Current UT Austin Faculty, Staff, and Students Don't Need This

Current UT Austin faculty, staff, and students are already provided a free "enterprise" plan account which is tied to their UT EID account. These accounts are referred to as UTBox accounts. This tutorial is only for non-UT Austin people who do not automatically receive a UTBox account and need to collaborate with UTBox users. These individuals will need to create a free account in order to access files and folders shared to them by a UTBox user.

Step 1 - Fill Out the New Account Creation Form on the Website

If you received an email invitation to share a Box folder with a UT Austin faculty, staff, or student:

If you received a sharing invitation email from a UT Austin faculty, staff, or student then there will be a link in that email to create a new Personal Free account if you don't already have one associated with your email address. In the sharing invitation email you receive click the button labeled Accept Invite to accept the folder sharing invitation and if needed create a free account.

If you did not receive an email invitation to share a folder:

Open up your web browser and go to the website ( and follow the links to sign up for a Personal Free account. Tell the UT Austin person you are collaborating with what email address you specified for your Box account. They will need to use this email address to give you access to their Box folders.

  • The option to create a free personal account is located under the "Individual Plans" section. The website may look slightly different than the screenshot on the right.

"Accept Invite" button in folder sharing invitation email:

Sign Up link listed on website:

Fill out the new account sign up form. The form may look slightly different depending on if you clicked on the "Accept Invite" button in a folder sharing invitation email you received from someone at UT Austin or if you clicked the new account sign up link directly on the website.

Set a Strong Password

Make sure you set a strong password on your account. As you type in a password the form field will indicate if the password you currently have specified is Weak, Fair, Okay, or Good. Set a password that results in a Good rating which indicates the password is strong and not easily guessed. To increase the strength of your password you can do the following:

  • Increasing the length of it by adding more characters
  • Have numbers in it
  • Have both capital and lower case letters in it
  • Have special characters in it such as $, #, @, !, ?

Sign Up Form Accessed From Folder Sharing invitation Email:

Sign Up Form Linked on

Step 2 - Click Through the Box Tutorial

After you create your account your web browser will be redirected to your home page. If this is your first time logging into you will be presented with a tutorial. Click the right-arrow to advance through each screen of the tutorial.
When you reach the end of the tutorial press the Go to My Account button to close it.

Once you close the tutorial you should see your Box account home page. This screen will show you all files and folders in YOUR account as well as any folders that have been shared with you by another Box user such as a UT Austin faculty, staff, or student.

Identify Folders Shared By UT Austin Employees or Students

In the screenshot to the right the only folder listed is one that was shared by a UT Austin employee named Joe Bevo. Note the folder icon with the two silhouettes and the folder owner being listed as "The University of Texas at Austin". These indicate that the folder is shared, owned by The University of Texas at Austin, and the folder resides inside of the UT Austin UTBox file space which means it is safe for storing FERPA data among other Confidential data types.

Step 3 - Access The Folder The UT Faculty, Staff, Or Student Shared with You

If a UT Austin faculty, staff, or student shared a Box folder with you it should be listed in your Box account home page. The screenshot to the right shows an example of a folder shared by an employee at UT Austin. The shared folder is named "Test" with the owner listed as "The University of Texas at Austin". Click on the shared folder to open it up. You can now access the files and folders that have been shared with you. If you have been granted upload ability to the folder you should be able to drag-and-drop files to the open folder in your web browser to upload files to it. If you have been granted the ability to view files in the shared folder then you can simply click on a file name to open it.

Confidential Data

When collaborating with someone at UT Austin it is critical that you only exchange files containing Confidential data in folders shared with you by someone at UT Austin. DO NOT put confidential data in folders that you create in your free account's file space. Shared folders such as the example with the owner listed as "The University of Texas at Austin" are safe for Confidential data which you need to share with someone at UT Austin. If you are unable to upload a Confidential file to a folder someone at UT Austin has shared with you, inform the UT Austin person of this so that they can adjust the shared folder permissions or create a new shared folder for you.

UT Austin has a contract with the service that ensures data stored in a folder created under a UT Austin employee or student assigned Box account is FERPA compliant as well as being compliant with several other data types. This contract DOES NOT extend to files stored in folders created in the file space of a free personal account like what you just created. When in doubt, ask the UT Austin employee or student what the name of the folder is that you should upload your Confidential files to and check to make sure the folder owner is listed as "The University of Texas at Austin".

More Information

How to Upload Files to Box

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