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Large File Transfer

Email provides a convenient method to transfer files, but because of bandwidth and service issues, most organizations limit the size of attachment to maintain email performance. With the volume of research, academic work and collaboration occurring across the University, the need to transfer large files between organizations, institutions, or between collaborators is an inevitability. The University provides the following two methods to transfer files between locations for faculty and staff


The ODU Large File Transfer system (ZendTo) is available to all ODU faculty, staff and students. This system provides the capability for ODU faculty, staff and students to send files to any individual connected to the internet. The user uploads the file(s) to the central server and provides the email address of the recipient(s). The system then generates an email to the recipient with a access token that will allow the recipient to use a web browser and retrieve the file.

Internet users that are not ODU faculty, staff or students can use the system to send files to ODU users. Their process includes requesting a token to upload a file by providing the email address of the ODU user that the file is destined for. The system validates the recipient and generates the email token for the file to be uploaded and then delivers it in the same fashion as for ODU users.

The system interface for the ODU Large File Transfer System (ZendTo) can be accessed at https://lfs.odu.edu

There are some specific issues with the Large File Transfer system that users should be aware of prior to using this system:

  1. This system must not be used for the transmission of Sensitive Data, copyrighted material or any other data files that cannot legally be sent.
  2. Access to the generated email token constitutes access to the data file to download.
  3. Because of web browser limitations, this system will have problems sending files 2 GB in size and larger.
  4. All files will only remain on the system for 5 calendar days. They are available for downloading during that period. Files are automatically deleted after the 5 days without recourse. Files can be resent if not retrieved within that period.
Access ODU's Large File Transfer System

Lions FTP

The LIONS system is used by the academic community to provide web services, academic programs and applications along with a variety of other uses, including transferring files to and from the University.

There are some specific issues with using LIONS FTP that users should be aware of prior to using this system for FTP:

  1. Users are allowed to upload files into the "incoming" directories without authentication (frequently referred to as anonymous FTP). However, those directories as not browse able by anyone other than authenticated LIONS users, this is, only users at the University.
  2. There are space quotas on all directories to insure the system is not overrun by random uploads. Use of this system should be restricted to small manageable files (<200 MB).
  3. Incoming directory files are automatically cleaned after 7 days. Any files in the incoming directories older than 7 days will be deleted without user/owner notification.
  4. Authenticated users can post files for download via their departmental directories as needed. College/Departmental directory space is managed by faculty and users.
  5. All files posted in college/departmental directories are publically accessible by anyone on the internet. Sensitive data, copyrighted material or other files that cannot legally be published should NOT be posted there.

ZendTo FAQ

How do I log into the LFS?

Only ODU users can log inot the LFS; you will log in using your MIDAS ID and password. If you need assistance with your MIDAS account, please visit https://midas.odu.edu.

How do I drop off a file?

Log in using your MIDAS ID and password.

  1. Click the 'Drop-­‐off' button
  2. Type in your organization (ODU)
  3. Click Next
  4. Fill in your recipient(s)
  5. Upload your file
  6. Type in a note to your recipient (optional)
  7. Click the 'Drop-­‐off Files' button

How do I retrieve a file that was sent to me?

To pick up a file, log in with your MIDAS ID and password then follow proceed with one of the following ways to retrieve your file:

  • Click the Inbox tab and locate the sender to retrieve the file.
  • Click the Pick-­‐up button then enter the Claim ID and Claim Passcode that was emailed to you.

How do I obtain a Claim ID and Passcode to pick up a file?

The Claim ID and Passcode will be emailed to you by the sender. If you are an ODU user, you can also access files sent to you by using your Inbox after logging into the LFS.

How do I request a drop-­‐off?

To request a drop-­‐off, log in with your MIDAS ID and password then click the Request a Drop-­‐off button. Fill in the necessary information and click the 'Send the Request' button to complete the request.

How long is a file available for pick up?

Files remain on the server for 5 days before they are purged. They will be purged whether they are picked up or not during that period.

I am a non-ODU user and need to pick-­‐up a file?

If you are a not an ODU user, you can still pick-up a file that was dropped off for you by clicking the pick-up button and entering the Claim ID and Claim Passcode that was emailed to you.

I am a non-ODU user; how do I drop off a file?

If you are not an ODU user, you can still drop off (upload) a file for someone to retrieve by clicking the Drop-off button and either entering a request code that was sent to you or filling in the necessary information to obtain a request code.

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