Lincoln College were looking to the future and approached Blackbird to help them develop a 5 year ICT strategy. Before any recommendations could be made, the first job was to conduct a detailed audit in order to uncover the current state of the environment.

The Issue

Interviews with residents at the college showed the huge importance of fast Internet connectivity and its impact on their studies. There was room for improvement with the existing solution but access to this was outside of staff control.

The Solution

In addition to engaging with the residents, the existing infrastructure was assessed. The College had been paying an “all included” managed service, something that Blackbird are often sceptical of due to the many poor implementations that we have witnessed. Blackbird discovered a number of opportunities to both improve the effectiveness of the IT implementation and also its robustness. Fortunately, Blackbird also uncovered many ways in which the College could save money.
The Internet was cutover to a brand new dedicated fibre service. The new service was configured in parallel and cutover was completed with minimal downtime. Once the new fibre was live, the previous service was decommissioned.
The core network was first replaced with an HP Procurve chassis and a residential WiFi network was configured using the existing Ubiquity infrastructure in order to save on budget. A Sophos UTM was deployed to handle security between the administration and residential networks.
Blackbird ensured that Veeam Backup and Replication 8 was configured correctly so that the College virtualised server environment was protected. The Microsoft Exchange Server event log errors were fixed up as well as some outstanding printing issues.

About Lincoln College

Lincoln College is a multi-faith, multicultural community that since 1952 has been providing a caring and supportive environment for students who live away from their homes during their tertiary studies. They foster independence, inclusion and diversity.

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