Feeds

School email's out across UK

School's been blown to pieces

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

7,500 UK schools using the email services of RM Plc, the UK's largest education technology supplier, have been without communications this week.

RM's EasyMail Plus service collapsed last weekend during an upgrade it was performing to deal with mushrooming levels of spam.

Billy McNeil, development director of RM Plc, said the system was being reintroduced to schools throughout the day and about 1,600 schools - all its customers in the south west - had already had their service restored.

The system was being upgraded because spam had been overloading and slowing its system. Between May 2006 and February 2007 the number of messages being passed through its school email service had increased almost fourfold, from 550 messages per minute to 2,000 messages per minute. About 85 per cent of these were spam, it said in a refreshingly informative explanation of the outage.

The 750,000 users of the system are also sending more email than they used to. In the last half of spring term, about 13,000 pupils were using EasyMail Plus at any one time. After half term, the number of simultaneous email users had risen to 16,000 median. The system holds 400m files on 90 hard disks with more than a terabyte of storage capacity. McNeil's team have yet to work out what went wrong because they are getting the old system up and running. They think the extra cpu and memory they added last weekend might have overloaded the power supply.

"The system we have has got 100 per cent redundancy and mirrored hardware, which is maintained live," said McNeil.

"But the problem we had, broke both sides of the system so all the business continuity got broken," he added.

To restore the service, the McNeil's team have had to replace and rebuild each of the failed disks. It appears to have retained its data.®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Bono apologises for iTunes album dump
Megalomania, generosity and FEAR of irrelevance drove group to Apple deal
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
Doctor Who's Flatline: Cool monsters, yes, but utterly limp subplots
We know what the Doctor does, stop going on about it already
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Arab States make play for greater government control of the internet
Nerds told to get lost in last-minute power grab bid at UN meeting
'Cowardly, venomous trolls' threatened with TWO-YEAR sentences for menacing posts
UK government: 'Taking a stand against a baying cyber-mob'
Apple SILENCES Bose, YANKS headphones from stores
The, er, Beats go on after noise-cancelling spat
Zippy one-liners, broken promises: Doctor Who on the Orient Express
Series finally hits stride, but Clara's U-turn is baffling
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.