Campus communication system shut down temporarily
The BYU-Idaho university communication system was shut down as a part of routine maintenance at 12:01 a.m. Due to errors in the start-up process, the system has remained shut down after the planned start-up time, according to information technology staff.
Randy Beard, a member of the IT department staff, said that the campus IT workers are working full-time to fix the problem.
The Testing Center has closed temporarily. Spencer Hooker, human resources manager at the Testing Center, said that no tests would be distributed until the problem was fixed.
Hooker said the individual teachers will decide how to reschedule their tests.
The University Store, the MC Market and the Crossroads are all closed due to the problem. Signs posted outside the University Store estimated that the shops would reopen at 9 a.m. This estimate was later changed to noon.
The David O. McKay Library systems are down. Students are unable to check out books, use the printers or put money on their I-Cards.
Some classes were cancelled. Morgan Meyers, a senior studying communication, said her COMM 310 class was cancelled due to the problem.
Beard said IT staff had no solid estimate of when the problem would be fixed but that they hoped it would be soon.
University IT staff resolved the errors in the university’s technology network by 12:40 p.m. on June 10.
Mike Kunz, associate chief technology officer in the IT department, said the problem occurred when IT staff installed a new supervisor module during routine maintenance.
According to an email distributed to IT staff prior to the maintenance, the work included installing firewalls and electrical wiring and upgrading the network core supervisor modules, described as the network’s “brains”.
Kunz said the work involved shutting down about 400 of the university’s servers and starting them back up again after the work was finished.
The purpose of the work was to provide faster service and greater reliability, Kunz said. According to the email, the work was scheduled to begin at 12:01 a.m. and end at 6:00 a.m.
Kunz said IT staff became aware of the problem at about 3:30 a.m. while they were starting up the servers again.
“They tried and they tried and just couldn’t figure out why it didn’t work,” Kunz said.
Between 15 and 20 people worked on fixing the problem for nearly nine hours, Kunz said.
“Everything in their testing came back to those new supervisor modules,” Kunz said. “That part seemed to be the common denominator, so they took them out and replaced them.”
Kunz said when IT staff replaced the new modules with the old modules the systems started working again.
IT staff sent out a text message announcing the fix at 12:40 p.m. and an email at 1:56 p.m.
Mary Ivie, a technology support coordinator at the University Technology help desk, said that online students’ connection to school resources was still unreliable.
“Whenever you try to implement a new technology there’s some risk involved,” Ivie said.
IT staff is unsure whether the error was a mechanical or human error, Kunz said.
Kunz said the IT staff and other university employees involved with IT will meet for a debriefing within the next two days to discuss the problem in greater depth.