Logo Utrecht University

UiL OTS Labs

How-tos

Accessing your (Research) Data

Last updated on 18 March 2020 by Iris Mulders

If you have suggestions on how to improve this document, or find mistakes, please send them to labman.gw@nulluu.nl

This how-to describes how to access your research data. If you want to know how to store your data, or if you need help understanding the various drives, see the how-to Understanding (Research) Data Storage in the UiL OTS Labs.

The procedure varies a bit depending on your location, on your operating system, and on your status (student (BA or (R)MA), teaching staff (UD/UHD/HL), or research staff (PhD student, postdoc))

When you log in using your Solis ID in the lab, the following drive mappings are automatically created:

Under Windows 10

Open drive L: (Lab Drives).

Under Linux (Kubuntu v16.04)

On the Desktop use the link called Lab-Drives or alternatively type cd /mnt/symbolic/Lab-Drives in a terminal.

Under Linux (Ubuntu v12.04)

On the Desktop you will find links to the individual network drives or alternatively type cd /uilots in a terminal.

On your own Solis PC (managed by ITS), the drive mappings will not be created automatically. Follow these instructions to create them manually:

    1. Start File Explorer (second item on the task bar, next to the start button, or use the keyboard shortcut Windows button + E).
    2. In File Explorer, right-click ‘Network’ and select ‘Map network drive’.
    3. In the dialog window that appears, type ‘L:’ for the drive letter. (Do not choose any other letter!). At ‘Folder’, type \\dfs.hum.uu.nl\uilots. (NB for EDDA course students: if you’ve done this and find later on that you see the project folder but can’t access it, try \\soliscom.uu.nl\uu\data\Research\GW\Projects at this point instead). Check ‘reconnect at logon’.
    4. Finally, click on ‘Finish’. The File Explorer window will appear again, showing the contents of the L: drive.

In classrooms and the computerleerzalen, it is not possible anymore to map the lab drives because ITS only allows SAMBA2 and the lab drives are SAMBA1. You can try access via https://myworkplace.uu.nl, a virtual environment where you can access your university drives and campus-licensed software through your browser. This is fairly cumbersome to use (ask Iris for help if you need it), but it does work.

Note that research staff (PhD students, postdocs) do not have access to myworkplace, because ITS thinks PhD students and postdocs do not teach – only students and teaching staff have access to Myworkplace.

If Myworkplace is not a viable solution for you, please let us know – we can work out an alternative arrangement with ICT&M. Once the ICT&M has been applied, you will be able to access the project folders in the CLZ under O:\Research\GW\Projects.

  • This method of connecting under VPN should work for employees as well as students. If you’re having problems, please let us know.
  • You will need two-factor authentication to make a VPN connection; set up 2FA at https://mysolisid.uu.nl/.
  • You will also need to install the application Anyconnect. Follow the directions in the ITS manual VPN on Windows 10 and download AnyConnect (from the sharepoint if you’re a student) and install it.

To connect to the data server from home, you first need to make a VPN connection.

Start AnyConnect, and fill out vpn.uu.nl in the ‘Connect to’ field. Connect with your Solis-ID and password. Use your two-factor authentication method.

Verify that you have a working VPN connection: look for the AnyConnect icon in your taskbar, it should display a lock:

Once you have a working VPN connection, do the following:

    1. Start File Explorer (keyboard shortcut: Windows button + E).
    2. In File Explorer, right-click ‘Network’ and select ‘Map network drive’.
    3. In the dialog window that appears, type ‘L:’ for the drive letter. (Do not choose any other letter!). At ‘Folder’, type \\dfs.hum.uu.nl\uilots. (NB for EDDA course students: if you’ve done this and find later on that you see the project folder but can’t access it, try \\soliscom.uu.nl\uu\data\Research\GW\Projects at this point instead). Check 'Connect using different credentials'.
    4. In the dialog window that appears, fill out your username as <SOLISCOM\your solis-ID>
    5. Password: <your solis password>.
    6. Click ‘OK’ to confirm.w7_2
    7. If this doesn’t work, try again using <your solid-ID>@soliscom.uu.nl as the username, and make sure you typed your password correctly.
    8. Finally, click on ‘Finish’. The Explorer window will appear again, showing the contents of the L drive.

On newer Windows installations, you may get an error message telling you that you are not allowed to connect to the network drive because it uses the old, less secure SMB1-protocol. You can fix that (if you have admin rights on your computer) by following the instructions here.

  • This method of connecting under VPN should work for employees as well as students. If you’re having problems, please let us know.
  • You will need two-factor authentication to make a VPN connection; set up 2FA at https://mysolisid.uu.nl/.
  • You will also need to install the application Anyconnect. Follow the directions in the ITS manual VPN on Mac OS and download AnyConnect (from the sharepoint if you’re a student) and install it.
  • Only Mac OS version 10.12 and later can definitely connect. Earlier versions of Mac OS have faulty features that cannot be circumvented; OS 10.7 may still work though if you fiddle around a bit (ask Iris for help). If the VPN connection is refused, restarting your computer often helps.

To connect to the data server from home, you first need to make a VPN connection.

Start the AnyConnect application. Fill out vpn.uu.nl in the ‘Connect to’ field. Connect with your Solis-ID and password. Then use the two-factor authentication you have set up.

Verify that you have a working VPN connection: look for the AnyConnect icon in your taskbar, it should display a lock:

Once you have a working VPN connection, do the following to map the Lab-Drives under Mac OS X:

  1. Open any Finder window.
  2. Hit command-K (apple-K).
  3. In the dialog window that appears, type smb://dfs.hum.uu.nl/uilots. (If you find that this doesn’t work, try smb://fb-kng-5.im.hum.uu.nl or \\soliscom.uu.nl\uu\data\Research\GW\Projects instead).
  4. Click on the + sign to store the connection so you can just double-click it next time without having to type it again.
  5. Click on ‘Connect’.
  6. In the dialog window that appears, choose ‘Connect as:’ ‘Registered user’ and fill out ‘Name’ as <your solis-ID>. Password: <your solis password>.
  7. connectregisterednodomainClick ‘Connect’. The mapping will appear in the sidebar of the Finder under ‘SHARED’.


  • These instructions are meant for those that have experience using command-line interfaces effectively.
  • These instructions were tested on an Ubuntu v19.10 installation but are expected to work on nearly all Debian-based distributions.

Connect to the Virtual Private Network (VPN)

Firstly, make sure you install the required packages:
sudo apt update; sudo apt-get install cifs-utils

Secondly, install the AnyConnect VPN client by going to vpn.uu.nl and logging in with your Solis-ID.
You should get a ‘Download for Linux’ button. This will download an installer.

Install the client with this command:
sudo dpkg -i Downloads/icaclient_19.12.0.19_amd64.deb
Note: the filename might differ between versions.

You should now have the AnyConnect client. Open it, enter ‘vpn.uu.nl’ as the server, click connect and login.

To simplify the mount command, please set the environment variable SOLISCOM_USERNAME:
SOLISCOM_USERNAME=<Your Solis ID here!>

Ensure that the target directory has been created (we use /mnt/uilots for this example):
sudo mkdir --parents /mnt/uilots

Finally, mount the UiL-OTS data server:
sudo mount -t cifs //dfs.hum.uu.nl/uilots /mnt/uilots -o username=$SOLISCOM_USERNAME,domain=soliscom,uid=$UID,vers=1.0

Disconnect the mount and VPN

If you are finished with the mounts, first unmount the UiL-OTS data server:
sudo umount /mnt/uilots
Secondly, open anyconnect again and click ‘Disconnect’

This method of connecting should work for all BA and MA students, and for teaching staff. Research staff (PhD students, postdocs) do not have access to Myworkplace, because Myworkplace is meant for teaching, and ITS thinks PhD students and postdocs do not teach. Feel free to try it anyway, and please let us know whether it works.

Students and teaching staff can access the lab drives through https://myworkplace.uu.nl, a virtual environment where you can access your university drives and campus-licensed software through your browser. When you first log in, you will be asked whether you want to install Citrix Receiver – choose yes. To access the lab drives, go to APPS and search for “Windows Explorer”; the L-drive should be listed.

If you have any questions, please call 06-2273 6073, or e-mail lab support.