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Fault Reporting

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Janet operates a fault reporting process to deal with all problems at both a network and a site level, as quickly and efficiently as possible. However, this process can only work if all Janet-connected organisations are familiar with the correct reporting routes.

Reporting Problems

All customers who wish to report a problem with their connection to Janet should follow the route set out in their fault reporting letter. Contact information is sent to the management and technical contacts by e-mail on an annual basis and includes the current telephone, fax and e-mail address of the appropriate fault reporting contacts. For organisations connected to Janet through a Regional Network, this will be the appropriate RNO. For ease of reference, site contacts may wish to print off a Record of Network Information and Contacts form from Appendix 3 and add the fault reporting information. If, for any reason, a site is unable to contact their RNO helpdesk, please contact the Janet Service Desk.

Sites not connected to Janet through an RNO should report all faults to the Janet Service Desk. Examples of the fault reporting information supplied may be found in Appendix 4.

If site contacts require confirmation of the appropriate fault reporting route for their organisation, they should contact the Janet Service Desk.

The Janet Service Desk

 The Janet Service Desk is the point of contact for reporting faults with the Janet Operational Services provided on the Janet backbone under the SLA with JISC. This includes problems with:

  • external circuits and all the associated routing and switching equipment
  • services such as Mailer Shield, Web Mail and Web Hosting.

If the fault to be reported is known to concern the Janet backbone, it should be reported to the Janet Service Desk.

Who Should Report Problems

Problems may only be reported by staff in the computer department of an organisation or one of the designated Janet contacts, not by individual end-users. In order for the fault reporting mechanism to work efficiently, it is essential for each organisation to establish a clear reporting structure, and make users aware that the correct route for reporting problems is via the technical contact.

Please note that the contact information provided by the Janet Service Desk is only to be used by designated contacts. It must not be passed to end-users at the site.

Response Times

Under the provisions of the current Janet SLA, the Janet Service Desk will respond to fault reports within one hour during working hours.

Emergency Cover

Emergency cover is provided outside normal working hours. Contacts requiring assistance will be asked to specify whether the call is urgent or non-urgent. Urgent calls are relayed to an on-call engineer for immediate action; non-urgent calls are dealt with at the beginning of the next working day. The fault reporting information provided by the Janet Service Desk includes the telephone number for the emergency service. If the problem reported requires attention outside normal working hours then the site contact must be available to discuss the matter with the engineer when the call is returned.

Please note that the out-of-hours emergency telephone number is not advertised on the web and should only be given to staff who are Janet contacts.

Escalation Procedure

Janet provides an escalation mechanism for customers who are unable to contact their nominated fault reporting point or are dissatisfied with the general performance of the fault reporting process. In either instance, sites should provide full details of their problem to the Janet Service Desk. The request will be logged and steps will be taken to address the problem. Janet will also investigate the reasons for the unsatisfactory service and provide a report of the action taken.

Trouble Tickets

The trouble ticket system was originally set up to share information about network problems and planned work between the networking experts who maintained JANET. Although access to trouble tickets is now freely available to support staff at sites with a Primary Connection to Janet, the terminology used in the tickets still reflects their very specialised origin.

All Janet-connected organisations are asked to set up a generic e-mail address using the format operations@sitename.ac.uk and then use this as their internal mailing list for all technical staff at their site who should receive this type of information. Please contact the Janet Service Desk once this address has been set up.

Janet Scheduled Maintenance Period

Scheduled maintenance work within Janet is normally timed to take place in the period between 07:00 and 09:00 on Tuesdays. All such work is advertised via the trouble ticket system. The Janet Service Desk will give prior warning to organisations directly affected by scheduled maintenance work. 

Scheduled Work on Janet Site Networks

Please note that all Janet-connected organisations should advise their fault reporting point of any planned work on their local network that may make the site temporarily inaccessible. Arrangements may then be made to circulate the details to other Janet sites as necessary.

Disaster Recovery Plans

 All organisations should consider producing a network disaster recovery document as part of their overall site disaster recovery plans.

Points to consider include:

  • identify staff responsible for each action required by the Recovery Plan
  • keep machine rooms tidy to minimise fire risk
  • maintain offsite secondary servers
  • agree to exchange systems with other sites
  • keep offsite copies of:
    • backups
    • the router configuration
    • critical mailing lists
    • configuration tables for vital services.

Further advice may be found at UCISA and ACU (Janet takes no responsibility for the content or accuracy of external web sites).