The ELBE center for high power radiation sources is the largest user facility in the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden- Rossendorf. The facility is based on a 36 MeV superconducting RF Linac which can be operated up to 1.6 mA in cw mode. The electron beam is used to generate secondary radiation, such as infrared light (Free Electron Lasers), coherent THz radiation, MeV-Bremsstrahlung, fast neutrons and positrons for a wide range of basic research like semiconductor physics, nuclear astrophysics and radio biological investigations. Two high power laser systems (500 TW Ti:Sa laser, 2 PW diode pumped laser) are under construction for laser acceleration experiments and X-ray generation by Thomson scattering. The FELs are in operation since 2004 (mid-IR FEL, 4-22μm) and 2006 (far-IF FEL, 20-250μm). The fundamental features of the ELBE IR FELs, the FEL instrumentation and advanced beam diagnostics for the photon beam are described. During ten years of user operation experiences and statistical data were collected.