2011/05/08 - Scheduled Internet Outage
Neotel have given notice that they intend to perform scheduled maintenance on Rhodes' Internet connection on Sunday 8 May 2011. Work will commence at 07:00 and should be completed by 14:00. It is not entirely clear whether Rhodes Internet connection will be disrupted as a result of this work, but we're certainly at significant risk of an outage.

Thus whilst this work is in progress, Rhodes may have intermittent or no access to the Internet. You will likely experience any outage as an ERR_DNS_FAIL or ERR_CONNECT_FAIL error when trying to access the Internet. When accessing secure (https://) web sites, your browser may report that the connection has timed out or the site is unreachable.

You are strongly encouraged to plan around this work and assume Internet access will be unavailable for the entire maintenance period.

During this time, Infraco (on behalf of Neotel) will be splicing the new fibre optic cable between Rhodes and Albany substation onto the fibre between Albany substation and Port Elizabeth. This is in preparation for replacing the existing microwave link with a new fibre optic one. The nature of the maintenance may involve work on live power lines, and for obvious safety reasons such work can only be done during daylight hours. For this reason it is scheduled outside the normal Sunday maintenance window. We're told that the work doesn't actually affect the fibre optic pair that's currently providing Rhodes with Internet access, but that it is possible that this pair might be damaged (and then repaired) during the course of the work.

This is a re-attempt of the work first scheduled for 20 February 2011.
While it's difficult to be sure given the number of contractors involved, it seems to be confirmed that this work will be going ahead on Sunday.
I've just spoken to the Infraco technician attending to the scheduled work. He's indicated that work has been slowed by the rain, and that while they are splicing the fibre optic cables at the moment, he expects that they'll still be busy for some time.