AFS Retirement for Alumni/Retirees

University of Michigan Information and Technology Services (ITS) began retiring Andrew File System (AFS) storage for Alumni and Retirees starting October 26, 2023. AFS users will be retired for Alumni/Retirees in early 2024.

What is AFS?

The Andrew File System (AFS) is a central file storage, sharing, and retrieval system known by many names since its creation in 1992. It has been referred to as “IFS” or “AFS.” It was accessible via “mFile” or through mapped drives from Campus Computing Sites. You may have also used it in the past either to host a static personal web page or to login to UNIX platforms.

Does this Apply to Me?

If you are an alumni or retiree that has used the University of Michigan Andrew File System (AFS) at some point in the last 30 years and have digital files stored in the system, you will need to take action in the next two months to save these digital files if you still need them. Your email account will receive two emails with these subject lines along with a link to download your AFS data via a Zip file:

  • Email 1: Action Needed: Save Your U-M AFS Data
  • Email 2: Action Needed: Download Your U-M AFS Data
If you do not receive these emails, then you DO NOT have any files in AFS and are NOT impacted by this change.

Note: If you have an ongoing relationship with the university, for example emeritus faculty, that requires you to continue to have access and use AFS, please reach out to your university department HR contact to arrange a sponsored account, or to update your official emeritus status.

What is a Zip File?

A Zip file is a type of compressed folder that reduces the size of stored data, making it more efficient to save and send over the internet. Some Alumni and Retiree AFS users stored a great deal of information in AFS, so ITS is sharing this information via Zip files to make it easier to download. A Zip file provides a single “container” with a large number of files inside, for convenient access.

How do I Download my AFS Data?


  • You will need to log into your UMICH (Level-1) account to download your AFS data.
  • Due to the average size of these Zip files, we recommend downloading the Zip file using a laptop or desktop computer instead of a mobile device such as an iPad or iPhone.

Step-by-Step Process

  1. Click the download link provided in the email with the subject line Action Needed: Download Your U-M AFS Data.
  2. If you have not logged into your U-M account recently, this page will require you to log into your U-M account via the U-M weblogin screen. Use your uniqname and password to login.
  3. As soon as you are logged in your zip file will start downloading to your computer. On Windows this usually means the file will download to your desktop and on a Mac it usually goes into a ~/Downloads folder. Depending on your internet connection this download may take substantial time.
  4. When the download is complete, select the file.
    1. PC users: Right-click on the file.
    2. Mac users: Double-click on the file.
  5. Select Extract All from the context menu.
  6. Choose the location where you want the files to be extracted to.
  7. Click Extract.

For additional instructions on how to open a Zip file, visit the following links:

Other Questions?

Visit the Alumni/Retirees AFS Retirement Frequently Asked Questions for additional information.