1. What exactly is it?
An annually renewable Agreement, between OUCS and a Department or College, supporting the major networking components in a typical local area network. The scheme is well established and is a very attractive alternative to a commercial contract. It offers a rapid on-site swap-out service for popular Cisco, HP and 3Com switches. The Departmental or College Computing Officer will be the normal contact with OUCS and will agree all relevant down-times and access. If a device becomes faulty, a phone call to the OUCS Network Operations team during office hours Monday - Friday, will produce an equivalent replacement device which we aim to supply the same day - within four working hours of logging the call.
Devices we support:
Please contact us if you require support of a device not listed above. If you have older switches which are no longer supported, please contact us to discuss upgrade options.
Contact for the scheme: Pierre Ramsay, OUCS. Tel. 2-73268 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
2. Benefits of joining
IT Officers are busy people who often do not have either the time or the skills to deal with internal physical network problems. When a part of the network goes down they need a rapid response to restore services. Our experience is that these events often take place when the IT Officer is away (most of our current contracts were established under precisely these circumstances). Who is the backup for your IT Officer? Can you afford for all or part of your network to be down for longer than is necessary?
3. How the scheme works
A joint survey of the existing system is undertaken with the objective of producing a plan of the network including the location of major devices and details of their basic configuration. If a unit becomes faulty a phone call to Network Control during office hours Monday - Friday (0830-1730) will produce a replacement equivalent device which will be fitted within four working hours of logging the call - In practice we normally do far better than this. Please note that weekends, public holidays and OUCS Christmas shutdown periods are not normally covered.
Charges are extremely attractive for the level of service provided. Will you be happy for your unit to stay uncovered and suffer a breakdown?
Charges are based on the the number of switches covered with a charge ceiling of £1000. The charge per switch falls into two categories.
Category 1 - £100 per annum
Category 2 - £200 per annum
4.1. Other items
SFP modules and Allied Telesyn AT-MC101XL Fibre media converters are not covered but can be provided at cost (normally between £40-£100)
4.2. Points to note
For all Cisco devices to be covered we will require a copy of the original sales invoice. This is required by Cisco in the event of any returns procedure.
For larger networks, and anything that falls out of the above specifications, please contact us.
Where the devices are different from the models we normally cover (and subject to agreement with OUCS) equivalent Cisco/HP/3Com units can be substituted to cover breakdowns. Repairs to the failed unit would have to be the responsibility of the Department or College. New switches may be added to the scheme if there is demand.
5. Fault monitoring and upgrades
Most switches have built-in management facilities enabled. This enables the Network Administrator to control various aspects of the system. These include error detection, traffic monitoring, VLANs and security features. We offer our skills in this area as part of the Agreement. We do require, however, that the IT officer keeps appropriate records and have a mechanism in place to re-create the correct configuration on a newly installed replacement switch.
The scheme does not cover faults in the building's copper or fibre cabling. OUCS is quite happy to undertake both fault finding and repair of local Ethernet sockets and fibre distribution systems in-house but may have to make a reasonable charge for doing so. Advice is free, however, and we are always happy to help plan upgrades and revisions to networks.