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University Information Services News
Updated: 2 hours 25 min ago

17 October: Google announces new look and feel for Google Calendars

3 hours 32 min ago
Don't be surprised to find your Google Calendars looking different. Google have done some work to improve the user experience, particularly on mobile devices. See: [](

Wireless Service: Resumption of Phase One of the 2N Resiliency Project

Tue, 10/17/2017 - 15:02
After a short pause to fix a technical obstacle we are happy to announce that we are able to restart the 2N controller resiliency project to the University Wireless Service. As a reminder, the wireless controllers coordinate the activity of all 5000 University wireless access points spread throughout the City. Presently we have an N+1 resiliency configuration (this is a master controller, a standby master controller and a single back up controller for the six local controllers). We are going to migrate this to a full 2N configuration over the coming weeks which means all seven central controllers will be fully replicated with another seven controllers in a separate resilient site. We plan to do this work in several phases, and whilst the first phase will achieve 2N resiliency, we also plan to add to the level of resiliency in subsequent phases. Unfortunately, this entails several outages, some of which are more disruptive to service than others. Lastly, as part of this reconfiguration work we are introducing changes to the way the underlying network arrangements for the Wireless system function in anticipation of adopting the next release of the Aruba Operating System (AOS 8). Adopting this OS will require a software rebuild of the wireless system. As such this will be a separate major project which will be announced nearer the time. Phase One The first of the 2N migration will be the setup of full replication in two disparate sites on the West Cambridge Site. The primary site will initially be in the Roger Needham Building Data Centre and the secondary site will be in the West Cambridge Data Centre (WCDC). Both these sites have backup networking and power resilience. To migrate to this configuration will require five out of hours outages, which are detailed below. An additional outage will also be announced at a later date. Phase Two In phase two of the reconfiguration we plan to move the wireless controller infrastructure to the distribution layer of the Cambridge University Data Network (CUDN). This will achieve geographic diversity but will also gain a big increase in network efficiency. Proximity to the centre of the CUDN will mean that Wi-Fi traffic can enter and exit the CUDN more efficiently. This phase will also enable us to explore load balancing arrangements for the controllers and due to the growing scale of the Service we also plan to place the controllers on their own router infrastructure. The timescale for this stage has yet to be determined. Phase Three In the last phase of this reconfiguration work, we plan to introduce resiliency for the supporting infrastructure that the Wireless Service relies upon. A timescale for this stage is yet to be determined. Phase One Outages Tuesday 24th October 08.00 – 09.00 (Service liable to short interruptions during this period). Tuesday 31st October 08.00 – 09.00 (Service liable to short interruptions during this period). Thursday 2nd November 07.00 – 09.00 (Service liable to longer periods of disruption during this period). Tuesday 7th November 08.00 – 09.00 (Service liable to short interruptions during this period). Tuesday 14th November 08.00 – 09.00 (Service liable to short interruptions during this period). During these outages we are conducting significant system changes, as such please expect some periods of no service during this time and the possibility of more than one outage. To clarify, this means that devices may be unable to connect to, or pass traffic via, the University Wireless Service. This will affect connectivity to the UniOfCam guest SSID, eduroam and all locally bridged SSIDs.

Launch event to mark Sharp UK winning contract to supply MFDs to the University

Tue, 10/17/2017 - 12:04
Following a successful tender bid from Sharp UK, a range of multi-function devices (MFDs) are available for purchase to the collegiate University. This contract will benefit institutions by offering competitive pricing without the requirement for further evaluation or competition. To mark this development there will be a launch event at UIS, Roger Needham Building, on 31 October 2017, 10:00–15:00. Refreshments provided.

Tuesday 17 October, 18:00-19:00: Service Notice: Hosted Server power management in Soulsby building unavailable

Tue, 10/17/2017 - 10:36
Extent: Power management for hosted servers at Impact: Service unavailable for some or all of the period We will apply operating system patches to the server that provides the user interface to the power distribution system for the hosted server service in the Soulsby Building. This means that managers of hosted servers in the Soulsby Building may not be able to turn their power outlets on or off during this time. Hosted systems themselves will be unaffected, as will power control for servers in the Roger Needham Building.

Tuesday 17 October, 18:00-19:00: Service Notice: Unix Support mirror server unavailable

Tue, 10/17/2017 - 10:33
Extent: The Unix Support mirror server, nfs-, www-, ftp-, and rsync-uxsup.csx Impact: Service unavailable The service will be unavailable for some or all of this period while the underlying operating system is patched.

Wi-Fi WPA2 Security Vulnerability

Mon, 10/16/2017 - 15:37
As per recent news articles we would like to bring to your attention the announced security vulnerability in Wireless Protected Access II protocol (WPA2), which is commonly used in securing the connection to wireless (Wi-Fi) networks both in the office and home environment. This is an important announcement because all Wi-Fi network and client devices are potentially vulnerable to this security flaw. The University Wireless Service runs a central controlled deployment of Aruba access points. Aruba Networks have already released a patch for this vulnerability and the University Wireless Team will be installing this between 08.00 and 09.00 on 17 October 2017, as previously announced. Those institutions who run their own infrastructure are advised to take steps to update their own devices as soon as possible. It is important to be aware that this vulnerability also needs to be patched on client devices (e.g. PCs, laptops, smartphones, iPads etc) and most major vendors should be releasing updates for these. We strongly advise that users update their software as soon as possible. We also recommend that devices that no longer receive security updates should not be attached to Wi-Fi networks, including the University Wireless Service (via eduroam or UniOfCam).

Relaxed rules for external references from the domain

Fri, 10/13/2017 - 16:27
The rules for external references from the domain have been relaxed to allow references to IP addresses when a CNAME target hostname is not available. There is some more information on this change on the IP Register news page

Brief licensing outage affecting applications on the Managed Cluster Service – Thursday 12 October

Thu, 10/12/2017 - 16:58
Two of our software licensing servers failed overnight following an issue with Microsoft patching. As a result, Managed Cluster Service (MCS) users may have been unable to launch a small number of applications. The servers have now been restored and we believe that the MCS is now running normally. If you are experiencing problems, please contact the UIS Service Desk: [](

Tuesday 17th of October: Wireless Service Software Upgrade

Thu, 10/12/2017 - 10:04
On Tuesday the 17th of October between 08.00 and 09.00 a software upgrade will be applied to the University Wireless system. This will include interruptions to connectivity to the UniOfCam guest SSID, eduroam and locally bridged SSIDs. As such, at brief intervals during this period, devices will be unable to connect to the University Wireless Service. This is a security and bug fixing update only and no new features are being introduced.

Microsoft announces withdrawal of support for RPC over HTTP as a means to access Exchange Online from 31 October 2017

Wed, 10/11/2017 - 17:26
Microsoft has announced that as of October 31 2017, it will no longer be supporting RPC over HTTP as a protocol for accessing mail data from Exchange Online. It will no longer provide support or updates for Outlook clients that connect through RPC over HTTP, and the quality of the mail experience will decrease over time. Note that RPC over HTTP will continue to work after October 31st, even though it will not be supported. Users who have followed UIS' instructions for configuring their email clients to access Exchange Online will not be affected and no action is necessary. The small number of users who have been detected using RPC over HTTP have been contacted individually. If you have not been contacted then you do not need to worry about this. Further details: [](

Thu 12 Oct 08:00 - 09:00: Git repository service upgrade

Wed, 10/11/2017 - 14:38
The git repository hosting service,, will be interrupted between 08:00 and 09:00 on Thursday 12th October for a service upgrade.

Thu 12 Oct, 07:30 - 08:30: Desktop Services will be unavailable

Tue, 10/10/2017 - 17:00
Desktop Services will be unavailable from 07:30 - 08:30 on Thursday 12th October due to routine maintenance - application of patches. Services affected - - All MCS machines - MCS/DS users' home directories - Personal, group and society webpages - Group file space (UX) -

10 October: Notice of change to data feed for students’ names into Blue and the Exchange Online GAL

Tue, 10/10/2017 - 16:16
Last week we rolled out staff members’ proper names into the Blue Active Directory (AD) and, hence, the Exchange Online Global Address List (GAL). Following this, at 12:00PM on 11 October we will be extending the change to include students’ proper names. This change will visibly take effect after the next sync to the Blue AD.

10 October: Students! Your name may display differently in the University’s Exchange Online address book from tomorrow

Tue, 10/10/2017 - 16:01
Tomorrow at 12:00PM we will be changing the source of the data feed that provides the directory entries for students in Exchange Online's address book. This change will make it easier to find people using the auto complete address feature in Exchange Online by including their preferred first name. As a result, some students' names may be displayed differently in Exchange Online's address book.

Resolved: Issues with Timetable service - Tuesday 10 October

Tue, 10/10/2017 - 12:37
We believe the problems experienced this morning with the online Timetable have now been resolved. If you are still encountering any problems, please contact our Service Desk: [](

Wed: 17:00 - 17:15: Jackdaw Services interrupted

Tue, 10/10/2017 - 11:48
Jackdaw Database Services (including IP registration database) will be unavailable between 17:00 and 17:15 on Wednesday 11 October Routine OS security and kernel patches being applied.

Issues with Timetable service - Tuesday 10 October

Tue, 10/10/2017 - 09:24
We're aware that there are problems loading the online Timetable service ( this morning. It appears to be the same issue we encountered last Thursday, and seems to be affecting all users. We've contacted our third-party provider and they are investigating. We'll update you as soon as we have more information.

Tue 10th Oct, 1730-1900: Scheduled maintenance of MCS remote-login service, DS-Filestore SFTP service

Mon, 10/09/2017 - 17:16
Extent: MCS Linux remote-login services; DS-Filestore SFTP service. Impact: Each server will be rebooted. The MCS remote-login servers and the DS-Filestore SFTP service will each be unavailable for several minutes between 1730–1900hrs for software updates.

Anti-virus upgrade now available for all staff and students

Fri, 10/06/2017 - 16:18
McAfee’s Endpoint Protection 10.5 anti-malware product is now available University-wide. Staff and students are encouraged to use it to help protect the University’s assets, intellectual property and information against cyber security threats. Staff and students can download a stand-alone version of McAfee Endpoint Protection 10.5 at We’ll be contacting users of the Managed Endpoint Protection Service over the next few weeks to arrange the upgrade of their machines to 10.5.

6 October: Changes to the Exchange Online Global Address List

Fri, 10/06/2017 - 11:58
Yesterday we rolled out proper names into the Blue Active Directory (AD) and, hence, the Exchange Online Global Address List (GAL). Unfortunately we neglected the case when people's preferred name was not the same as their formal name (as recorded by the HR system). We received user feedback pointing this out and corrected our process mid-day. Note that none of this affects students (whose data comes from CamSIS) and staff not managed via CHRIS.

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