Mainframe crash in Administration

By Joseph Barrios

Arizona Daily Wildcat

Students were unable to drop classes or access financial aid records yesterday after the computer mainframe in the Administration building crashed for two hours.

"We had a systems failure that is extremely rare for us. It was an abnormal situation we have not seen before. When it crashes, it catches us by surprise," said Richard Ecelbarger, director of computer operations at the University of Arizona Computing and Information Technology Center.

Employees of Financial Aid, the Bursar's office and the Controller's office had to turn away some students because financial aid transactions and schedule changes could not be completed during the crash. It is unclear how many students were affected by the crash.

"When it goes down, we're pretty much out of luck," said Assistant Controller Jean Johnson.

Today is the last day to drop a class using RSVP without receiving a "W" on record.

Ecelbarger said the biggest loss during the failure was the time students were able to access the system. But he said it was fortunate that no data or transactions were lost.

The system crashed between about 10 a.m. and 12 p.m. Technicians from CCIT are investigating the cause of the crash and plan to have a conclusion by today, Ecelbarger said.

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