AFS Course Disk Space

How to request and use AFS course disk space

Reviewed by John Sopko 8/3/2016

The department provides course related AFS disk space for professors teaching courses. The courses disk space is located in AFS file space. The UNIX directory path name to the space is /afs/ You can access this data area via any Linux system in the department or by using the AFS client software on your Windows computer.  Students can then access the courses disk space from any of the department’s computers.

You can place web documents and files in your courses directory.  Instructors can request a web link be placed on the department’s page that links to their course directory space. Read below for more information.

Requesting Disk Space and Directory Naming Convention

To obtain disk space for your course please email requesting course disk space.  Please provide the course number, which determines the name of your subdirectory.  Directories use the convention “comp###-syr”.  For example:


This would be for comp 101 fall semester 2016.  Where there are multiple sections of the same course in a semester, the section number is included like this:


You will get full AFS permissions on the directory for the course you are teaching.  Directories have an initial disk quota of 8 gigabytes, but this can be increased if necessary.

About AFS

You will need to know something about AFS permissions.  The AFS Users Guide is a good place to learn about AFS ACL’s (Access Control Lists).  You will be given full access to your courses directory.  Your directory will also have read/list access from any machine in the department.  You can then create AFS groups, add users to those groups, and give permissions to those groups on your courses directory and sub-directories.  For instance, you can create a group for your Teaching Assistants and give them full access rights to your courses directory.  You can create a student group, add your students to this group, and give the group permissions on sub-directories.

Courses web pages

You can create a sub-directory in your courses directory in which to store the course’s web info.  You can use any directory name you like, but “public_html” is a standard directory name that is often used.  Create a sub-directory in your courses directory, then send email to and request a link be made to your courses directory from the department’s Courses page.

The directory must have read/list AFS privileges in order for the web server to be able to access your pages.  The following AFS command will give your directory access so that any machine in the department including the web server can read your courses web directory:

fs sa dir_name cs-machines rl

Where dir_name is the directory you wish to set access on.  See the Department’s Web Server FAQ for more info on the department’s web server.  Email if you need assistance with setting up your courses web space.

Disk Space Management

You can view how much space is available in the courses AFS partitions by executing the UNIX command “fs exam /afs/unc/proj/courses/your_course_dir”.  We request that you periodically review your data in the courses directory and remove any data that is no longer needed.  If you are done with your top level courses directory please email requesting that the directory be removed. Course space is typically kept indefinitely, but if you know you will not be using or would like removed let us know.