New web browsers causing email issues
Aberdeen City Council has solved a four-month IT issue in just two days with IT problem resolution consultants Advance7.
Council workers had been reporting problems with their remote access capabilities when attempting to connect to the email system. Staff that travelled off-site during the day and then logged on to the Council’s web access system to catch up on emails experienced inconsistent or very slow access to the system, which the Council said was severely impacting their ability to work from home.
The Council completed internal due diligence procedures but was unable to solve the problem.
Michael Campbell, technology analyst at Aberdeen City Council, said: “This issue was particularly frustrating because it was an intermittent problem which meant we could not predict when it would occur, making it very difficult to log issues each time. Even when using the standard logs provided for the application we were unable to identify where the problem lay.”
The council employed Advance7, who obtained a detailed brief from the IT team about the issue. Network analysers were installed to gather data from the network. Members of staff were asked to record information such as, time, location, Internet connection and user name, as well as information on the action being attempted, such as logging on, downloading email or sending attachments.
Using this information, it took Advance7 just two days to identify the root cause of the problem. According to the company, when accessing the email application remotely, staff were using HTTP 1.1-enabled web browsers, the newest version of web browser. The WebAccess server was not configured to support persistent sessions of HTTP 1.1.
If a user’s initial attempt to connect to the network timed out, they would often try to re-connect, leading to an overload of the firewall and a failure of the application to respond.
“Advance7 brought their trouble-shooting expertise to the table – knowing where to look and how to look at it,” said Campbell. “Once the REACT team had identified the root cause my team was able to apply a one line fix in the command – and our remote users have been logging on problem-free ever since.”