Office 365 Migration on Dec 6, 2017 at 5pm

The University is moving to a cloud-based Office 365 service due to the desire to decommission the UTORexchange and UTORmail email servers and to provide more modern communication and collaboration services.

This will not affect the departmental mail service (your email ending “” or ““) which you can access with pine or Thunderbird (for example) or as always with a web browser at:


The current schedule is for the migration of people with UTORexchange accounts in our department to start at 5pm on Wednesday December 6, 2017 and finish by 9am the following morning.  UTORmail users will be migrated at a future date.

Once migrated, users should use:

to access their “” email via webmail.

Please see:

for general information about this move and what you should do before and after the migration (upgrading to Office 2016 if you have an earlier version will be the main task for most people).

has information about accessing your “” email after the migration.

There is documentation about using Office 365 at:


Bell Centrex system to be replaced by VoIP

The University is moving from the current Bell Centrex system for telephones to a new VoIP (Voice over IP; essentially using computer networks to replace telephone networks) system.  The change will provide enhanced communication features and significant cost savings.

The main University website for this changeover is VoIP at U of T.

Currently the Faculty of Arts and Science is in discussions about this changeover with the central people and the departments within the faculty.

More updates will be posted on this blog as the project progresses.

University Campus Agreement for Microsoft Software

The University has an agreement with Microsoft to provide software for equipment which is owned by the University of Toronto.  Please see:

for more information (you will need your UTORid and password to access that site).  Here is a paragraph from that page:

The Campus Agreement provides CORE CAL licenses, Microsoft Windows, Microsoft Forefront Endpoint protection (for Windows), System Center Endpoint Protection 2012 (Windows, Linux amd Mac) and Microsoft Office Professional for Windows or Macintosh for installation on University of Toronto owned equipment only.

For personally-owned machines, the website mentioned above has a link to the Home Use Program where you can purchase an inexpensive Microsoft Office Professional license if you wish.

sphere update on 2017oct11 was completed early; coxeter should be done by 4:45pm

sphere has already been updated.

coxeter will be updated starting at 4:15pm and should be back up by 4:45pm.

UTSend service for transferring/sharing files

The University now has a UTSend service for sharing files between users.  This can be used to share files with users at UofT and also with outside users.

Important things to know:

  1. You should encrypt all files that you upload to this service, since links to access files are sent in plain text which could be intercepted.
  2. Files will be deleted after 14 days.  The files uploaded to this service are not backed up.

For more information see their help page.

We are planning to retire our server now that there is a University-supported service.

coxeter and sphere updates on 2017sep27 were successful

coxeter and sphere appear to be working fine after the updates this afternoon.

Networking issues in 215 Huron

We have been told that some people are experiencing connection problems in 215 Huron. Please send detailed email to:

if you are having such problems. A problem description which is specific and reproducible, such as:

Whenever I use Firefox and I visit the site it takes at least 5 seconds to load.

is necessary for us to track down any issues.

Server updates on 2017sep20 were successful

The departmental servers appear to be working fine after the updates this afternoon.

It took slightly longer (less than 15 minutes) than expected to bring coxeter back up.

web server update slightly delayed

The web server update is delayed by approximately one hour.

Web (www) server update at 3:45pm on Wednesday August 30, 2017

An update of the web server, www, will be applied and the server will be rebooted starting at approximately 3:45pm on Wednesday, Aug 30. Some updates will be applied somewhat earlier if it appears that the impact on the system should be minimal, so minor software issues may be noticed. Please restart any programs if you observe problems during the upgrades (and please let us know at, so we can investigate). We expect that the web server will be back up by 4:30pm if there are no unforeseen problems.