Computing Services home page

Year 2000 Issues home page

Contingency Plan Report - Financial Affairs

Year 2000 Issues home page




Plan of Attack

Inventory Rep.

Mission Critical

Contingency Plan

Y2K Status -
All Items


MC Remediation

MC Retesting

Final Remediation

Final Retesting

Site Map



 Welcome  What's New  


In accord with campus Year 2000 definition of Contingency Plan the following alternative plans have been created for the theoretical possibility that a mission critical item were to fail because of a Year 2000 problem. These plans are not an indication of expected failure, but are theoretical in nature due to the importance of mission critical items.

AVCF - Financial Affairs/Treasurer's Office Y2K Contingency Plan (Jan. 15, 1999)

If, despite our best efforts at remediation beforehand, a mission critical inventory item, supplier or service provider is unavailable for longer than one week after January 1, 2000, the following alternative plans explain how our department will accomplish our mission critical functions.


The oldest mission-critical PCs we have are Pentium 120s. This doesn't include a 386 that we already know will either be replaced prior to 1/1/2000 or have its functions rolled into another workstation which will be compliant. In the event that BIOS upgrades are not available for these machines, the basic plan will be to replace motherboards and, when necessary, CPUs. Not all of our 60 workstations are mission critical, so a rotating schedule based on priority would be followed, as allowed by the budget. We estimate that 10 motherboard/CPU combinations at approx. $250 each would cover critical functions at the start of the year. The others could be upgraded as money became available. Impact: $2500.

Should our NT servers fail, the short-term solution would be to migrate to usage of the Computing Services "Kronos" NetWare server as had been previously planned. This would have no major budget impact. In the longer run, as budget became available we would either purchase the parts necessary to rebuild functional NT servers, or purchase new ones if repair was not a viable option.

Implicit in the above discussion is the assumption that those who use PCs that are neither upgradeable nor mission critical would share time on functional PCs in order to complete their work.


  1. Adobe Exchange Suite: Should the version we have (3.01) not be functional, we will purchase a new version. If there is no new version available, then this becomes non-critical since it is only mission critical if we assume that other information providers are using the PDF standard. Impact: $50.
  2. Brio Technology: Since this is only one of a number of ODBC (Open DataBase Connectivity) programs capable of accessing the Data Warehouse, the contingency plan is to seek out and utilize whichever ODBC software is Y2K compliant. Not knowing what this will be makes it difficult to estimate a monetary impact. The most likely scenario, though, is that MS Office 97 (upgraded) or Office 2000 containing Access will be compliant. We already own Office 97 and if necessary (see item #6 below) will purchase 2000, so the dollar impact is estimated below (#6).
  3. WS-FTP and War FTP Server: These are marginally mission critical. If either of these freeware programs is not compliant, we will seek out replacements from a web-based catalogue such as the TUCOWS (The Ultimate Collection Of Winsock Software) site.
  4. QWS Plus: As the primary means of connecting to our campus mainframe systems, including accounting, travel, payroll, personnel, etc., this 3270 software is vital. Since QWS and all of its predecessors were chosen by the Computing Services workstation team, we will look to them for guidance on any replacement that might be necessary. Since pricing also comes through CS, it is difficult to forecast any budget impact. Prices would fluctuate wildly if we went out on our own versus CS buying a block of site licenses and forwarding a per seat cost to us as is traditionally done. All we can do here is protect some modest amount of funds against a possible increase in the per license cost, assuming a new type of software: $10 per seat X 60 = $600.
  5. Windows 95a and 95b: We already plan, unless the budget does not allow, to move from all Win 95/98 platforms to Windows NT 4.0 Workstation before 1/1/2000. MS has released service packs (which we must verify) that supposedly take care of OS-related Y2K issues. Assuming this is true, the approx. $2100 cost for the competitive upgrade will occur before this contingency plan comes into effect. If the migration to NT does not occur, we would be looking at upgrades from 95a and/or 95b to 98 assuming that patches to the 95 products were not available. Worst case scenario: 54 upgrades from 95 to 98 at $2045 total.
  6. Office 95: Two possibilities occur here. One is that Office 2000 is released and Y2K patches aren't available for either Office 95 or Office 97, in which case we need to upgrade all 57 copies we have of both. Since Y2K patches are currently appearing on the MS web site, this is not likely to occur. We believe the most likely scenario requiring extra budget is an upgrade to Office 97 for our 33 Office 95 users. That is the contingency for which we will be prepared. Impact: $1155.
  7. E-mail: For simplicity, we lump these together. Unless all e-mail packages fail, we will simply migrate the non-compliant packages to a compliant one. Many of these are freeware. Although we have some users currently using commercial packages such as Outlook 97/98 and Eudora Pro 4.0, most people use either Eudora Light or Outlook Express. It is our belief that either the MSIE package (containing Outlook Express) or Netscape Communicator, which are both available for free to us, will provide a viable mail package if the commercial packages fail.
  8. MeetingMaker: The campus already plans an upgrade to a compliant version. This move is scheduled for Spring 1999, which means any budget impact will occur in the current fiscal year, thus removing any need for budget contingency planning for FY 2000.
  9. Tera Term Pro: As with QWS (#4), this comes packaged as part of the CS network install. The same logic follows here. Since we currently don't pay site license fees for this Telnet software, we will assume that another freeware Telnet client that is compliant can be found if Tera Term fails.
  10. EdConnect for Windows: The U.S. Dept. of Education supplies this software, and no real alternatives exist. For a discussion regarding these external suppliers, see the section titled, "Suppliers and Service Providers."
  11. SCT Banner - Loans Mgmt. System (LMS): This is a mainframe-installed product currently administered by Computing Services' personnel. I only include it since our office is the sole user, and we obviously have a stake in its compliance. Currently, a Y2K compliant version (as certified by the manufacturer, the largest supplier of software in the Education sector) is scheduled to be installed far in advance of 1/1/2000.

Embedded Chip Devices

  1. Fax machines: As long as we have one central machine functioning, sharing can occur for some time until the budget allows full replacement. In the event that none of our machines function, we will purchase one to be centrally placed. Impact: $500.
  2. Copiers: Since we do not own these, but lease them from Printing Services, we will rely upon PS to provide a solution. If replacement of departmentally leased machines is not a viable option for them, we will rely on a centrally located machine to be shared. Possible examples are the equipment on the 4th floor, or even the main Printing and satellite Copying Services offices. If none of these work, we as an entire campus will have a problem. Other solutions include use of outside printers such as Kinko's which will have to be negotiated by Business Affairs.
  3. Credit Card processing machines: We need to confirm with the bank, but these machines have already had a Y2K upgrade applied to allow them to handle the first cards that appeared with 2000 expiration dates. If the vendor/bank cannot supply machines capable of taking credit card student payments, we would have to accept only check or cash txns. That of course would be a small worry compared to the economic impact the entire nation would suffer if these machines go down.
  4. Printers: Our assumption here is that we need only one or two networked printers to meet mission critical printing needs. Assuming that none of our printers will function, we will purchase one or two new Hewlett Packard mid-grade networked printers. Another consideration is the three MICR printers used for creation of checks. These are old enough that a lack of an upgrade is a possibility. They also keep track of date-related audit information. If they fail, we could possibly look at the less secure (temporary) use of one of the newly purchased network printers with a magnetic ink cartridge, or we could purchase replacements. Prices vary, but a conservative estimate would be $3500 ea. We currently have three. In the short run, we would probably have to get by with one or two. Total Impact: $9000.
  5. Inventory scanners: These machines have no date-related functionality (although I need to verify this). They are supposed to be verified as Y2K ok. If for some reason this isn't true, we would temporarily revert to the old, manual inventory process or skip the inventory for one year.
  6. Security camera and alarm system: More information needs to be gathered before an intelligent plan for these products can be created.

Personal Applications

  1. dBase applications: The four applications written in old dBase are almost certainly not compliant. We are currently considering the following options:
    • Check Reimbursement: write a Visual Basic replacement, use a commercial product such as Quicken, or roll this check printing in with our other MICR checks. Only the second would have a direct budget impact for the purchase of a new PC, a new printer, and the software: $2000.
    • Check recon, Endowment manager, Investment manager: these are custom applications for which there is no viable commercial alternative. We will have to internally write VB replacements, or update them to another platform which supports Y2K. In any case, there will be no budget impact.
  1. Research accounting invoice database: If the CS staff cannot provide an update to a MS Access platform that is Y2K compliant, the short term solution would be to return to manual paper processing as was previously used.
  2. COLD/FYI: We simply offer a clone copy of this software which is managed and written by CS. If they cannot provide a compliant version, we along with the rest of the campus will look to them for a replacement method of accessing invoices and other accounting reports.
  3. IVR: This is much more vital to the Registrar's office in terms of student registration. If the system cannot be made to function, we will piggy-back on whatever solution the Registrar decides to use. For our part (student payments), we could simply do without: accept only in-person, mailed, or drop box payments.

Suppliers & Service Providers

Since our external suppliers can be grouped under three categories (government, banking, and credit bureau) it is clear that options will be limited. For example, the Dept. of Education provides drawdown of funds used in Student Loans. If the Federal government cannot supply these funds, we will have no long-term replacement (nor will every other institution of higher education in the country). For approximately two to four weeks, we have sufficient reserves to continue; after that we would have to stop writing checks. This includes all checks to external vendors, etc. If our bank and the credit agencies cannot supply the systems, means and information to conduct business, we like every other business and institution will have few options. Again, as far as funds go we are ok for somewhere between two weeks and a month. After that, it's shutdown.


If the worst case scenario occurs and we need to cover the monetary costs for all contingency plans listed above, the total estimated impact for a short-term continuation of our core business is aproximately $18000. Again, this just allows core functions to continue in the early months of 2000. There would be considerable sharing of resources (inconvenience) and a mid- to long-term need for full replacement in order to allow ultimate effectiveness and efficiency to return to the office.

(The relevant campus definitions are for Mission Critical and Contingency Plan.)

© 1998 University of Arkansas

The information on this Web site is provided as a service to University of Arkansas faculty, administration, staff and students for educational and informational purposes only. The information on this Web site does not provide legal, accounting, or other professional advice or services. Use of any information in this Web site does not create a professional relationship. You should not act on the information provided in this Web site without seeking additional legal, accounting, or other professional counsel. The University of Arkansas does not warrant that by using the information of this Web site the reader's systems will be Year 2000 compliant.

The University of Arkansas shall not be responsible for any errors or omissions contained at this Web site, and reserves the right to make changes without notice. Accordingly, all information, whether from the University of Arkansas or a third party, is provided "as is."

In no event shall the University of Arkansas be liable for any damages whatsoever and, in particular, the University of Arkansas shall not be liable for special, indirect, consequential, or incidental damages, or damages for lost profits, loss of revenue, or loss of use, arising out of or related to this Web site or any links accessible through this Web site or the information contained therein, whether such damages arise in contract, negligence, tort, under statute, in equity, at law, or otherwise.
 Welcome  What's New  

Date Posted: 11/23/1998
Last update: Monday, 23-Nov-1998 14:37:13
155 Razorback Road
Fayetteville, AR 72701
(501) 575-2905