Joy Hughes Addresses Slow E-mail Problems at Mason

Posted: August 29, 2003 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

Editor’s note: Joy Hughes, vice president for information technology, wrote this column to address concerns about delayed e-mail affecting much of the university community.

E-mail delivery has been very slow since the sobig.f virus came on the scene, but users should see considerable improvement in the delivery time beginning today. Mail is slow because WebShield, the appliance the university uses to screen e-mail for viruses and return infected messages to the sender, has been under an extraordinary load. There are just so many more messages coming into George Mason because the virus gets control of a user’s address book and spews out infected messages to everyone in the book.

All mail will eventually be delivered. You may have noticed that some e-mail has been delivered faster than other e-mail. Speed of delivery time has depended on which of the six WebShields the message came through–a few were much more overloaded than the others. The e-mail department is working with the big Internet service providers, such as AOL and MSN, to ensure that mail directed to the university is equally dispersed across five of the WebShields. In addition, all internal George Mason mail will now be routed through the sixth WebShield and, thus, not have to compete for delivery time with mail from the outside.

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