Scriba, which hosts SmartSite for UC Davis, told UC Davis Thursday afternoon that the company is taking SmartSite offline this weekend for emergency maintenance. SmartSite will be unavailable from 9 p.m. Friday, May 20, until 11 a.m. Monday, May 23 (all Pacific time).
Scriba hosts Sakai-based learning management systems like SmartSite for several universities and colleges, and the outage will affect all of them. UC Davis has contacted Scriba to protest the short notice and extended duration of the outage, but the interruption in service seems unavoidable. Faculty, students, and staff should plan accordingly.
If possible, any work you would normally do in SmartSite from Friday night through Monday morning should be done outside of SmartSite. You can move the work into SmartSite after the interruption, as needed.
Ideas for instructors
Academic Technology Services' instructional technologists also offer these ideas for faculty who use SmartSite:
- If you have timed any Assignments, Quizzes, Discussions, or Announcements so that they end during the outage, you might wish to edit those items so they have an end date after the outage concludes.
- If you want to give specific instructions to your students before the outage, you can do so by using the Announcements tool. When you create a new announcement, select "High - All participants" from the "Email Notification" area at the bottom of the announcement creation page.
You might wish to use these non-SmartSite tools to share information with course participants:
- Class Lists can be used as a substitute for the Mailtool in SmartSite to send email to students.
- Class rosters are available to print or download (as Excel) from https://classes.ucdavis.edu or from my.ucdavis.edu -> My Classes -> Classes I'm Teaching
- Files can be shared (or worked on collaboratively) through drive.google.com or box.com by using the email addresses in the "Email" column found in your class roster download.
In an email to SmartSite administrators Thursday from Michael Sanders, president of Scriba, the company said "over the past few weeks we have experienced a large number of failures in our primary data center. The failures are as of a result of a third party and are outside of our control. We have been using a number of backup resources to keep our systems operating. However, these systems were intended as a short-term solution, and will not continue to run much longer if the data center cannot resolve the issues.
"Therefore, as a result we are going to have to schedule an emergency maintenance window ... to relocate our equipment to a higher class facility. This facility will ensure continued operations.
"We apologize for any inconvenience that may be caused, and we can [as]sure you we have thoroughly investigated the performance and stability of our new vendor, and we are confident future problems shall not arise. We can assure you that all systems and data are secure, and there is no risk of data loss during the emergency maintenance."
For more information
UC Davis will post updates about the status of SmartSite at status.ucdavis.edu. If you have questions or need assistance, please contact the IT Express Service Desk (itexpress.ucdavis.edu) at 530-754-HELP (4357) or firstname.lastname@example.org.
As previously announced, UC Davis is moving to a new learning management system, UC Davis Canvas, starting in 2016-17.