NinerNet Communications™
System Status

Server and System Status

NC020: Data centre maintenance complete

28 April 2016 22:20:58 +0000

We’ve been informed that the network maintenance within the NC020 data centre was completed successfully this morning. All services are running normally.

NC020: Data centre network maintenance

16 April 2016 10:52:19 +0000

The data centre where server NC020 is located plans to do some possibly disruptive network maintenance. They write, “We have taken precautions in preparation for this maintenance and do not anticipate a disruption lasting longer than one hour during the scheduled maintenance window.”

The maintenance window will be on Thursday, 28 April, between 05:00 and 10:00 UTC.

Please use the website to convert this time into your time zone.

Server NC020 still hosts a few websites that have not yet been migrated to server NC031. It also hosts some custom mailing lists and some secondary email domains. And it hosts this status blog, actually.

If you have any questions or concerns or want to find out if any of your services are hosted on this server, please let us know. Thank-you.

Email migration: Update 1

21 August 2015 21:58:35 +0000

Following are the details of the email migration of some clients this weekend. This is a long post, but we’ve broken it down and bolded key points for quicker scanning. You can use your web browser’s “find” feature to look for key words that might help you locate information about any issues you may encounter.

  • WHO: If this migration affects you, you will have received an email about it on 14 August. All remaining email domains hosted on server NC018 are being migrated to server NC027.
  • WHAT: Migration of the remaining email accounts on server NC018 to server NC027.
  • WHERE: In cyberspace, of course.
  • WHEN: The migration will start at 19:00 UTC on Saturday, 22 August. Please check the World Time Server for a conversion to your time zone. We do not have a precise estimate for the duration of the migration, but it will be several hours. During that time email will continue to be delivered, either to the accounts on the old server (NC018) before being transferred to the new server, or to the accounts on the new server (NC027). Updates will continue to be posted here throughout the migration.
  • WHY: Server NC018 has outlived its useful life and needs to be replaced. The new server is an improvement over the old server in every respect.

Things you need to do:

Change the configuration of your email program after 19:00 UTC on 22 August. (Please check the World Time Server for a conversion to your time zone.) Here are links to illustrated guides to configure the most common email programs in use:

(Our thanks to “The Lowdown” / African VSAT Systems for these guides.)

Here is a summary of the main configuration items that need to be changed:

  • Use port 587 for outgoing (SMTP) mail.
  • Use TLS (or SSL if TLS is not present in your email program) for all incoming and outgoing mail.
  • Use SMTP authentication for outgoing mail.
  • Make sure you’re using a sub-domain of the domain for mail server names:
    • for incoming (POP or IMAP) email, and
    • for outgoing (SMTP) email.

And here are the actual settings that we provide to new clients on server NC027:

  • Email address:
  • User name:
  • Password: The correct password on your email account. In the future, if you want to change your password, you can do so through the control panel (administrators only) or through the webmail.
  • Password type: Plain
  • Incoming (POP/IMAP) mail server:
  • Incoming mail server port: 995 (POP) or 993 (IMAP)
  • Outgoing (SMTP) mail server:
  • Outgoing mail server port: 587
  • Authentication: Turned on for SMTP
  • Encrypted connection: TLS (if it’s an option in your email program) or SSL (if TLS is not shown as an option). If TLS doesn’t work, please try SSL.

All of the above settings are important and required. None are optional. Your password has not changed from what it was on the old server, so if you’re not sure that you remember your password, please don’t edit it in your email program.

Using the above settings you can configure any email program on any computer, phone or tablet, even ones for which we have not provided unique instructions.

In our experience, 99% of problems clients experience with email are mis-configurations. If you run into a problem, please take a deep breath, then double- and triple-check your configuration — spelling, check/tick boxes, and various other parameters — to be 100% sure that everything is set EXACTLY correctly. When configuring email settings, there is no such thing as “close enough”. All of the settings are there for a reason and need to be set exactly as they are shown in the configuration instructions — with the one exception where some email programs work with TLS set and some with SSL set. Rebooting can work wonders … seriously. When reporting problems to support, please ensure you send us the exact text of any error messages you are seeing. We cannot help you if you just tell us that “it doesn’t work,” as our first response will be to ask you for the exact text of any error messages you see and we could have had that on the first message.

Here are a few additional notes:

  • Mailing lists: Domains with Mailman mailing lists will not be migrated this weekend, but they will in the very near future. Domains with custom mailing lists will be migrated this weekend.
  • Letter case: All email accounts will be set up in lower-case letters. This doesn’t make a difference from an email point of view (messages addressed to BOB@EXAMPLE.COM and will be delivered to the same account), but it does make a difference when trying to log in. If, for example, you set up your account on server NC018 as, it will be set up as on server NC027. If you try to log in as, your attempt will fail, so please log in as
  • Accounts over quota: The contents of accounts that are already over quota on server NC018 will not be transferred.
  • Address books, calendars, notes, etc.: If you have any of these stored in the webmail on server NC018, these will not be transferred. Please ensure that you have local copies of this data to upload to the new server.
  • Changes on server NC018: Please do not add, remove or change any email accounts to, from or on server NC018 after 00:01 (12:01 am) UTC on Saturday, 22 August. (World Time Server.) Any such changes may not be reflected on server NC027.
  • Control panel log-in details: Following the completion of the migration, account contacts will be sent log-in information for the control panel on server NC027.

Based on experience from previous migrations, here are some issues we expect that some clients will experience:

  • Multiple copies of old messages: This has been reported by some users of Outlook. This is an Outlook issue over which we have no control, and it should eventually clear up.
  • Company contacts: If you are not our contact for your company, please deal with the person who is our contact, and we will assist them. If they are unable to help you, they will refer us to you.
  • MTN business customers: Some (not all) MTN business customers have a unique SMTP set-up that requires they use MTN settings for outgoing email, and you may not be able to use our server to send email. If you are an MTN business customer, this may apply to you if you already have an MTN IP address in the outgoing (SMTP) server field in your email program’s settings. If that is the case, it’s probably best to leave your SMTP settings as they are. However, the incoming (POP/IMAP) server settings need to be exactly as described in our configuration documentation (linked to above).
  • iPhone: It seems that the iPhone does not turn on SSL/TLS by default, so you have to go out of your way to find this under “advanced” settings and turn it on. Please also ensure that the port is set correctly for incoming mail: 993 for IMAPS (IMAP over SSL/TLS).
  • Android: Contrary to the iPhone, we’ve had a report from a client using an Android-based phone that port 993 did not work, but 143 did. Try port 993 first if you’re using IMAP, but then try port 143 if port 993 doesn’t work.
  • Eudora: The “Secure Sockets when Sending” field on the “Generic Properties” tab needs to be set to “Required, STARTTLS”, and the “Secure Sockets when Receiving” field on the “Incoming Mail” tab needs to be set to “Required, Alternate Port”.
  • Firewalls: We spent a significant amount of time dealing with a firewall issue with one client, after being assured that the firewall had been opened by the network management company managing their firewall. It turned out that the firewall was not open, or at least not sufficiently for the type of connection that was required. After it was properly configured, email miraculously flowed with no problem. Please check your firewalls!
  • Email-sending applications: Another fairly unique situation was encountered with a client who uses a “localhost” web and mail server installed on their computer to run a reservations system. This was unable to connect to the mail server, and the vendor of the software was also unable to determine the problem with their software.
  • Bouncing email: If some people tell you that their email to you is bouncing, and the bounce message reads as follows — “REJECT ACCESS DENIED. Your email was rejected because the sending mail server does not identify itself correctly. (.local)” — then their mail server (probably Microsoft Exchange) is incorrectly configured. Please send them a link to Email migration: Update 13 and ask them to forward that link to their system administrator for resolution of the issue.
  • Outlook 2003: Outlook 2003 does not support TLS. This is software that is over a decade old, and Microsoft stopped supporting it in 2014. Now would be a good time to upgrade … seriously. However, apparently a 2004 “hotfix” available from Microsoft will add TLS support to Outlook 2003, but we cannot vouch for this personally, nor are we aware of any clients who have used this.

As always, please contact NinerNet support if you have any questions, concerns or problems. Thank-you for your patience as we move your email accounts to a newer, faster, more secure server.

Server NC020 upgrade complete

18 March 2011 09:02:39 +0000

The memory upgrade on server NC020 is complete, and the server was rebooted at 08:54 UTC.

Server NC020 memory upgrade

18 March 2011 08:45:14 +0000

We will shortly be increasing the memory on server NC020 to accommodate increasing use of this server. The server will be unavailable for about five minutes during the next hour.

We will post a follow-up message here when this maintenance is complete.

Mailing lists on server NC018 back online

14 June 2009 02:57:56 +0000

The issue that caused us to suspend the processing of mailing lists with PHP List has been resolved, and the mailing lists are fully functional once more. Just to clarify, it was only the sending of mail-outs that was suspended; all other functions remained online.

Thanks for your patience.

Mailing lists on server NC018

14 June 2009 00:26:20 +0000

The processing of mailing lists with PHP List has been temporarily suspended for at least the next 24 hours while we resolve an issue following an upgrade. We will have further updates here within the next 24 hours.

NinerNet home page

Systems at a Glance:

Server NC023, London, United Kingdom (Relay server), INTERNAL.NC023InternalUp?
Server NC028, Vancouver, Canada (Monitoring server), INTERNAL.NC028InternalUp?
Server NC031, New York, United States of America (Web server), INTERNAL.NC031InternalUp?
Server NC033, Toronto, Canada (Primary nameserver), OPERATIONAL.NC033OperationalUp?
Server NC034, Lusaka, Zambia (Phone server), INTERNAL.NC034InternalUp?
Server NC035, Sydney, Australia (Secondary nameserver), OPERATIONAL.NC035OperationalUp?
Server NC036, Amsterdam, Netherlands (Mail server), OPERATIONAL.NC036OperationalUp?
Server NC040, Toronto, Canada (Web server), INTERNAL.NC040InternalUp?
Server NC041, New York, United States of America (Web server), OPERATIONAL.NC041OperationalUp?
Server NC042, Seattle, United States of America (Status website), OPERATIONAL.NC042OperationalUp?


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