Council on Academic Computing

May 22, 2008

Meeting Summary



The Councilís May meeting was held at the Network Operations Center facility of Computing Services and Systems Development (CSSD).The RIDC computer facility, which houses the Network Operations Center (NOC), Help Desk, and data center, was originally built in 1970 to house University administrative computing operations.Over time, additional systems were added to the facility, which was staffed primarily by operators who responded to warning lights and alarms.

CSSD renovated the facility in 2004 and established the NOC, which is designed to monitor and respond to potential problems affecting the University network and the more than 500 servers that support critical University operations including the PeopleSoft student information system, the PRISM financial system, PITTCat, Blackboard, enterprise email, and many others.The NOC prevents service disruptions by providing around-the-clock, proactive monitoring using a wide range of state-of-the-art monitoring and reporting tools.

Four groups of highly trained specialists are responsible for the identification, classification, and validation of alerts, outages, and problems.Monitors proactively manage the infrastructure and are also responsible for identification and classification of problem alerts. System and Application Engineers maintain enterprise servers and applications.Network engineers maintain the network infrastructure.NMS Engineers monitor and maintain the systems and tools that are used within the NOC.

The RIDC facility now has two completely redundant electrical power feeds along with uninterruptible power supplies, and redundant backup diesel generator systems to ensure that the Universityís critical applications and services are available at all times to support teaching, research, and business operations for the University.