The minutes for 29th April were approved.
Alastair reported that he had received feedback from Victoria and Rena on this. In short, the suggestion is that when support make contact with a user, they should inform the user that the most efficient means of solving the issue will probably be if the user gives consent for the support person to access their machine, but that if the user does not wish to give such consent, then the support person will happily tackle the issue via other avenues. It is believed that Victoria and Rena will be producing a formal version of this advice. In the meantime, Alison will make sure that a suitable form of works is available to support staff when making contact.
Report from Computing Executive Group
Reports from Units
Concern was expressed that in the daily power bar reports important information, such as power bars nearing overload, was being lost in the noise. George will rewrite the reports to further emphasis important issues and arrange to the reports to be sent to all computing staff
Stephen asked whether servers with multiple power supplies drew power from all of the supplies? Iain replied that in his experience, there is no hard and fast answer to this. Some do, some don't and others flip between the two states.
Alastair asked what the lead time was on new power bars. Ian replied that it currently seemed to be about a week.
It was agreed that the current web service should be moved to the DR machine at KB, and that a new VM should be created downtown for the service to run on in the long term.
There was some lively discussion over the merits of this proposal. Concern was expressed at the creation of another location for documentation, especially documentation which is not only used by support staff. Conversely, we do have to support the ever-increasing admin staff use of SharePoint and this is a good way for people to gain experience of it.
Topics for discussion
Alastair asked to be told of any ideas or concerns people might have about how we would manage things once we return to Appleton Tower and have to start running a support desk again. It was generally agreed that though Level 7 itself would be workable, other aspects of life in the Tower such as the toilets and lifts would be far harder to manage. These issues would be compounded if students had returned to the tower as well, especially management of the labs. In addition, several people expressed concern at the prospect of using public transport to travel into work. It was felt to be unlikely that the council would transform Buccleuch Place into a car park for our benefit. Though the University at present seems to be taking a conservative approach to a return to work, these issues, especially that of the support desk, will need to be addressed if things change.
There is a general meeting on the 13th of May so the next meeting will be on Wednesday 20th May 2020 online at 10am.
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