Students Staff

July 17, 2018

[Service Alert] Scheduled downtime of database services

IT Services will be performing an essential upgrade to one of our student database servers (SERNT72) between 10am and 4pm on Saturday 21 July 2018.

During this time, many student and applicant facing services will be unavailable. This includes but is not limited to:

  • ESIS and attendant student and applicant information systems
  • AppPortal and Web Clearing
  • MyEssex
  • ESF, EAF and ECF on SharePoint
  • The Accommodation booking systems
  • The PocketEssex App
  • FASER, and Listen Again

This upgrade is necessary to prepare our systems for clearing and the next academic year.

Work has been undertaken to mitigate the impact of this upgrade, but if you have any concerns please contact Richard Martin.

The University of Essex will moderate comments and there will be a delay before any posts appear.

July 16, 2018

Phishing emails – be alert – don’t get hooked

Filed under: Email, [Resolved], [Service Alert] — Dan Jolly @ 12:02 pm

Staff and students received A LOT of phishing emails over the weekend. Around 55,000 emails were sent by scammers from two student accounts that had been compromised.

Hopefully you spotted this was a phishing email by hovering your mouse over the link in the email to reveal a dodgy looking website address.

In case you didn’t know, is not the University’s official website address, plus we would never ask you to confirm your login details in this way.

Our techies are now working to remove the phishing emails from our mail servers.




The University of Essex will moderate comments and there will be a delay before any posts appear.

July 9, 2018

[Service Alert] IMPORTANT SharePoint service to be treated as READ-ONLY due to issues previewing, opening, saving, and uploading Office documents

Filed under: SharePoint, [Resolved], [Service Alert] — Sharon Steeples @ 9:42 am

UPDATE Tuesday 10 July 13.00pm

User feedback has confirmed that the SharePoint service has been restored as expected. The root causes of the problems are known, and actions are being taken to prevent future reoccurrence.

SharePoint Team


UPDATE Monday 9 July 17.16pm

The SharePoint Team are cautiously optimistic that these issues were resolved earlier today.

We are inviting users to return to working normally with their files, but to report any issues to .

We thank users for their patience, and apologise again for any inconvenience caused.

SharePoint Team


There are still on-going issues with the Office Web Server (OWAS), part of our SharePoint Farm, which we are aware will cause disruption to users.

Our advice is: please treat files in SharePoint as READ-ONLY until further notice. Do not edit online or offline, as we cannot guarantee your changes will not be lost.

Office Web Apps provides the services below:

  • Opening Office documents (eg Word, Excel, OneNote, PowerPoint) on SharePoint sites;
  • Synching Office documents to SharePoint sites;
  • Synching Outlook calendars to SharePoint sites;
  • Uploading Office files edited offline/in desktop applications to SharePoint sites;
  • Previewing Office documents;
  • Previewing Image Files;
  • Previewing and opening PDF files.

Not all files seem to be affected. The issue is intermittent.

Users may also experience an issue with Office files refusing to open in their web browser, and also saying that the file can’t be opened in the desktop application either (eg Word, Excel).

It was hoped that the maintenance work undertaken on the SharePoint Farm on Saturday would have resolved these issues. But it is apparent further remedial action is still required.

The SharePoint Team are investigating this with urgency, and external support is being sought from our SharePoint Support Service as well.

We greatly apologise for any inconvenience caused, and recognise the urgency to resolve these issues for users.

Further updates will be posted here as they are known.

SharePoint Team


The University of Essex will moderate comments and there will be a delay before any posts appear.

July 5, 2018

[Service Alert] Disruption to SharePoint Services for planned maintenance 8:00am to 5:00pm Saturday 7th July

Filed under: SharePoint, [Resolved], [Service Alert] — Sharon Steeples @ 4:28 pm

UPDATE 17:00PM Saturday 7 July

The planned maintenance work is now complete, and all SharePoint services have resumed.

We thank our users for their patience.

SharePoint Team


Our SharePoint service will be OFFLINE for approximately one to two hours on Saturday 7 July 2018. This is to allow us to install essential updates to the SharePoint platform software and it is needed to address a known issue with current instability.

The SharePoint service should be considered ‘at-risk’ between 8.00am and 17:00pm on Saturday 7 July 2018, as the exact timing of the offline period is not yet certain. Users are requested to avoid using (and particularly editing) any SharePoint sites or SharePoint-hosted documents, during the ‘at risk’ period to prevent loss of unsaved data.

Services affected include:

  • All sites hosted in the domain (PG EAF, UG EAF, ESF, Agent Online Services, Reporting)
  • All sites hosted in the domain
  • All personal mysites (and OneDrives) hosted in the domain

We apologise for any inconvenience this will cause.

Notification will be made to users when the service is restored to full usability.

SharePoint Team

The University of Essex will moderate comments and there will be a delay before any posts appear.

July 3, 2018

[Service alert] [Resolved] Moodle currently unavailable

Filed under: Elearning, Moodle, [Resolved], [Service Alert] — Samantha Thornton @ 9:21 am

Moodle is currently unavailable whilst essential maintenance is taking place.

Sites unavailable are:


We will update this blog as soon as service is resumed.

Update: 10:15am:

Moodle has returned to service now and is available.

If you have any further issues access Moodle – Please contact the IT Helpdesk.

Apologies for the inconvenience caused.

The University of Essex will moderate comments and there will be a delay before any posts appear.


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