Experiencing Internet issues

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An update from the IM&T team regarding the problems some users have experienced in the last few weeks with the Internet.

There is currently a national problem for all NHS Trusts using the N3 network, which is the network that our Trust uses to connect to the Internet.

This problem is intermittent but is most noticeable on a Monday due to the high volume of users downloading e-mails at the same time from the Office 365 platform, which results in a bottle neck of the data coming in and out. Also every other week, Microsoft release essential security updates which hundreds of Trusts, like us, are all downloading at the same time. This too can cause performance issues for a significant period of time.

When there is a problem, sometimes the sending and receiving of emails can get stuck when using the Outlook desktop client. If you close and re-open Outlook, this should trigger the process of sending and receiving messages, if the connection is good.

Our infrastructure team are investigating to see what they can do to help improve Internet performance. However, the N3 network has been in place for a long time and requires replacement as it is now at the end of its life and no hardware upgrades can take place.

The Trust is in the final stages of procuring a new trust-wide Internet-solution, which will see significant enhancements to all our sites. The implementation of this is due to start in early 2019 and when complete we will all see the benefits, especially relating to Internet performance.

All Internet connections are monitored by the Infrastructure team and they will be aware of any physical issues with equipment immediately and will always try to remedy this as soon as possible. If you are experiencing slow speeds, it is almost certainly going to be related to the N3 network issues so we would ask that you do not contact the IT Help desk to raise a ticket.

However, if all your colleagues are working without problem, you have rebooted your device and you are still encountering issues then do contact the Helpdesk as this is something that should be investigated.

Thank you for your patience with this matter. The IM&T team will keep you updated in due course.

Published 23rd November 2018

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