FAQ: Frequently Asked Questions


What is LabKey Server?

LabKey Server provides data-related solutions for clinical, laboratory, and biotech researchers. Feature highlights include: research collaboration for geographically separated teams, open data publishing, data security and compliance, as well as solutions for complex data integration, workflow, and analysis problems. LabKey Server is a software platform: a toolkit for crafting your own data and workflow solutions. It is highly flexible and can be adapted to many different research and laboratory environments. You can keep your existing workflows and systems using LabKey Server to augment them, or you can use LabKey Server as an end-to-end workflow solution.

Who uses LabKey Server?

Academic researchers, clinicians, and biotechnical professionals all use LabKey Server to support their work. LabKey Server provides a broad range of solutions for data collaboration and security, clinical trial management, data integration and analysis, and more.

Please visit LabKey.com to learn more.

Which assay instruments and file types does LabKey Server support?

LabKey Server supports all common tabular file types: Excel formats (XLS, XLSX), Comma Separated Values (CSV), Tab Separated Values (TSV). LabKey Server also recognizes many instrument-specific data files and metadata files, such as Flow Cytometry FCS files, ELISpot formatted XLS files, and many more. In general, if your instrument provides tabular data, then the data can be imported using a "general purpose" assay type. You may also be able to take advantage of other specific assay types, which are designed to make the most of your data. For details, see the documentation for your instrument class. Both general and instrument-specific assay types are highly-flexible and configurable by the user, so you can extend the reach of any available type to fit your needs.

Contact LabKey if you have specific questions about which file types and instruments are supported.

When will the next version be released?

New features in the Community Edition are released three times a year. Release dates can be found in our release schedule.

Who builds LabKey Server?

LabKey Server is designed by the researchers who use it, working in collaboration with LabKey's professional software developers.

How much does it cost?

All source code distributed with the Community Edition is free. Third-parties can provide binary distributions with or without modifications under any terms that are consistent with the Apache License. LabKey provides Community Edition binary distributions.

Premium Editions of LabKey Server are paid subscriptions that provide additional functionality to help teams optimize workflows, securely manage complex projects, and explore multi-dimensional data. These Premium Editions also include LabKey's professional support services and allow our experts to engage with your team as long-term partners committed to the success of your informatics solutions.

What equipment do I need to run LabKey Server?

LabKey acts as a web server and relies on a relational database server. It can be installed and run on a stand-alone PC or deployed in a networked server environment. You can deploy the server within your organization's network, or we can deploy and manage a cloud solution for you. Single laboratory installations can be run on a single dedicated computer, but groups with more computationally demanding workflows routinely integrate with a variety of external computing resources.

Who owns the software?

LabKey Server Community Edition is licensed under Apache License 2.0, with premium features licensed under a separate LabKey license. Developers who contribute source code to the project make a choice to either maintain ownership of their code (signified via copyright notice in the source code files) or assign copyright to LabKey Corporation. Source code contributors grant a perpetual transferable license to their work to the community under terms of the Apache License. The Apache License is a broadly used, commerce-friendly open source license that provides maximum flexibility to consumers and contributors alike. In particular, anyone may modify Apache-licensed code and redistribute or resell the resulting work without being required to release your modifications as open source.

Do I need to cite LabKey Server?

If you use LabKey Server for your work, we request that you cite LabKey Server in relevant papers.

How can I get involved?

There are many ways to get involved with the project. Researchers can download and evaluate the software. You can join the discussion on the support forum and provide feedback on our documentation pages. Research networks, laboratories, foundations, and government funding agencies can sponsor future development. Developers interested in building from source or creating new modules should explore the Developer resources.

How can I find documentation for older versions of LabKey Server?

See the links below for release notes from previous versions and archived documentation:

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