Students Staff

[Service Alert]

April 17, 2019

[Service Alert] [Resolved] Problems logging in to some services

Filed under: [Resolved], [Service Alert] — admin @ 10:48 am

Update 11:00:

The issues should now be resolved.

Original message:

We are currently investigating a problem with our authentication servers (LDAP) which is preventing people from logging in to various services, including Moodle.

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April 16, 2019

[Service Alert] [Resolved] Issues when logging in to Moodle and other LDAP-enabled services

Filed under: Moodle, [Resolved], [Service Alert] — admin @ 4:26 pm

Update 17:00:

We have narrowed the problem to a failed update script which prevented people from logging in to LDAP enabled services, including Moodle. The affected server has been rebooted and people should be able to log in without issue.

Update 16:42:

We believe that the Moodle login issues are being caused by problems with our authentication servers. We are currently investigating the cause.

Original post:

We are currently investigating issues with Moodle which are preventing people from logging in (from approximately 3:00pm).

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

April 11, 2019

[Service Alert] [Unresolved] Issues with logging into PCs this morning

Filed under: Computers, [Service Alert], [Unresolved] — Samantha Thornton @ 9:53 am

Update 16/04 17:15

We have applied a fix for the recent Windows Update issue and we need you to restart your computer for it to take effect.

Please restart your computer at your earliest convenience. The restart will take longer than usual and in some cases significantly longer depending on how fast your computer is.

This restart is necessary for security reasons and to ensure your computer is ready for the new term.

We’ve had very few errors reported so far which indicates the fix is working.

If you still have problems after restarting you can contact the IT Helpdesk (it.helpdesk@essex.ac.uk, 2345).

We will update you on our progress. Thank you for your cooperation.

Update 12/04 11:15:

A quick update on our progress with the PC logging on issue. We are still working through all issues that have been logged with the Helpdesk. We have now fixed 90% of those reported, so if we haven’t got to you yet we will be getting to you as soon as we can.

Please remember:

  • If your computer asks you to restart to install important updates, please DO NOT restart your PC.
  • Do not turn off your PC when you leave for the weekend.

When you need to leave your PC, please leave the screen locked by holding the Windows key and pressing L.

If you have been affected:

  • Make sure you report the issue to the IT Helpdesk (helpdesk@essex.ac.uk, 2345).
  • We will be in touch to fix your computer as soon as we can.
  • There may be computers available and unaffected in open access labs, the Library and the Silberrad Student Centre if you need an alternative computer to work on.

Thank you for your patience.

 

Update 15:37:

Thank you everyone for being patient while we fix this ongoing issue. Of known affected machines, we have now fixed over 60 across our 3 campuses. If yours has not yet been fixed our engineers are working hard to get to you as quickly as possible.

Please remember, DO NOT turn off your PC tonight or over the weekend, even if prompted to do so. If you need to leave your PC, please leave the screen locked by holding the Windows key and pressing L.

If you have been affected:

  • Make sure you report the issue to the IT Helpdesk (it.helpdesk@essex.ac.uk, 2345)
  • We will be in touch to fix your computer as soon as we can
  • There may be computers available and unaffected in open access labs, the Library and the Silberrad Student Centre if you need an alternative computer to work on

We are monitoring the Microsoft support channels for the latest updates about this issue.

 

Update 13:15pm:

If your computer is running Windows 7, please do not restart your computer and ignore any prompts to do so.

 

Update 11:24am:

We are aware that this issue is also affecting computers in IT Labs. We are continuing to work on fixing these problems.

 

Original message 09:53am:

We have had reports of PCs getting stuck on one of the logging in screens when trying to log on this morning. This appears to be due to a Windows Update. We are investigating this currently and will post an update when we have further information.

If your PC is pending a Windows Update to be installed, we advise not to restart your PC for the time being.

We recommend to try using another PC if possible while we look into fixing these issues.

 

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

March 14, 2019

[Service Alert] [Resolved] Issues affecting FASER’s performance

Filed under: [Resolved], [Service Alert] — Tags: — Benjamin Steeples @ 1:41 pm

Update 26 April:

We now believe that the majority of FASER’s performance and online annotation issues are resolved. Further improvements are planned and will be implemented over the summer.

Update 18 April:

We have taken several steps to reduce the load placed on the Annotaion service, which has improved its performance and reliability. We will continue to monitor things.

Update 03 April:

We’ve released version 2.2.10 of FASER which aims to improve the stability of FASER and reduce its impact on the Annotation service. FASER may be somewhat slower to begin with while it recalculates some common items, but users should notice a more stable online marking experience.

Additional changes are in development, and we are continuing to monitor the situation

Furthermore to the updates, we will be doing the following:

  1. Tuning: This week we will tune the database and underlying server and hardware, this should show improvements and is reversible and non-destructive.
  2. Preloading: After this we will be using the list of expected feedback required and “pre”-preparing these so they are ready for use. Others will queue.
  3. Database shrinking: Next week we will be removing records from the system so that any size issues are removed, this is non reversible and must be tested.
  4. Supplier bug report: We are in contact with the supplier to ask them to address the overly greedy software. Note that we cannot roll back to a previous version after upgrading this software.

Update 29 March:

The service is currently degraded as we are seeing high usage with the annotation component in FASER, which is causing latency with the service. Students should be unaffected, but staff may encounter problems when attempting to annotate submissions.

We have restarted the annotation component, which should reduce the latency and return to normal service.

 

Update 28 March:

We have identified some additional un-used features of the annotation service that are still active, and are having an adverse effect on service performance. These features have been disabled and users should notice an improvement during peak usage times.

Additional update 15:00:

To try to reduce the load on the annotation service, we have changed how submissions are uploaded. After being checked files are no longer automatically uploaded to the annotation service unless submissions are being marked online for an assignment. This means that when you start the first few files will be slightly slower to load while FASER uploads them, but the rest will be uploaded in the background ready.

 

Update 27 March:

We have identified an issue with the annotation service that may affect performance under heavy loads. A patch has been applied, which should improve page load times.

We will continue to monitor the situation

 

Update 22 March:

We are seeing a significant number of deadlines and submissions today, which is having an impact on FASER and its annotation component. Students should be largely unaffected by this, but staff may encounter problems when attempting to annotate submissions.

 

Update 19 March:

This morning, FASER’s annotate component was migrated to faster hardware (SSD storage). We are still monitoring the impact of this, but initial tests are favourable.

 

Original message:

We apologise for the recent performance issues with FASER. Over the last few days, we have been monitoring the service and slowly narrowing down the root cause of the problems that people have been encountering. We are still working on this, but one of the issues identified relates to an update to a third-party component that we rely on to provide online annotation and document checking.

We have implemented various emergency fixes to lessen the impact of these performance problems, and are working to identify other root causes and develop fixes. This is being treated as a priority.

We will continue to keep this blog post updated with developments every few days, but we thank colleagues and students for their continued patience whilst we fully resolve the matter.

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

March 8, 2019

[Service Alert][Resolved] iTrent/ People Manager/ HR Organiser Maintenance – Monday 11 March 2019

Filed under: Corporate systems, [Resolved], [Service Alert] — Katie Sellens @ 9:30 am

Business Systems Team will be performing an essential system upgrade on Monday 11 March 2019. During this time the following services will be unavailable:

  • iTrent
  • HR Organiser
  • People Manager
  • Web Recruitment
  • External Examiner Nomination Portal

It is anticipated that the system will be unavailable for most of the working day, notification will be made to users once this is complete.

We apologise for any inconvenience this will cause, if you have any queries please email bsthelp@essex.ac.uk

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

 

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