Tag: servers

By Luis Monzon for IT News Africa

The University of South Africa (Unisa) has been forced to postpone several exams after technical issues interrupted last week’s set of online exams.

Affected modules whose exams have been postponed include those studied by criminology students, as well as those in development studies.s.

Sipho Xukwe, a third-year criminology student told City Press on Friday that he wasn’t able to submit his exam answers during online writing sessions this week because the system was “clogged due to the high volume of exam scripts and question papers.”

Xukwe continues says that while trying to answer questions, “A message popped up saying [the system] cannot hold the number of students trying to submit at one time and others trying to download the exam question paper.”

He says that the most pertinent issue for students is that the university lacked a plan B for students who were not able to submit due to system failures or faults. He says that students who failed to submit because of system issues would have another opportunity to write in October/November later this year. No doubt dreadful news to anyone who has ever had to study for a university-level examination.

The other concern with the shifting of exam dates is that they coincide with the dates of exams of other modules.

“Our concern is how students are going to be able to write five modules for this semester and five modules of the coming semester?” Xukwe says.

He continues to say that the university is fully aware that students won’t be able to write all 10 modules in a single semester. There are already some students that have had to choose between modules to be able to write during the current semester because of coinciding exam dates and times.

City Press writes that students were informed of the exam postponements via SMSs from the institution. In a statement, Unisa said that rescheduling modules to later dates, dates which still fall under the current examination period, is essential to maintaining and improving the system’s performance.

ICT assistance to students

The university says that a number of their students had been assisted when taking and to achieve access to their exams as well as uploading their written scripts.

“Both academics, and the information and communication technology (ICT) team were on standby to support the students so that they could download, write and upload their answers.”

In many modules, Unisa says, students managed well with the exams and didn’t have problems. Academic staff members also assisted the students with extending exam submission times.

The students that were not able to submit their examinations will be provided with other opportunities, such as special examinations, amongst other methods – all of which will be communicated with students at another date, says the university.

Source: Randburg Sun

The Eskom website is currently down as Stage 4 loadshedding continues  “until further notice”

The utility released a statement on Twitter this morning indicating that their systems were currently not working, including their website – where customers can check their load-shedding schedule.

Yesterday the power utility announced that loadshedding had been upgraded to Stage 4 after the Koeberg Power Station tripped.

Stage 4 was implemented due to a shortage of capacity and unplanned breakdowns. “We expect that load-shedding at various stages may continue into the weekend.”

Consumers were additionally frustrated by the court’s ruling against the energy regulator, stating that Eskom could have an 18,9% tariff hike. The hike will allow Eskom to generate R219.5-billion in revenue, R29,2-billion more than Nersa’s hike would allow.

Eskom has 60 days to apply to the regulator to increase the tariffs it can charge customers and the regulator must pay Eskom’s costs, the ruling said.

WhatsApp messenger service suffers major outage

WhatsApp was hit by a major outage last Friday morning, preventing people around the globe from using the world’s most popular messaging app.

Users of the Facebook-owned app could not send or receive messages as the service continued to say it was “connecting”, though no connection was made.

According to DownDetector, there were problems across Europe although users in India, Pakistan, Singapore and Iraq also reported that they could not access the service.

Whatsappdown was the top trending item on Twitter in India, which is the app’s largest market. Around 200 million of the messaging app’s billion-plus users are based in India.

A spokesperson for Facebook in Singapore said the company was investigating the matter, Reuters reported.
The online messaging app went down in the U.K. at approximately 8:30 a.m. GMT (4.30 a.m. ET), before users were able to reconnect around 30 minutes later.

The reported connection error comes as Apple released the iPhone X on Friday, with people eagerly anticipating the tech giant’s latest flagship phone in stores globally.

Facebook was not immediately available for comment when contacted by CNBC.

By Sam Meredith for CNBC

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