Blog from July, 2014

The Rice Bulkmail application was upgraded to the new version at 5:00 PM today, July 31. Bulkmail is an application is used by the President's Office, or an approved designee, to distribute email messages to targeted addresses. The system returned to full functionality at 5;10 PM. 

Early this morning, IT's Academic Technology Services team installed an upgrade to the audio/video streaming services that feed media into OWL-Space course pages and the public media archives.  The upgrade was complete and the system returned to normal service by 8:30AM. Please email the Help Desk (helpdesk@rice.edu) if you have any issue with your audio/video stream in OWL-Space or the public media archives.

The Rice Bulkmail application will be upgraded to the new version on July 31 (Thursday), 2014 at 5:00 PM.  This application is used by the President's Office, or an approved designee, to distribute email messages to targeted addresses.  The outage required for the upgrade will last about 15 minutes. Updates will be posted to the IT web page: it.rice.edu

The planned maintenance of a border network link is complete.  No user impact was observed.  - Danny Eaton (x5233, dannyeaton@rice.edu)

The planned maintenance of a border network link will begin at 0500.  Networking and Data Center Operations personnel are on site.  No user impact is expected.  - Danny Eaton (x5233, dannyeaton@rice.edu)

On Thursday morning, July 31, IT's Academic Technology Services team will install an upgrade to the audio/video streaming services that feed media into OWL-Space course pages and the public media archives.  The outage will start at 6:30 am.  The work is expected to be completed by 8:00 am.  Updates will be posted to the IT web site: it.rice.edu

MyNetID, the web system used by Rice faculty, staff and students to manage their NetID accounts, was upgraded this morning to v1.3.3.

This is a bug fix release.  No new functionality was added.

The bulkmail tool will be upgraded on Thursday, August 31, at 5:00 PM.  This application is used by the President's Office, or an approved designee, to distribute email messages to targeted addresses.  The outage required for the upgrade will last about 15 minutes. Updates will be posted to the IT web page: it.rice.edu

MyNetID v1.3.3 Upgrade

MyNetID, the web system used by Rice faculty, staff and students to manage their NetID accounts, will be upgraded between 6:00 AM and 6:30 AM on Wednesday morning, July 30.  The only impact of this upgrade will be for users logged into the MyNetID system at the time of the upgrade.  Their sessions will become invalid and they will have to log in again.  This upgrade does not affect any other system or service.

Updates will be posted to the IT web site: it.rice.edu.


This is a bug fix release.  No new functionality has been added.



In preparation for the start of the fall semester, a maintenance window to update Camtasia is scheduled for 5:30 AM on Wednesday, July 30.  The maintenance will last all day.  During the update, the Camtasia clients cannot be used to create and upload videos. Camtasia and Ensemble are separate components of the video capture delivery system used by Rice instructors in their courses. During the maintenance for Camtasia, existing videos can still be viewed through Ensemble (http://mediahub.rice.edu/ and/or mediacosmos.rice.edu).     Updates will be posted to the IT web site: it.rice.edu.

Users may need to reboot their computer.

Camtasia and Ensemble are separate components of the video capture delivery system used by Rice instructors in their courses.  In preparation for the start of the fall semester, an maintenance window to update Camtasia is scheduled for 5:30 AM on Wednesday, July 30.  The maintenance will last all day.  During the update, the Camtasia Clients cannot be used to create and upload videos.  Existing video will be viewable through Ensemble ( media hub.rice.edu and mediacosmos.rice.edu)  Updates will be posted to the IT web site: it.rice.edu.

July 28-August 1, the research computing cluster known as STIC will be down for a major maintenance window.  STIC (Shared, Tightly-Integrated Computing) will be offline for all five days, Monday through Friday.

One of the changes includes a new job scheduler -  the Simple Linux Utility for Resource Management (SLURM).  SLURM replaces the current job scheduler known as Torque/MOAB.  STIC users can attend the overview and/or hands-on workshop to learn how to schedule jobs with SLURM.  RSVP through the Rice Google form: http://goo.gl/AW8yUS.

Email questions to the IT Help Desk: helpdesk@rice.edu.

At 8AM on Friday morning, July 25, IT will add Box account provisioning to the campus account management system. The Rice Box service provides faculty and staff a U.S.-hosted, NetID-authenticated 30GB space that is appropriate for research and other sensitive Rice data for sharing, collaboration and temporary storage.

 The July 25 update will allow new faculty and staff to access their Rice Box accounts more quickly. Adding Rice collaborators will become simpler because the Rice community names and email aliases stored in Esther will be searchable in Rice Box. In addition, active graduate and undergraduate students will now be able to access their own Rice Box spaces (1GB) and upload data to their faculty member's project or research group space.

Updates will be posted to the IT web site: it.rice.edu.

Thursday morning, the IT Help  Desk received several calls about customers having issues logging into their Rice Windows computers.  The issues seem to have been resolved at this point.  If you notice a problem with your NetID login on your Rice Windows PC, please contact the Help Desk: 713.348.4357.

Next week, STIC will be down for maintenance.  STIC is a shared, tightly-integrated computing cluster, and will be offline for major maintenance from July 28, 2014 through August 1, 2014 (five days).

One of the changes includes a new job scheduler to replace Torque/MOAB.  The new job scheduler is the Simple Linux Utility for Resource Management (SLURM).  STIC users can attend the overview and/or hands-on workshop to learn how to schedule jobs with SLURM.  RSVP through the Rice Google form: http://goo.gl/AW8yUS.

Email questions to the IT Help Desk: helpdesk@rice.edu.

 

The IT Help Desk has received new reports of authentication issues (connecting with NetID to storage drives, etc) on Tuesday, after resolving the previous issue on Monday.  We will investigate further and post updates to the IT web page: it.rice.edu.

IT resolved issues on printing.rice.edu, the print system used by faculty, staff and graduate students. If you have further problems printing, please contact the IT Help Desk.

The IT Help Desk received reports of issues with printing.rice.edu, a print system used by Rice faculty and staff.  IT is investigating now.  Updates will be posted on the IT web page: it.rice.edu.

Users may need to power cycle their machine.

The network maintenance exercise is complete.  No user impact was observed. - Danny Eaton (x5233, dannyeaton@rice.edu)

The planned replacement of a backup routing-engine has begun.  No impact to users is expected during this exercise.  - Danny Eaton (x5233, dannyeaton@rice.edu)

The network switch is back up at this time as power has been restored.  Thank you.   - Danny Eaton / Jeremy Reichert

The network switch in Allen Center 220 is currently down.  IT Networking/Technical Services are investigating.  Thank you for your patience.  - Danny Eaton / Jeremy Reichert 

A problem was reported regarding authentication to the file storage service for Home Directories and Department file shares.  The issue appears to have been related to Active Directory and has been resolved.  If  you have any problems accessing you U drive or storage please contact the help desk or your IT Divisional Representative.

 

Support-dc2

The rebuild of support-dc2.ad.rice.edu has been rebuild.  All logs are indicating no issues.  We will be watching queue for any authentication issues.

 

Rebuild Support-dc2

We are having to rebuild support-dc2 as an emergency fix this morning.

We have tracked authentication issues to this domain controller.

FE&P electrical maintenance occurring every night from July 15 to 24. Network services will be unavailable at the duration of the outage.

If you have any questions or concerns please contact Facilities Service Center x2485. Reference Outage#: SR0207910

Maintenance of Rice Webmail is complete.  If you notice issues with Webmail,
please contact the IT Help Desk: 713.348.4357 or helpdesk@rice.edu.

The scheduled maintenance window for Rice Webmail (https://webmail.rice.edu) is
beginning shortly.  Updates will be posted to the IT web site: it.rice.edu.

Early Thursday morning, July 17, webmail.rice.edu will be offline for about 15 minutes for maintenance to optimize the database.  The work begins at 6:00 AM. Rice email accounts are NOT affected, only the web interface at https://webmail.rice.edu.  Updates will be posted to the IT web site: it.rice.edu.

IT Networking has completed maintenance on the Internet security appliances.  Internet services have been restored.  Please contact IT Operations at x4989 if you are experiencing connectivity issues.

IT Networking will be performing maintenance on the Internet security devices.  Users will be unable to access the Internet for 20 minutes during this time.  A notification will be sent when services have been restored.

Maintenance of Rice Webmail was completed at 6:40am.  If you notice issues with Webmail, please contact the IT Help Desk: 713.348.4357 or helpdesk@rice.edu.

The scheduled maintenance window for Rice Webmail (https://webmail.rice.edu) is beginning in a few minutes. Updates will be posted to the IT web site: it.rice.edu.

Network connectivity has been restored.

One of the network switch in Baker Hall 1st floor is currently offline. Technical services is en route to investigate.

Early Tuesday morning, July 15, webmail.rice.edu will be offline for about 15 minutes for an upgrade to the database and the server that manages the database.  The work begins at 6:30 AM. The Rice email is NOT affected, only the web interface at https://webmail.rice.edu.  Updates will be posted to the IT web site: it.rice.edu.

We are currently working on this issue with the vendor.  The site is expected to be up by 2 pm Friday, July 11th.

http://mediahub.rice.edu

The public video archives site, http://mediahub.rice.edu, is currently out of service.  IT is aware of this and is working with the vendor support team to bring it back. Updates will be posted to the IT website: it.rice.edu

SUGAR is a shared computing grid, utilized by Rice researchers for the past six years. The equipment has reached its end of life and is being decommissioned Friday morning, July 11, 2014.

IT's Research Computing Support Group (RCSG) has been communicating with SUGAR users as their jobs were wrapping up; no new jobs could be started as of July 1. RCSG has also helped users migrate their workloads to other clusters and resources.

New high performance computing resources for researchers will be announced in an IT Newsletter this fall.

Please contact the Help Desk (helpdesk@rice.edu, 713.348.4357) with your questions.

The system that streams audio and video in OWL-Space will be offline for an upgrade on Friday morning between 6:30 AM and 8:30 AM.  Updates will be posted to the IT web site: it.rice.edu.

MyNetID.rice.edu has been upgraded to version 1.3.2.

This version fixes several fatal errors that people are experiencing. All servers have been upgraded and everything looks good.

Some of the license servers that provide access to licensed software in computer labs and research spaces around the campus will be restarted today to add new licenses for software whose licenses have expired.  The restart is required in order to accept the new licenses and most licensed software will be affected during this restart.  This disruption is expected to last for 15 minutes.  Should access to any licensed application fail after 2:15 PM, please contact the help desk.

The network maintenance scheduled for this morning is complete at this time.  Additional maintenance will be required.  Thank you for your patience. - IT/Networking

Network maintenance for the border firewall will start shortly. Users may experience a brief outage during this time. Thank you for your understanding. - IT/Networking