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Downloading the NBIA Data Retriever 

After you search for images of interest and add them to your data basket, you can download them.

The most convenient method of downloading is by using the NBIA Data Retriever. You must install the NBIA Data Retriever before you begin downloading. You only have to install it once to use it in future downloading sessions.

Get the NBIA Data Retriever

Click one of the following links to download the NBIA Data Retriever for that operating system.

  • Windows
  • Mac: NBIA Data Retriever in the Mac App Store

  • RPM (tested on CentOS)
    To run this file, type the following at the command prompt:
    sudo yum -v -y remove TCIADownloader.x86_64;sudo yum -y install NBIADataRetriever -3.3-1.x86_64.rpm
  • DEB (tested on Ubuntu)
    To run this file, type the following at the command prompt:
    sudo -S dpkg -r tciadownloader;sudo -S dpkg -i nbia-data-retriever-3.3.deb


Consult the NBIA Data Retriever FAQ for more information about NBIA Data Retriever versions and usage.

Installing the NBIA Data Retriever

To install the NBIA Data Retriever on Windows
  1. Download the installer package for Windows using the Windows link above.
  2. Save the installer package file to your computer.
  3. Install the app by double-clicking the installer package file.
  4. Agree to the terms in the License Agreement and click Install.
  5. When the Setup Wizard ends, click Finish.

To install the NBIA Data Retriever on Mac

The Mac version of the NBIA Data Retriever is only available through the iOS App Store. It requires a manifest file to work. You can download the app first or create a manifest file first. If you download the app first, right-click the manifest file and select Open With Downloader App. If you create a manifest file first, right-click it and select Open With App Store. This installs the app and then opens the manifest file in the app.

  1. On your Mac, find the NBIA Data Retriever on the Mac App Store.

    The NBIA Data Retriever is free but still requires you to log in to download it. Consider changing your iOS Password Settings so that you can download free software without having to log in separately for it.

  2. Click Get, then click Install App. The NBIA Data Retriever is free.
    The app starts downloading to your Mac. When the download is complete, you can open a manifest file with the NBIA Data Retriever.

To install the NBIA Data Retriever on Linux (centOS or Ubuntu)

You must have the sudo privilege on your computer and a sudo password to install the NBIA Data Retriever on CentOS and Ubuntu.

  1. Download the installer package for centOS or Ubuntu using the links above.
  2. Save the installer package file to your computer.
  3. Open a command window and go to the location where you saved the installer.
    • For a centOS system, enter the following at the command prompt:
      sudo yum -v -y remove TCIADownloader.x86_64;sudo yum -y install NBIADataRetriever -3.2-1.x86_64.rpm
    • For a Ubuntu system, enter the following at the command prompt:
      sudo -S dpkg -r tciadownloader;sudo -S dpkg -i nbia-data-retriever-3.2.deb
      Enter the sudo password when prompted.

Downloading Images Using the NBIA Data Retriever

When you download images you have added to your cart, TCIA provides a list of these images in a manifest file (manifest-xxx.tcia). You must have already installed the NBIA Data Retriever to open this manifest file and download the images.

To download images using the NBIA Data Retriever

  1. Search for images of interest.
  2. Add those images to your cart.
  3. Click the cart icon in the top-right of the page Cart icon.
    The cart contents appear.
    Cart contents showing three image series ready to be downloaded
  4. Click Download button.
    A message appears reminding you to download the NBIA Data Retriever. If you have already downloaded it, click Do not show this message again and click Download button. Otherwise, click Get NBIA Data Retriever App Button to go to a page with links for downloads for each operating system.
    Message box prompting you to download the NBIA Data Retriever
  5. Open the manifest-xxx.tcia file.
    The  NBIA Data Retriever appears, with the items you added to your cart in the Downloads table.
    NBIA Data Retriever in the process of downloading data

    The NBIA Data Retriever lists all items you selected in the cart. You can hover your mouse over the Patient ID, Study Instance, and Series Instance columns to reveal the complete corresponding IDs. You can also resize a column by selecting and dragging the column border.

    If you do not want to download any of those items, select them in the Downloads table and then click Delete. When you remove an item from the Downloads table, it stays in your cart.

  6. Click Browse to navigate to the destination where you want the images/annotations to be downloaded.

  7. Click Start to begin the download. You can monitor the download in the Progress column. The Status column indicates when the download for each item is complete.

    At any point in the process, you can click the Pause and Resume buttons to temporarily stop and restart the process.

    Note that files downloaded this way are not compressed. The downloaded files are stored in a child folder under the destination folder such as Collection Name > Patient ID > part of Study Date + part of Study ID + part of Study Description + last 5 digits of Study Instance UID > part of Series Number + part of Series Description + last 5 digits of Series Instance UID.

    Network Error?

    If network errors occur during large downloads, the NBIA Data Retriever retries downloading the series in the manifest file the number of times that your administrator has configured. The default is four times.

    After the automatic retries, you have the option of saving an error report, which you can share with the TCIA help desk, or of retrying just the failed series.

    NBIA Data Retriever download in progress with errors

Downloading Private Data

If you are downloading any private data, you are prompted to log in.
This download contains restricted data. Log in or contact the help desk for access.

Once you log in, the NBIA Data Retriever appears.

If you do not have permission to access even one of the collections/sites to which the images you have in your manifest file, you are prompted to contact the TCIA help desk to request permission to access all of the images.
TCIA Downloader contact the help desk to request permission to access all of the images

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