Single Point of Failure

It may sound like an airport novel, but when we were introducing FAM to the world (and by world I mean UK HE / FE) one of the scare stories that doubters threw around was that it was a single point of failure – if one thing goes wrong, then you lose access etc.

As a scare story it had little effect on IT staff – who obviously are used to planning for resilience, redundancy, disaster recovery etc – but it did worry Librarians who on the whole have to worry less about such issues. It was one reason why we were so keen at briefing events for institutions to send IT and Librarians together – so they could reassure each other of the worrying bits outside each others natural domains. Well good practice on the IT front should heavily mitigate the topic of today’s title – however…. Server Certificates…..well for the non tech out there, they play a similar role to passports and work in a similar way- ie if you get to the check in desk and yours is out of date, you don’t get to go anywhere. That’s it, no negotiation, no pleading just no flight, no holiday.

And it works the same way for Publishers as well….. – makes me almost wish we had a central certificate reminding service – and I don’t mean an email and letter that sometimes get ignored given the amount off spam and junk mail we get – but no, an annoying persistent phone call that just keeps on coming until the cert is renewed….