Everyone at Morris should be well aware of our campus network upgrade. We will provide faster network connectivity, and better wireless coverage, across all of campus. But at the same time, I wanted to highlight something about our current network: redundancy.
You may not want redundancy in an English paper (it means you're repeating yourself) but redundancy is a good thing in a network. Network redundancy allows you to seamlessly recover from most problems. For example: did you know that our network fiber to the State network, and thus our campus connection to the Internet, was accidentally cut last week? But that's why we have multiple connections, so if we lose one connection in such an accident, we can continue to provide network service on the redundant line.
And that's exactly what happened here. In this case, the redundant link handled the traffic while the State of Minnesota repaired the damaged network fiber. On campus, you shouldn't have noticed anything was wrong. And that's why we have network redundancy.
Unfortunately, we don't have this redundancy everywhere. In the IT world, we often decry the "last mile" as a single point of failure. And indeed, for about 20 minutes on April 4, our campus lost our Internet connection.
While we have two network "paths" to get us to the State network, the "last mile" goes through a single connection in Morris. Our local Internet provider lost power for a short time that morning, which also took our campus off the Internet until things came back up. (We're working with our network partners in the Twin Cities, the State, and the local provider to find ways of keeping this from happening again.)