed you to, it shows:

  • 2GB limit on individual files uploaded to Canvas
  • 500MB limit for files created using the media tool in Canvas

I'm thinking that students will be creating their files outside of Canvas and then uploading them, so my thought is that it would be the 2GB limit.