IT/Web: December 2008 Archives

bnjacobs " The @NASA starts today. It's a soft roll out until we find our rhythm in posting and answering questions. Be patient! We're newbies."

NOMAD Has Issues This Morning

""Potential Issue Connecting to the Exchange Server - Monday, December 15, 2008, 9:05 a.m. Central: The NOMAD/ODIN team is looking into a possible issue affecting the user's ability to connect to the NOMAD server. An update will be posted in 30 minutes."

9:39 a.m. Central: The NOMAD/ODIN team has determined that an issue with connecting to the JSC exchange server exists. Webmail is available as an alternative at https://webmail.nasa.gov/ for those unable to connect through their desktop or laptop mail client. An update will be posted immediately once the issue is resolved. If the issue is unresolved, an update will be posted in approximately 1 hour.

10:30 a.m. Central: The connectivity issue experienced by some customers on the JSC Exchange servers has been resolved. All NOMAD systems have been restored to normal operations."

Editor's note: I have been featuring space-related items that I have found posted on President-elect Obama's official Change.gov website for a week - as well as the ways to submit and view items on their website. Curiously, the crowd at NASA - the Gen Y types - who have been the most vocal about how they want to change NASA to suit their lifestyle and way of working and collaborating have not submitted a darn thing (at least not that I can find) to Obama's website.

This is very odd when you consider all of those web and powerpoint things they are so fond of generating, their incessant Twittering, and frolicking via avatars at NASA "meetings" in Second Life. Indeed, this is even more peculiar when you consider that the Obama administration is overtly sympatico with the whole social networking paradigm - indeed, they used it to get elected! You'd think that the NASA Gen Y crowd would be all over this opportunity.

So much (it would seem) for the NASA Gen Y/Web 2.0 crowd - at least, those self-selected few who have been vocal and doing all of the arm waving this past year. Perhaps a new group - one that is more willing to actively engage with (and work to transform and enhance) the status quo - can step up to the plate and continue the discussion?

To be fair, NASA employees have been told in no uncertain terms that they are not to communicate with the Transition team outside of the formal NASA process that has been established. But these documents and reports that have been generated have been widely shared outside of the NASA and contractor workforce. They have all been featured on NASA Watch. Is no one outside of NASA willing to send them in? Could it be that the "reach" outside of the agency that the Gen Y folks at NASA are so fond of pointing to is far more shallow and under-motivated than they thought?

NASA ODIN Outreach: New and Improved eCatalog!

"On December 15, 2008, Lockheed Martin IT and Desktop Services will officially launch its new eCatalog revealing a fresh new look to the main tool for ordering services. We encourage you to take a look around to see what has changed! The new eCatalogs' added features include a more modern display of seats with description, browse capability to the hardware, software, and services on the main page. The new design is more in line with industry standards and represents our continued commitment to delivering current Information Technology (IT) products and services to NASA. The main eCatalog page now features a "Specials Available" section for items on Clearance, Top Sellers, and Daily Specials. Items listed in this area are in stock and available for purchase through the eCatalog."

NASA NOMAD: Upgrade to Microsoft Exchange 2007 Starts Next Week

"Improved Disaster Recovery (DR) and Continuity Of Operations (COOP) Capability. During a hurricane or other disaster, users will have access to their full mailbox once the failover procedures have been completed. We plan to make this feature available before the start of the 2009 hurricane season."

Editor's note: Unless, of course, NOMAD shuts you off before the disaster, does not have backup generators in case of fires or other routine disruptions, or just goes dark.

NOMAD Fixes Self-inflicted Damage, earlier post
Another Planned NOMAD Blackout - Cancelled, earlier post
NOMAD Goes Down Again Due To Power Outage, earlier post
NOMAD Learned a Lesson - or Did It?, earlier post
Only NASA Would Create a Zero Fault Tolerant Email System, earlier post

Mailbox Stores Temporarily Offline

"Monday, December 8, 2008, 8:20 a.m. Central: Some NOMAD mailbox stores went offline briefly this morning. Those users who had their mailboxes moved last week in anticipation of the scheduled facilities power outage at MSFC would have been impacted. All mailbox stores are now back online, and all NOMAD services are up and running."

Another Planned NOMAD Blackout - Cancelled, earlier post

NASA ODIN Internal Memo: ODIN Catalog Product Pricing Instruction

"For years, NASA civil servants have actively worked to get the best value for information technology (IT) products and services. Many have followed a "cost re-determination" process when the ODIN catalog price is greater than 15 percent of that of a tier-one vendor, such as Office Depot, CDWG, or PCMall. This instruction is being issued to formalize a "best practice" that has been in use for the past year. ... If you find IT peripherals that are priced 15 percent or more below the ODIN catalog price, then you should notify the delivery order contracting officer technical representative (DOCOTR) at your Center or submit a quote request to the ODIN vendor."

Reader note: "This is absurd! Why can't we just buy the better value instead of the bloated ODIN price? The policy seems to be gouge ya if they can, but if you find a better price (and you will), fill out some paperwork and maybe they will lower ODIN's price."

Editor's note: Another way to look at this: A 15% cost differential between ODIN costs and real world costs is apparently not an issue for ODIN management. They will happily charge that. Apparently, ODIN will only consider changes in pricing if it is more than 15% cheaper to buy it outside of ODIN - and only if YOU do the research and then YOU tell them about it.

NASA NOMAD Update: CANCELLED: Planned Outage This Weekend

"In order to support computer processing related to the Shuttle Endeavour's return to Florida, the facilities outage at Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) scheduled for this weekend has been cancelled. Therefore, there will not be any disruption in NOMAD services (Email, Calendaring, Webmail (Outlook Web Access - OWA), Instant Messaging (IM), BlackBerry, Treo and Windows Mobile Devices). Scheduled activities to relocate VIP and Critical user accounts from the servers at MSFC to JSC will be discontinued. VIP and Critical users mailboxes that were relocated on Monday, December 1, 2008 will be provided additional information at a later date."

NASA NOMAD Memo: Major Planned Outage Saturday December 6, 2008 - Sunday, December 7, 2008

"Many computer systems and networks will be unavailable for 43 hours due to a facilities maintenance outage necessary to support mission critical systems at Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC). This preventive maintenance activity is being performed to avoid placing NASA's critical Space Operations Mission Directorate (SOMD) systems at an unacceptable risk. The following services will not be available to you during the weekend outage (Dec 6-7): Email, Calendaring, Instant Messaging (IM) and Webmail (Outlook Web Access - OWA) services. You will not be able to send or receive email messages using your email client on your desktop or laptop computer. Email messages sent during the time of the outage will be queued and delivered to your mailbox once the servers have been brought online."


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This page is an archive of entries in the IT/Web category from December 2008.

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