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LabArchives Now Available to University Researchers

Northwestern IT is pleased to share that the University now offers the Electronic Research Notebook Service (ERNS), powered by LabArchives, at no cost to all Northwestern researchers, including undergraduate and graduate students, postdocs, faculty, and staff.  

This service provides a secure, cloud-based replacement for traditional paper notebooks, enabling researchers to capture, manage, store, and share their research information and data. Using an Electronic Research Notebook helps protect against data loss and ensures the integrity of research records, improves research reproducibility, and increases research continuity through the life of collaborative research projects.  

Important: LabArchives is not approved for storing controlled research data (e.g., research subject to regulations such as CUI, Export Control, IRB, or HIPAA).  

Features and Benefits  

LabArchives allows University researchers to: 

  • Record and access research in one place from any device.  
  • Integrate lab equipment, productivity software, and cloud storage with various scientific tools. 
  • Collaborate in real-time and simplify data sharing across institutions 
  • Automate file uploads and store files. 
  • Connect data, notes, and protocols to relevant experiments, samples, and projects. 
  • Quickly find information across notebooks, attachments, and metadata.   
  • Standardize protocols and workflows.  
  • Prevent file loss and preserve version history.  

ERNS can be used across all disciplines. Examples of use cases are listed on the Research Computing and Data Services website.  

How to Access LabArchives   

  1. Go to:  
  2. Select "Northwestern University" from the Sign in through your institution drop-down menu.   
  3. Authenticate with your NetID and NetID Password and approve the Duo Multi-factor Authentication notification when prompted.  

Please visit the LabArchives website for instructions on signing in through your institution for additional details.  

Virtual Training Opportunities  

LabArchives is offering introductory courses via Zoom over the summer and fall quarters to assist Northwestern researchers with transitioning to and setting up their notebooks. Topics include building a notebook that compliments research workflow and lab structure, identifying best practices and tips for managing a lab notebook with member access management and the activity feed, and maximizing collaboration across their notebook with lab members while protecting their intellectual property.  

For details and to register, visit the Research Computing and Data Services events calendar.  

Additional Support Resources  

Northwestern IT Support: For questions regarding Northwestern's Electronic, including site-wide settings, policies, and procedures, please contact your local technology support staff or email

Troubleshooting and Self-Help Options: LabArchives provides generous customer support and a training model for setting up and using the ERN. Support is available 24 hours a day on weekdays and a reduced schedule on weekends.  Visit the LabArchives contact page for more information. 

LabArchives Support: LabArchives offers general knowledge base articles, comprehensive user guides, on-demand videos, customized training on request, public webinars, and blogs on select topics.