Title of Service: Instant Messaging Services

Status of Document: this document describes services offered at August 2012.

1. Introduction

The instant messaging service comprise an IRC server and a Jabber server, provided for members of the University.

The IRC server operates at irc.ox.ac.uk and the jabber server operates from jabber.ox.ac.uk. There is an account management facility for Jabber at https://jabber.ox.ac.uk/.

This service is owned by the Systems Development and Support Section Manager and was released for general use in 2006 (IRC) and 2009 (Jabber).

1.1. User Support

There is no formal support for these services, but other service users are typically happy to help each other. Brief introductions to IRC and Jabber are available at: http://www.irchelp.org/ and http://www.jabber.org/faq.html.

Enquiries and problem reports may be addressed to sysdev@it.ox.ac.uk.

2. Summary of IT Services' responsibilities

Hours of Service

2.1 The service is offered as follows:

  • 9am - 5pm on weekdays: the service operates with full technical support.
  • All other times: the service operates without technical support. Automated service monitoring will take place, and informal arrangements exist for staff to be notified of exceptions, however no funding is provided for contractual cover or guaranteed response.
  • Exclusions: service maintenance carried out during the JANET maintenance period (7am - 9am every Tuesday).

2.2 IT Services will commence investigation of reported faults within one hour when full technical support is available (provided that no similar fault is already being handled by the same team).

Service Level Targets

2.3 It is intended, as far as is possible, to maintain service availability at all times apart from exclusions listed under 2.1, however there are no formal targets.

Disaster Recovery

2.4 This service is classified as "non-critical" to University business and will be recovered as soon as possible after all critical services have been recovered. This may take more than 72 hours.

2.5 Recovery will restore service availability and state to a point within the last 24 hours.

2.6 There are several alternative IRC and Jabber servers available which could be used in place of these servers during a period of unavailability. In addition, email, telephone and other communications methods may be used.

Administration and Support

2.7 Technical support (operations and 2nd/3rd line user support) for the service is provided by IT Services; as described above, there is no provision for centrally-provided user support.

2.8 Notification of scheduled maintenance, outages, and other information of general interest in relation to the service will be circulated on the itss-announce mailing list.

2.9 Fault reports relating to the service should be sent to sysdev@it.ox.ac.uk.

3. Summary of client’s responsibilities

3.1 Users are responsible for ensuring that this service is suitable for their needs, including availability and security (bearing in mind the limited user identification provided by the services and optional encryption).

3.2 Use of this service is subject to, and implies, acceptance of any applicable regulations, including but not limited to:

3.3 Users should report any defect, malfunction, or performance degradation of the service promptly to enable remedial action to be taken.

4. Premium services

None applicable.