Data Sharing and Access Control by Shared Storage Folder



  • Share user’s storage folders to other users
  • Understand the sharing by group storage folder (admin-only)

You may need to share the contents of a storage folder with other users or group members to collaborate. For this purpose, Backend.AI provides flexible folder sharing feature.

Sharing user’s storage folders with other users

Let’s learn how to share your personal Storage folder with other users. First, log in to User A’s account and go to the Data & Storage page. There are several folders, and we want to share a folder named test to User B.


Inside the test folder you can see files and directories like hello.txt and myfolder.


Confirm that the test folder is not listed when logging in with User B’s account.


If a folder named test already exists in User B’s account, User A’s test folder cannot be shared with User B.


Back to User A’s account and click the third icon in the Control column on the right of the test folder. Enter User B’s email in the email input field and click the SHARE button to send a sharing invitation. No actual email is sent, and invitations are generated through the Backend.AI database. In the case of Permissions, if you check View, it is shared as read-only, and if you check Edit together, even write operation is allowed to User B. If you want to share with multiple users, you can also click the + button to enter additional emails.


Back to User B’s account and visit to the Summary page. At the bottom of the page, you can see an invitation with the title Invitation arrived. Click the ACCEPT button to accept the invitation.


Visit the Data & Storage page and check that the test folder is displayed in the list. If you don’t see it on the list, try refreshing your browser page. Since you have accepted the invitation, you can now view the contents of User A’s test folder in User B account. Compared to the other folders created by User B, the test folder has no management icon in the Control column. You can also see only the R (read-only) mark displayed in the Permission column.


Let’s navigate inside the test folder by clicking the folder icon in the Control column of test. You can check the hello.txt and myfolder that you checked in the user A’s account again. Let’s create a compute session by mounting this storge folder with the user B’s account.


After creating a session, open the web terminal and check that the test folder is mounted in the home folder. The contents of the test folder are displayed, but attempts to create or delete files are not allowed. This is because User A shared it as read-only. You can see UPLOAD FILES button and NEW FOLDER button are disappeared, and READ-ONLY FOLDER text display on that spot. Also operations modify icon and delete icon are also disabled since the folder is read-only. User B can create a file in the test folder if it has been shared including write access.

../_images/test_vfolder_explorer_B.png ../_images/file_operations_on_shared_test_folder.png

This way, you can share your personal storage folders with other users based on your Backend.AI email account.


Backend.AI also provides sharing group folder to group members. To See the detail, go to sharing a group storage folder with group members.

Adjust permission for shared folders

If you click the fourth person icon in the Control column, you can see a list of users who have shared the folder. Click Select permission to set the sharing permission.

  • View: Invited users only have read access to the folder.
  • Edit: The invited user has read and write access to the folder. The user cannot delete folders or files.
  • Edit+Delete: The invited user has full access to the folder and can delete files or folders.
  • Kick out user: Retrieves the user’s invitation. The user can no longer view or use the folder.


Renaming vfolder itself is available for the owner only, even if the user has granted Edit or Edit+Delete permission. Please note that Edit permission does not provide renaming vfolder.