1,600 email accounts did not expire over holiday weekend

By Вen Li

Sixteen hundred users were erroneously told they were no longer eligible to use University of Calgary computing resources due to a computer glitch Sunday night.

"At the moment, we’re not exactly sure what happened," said Information Technology Senior Systems Analyst Paul Starling. "For some reason the data extraction process didn’t work properly."

The nightly process involves extracting a list of users no longer with the university community from one computer and transferring that list to another computer which expires the users accounts. On Sunday’s list, all but four listed users were incorrect but all 1,600 were sent the expiration notice.

"This is the first and only time it’s ever happened, so it’s got to be something rather unique and to our knowledge nothing has changed," said Starling.

He noted that no one was working on thesystems on Sunday because of the long weekend and suspects that the problem is isolated as most of the affected users were faculty and staff members and not students.

"We’re certainly sorry for any concern or inconvenience we caused people," said Starling. "There were people who phoned in to our office immediately to inquire about their accounts possibly going away and we’re sorry for that happening. We don’t like things like this happening so we’ll be certainly investigating this further to try to prevent that from ever happening again."

Affected users were sent a correction notice on Tuesday, stating their accounts would not expire. Starling urges affected users who did not receive the correction to contact the IT department at 220–6201.

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