Category Archives: System Updates

A category for information around upcoming system updates

WordPress images automatically resize on upload

With a 100MB upload quota, running out of space has been a problem for many site owners using images on blogs.evergreen.edu. For most, the issue lies with uploading high resolution, unprocessed images straight from a digital camera to the image library. These images then get scaled down by WordPress for the web but the original still hangs out in the media library taking up valuable space. We often see image files uploaded to WordPress in excess of 7MB in file size and over 5000 pixels wide. When people view your images on your blog however, WordPress is delivering a scaled down version,  typically at 500 pixels wide max.

For Fall of 2014 we’ve implemented a fix that will hopefully solve this issue. We’ve activated a network-wide plugin that automatically resizes  images on upload to a max of 1200 pixels wide and discards the original high resolution version (site owners are responsible for keeping copies of original images somewhere safe). With 100MB of file space you should now have room for over 600 images . The settings to control the image resize on upload are found in Settings > Resize Image Upload.

Kace 6 update

On sunday I will be updating our Kace instance to version 6.0.x .  While the appearance will change the basic functioning of the ticket component should remain basically the same.  For more information about the interface and other changes there is a screencast you can view.  Minutes 8:00 thru about 18:00 are the more interesting parts though it does cover parts of Kace that we make limited us of.  There is also a written version of the changes you can read here

The update will take indeterminate amount of time so expect kaceapp.evergreen.edu to inaccessible for sunday.

WordPress Upgrade to 3.9.2

What’s New at blogs.evergreen.edu

General

  • The “update” message has been restored to the dashboard
  • Posts
  • Add “Return to post editor” link from Revisions screen
  • A “View Post” link will now show for any post an author can read
  • Distraction Free Writing mode is now responsive to any size device

Media

  • Edit images from the Add Media modal
  • Improvements to the “Attach Media” pop-up interface
  • Better support for auto-playing videos
  • Drag and Drop files into the editor
  • Full-screen Drag and Drop zone in Distraction Free Writing
  • oEmbed support added for imgur and meetup.com
  • Comments
  • Small improvements to comment administration screens, link colors, language tweaks

Appearance

  • Widget Customizer management
  • Upload header images with cropping in the Customizer
  • Improved theme install workflow

Users

  • Admin auto-complete improvements
  • Make sure the “Send this password to the new user by email” toggle option value is remembered

Accessibility

  • Improved focus styles for form elements throughout the admin
  • Keyboard accessibility added for theme install screen and theme action buttons

Orca – Server 2012 Migration

Summary

We will be transitioning the Orca academic file server to Windows 2012. There are a handful of reasons for doing this, including the fact that Orca is currently a 32bit Windows 2008 server and uses Windows dynamic disks for the programs share.  Additionally, once the data is on Server 2012 we can take advantage of data deduplication which should reduce the total disk space consumed by at least 10-20%. This space savings is important as Orca is our largest file server.

Scope

The transition is intended to be as seamless and unnoticeable to end users as possible. The new server will assume the same name and IP address. Much of the data that needs to be copied from the dynamic disk will be copied over beforehand in order to reduce the necessary downtime. At this time I expect the final cutover to require the server to be unavailable for up to 2 hours.  There was a prerequisite for this project of upgrading our ESXi infrastructure to version 5.5.

Project Manager: Josh Jordan

Team: Network Services

  • Josh Jordan

Groups Involved

  • Network Services
  • Academic Computing (to help schedule the cutover and provide notification to students)
  • Client Services (to help schedule the cutover and provide notification to staff/faculty)

 

Start: Feb 2014 (with prerequisite work done in Jan)

Completion: TBD

Plan:

Jan: Upgrade ESXi to version 5.5 in order to support large virtual disks

End of February: Build replacement server

March 10th-24th  – The programs share will be copied (at a slow rate so as not to interfere with normal access) to the new server.

Mar 24th – Apr 11th  – Verify that disk quotas, quota templates, the pfcc program, and the various clients supported at Evergreen can connect properly. Also, make sure that DUC can properly provision and delete home directories.

April-May –Schedule cutover with client services and academic computing. This will be dependent on when downtime is acceptable for the server.

Any updates will be added to the documentation here: \\hurricane\PCCommon\Computing and Communications\Orca_Server2012_Migration

Update to campus wikis

Campus wikis are in the process of being updated to the latest version of Mediawiki 1.20. In addition to the updated version, we are now using a more mobile friendly theme.

helpwiki-homeTo see what the new wikis look like, check out the updated version of Evergreen’s Help Wiki. In addition to the theme changes, perhaps the most noticeable update is the improved wiki editor feature that allows you to create pages without having to remember wiki syntax.

 

Sophos Threat Message

This is information on a recent issue we experienced with Sophos, the anti-virus program we use on our computers here at Evergreen. This message primarily applies to Windows-based computers.

Some of you may have noticed Sophos notifications on your computer this afternoon in the form of a balloon in the bottom right-hand corner of your screen (most were referring to an item called ‘Shh/Updater-B’). These notifications reported potential threats to your computer. However, there is NOT a virus going around campus and you computer is not at risk by this ‘threat’.

This desktop notification was caused by an update that Sophos released earlier today that inadvertently views all updater programs as a potential threat, which causes the notification message to open on your desktop. Sophos is currently working on an update to resolve this. We are working on turning off desktop notifications from Sophos until they resolve this issue.

You do not need to take any action on these messages; simply close Sophos and continue working. If you encounter any issues or have other concerns, please contact the Help Desk at 360-867-6627 or via email at support@evergreen.edu.

WordPress upgrade on Sept 11

WordPress will be upgraded to version 3.4.2 this Tuesday morning between 7am and 8am.  This will provide some new features, the most exciting one being really improved in-line contextual help.  The outage will be less than an hour, thanks for your patience and let us know what you think the next time you go to blogs.evergreen.edu.

For more information on what this upgrade means, go to http://wordpress.org/news/2012/06/green/ and http://wordpress.org/news/2011/12/sonny/ to see the changes and new features.

Hurricane Work: Friday, May 11th

This Friday we will be performing maintenance on the Hurricane file share. Starting at 7p on Friday, May 11th all network shares on Hurricane will be read-only. You may access these shares, but you will be unable to update or create new files or folders. We anticipate this work will take place all night with full access to Hurricane available Saturday morning. Continue reading