It is necessary for CNS to schedule a planned shutdown to make changes to our network disk array configuration. The effect would be similar to the emergency shutdown a couple of weeks ago, but with more time to plan, we expect to be able to keep additional campus-wide services up, including the web site, as well as Internet and file access from on-campus locations. A few web site features (some of the forms, and other items relying on an external database) will not function. Access to external Library electronic resources should be available as well, although the Library catalog will not be.
We are taking the time to do this on the 9th while all three schools are on Spring break. A late evening shutdown rather than early morning or the weekend gives us both time to address any lingering problems well ahead of the next business day, and also insures we have access to a reasonable level of technical support from HP and other vendors. It will likely take about 45 to 60 minutes to complete the major portion of the operation, and if we haven't run into unexpected problems we could start bringing services up after that. This involves multiple staff members from CNS and ETC in order to shorten the length of time to shutdown, restart and test the applications as we restore services. Barring unforseen difficulties, we expect the entire shutdown to last for two hours, and services will be gradually restored over the course of the evening.
We have been working closely with HP and VMware, trying to sort out the best way to configure the new main network disk arrays. Our current configuration follows HP's documented "best practices", but we've found a few issues. In pursuing those with HP, they've recommended some changes that will make the system more reliable in the most likely failure cases.