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Durham University

Computing and Information Services

Big 3 Infrastructure Programme

In June 2018 the University Executive Committee (UEC) received a report covering three main areas, collectively known as the “Big 3”:

  1. The IT Network
  2. Hosting
  3. Storage

The business case was developed into an investment proposal over the next 18 months to build capability across Computing and Information Services (CIS). UEC was supportive of investment in the Big 3 and agreed to take forward the action plan as proposed to Finance Commitee and University Council who subsequently approved the proposal.

Why is the Big 3 Needed?

The Big 3 is essential to ensure that the University has IT foundations that are robust and fit for purpose. This infrastructure programme builds on lessons learned from the New World Programme (NWP) and will introduce technologies to provide stability and appropriate underpinning architecture. Utilising simple, standard, supportable, secure, scalable solutions it will support the delivery of University projects in a time of significant change across the organisation.

What happens next?

The Big 3 will begin to provide user facing storage from the second quarter of 2019 in partnership with an external supplier who will provide the University with a managed service solution. This will allow the service to be offered through a defined cost model based on different consumption requirements and financial show back. These costs can be used as a baseline to develop a pricing structure for storage which can form part of research grant bids going forward, in conjunction with the Research Office. Simultaneously work will be undertaken to improve the stability and effectiveness of the hosting platform used by university applications within our private cloud environment. Find out more about hosting and storage

Work to complete the migration to the new university network will be undertaken with a network architecture partner who will help to confirm the most appropriate priorities. The network component will see the completion of civil engineering works across the city to install modern fibre optic cabling in mapped duct routes that facilitate future expansion and increase operational resilience. It will also allow the legacy network to be decommissioned, improving connectivity speeds and user experience. Find out more about the IT network

Visit the Big 3 news section for regular progress updates.

How will the Big 3 affect me?

This website will be developed with relevant information about the programme of works. A set of Frequently Asked Questions has already been setup which we will add to as the programme progresses. Any further questions can be submitted via: