User Groups

Assigning access to datasets to user groups is an alternative to assigning access to individual users. A folder structure of “User Group/Instrument/Data Owner Full Name/Dataset” is supported for this purpose. As well as being used by MyData, this folder structure can be used to copy / sync data to a shared network drive. Each instrument PC will only have one instrument folder, being the name of that instrument, but when data from multiple instrument PCs is copied to the shared network drive, multiple instrument folders can appear alongside each other. The “Data Owner Full Name” folder is usually the name of the person who collected the data, but it is really just a way of grouping datasets into MyTardis experiments, i.e. it is not used to assign access control.

For more information, see the “Folder Structure - User Group / Instrument / Full Name / Dataset” section in

Data Uploads from Instrument PCs

When using User Groups, the primary data directory used with MyData could look like this:


The first folder level within C:\UserGroups (“Group1”, “Group2” etc.) is a user group defined in MyTardis. The actual group names in MyTardis may have an additional prefix (“TestFacility-“) prepended to the folder name, i.e. “TestFacility-Group1”, “TestFacility-Group2” etc.

The second folder level within C:\UserGroups (“Instrument 1”) is the name of the data collection instrument. This folder may seem redundant, because all of the data on each instrument PC is by definition, on the same instrument PC (e.g. “Instrument 1”), but this folder level becomes useful when data from multiple instrument PCs is synced to a shared network drive.

The third folder level within C:\UserGroups (“G1Member1”, “G1Member2”, “G2Member1”, “G2Member2” etc.) is usually the full name of the researcher who owns the data, but in some cases it is just an arbitrary collection of datasets. This corresponds to an experiment in MyTardis, which is a collection of datasets which can be made accessible to a particular user or to a group (e.g. “TestFacility-Group1”).

The fourth folder level within C:\UserGroups (“Dataset001” etc.) is mapped to a MyTardis dataset.


The MyData screenshot shows the 8 datasets found within the C:\UserGroups directory on the “Instrument 1” PC. MyData counts the number of files within each dataset folder on the local disk, then counts the number of files previously uploaded to VicNode / MyTardis for that dataset (if any), and then uploads any datafiles which are not already available on VicNode / MyTardis.

Whilst MyData can recognize old data in a well-defined folder structure as described above, MyData is generally intended to be used to upload recently acquired data. An option to ignore old datasets (older than 6 months) has recently been implemented in MyData.

Data Management in MyTardis for Facility Managers

The first time MyData is run on a new instrument PC, some configuration is required - MyDatas Settings dialog is shown below. Typically a facility role account in MyTardis (“testfacility” in this case) is used to upload data). Once the data has been uploaded, access (and ownership) can be granted to individual users within MyTardis. In the case of the User Group folder structure, MyData will attempt to automatically grant read access to each dataset to all users within the data set’s user group (e.g. “TestFacility-Group1”).

_images/SettingsGeneralUserGroups.PNG _images/SettingsAdvancedUserGroups.PNG

The “testfacility” account in this MyTardis instance is associated with a facility record in MyTardis’s database, which means that MyTardis’s Facility Overview will be accessible when logged into MyTardis as “testfacility”. The Facility Overview lists recently uploaded datasets. The number of verified files in each dataset is the number of files which have been uploaded and confirmed to have the correct file size and MD5 checksum.


User and Group Management in MyTardis for Facility Managers

The “testfacility” account in this MyTardis instance is a group administrator for the “TestFacility-Group1” group, which means that they can view all members of that group by selecting Group Management from the drop-down menu available by clicking on the “testfacility” username in the upper-right corner of MyTardis.


Clicking on an experiment from the Facility Overview page (or from the My Data page or from the Home page) allows you to determine which users its datasets are accessible to. In this case, the “Instrument 1 - G1Member1” experiment is owned by “testfacility” and is accessible by the “TestFacility-Group1” group. Users can be granted access (or revoked access) using the Change User Sharing and Change Group Sharing buttons.


Researchers can log into MyTardis and view all experiments which their user group has access to. User “wettenhj” has access to the experiment “Instrument 1 - G1Member1” (below), because he is a member of the “TestFacility-Group1” group.