Network Downtime

As part of the roll out for primary schools to increase their bandwidths using fibre to the cabinet circuits, additional hardware needs to be deployed into some of the local BT exchanges. This does mean there is a possibility of downtime but this work will be carried out in the evenings between 8pm and 10pm. Whilst this disruption is outside of normal school hours we are aware that sometimes staff do stay onsite to work into the evening and you may have other staff and students who access school-based systems from home and elsewhere. This remote access to school systems will also be affected by this planned maintenance.

We are told that any downtime will typically last 20 minutes but we will of course keep an eye on this to make sure this is an accurate assessment. I appreciate no one wants downtime but as many of you will be aware, lots of  primary schools have outgrown their 8mbps connection and I am hoping you will be as understanding as possible. Please note that the downtime has been carefully arranged and we have liaised carefully with HCC Corporate as they also have sites on the network that may also lose connectivity (such as blue light services and hospitals). We hope that this essential work will not be too disruptive for you and as ever your ongoing support is appreciated. If you have any queries relating to this, please get in touch in the usual way. Thanks

Work schedule:

Potters Bar Thursday 28/04/2016
Stevenage Tuesday 03/05/2016
Ware Thursday 05/05/2016
Berkhamsted Tuesday 10/05/2016
Hitchin Thursday 12/05/2016
Bushey Heath Tuesday 17/05/2015
Rickmansworth Thursday 19/05/2016
Elstree Tuesday 24/05/2016
Hatfield Thursday 26/05/2016
Lea Valley Tuesday 31/05/2015
Letchworth Thursday 02/06/2016
Royston Tuesday 07/06/2016
Waltham Cross Thursday 09/06/2016
Welwyn Garden Thursday 09/06/2016
Posted in Internet access, Planned Maintenance | Leave a comment

The Transparent Proxy

As per my previous communication, the transparent proxy for LD4 and LD5 went down on Friday for approximately one hour.

This also happened last month and everything is pointing towards it being the same issue. The root cause of last month’s incident was the transparent proxy located in LD4 running out of memory. The service then (correctly) diverted the traffic, as designed, to the LD5 Transparent Proxy, but the load at the time was too great for the service to handle and within minutes this server also ran out of memory. This caused a complete outage of the transparent proxy service for both the education and corporate Wi-Fi users (HCC corporate route their traffic through this service). To fix this, on both occasions an Updata field engineer was despatched to LD4/LD5 and a ‘hard reboot’ was required to both Transparent Proxies.

Updata have identified this as a memory issue and have advised us that the CPU on the proxy servers that deal with the transparent proxy traffic, need upgrading from 32bit to 64bit. There was an upgrade on the horizon for the proxy platform pencilled in for the summer but this obviously now needs to happen ASAP. The matter has been escalated to senior management at Updata and HCC. HfL senior management have also been made aware. I expect to hear more from Updata by the end of the week as to how they intend to deal with this.


Kevin Crawley
Schools Connectivity (HICS) Service Coordinator

Posted in Service Improvements, Transparent Proxy | Leave a comment

Transparent Proxy

The transparent proxy is currently down at the moment. Updata have a field engineer at the data centre so hopefully service will resume shortly. Apologies for the inconvenience.


Kevin Crawley

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Transparent Proxy

The transparent proxy service is not working and Updata are dealing with this incident. I’ll put updates into this post.


Kevin Crawley

Posted in Service, Transparent Proxy | 3 Comments

VPN not working

I have received reports of VPN not working and I too am getting the “Connection terminated. Reason 433: (reason not specified by peer)” error message. I have logged this with Updata to fix and reminded them that the SLA for VPN, is for it to be working 24/7. I appreciate that it is frustrating for people when they have put time aside from their personal lives to work, so please accept my apologies and rest assured that I am liaising with Updata to get this fixed as quickly as possible. When I have any further updates, I’ll add them to this post.

On a separate note, can I please thank the people who brought this to my attention. The quicker I know about these incidents, the quicker I can hopefully get them resolved. If you think something isn’t right out of hours, please feel free to drop me an email/text and where possible, I will investigate/log.


Kevin Crawley
07951 965897

Posted in Service | 1 Comment