As regular readers of this forum will know, our ongoing focus on network development, and upgrades to core services such as email, has led to many performance improvements. During recent weeks a number of service issues have been identified and resolved. Our Support Team have been keeping customers up to date with regular Service Status postings. This work has meant our network and support teams have been extremely busy and we can now see the benefits of this work. Our goal is to provide the very best Internet service and we trust you can see the difference!
More Storage We have recognised that some customers have experienced intermittent delays when connecting, and when sending and retrieving email. Some customers' websites have also experienced problems, with pages loading much more slowly than is acceptable. To address these issues we have installed a brand new storage system and introduced new authentication servers.
Located at more than one site, the new data storage is fully resilient. Data is replicated in real time, offering a stable, secure and safe data storage solution. We are pleased to report that we have completed the work of moving our email storage to the new platform, meaning improved connection, and faster delivery of email to mailboxes.
Faster Email In April we introduced a beta trial of our new webmail solution. This is proving to be well-liked and delivers significant performance improvements, making it quicker and easier to check email from your web browser. We've also introduced a new "blackhole" email address so that customers can permanently filter out unwanted emails.
Web space Improvements The speed and efficiency of customers' web pages (as well as webmail access) has also benefited from performance improvements brought about by this storage work. In addition, our front end CGI web servers and shell servers have been upgraded. Complimenting this work, our MySQL platform has also been upgraded, further improving our customer web space service.
Webstats have also been the focus of development. Improvements to the platform have meant that customers wanting to see how many people have looked at their websites, and which pages were looked at, can get the data in a comprehensive and timely format.
Better Network In addition to the improvements to storage and authentication, the resilience and stability of the network has been further enhanced by new DNS caching. Most Internet services, and web browsing in particular, will benefit from the much quicker resolution of domain names.
New Gameservers Online gamers have benefited from an all-new gaming platform kitted out with the latest games such as Unreal Tournament 2004 and Battlefield Vietnam.
Broadband Trials We continue to be involved with ongoing broadband trials that aim to ultimately increase the availability of broadband across the UK, making it easier to get broadband service and making it easier to move between providers. Our offer to allow those with an alternative provider to join PlusNet at no cost has proven popular. Likewise, given the freedom to choose the ISP they want, PlusNet is confident that customers will choose to stay.
More Support Support pages have been improved and streamlined to provide support information at your fingertips. A Top 5 FAQ section has been created so that you can see at a glance the most common questions posed allowing you to quickly find the answers you need.
New products Last month of course saw the introduction of Broadband Home, offering real "10x faster than dial" 512k broadband at a real price from only £14.99 a month. Low-cost options designed for less demanding users are available, as well as unmetered and high-performance 1Mb and 2Mb options.
PlusNet is committed to continually focus on the service we provide for you, our customer. We hope this summary has provided some insight into the many activities our network and support team are engaged in. You can be assured that this work will continue into the next quarter of the year with passion.