It’s a standard troubleshooting use case that makes it into many Uplogix presentations: say a backhoe working on a water line issue in your parking lot accidentally cuts the fiber line going into your building. What do you do? An Uplogix customer recently found out.

The best-case scenario is that their network shifts over to a failover secondary network automatically. Everyone in the office keeps working, although depending on that secondary network maybe at a slower pace. IT is alerted and starts troubleshooting knowing that the site is still functional.

A worse scenario is that the broken line means the office is no longer connected to the outside world. Office workers feel the impact immediately as business processes go down, Facebook goes dark and streaming music goes silent. After confirming with their coworkers that the “network is down,” and maybe getting another cup of coffee or hitting the bathroom, calls are made to offsite IT support. Maybe ten calls are made to support. Maybe hundreds, depending on the site and frustration of impacted workers. The starting gun has already gone off and IT is just getting out of the starting blocks troubleshooting the issue…

Starting from what is known (no Internet at the site, users unhappy), network admins start troubleshooting, eventually deciding that it might be a fiber issue. The owner of that fiber line might not know there is a problem until they are contacted by unhappy customers. And as we’ve all experienced, that’s often when the finger pointing begins.

What about that Uplogix customer? In this case it was a fiber line bringing data into a school that was accidentally severed. Alerted by Uplogix that the inbound connection was down, they were able to shift to a secondary connection to keep data moving and then contact their provider to request they look into it. Beyond that, using troubleshooting software on the school side they were able to advise the fiber owner where the line was broken. Talk about reducing finger pointing.

Stay tuned for a more detailed case study soon.