skip to content

Managed Web Service Help & Support



  • MWS servers are available to support of the work of the University, the Colleges and its related institutions. They can also be used to support collaborations between the University and other bodies providing the servers are managed and maintained by current members of staff or resident students of the University.
  • All fees must be supported by purchase orders acceptable to the University; cash and other 'personal' payments are not accepted.
  • Every site must have at least one Site Administrator who is a current member of staff or resident student of the University. Sites with no administrators will be disabled.
  • All Site Administrators and SSH users of MWS servers require their own personal UIS account. UIS User Administration should be consulted about people not normally entitled to UIS accounts who need to be Site administrators or SSH users.
  • Routine operating system and web server patches are installed automatically by UIS. Some of these will require that the operating system be restarted after installation and this will result in occasional short interruption to site availability.
  • MWS users do not get 'root' access to their MWS servers. The expectation is that Site Administrators will be able to achieve everything that they realistically need to do without needing root access.

Responsibilities of Site Administrators

Site Administrators are the people who originally requested the site and the people who subsequently take on responsible for the site's operation, have access to the MWS Control Panel and have SSH access to the site.

Site administrators are responsible for:

  • ensuring that sites are operated within the relevant rules, policies and the law (see In particular (but not limited to):
  • ensuring that sites have appropriate privacy and cookie policies
  • dealing with complaints, take-down requests, etc. relating to their sites
  • creating and maintaining web site content. Administrators may install content management systems and other web applications (subject to compatibility with the underlying platform) but are responsible for that installation and subsequent maintenance of the software and for keeping it up-to-date and secure.
  • upgrading to new versions of the underlying operating system in a timely fashion when they become available. Facilities are provided to allow Site administrators to test the effect of such upgrades and to fix any resulting problems, and then to upgrade their sites at a time convenient to them. Site administrators are responsible for completing the upgrade procedure before the version they are currently using expires. Sites running expired versions of the operating system will be upgraded by UIS (which may break the site) or be disabled.

Rights and responsibilities of University Information Services

  • UIS may disable sites that are causing problems for other users of the service or which are otherwise in contravention of these Terms of Use. Wherever possible Site administrators will be warned before this happens.
  • UIS is responsible for maintaining the hardware supporting the MWS, the system hosting MWS servers, the base operating system on the MWS servers and the provided web server software.
  • UIS is responsible for creating 'disaster recovery' backups of MWS servers to allow it to recover following catastrophic failure.
  • UIS does not offer a formal SLA for this service. Sites are implemented on a pair of Hosts located in physically distinct data centres within the University. Data is replicated between Hosts such that MWS servers can be transparently and automatically moved between Hosts for maintenance or following a failure. This is expected to lead to very high underlying availability of individual Sites.