Students Staff

Moodle

July 2, 2021

[Service Alert] Moodle upgrade 2021

Filed under: Elearning, Moodle, [Scheduled], [Service Alert] — Tags: , , , — John Maydew @ 10:37 am

Updates

  • 07:00 The Moodle update is now underway, you will experience some connection issues
  • 08:27 Upgrade is still progressing but taking longer than anticipated, thank you for your patience
  • 09:39 We’ve hit a few hurdles, but the upgrade is still progressing
  • 10:36 Upgrade is largely complete, Moodle and Open Essex will remain “At risk” throughout the day while we monitor the situation. We are still working on creating the 2020 Moodle archive
  • 12:15 2020 Moodle archive is now available
  • 15:00 All existing grid format courses are now set to “One section per page”
  • 15:15 Changes to student enrolments have been completed

Original message

Moodle will be unavailable from 7:00am on Tuesday, 13th July until no later than 5:00pm (GMT) while we upgrade to the latest version and perform essential system maintenance. Moodle will be “At risk” throughout the day, and we advise users to avoid any critical work in Moodle during this period.

The latest version of Moodle will include performance and security improvements, along with bug fixes and new features for Moodle and its core plugins. You can find full details in the release notes for Moodle 3.10 and 3.11.

We will also be creating the 2020/21 Moodle archive and removing the 2016/17 archive.

New plugins

This upgrade will include the following new plugins:

  • Download Essay Submissions (quiz_downloadsubmissions)
    • Allows teachers to bulk download essay answers from Moodle quizzes
  • Panopto filter (filter_panopto)
    • Paste a link in your course to a video in Panopto and Moodle will automatically convert it into an embedded video, without you having to worry about embed codes
  • Word count (atto_count)
    • See word counts in the Moodle text editor
  • Coderunner question type (qtype_coderunner)
    • Pose programming questions to students who respond with blocks of code, which can be automatically checked and graded
  • Academic week availability (availability_academicweek)
    • Restrict access to activities and sections based on the current academic week

Changes to student enrolments

We’re improving how students get added to Moodle courses, to make the process more accessible to staff and much more flexible. This will make it easier to set up courses for multiple modules, provide better control over when students gain and lose access to a course, and improved group synchronisation.

We’ve trialled this method with a few courses over the last six months, during this upgrade we’ll be migrating all taught courses (linked to at least one module) to use the new enrolment method. This process will happen automatically, and you shouldn’t need to do anything.

You can find more information on how to manage student enrolments in your courses here: https://moodle.essex.ac.uk/mod/page/view.php?id=777772

Changing how courses are displayed

We’ve noticed a number of problems with the “Grid” course format, specifically when configured to open sections in a pop-up window, rather than in a separate page.

This pop-up window does not follow web accessibility standards, and may be difficult to navigate for some users who make use of assistive technologies. In addition pop-up windows have been observed causing serious performance issues in large courses, and especially courses with lots of embedded videos.

During the upgrade we will be changing all courses using the “Grid” format to not use the pop-up window, and instead open each section in a separate page. This will be done automatically, and you won’t need to do anything.

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

June 8, 2021

[Service Alert] [Resolved] Issue with Moodle and other SSO services

Filed under: Moodle, [Resolved], [Service Alert] — Benjamin Steeples @ 3:21 pm

Monitoring: 15:25pm

We believe the issue is now resolved. If you are still experiencing problems when trying to log in, please close your web browser and start a fresh session.

Investigating: 15:15pm

We’re aware of an issue affecting Moodle, Qualtrics, online reading lists, and other services that require Shibboleth-based SSO. We are currently investigating.

Workaround for Moodle users:

Sorry for any inconvenience this may be causing you.

We’ll post another update as soon as we learn more.

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

March 29, 2021

[Service Alert] We’re making improvements to how you log into our services

Work Complete, 4.45pm

The planned upgrade has been completed successfully for all services listed below.

Box
Moodle
Talis
Library eResources
LinkedIn Learning
Qualtrics
Turning Point
Encore
Report and Support
Graduate Intelligence
Parksmart

If you notice any issues please let the IT Helpdesk know.

Monitoring, 3.30pm

The work for the following services has finished and we continue to monitor the situation.

Moodle
Talis
Library eResources
LinkedIn Learning
Qualtrics
Turning Point
Encore
Report and Support
Graduate Intelligence
Parksmart

Thank you for your patience.

Planned Work

As part of ongoing improvements to our services, we’ve got some planned upgrades happening tomorrow on 30 March.

Between 8:00am and 9:00am you may be unable to log into these services: 

Box

Between 10:30am and 11:30am you may be unable to log into these services for short periods of time: 

Moodle
Talis
Library eResources
LinkedIn Learning
Qualtrics
Turning Point
Encore
Report and Support
Graduate Intelligence
Parksmart

We will be keeping a close watch on these services for the rest of the day, but we don’t expect any further disruption.

We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.  We’ll update you here as soon as the work is complete.

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

March 23, 2021

[Service Alert] [Resolved] Problems logging in to Moodle

Filed under: Moodle, [Resolved], [Service Alert] — Benjamin Steeples @ 4:07 pm

We are aware that some users had difficulty when logging in to Moodle (https://moodle.essex.ac.uk/) between 3:40pm and 3:55pm today (23 March 2021). This issue has now been resolved.

If you are still experiencing problems, please:

Apologies for the inconvenience this has caused.

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

February 23, 2021

[Service Alert] Issue with some IT services earlier today

Filed under: FASER, Moodle, Network, SharePoint, University website, Wi-Fi, [Resolved], [Service Alert] — Kit Lindsley @ 9:43 am

Earlier today we experienced an issue with the Colchester campus IT network which meant that you may not have been able to access some services between 8:25am and 9:15am – for example:

Faser

Moodle

edrm.essex.ac.uk

www.essex.ac.uk

We would like to apologise for any inconvenience this may have caused you at the time.

This issue has since been resolved.

If you experience any further problems please let the IT Helpdesk know.

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

 

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