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IT Service Status
IT Service Status

Quest Storage

Quest Storage is available to users on Northwestern’s high performance computing cluster, Quest. Quest’s high-speed storage is connected to all nodes on Quest including the compute nodes, the login nodes and Quest Analytics nodes, and is appropriate for storing data for computing, processing, and analysis.

Request Storage

The options for utilizing Quest Storage are as follows:


Every user who is part of an active allocation is granted an individual home directory; no additional request is necessary.


Every user who is part of an active allocation has access to the allocation’s project directory. There are two main allocation types that provide project space:

  • General Access: Users may request up to 2 TB of project storage for one year through the Quest Allocation and Proposal process.
  • Buy-in Access: Project storage may be purchased at $195.00 per 1 TB for five years of access. The requesting researcher must provide a chart string for payment of the storage. If sponsored funds are used for purchase of data storage, the faculty member is responsible for assuring the purchase is required to achieve, and is consistent with, the purpose and aims of the grant.

To purchase storage, please complete the request form. Users can expand their existing buy-in storage by purchasing additional storage at any time.


Every user who is a part of an active allocation may apply for a 5 TB individual scratch directory for storing temporary files.  To apply for scratch, fill out the Quest scratch space application.  For more detailed information about Quest scratch policies see the scratch section of the Quest Data Storage Policy page; we welcome feedback on Quest scratch through the Quest Scratch Feedback form

To learn more about home, projects and scratch storage, please see File Systems and Storage on Quest. For further information on research data storage options, please see Document Sharing and Data Storage Finder.

Duration of Access

  • General Access storage is available for one year and can be renewed through the Quest Allocation and Proposal process.
  • Buy-in Access storage is guaranteed for a period of five years.
  • Home and scratch space is available as long as the user is part of an active allocation.

Quest Storage and Data Policy


For further information on storage limits and access expiration, please refer to the Quest Storage and Data Policy.