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.

June 25, 2018

Moodle 3.5 Upgrade

Filed under: Elearning, Moodle, [Resolved], [Scheduled], [Service Alert] — John Maydew @ 1:26 pm

What’s happening?

Moodle will be unavailable from 9am Wednesday 18th July while we upgrade to the latest version (3.5+), make improvements to the hosting systems and create the 2017 archive. These upgrades will affect the following systems which will be inaccessible during the upgrade:

We expect that the upgrade will be completed before 5pm Wednesday 18th July when Moodle and MoodleX will be available again. Due to the nature of some of the changes, Moodle services will be considered at risk until Wednesday 25th July. This post will be updated as work progresses.

Need access to Moodle that day?

The 2017/18 Moodle Archive will be made available early, on Friday 13th July, so that students studying for exams will still have access to their learning resources. The archive will be acessible from once it has been created.

What can I expect?

Moodle 3.5+ includes improved question tagging, updated global search and improved privacy management tools, alongside the usual bug fixes and security patches. The 3.5+ upgrade will also include changes from Moodle 3.4; for more information you can read the release notes for both versions here:

Additionally we’re making improvements to how Moodle works behind-the-scenes, which should improve Moodle’s performance overall


  • 2018-07-13
  • 2018-07-18
    • 09:00 Moodle has been taken offline. The 2017 archive is still available at the above address
    • 09:50 Issues affecting the 2017 Moodle archive have now been resolved
    • 13:38 Normal service to Moodle and MoodleX has been resumed
The University of Essex will moderate comments and there will be a delay before any posts appear.

June 4, 2018

OpenVPN update required

Filed under: Network, [Scheduled], [Service Alert] — Trevor Smith @ 10:25 am

Important changes to remote network access – OpenVPN update required

Due to recent changes to our OpenVPN service, you must download and install a new configuration file to continue to use the service.

The latest configuration file contains the necessary security settings your computer or device needs to be able to connect to the University network remotely.

The old configuration file expired in May 2018 and you will no longer be able to connect if you don’t update. You may have already noticed a message appear on your home computer warning you about this.

We also recommend you update to the latest version of OpenVPN.

Instructions on how to update are available on the IT Services blog.

Do not reply to this email – if you have any questions about this update please contact the IT Helpdesk.

Regards IT Services

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

May 23, 2018

[Service Alert] Scheduled Telephone system firmware upgrade 12 June 2018 – 06:00 to 08:00

Filed under: Telephone, [Scheduled], [Service Alert] — Andy Tyne @ 6:14 pm

Information Update – 12 June 2018, 07:45: All systems have been updated and restarted. Testing has been completed, no errors reported. Maintenance engineers will continue to monitor performance of the system for the rest of the day.

Information Update: During the outage, all telephone services at all three of our campuses will be affected, including:

  • All inbound and outbound calls
  • Leaving and retrieving University voicemail from any location (internal and external)
  • Using lift emergency systems on the Colchester Campus only – explicitly not affecting The Quays and The Meadows accommodation.
  • Alarm auto dialler calls that use an internal number
  • All calls to the Nursery, Sports Centre, Information Centre and Nightline
  • All calls from student accommodation emergency phones to university extension numbers

External calls to and from Wivenhoe House, StudentCom users in student accommodation and payphones will be unaffected.

Emergency contact information will be posted near to all Accommodation emergency phones and any lifts that are taken out of service during this period.

During this time all emergency calls should be made to our security team on 07748 704529 or 01206 864634.

Original Alert: The telephone system software will be upgraded from 06:00 with disruption to services possible to 08:00.

All telephone services will be taken offline at 06:00. Telephone devices will resume operation in gradual phases depending on the core system they are connecting to. SIP phones will resume quickly (estimated 10-15 mins), analogue and Ergoline phones will take longer to restore (Southend – estimated 20-30 mins; Colchester – estimated 30 – 45 mins).

During the work access to voicemail will be unavailable.

This work will improve functionality of the overall system and is being planned to avoid disruption to Graduation and Clearing preparations.

We apologise for the relatively short notice and for any inconvenience this will cause.

If you have any enquiries please contact using the subject: Scheduled Telephone system firmware upgrade 12 June 2018




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

May 21, 2018

[Resolved] Essential M drive server maintenance

Filed under: File storage, PC Labs, [Resolved], [Scheduled], [Service Alert] — Trevor Smith @ 3:34 pm

Two of our M drive servers (isslx109 and isslx110) will be undergoing essential maintenance work on Tuesday 22nd May between the hours of 6am and 7am. This will mean that the M drives of staff and students stored on these servers will be unavailable during this time. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause and will endeavour to keep downtime to a minimum whilst this essential work is carried out.

The scheduled work was completed by 0645 and all services are now available again.

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


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