Blog from October, 2014

CAS service upgrade complete

The CAS (Central Authentication System) service upgrade has been completed.  The new CAS service now supports SAML attributes for configured services.

IT has received reports of campus network connection issues for Macintosh computers running Mac OS X 10.9.x (Mavericks). 

If you use this operating system on your Apple computer, you may be experiencing random and/or intermittent drops off the Rice campus network. The recent release of Yosemite (OS X 10.10) appears to also have similar issues, one of the reasons IT has recommended not upgrading to Yosemite at this time.

Installing a Mac OS X patch appears to resolve the conflict between Apple's ARP Unicast Caching and Cisco's implementation of GLBP (gateway load-balancing protocol) on the Rice network.  Scroll to the "Quick Implementation" instructions in the docs.rice.edu page for details on applying the patch:
https://docs.rice.edu/confluence/x/-KPLAg

Contact the IT Help  Desk (713.348.4357 or helpdesk@rice.edu) if you need assistance or if the issue is not resolved.

All services are believed to be up at this time. Log a service ticket or call the Help Desk at x4357 with any issues.

Scheduled maintenance is being performed on the network load balancing devices. No services outages are expected.

Ensemble is the system used to stream media for Rice courses and events.  The system will be unavailable on the Tuesday morning before Thanksgiving, beginning at 8:00 AM. Although the Ensemble video system upgrade is one month away, an early announcement is warranted due to the large number of Rice community members who will be affected by the maintenance. 

Details: On November 25 at 8:00 AM, the Ensemble video system will be taken offline in order to install upgrades for both the asset management and presentation components.  Videos cannot be uploaded or viewed during the outage. The system will be available again that afternoon.  Updates will be posted to the IT web site: it.rice.edu.

To correct the number of available stations (ports) on the campus telephone system, IT will reboot the system tomorrow morning, Saturday, October 18,  at 6:00 AM.  Anticipated down time is approximately 5 minutes.  Critical services such as RUPD, Environmental Health and Safety and North and South Plants, will still receive calls during the maintenance.  If you notice any issues with your campus telephone when you return to work on Monday, please contact the IT Help Desk: helpdesk@rice.edu or 713.348.HELP(4357).

The planned network maintenance has been completed.  - Rick Ordiales & Danny Eaton (x5233, dannyeaton@rice.edu)

The planned network maintenance will begin at 5:00 PM.  No impact to users is expected.  Network personnel are on hand at each site.  - Danny Eaton (x5233, dannyeaton@rice.edu)

To guard against a possible security vulnerability, IT has patched and restarted the webmail server.  No email accounts or messages should be affected.  If you notice any issues with your webmail account, please contact the IT Help Desk: 713.348.HELP(4357) or helpdesk@rice.edu.

One of the redundant core routers at the primary data center reset.  Users should have seen no impact due to design redundancy.  IT/Networking is monitoring, and will be working with the vendor for additional information.  - Danny Eaton (x5233, dannyeaton@rice.edu)

Power is back and Network Management is monitoring the system.

The Rice telephones that were experiencing missing dial tones have been restored to full functionality.  If you notice any further issues, please report the extension number and the problem to the IT Help Desk: 713.348.HELP(4357) or helpdesk@rice.edu.

IT has had several reports of Rice telephones missing a dial tone.. The phones ARE working.  You can call out and receive calls, but the phone may not not produce the familiar dial tone when the handset is lifted or the speaker button activated to make a call.  If your Rice telephone cannot make or receive calls, please email tele@rice.edu.  IT will continue working on the card replacement which may have resulted in the missing dial tones on some phones.  Updates will be posted to the Rice IT web site: it.rice.edu.

IT will perform maintenance on OnBase, the campus document imaging and workflow system, Thursday, October 9th at 2PM. This maintenance should not impact system availability.

Updates will be posted to the IT website: http://it.rice.edu/

The maintenance on classes.rice.edu is complete. Please report any problems to the Helpdesk at xHELP(4357).

Starting classes.rice.edu (OWLNET) maintenance.

6 AM Owlnet upgrade

Owlent, also known as classes.rice.edu, will be upgraded on Tuesday, October 7, beginning at 6:00 AM.  OWLNET systems will be upgraded to Kerberos, the central authentication platform used by other Rice web applications.  If you notice any issues with your OWLNET sites after 8:00 AM, please contact the Help Desk: helpdesk@rice.edu or 713.348.4357.  Updates will be posted to the IT web page: it.rice.edu

The university events broadcast through IT's Academic Technology Services group will be displayed in a new web site beginning Tuesday morning, October 7, at 8:00 AM.  The new webpage, accessible through ats.rice.edu, will use an in-page media player.  Previously live events were presented through webcast.rice.edu, which required a desktop media player like Windows Media Player or Quicktime to view the events.  The previous URL (webcast.rice.edu) will automatically redirect to the new site.  The new web site has been in production for six weeks and the transition should be seamless for customers. Contact the Help Desk if you notice any issue viewing webcasts after the October 7 transition.  Updates will be posted to the IT web site: it.rice.edu.

On Tuesday morning, October 7, at 8:00 AM, IT will begin presenting live events in a new web site. The new webpage, accessible through ats.rice.edu, will use a in-page media player.  Previously live events were presented through webcast.rice.edu, which required a desktop media player like Windows Media Player or Quicktime to view the events.  The previous URL (webcast.rice.edu) will automatically redirect to the new site.  The new web site has been in production for six weeks and the transition should be seamless for customers. Contact the Help Desk if you notice any issue viewing webcasts after the October 7 transition.  Updates will be posted to the IT web site: it.rice.edu.

IT will upgrade classes.rice.edu on Tuesday, October 7, at 6:00 AM. OWLNET is the common name for classes.rice.edu. OWLNET systems will be upgraded to Kerberos, the central authentication platform used by other Rice web applications. Contact the Help Desk if you notice any issues with your OWLNET sites after 8:00 AM. Updates will be posted to the IT web page: it.rice.edu.

IT has resolved an issue with the campus Shibboleth authorization system. Services using it should be able to login normally.

Regards,

Kenneth Marshall, PhD
--
Mgr./Middleware, Infrastructure & Development
ktm@rice.edu / 713-348-5294