Computer Glitch Stalls Phones

Weekend System Problem Delays Service for 400

A computer glitch over the weekend delayed telephone service for approximately 400 Harvard students, continuing many undergraduates' ongoing battle to activate their phones.

Students who were promised telephone service by Monday will not likely get it until this morning, said Jack Wise, the manager of the Harvard student telephone office.

The computer systems failure occurred while Harvard's Office of Information Technology was trying to reactivate the lines with New England Telephone, said C. Julian Beaudet, a systems consultant for New England Telephone.

"Harvard was notified of the error when we first learned of it Monday morning from a computer report," Beaudet said.

The systems failure, the origin of which is not known, cost the telephone office approximately six to eight hours work.

Harvard reentered the data on Monday and some of the telephone lines should be activated this morning, Beaudet said.

Wise said he did not know how many students remain without service on campus. He said the office is doing everything possible to accelerate service but added that the increased number of applications were creating further delays.

The student telephone office has activated 6500 lines this fall, approximately 1000 more than last year, and is receiving more applications every day.

Wise said the final section of campus to receive telephone hookup will be the new DeWolfe St. housing complex.

Wise said DeWolfe was an unusual situation because each telephone line installed in the new dorms requires manual hookup instead of simply being switched on from the telephone office. Wise said he expects DeWolfe will have full service within days.

Wise also said that students who do not have their Personal Authorization Codes activated or who have any other problems with their service should contact his office.

But Wise's comments were of little consolation for students still without telephone service.

"It's annoying but I'm patient," said Jenna L. Andelman '95 said. "But I don't know for how long."