How IT Informs About Limitations of Services

Introduction

IT provides a multitude of services. But in spite of carefulness and redundancies, planned as well as unexpected interruptions of services occur. This web page summarises through which channels users can inform themselves - or rather will be informed automatically by IT.

Usual Information Practice

All limitations of services are announced on the IT-Trouble page in the IT-Web. If, due to a malfunction, entries on this page cannot be made, messages will be announced after trouble shooting.

Messages that are displayed on the IT-Trouble page will normally be posted to the newsgroup desy.computing and are then automatically distributed via the mailing list desy-computing@desy.de. Interested parties who want to receive the latest messages by e-mail can subscribe to this list (How to subscribe).

Information Provided Automatically for all Users ...

The above mentioned measures imply that the user himself takes care about getting information. But in certain situations it is useful to inform all users independent of their own actions. In accordance with the Computer User Committee (webpage only in German) IT will inform all users if serious limitations of the following services have or will have an impact throughout DESY:

  • Computer-Network
  • AFS
  • Windows File System (H- and N-Drives)
  • Email
  • Web
  • Printing
  • Telephone

It was mutually agreed that this user-information is neither to be distributed by pop-up windows on the screen on an active computer system nor by messages that appear during the login process on these systems. The reason is that these measures would not reach all users, but only those who work on their computers or those who are logging on to the computer.

... for Planned Interruptions

In some cases disturbances of all users are foreseeable - e. g. because of central maintenance work. Such  planned restrictions will be announced via e-mail to all users who are registered at DESY. Distinctive marks of such e-mails are that the sender is uco@desy.de and the subject starts with [DESY].

... and for Unexpected Interruptions

If an unexpected interruption of the above mentioned services occurs, it is due to technical interconnections sometimes not possible to send an information by e-mail to all users. The following table gives an overview which procedures will be applied in these situations:

 

Information via
Problem with ...
Announcement 1(paper)Telefon2
Web
Email
... Computer Network
+
+
-
-
... AFS (Unix File System)
-
+
-3
+4
... Windows-Data System
-
-
+
+
... Web
-
-
-3
+
... Email
-
-
+
-
... Printing
-
-
+
+
... Telephone
-
-
+
+

1) A list of the locations is in progress.
2) A list of phone numbers of important (<=15) points-of- information as e. g. control room is in progress.
3) In this case spreading information via the Web is not possible due to technical dependencies,
4) Due to technical dependencies this e-mail cannot be read during the interruption by users of the mail server"mail.desy.de". 

Further comments:

  • A first, assured information on such serious problems will normally not be available before 15 to 30 minutes.
  • Announcements via paper will only be made if the trouble will presumably take more than several hours.
  • If required and if possible the above mentioned measures will be complemented by selective information that is sent to members of specific e-mail lists such as administrators, Oracle-users, etc..
  • If you receive the information about an interruption via e-mail, the announcement of the complete recovery of the operability of the relevant service will also be sent by e-mail.

Outlook

Various measures to improve the possibilities of user information in the case of a malfunction are already planned or are being put into practice.

  • Telephone announcements in case of trouble when calling the UCO (Tel. 5005).
  • Installation of an independent Web-Server what means that information via Web will be possible at any time, except if the network is not working.
  • Distributed displays on which trouble information will be shown.


State: 1.4.2005 (sl/mg)