Using the Globus Data Transfer Tool

This document provides an overview of how Globus works and how to use Globus to transfer files.


Transferring and sharing files is a major bottleneck in data workflows. The Globus service allows users to automate file transfer between data storage and compute systems as well as share data with any other Globus user quickly and securely. The Globus web interface allows users to easily initiate and schedule file transfers in a point and click interface. 

Once a file transfer begins, Globus handles the rest:

  • Globus maximizes use of your network bandwidth to prevent connectivity problems.
  • If you lose network connection, Globus will continue where you left off.
  • When your file transfer is complete, Globus checks for data integrity and will notify you of any problems.
  • If your file transfer fails, Globus will restart the transfer automatically.

This document describes how to use Globus to transfer and share data using Northwestern University's subscription. 


Globus should not be used to transfer legally and contractually restricted data, such as data subject to HIPAA and FISMA.

Endpoints and Collections

Globus refers to the places that data are stored (such as your computer, Quest, RDSS, the cloud) as endpoints. Data stored on these endpoints are organized in collections. 

See Globus Endpoints and Collections for more information on the endpoints and collections you can use with Globus.

Transferring data

Once your endpoints are configured, you can use Globus to initiate file transfers between these endpoints.

See Transferring files using Globus for instructions on how to transfer files using Globus. 

Advanced features

You can do much more with Globus than transfer data. See the following sections for more information on Sharing data and automating data workfows using Globus timer and Globus's command line interface. 

See Advanced Globus Features for more information.


Need help using Globus? The following resources are available to you:

At Northwestern

Contact Northwestern data management specialists by emailing

Also see our Research Data Management Guide for quick links to our help documentation. 

From Globus

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Article ID: 2017
Wed 11/16/22 11:49 AM
Tue 1/24/23 3:29 PM

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