On 3 and 4 January, the University’s IT services were tested to assess how we could continue to run the University’s business during an unexpected incident which affected our IT systems, servers or data centres.What was the outcome?
Under test conditions, we have shown our critical services can be moved from one datacentre to the other, ensuring we can run them from either site should the need arise. This test has proven our ability to ensure that essential University business will continue should an unexpected event occur.
The test also gave us the opportunity to optimise key processes to further improve the University’s ability to respond to critical incidents and allowed us to update our guide to suppliers about which systems need to be recovered most urgently.
What did we test?
External web server (www.shu.ac.uk); Internet connections; Authentication services; SI and MyStudentRecord; Shuspace and Blackboard; E5; Syllabus Plus; Room Service accommodation system; Sharepoint; Filestore (F: N: and Q: drives); Staff email; Achiever
We ran 221 tests on these services and their underpinning systems to show they could be failed over successfully from one site to the other in the event of a serious problem. All services were able to be run from either site as planned.
Will this happen again next year?
In order to remain prepared and maintain confidence in our IT, we plan to run a similar test every year with UEG’s approval. Given that Christmas is a quiet time for the University we will propose a test in early 2016 with enough notice that University activity can be planned to avoid it, reducing some of the risks faced this year.
For more information, please see the FAQs on our blog.