The TSRA Information Communications and Technology (ICT) team had an extremely busy year. Key activities are noted in the following paragraphs. The corporate services business plan for 2012 - 2013 has additional information.
During 2012 - 2013 TSRA data links for all of the core offices were updated, migrating from basic small business links with Internode to enterprise level links managed by Telstra. Planning for the next stage, when all the outer island offices will move across to the new corporate network, is currently underway.
High Definition videoconferencing units have now been installed in four locations, leveraging the new Telstra network to allow better communications between TSRA offices and other agencies.
All telecommunications services have now been moved from the old ISDN-based systems and are running over the new data links. The old ISDN systems will be decommissioned by the end of July 2013.
Telstra Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) telephones were trialled in the Cairns office before being rolled out to all the remote offices in the outer islands. The Cairns trial has been successful and test units are now being arranged for several outer island offices.
The new public TSRA website was successfully launched and feedback has been universally positive.
All networking equipment in the three Thursday Island offices was replaced as part of the standard maintenance replacement cycle. Significant improvements were made to office networks during the process. Phone and data networks were merged, allowing all wall ports to service all devices and a major re-cabling project was completed, removing all aging excess cabling from both data centres on Thursday Island and implementing best practice cabling standards.
Significant upgrades to storage and backup systems in the Thursday Island data centres were completed successfully. They included firmware upgrades for all TSRA Dell storage arrays and upgraded storage network switches to increase the storage access speed for all servers. This has significantly improved backup times, allowing backups to be completed outside business hours.
A number of challenges in records management were addressed. For example, two containers of records were shipped from various Thursday Island storage locations to secure record storage in Cairns. Significant improvements were made to digital records management in 2012 - 2013, and many more improvements are planned over the next 12 months.
A Network Operations Centre was established in the Thursday Island office. Different monitoring systems are currently being assessed to proactively manage the various components of the TSRA network. The centre has already allowed us to identify and remove a number of performance bottlenecks in our communications systems and datacentre hosting systems.