Transitioning to LGfL with EasySwitch - we aim to make it as stress free as we can
LGfL will allocate your School with a Customer Success Manager who will discuss the onboarding tasks covered in the sections below with your IT support staff or 3rd party organisation to plan your transition to the new LGfL service.
Your Customer Success Manager will regularly check-in on progress to ensure services are up and running ahead of the transition.
What are the steps to move to LGfL?
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Connecting your school to LGfL Broadband
LGfL will complete a site survey with a school representative present
A site survey will be required to determine the best mutually acceptable route for the new connection. Your site may be classified as “On-Net” if it can be served directly by Virgin Media Business or “Off-Net” if another telecoms company (usually BT) is needed to provide the ‘last mile’ connection to your establishment.
To find out if your site is “On-Net” or “Off-Net”, you will need to log into the LGfL Support Site, select the "My Account" tab, choose "LGfL’s deployment" from the menu, then select "Virgin Media" tab. The relevant information is displayed in the Site Status section. To gain access to the LGfL Support Site, review the next section on Setting up your school to access support, resources and services
For On-Net sites, Virgin Media Business will contact the site to make an appointment for a surveyor to attend and undertake the survey.
If your site is Off-Net, BT will contact the site to make an appointment for their surveyor to attend and undertake the survey.
BE AWARE of the points below, as they may delay your connection
The surveyor will not have been DBS checked, so it is essential that they are accompanied throughout the survey visit. If re-visits are requested due to staff not being present for the visit, this may incur an additional charge of at least £250.
If your site was built before 2000 it is a legal requirement that you have an Asbestos Report available to view on-site. When the planner visits your site, they will request to see your Asbestos Report. If this is not available, then the site survey cannot be completed, and may incur an additional charges.
2. School to review cabinet space and power requirements for broadband equipment
You will need to ensure that there is sufficient space in your equipment cabinet to accommodate the new equipment you will receive as part of your LGfL Broadband service. Details of the space needed can be found in the LGfL Support Site, select the "My Account" tab, then choose "LGfL’s deployment" from the menu, then select the "Equipment" tab.
You will also need to ensure sufficient power sockets are available. Again, the requirements can be found in the "Equipment" tab.
In addition to the equipment and power requirements shown in the LGfL Support Site, it is possible that additional equipment while be provided by LGfL requiring an extra 45mm of height in your rack and an additional power socket may be needed.
If your connection will be 200Mbps or higher, a suitable Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) should be considered. These requirements will be confirmed to you during the site survey.
BE AWARE of the points below, as they may delay your connection
If enough cabinet space or power sockets are not available when the survey is made it is likely to result in your installation being put on hold until you are able to advise that sufficient rack space has been provided.
Any wall-mounted cabinet to be used for the LGfL service must not be mounted with the top of the cabinet higher than 2.5 metres. If a cabinet exceeds this height, the delivery will not be able to go ahead as the engineer is not allowed to work at that height. This also applies to any work required to rectify faults in the future.
Installed equipment can be noisy and, in summer, generate unwelcome heat and may be regarded as unsuitable for installation in an office or classroom environment.
Where the site has an existing service prior to the provision of the LGfL service, the responsibility for having this service ceased and disconnected, and the equipment removed, lies with the site.
Where the rack space and power requirement (see above) is dependent upon the removal of existing equipment, this must be carried out prior to the installation of the LGfL service.
3. School representative then approves the route for broadband connection
For On-Net sites, following the site survey, the resulting plan of the cabling route will be uploaded by Virgin Media Business to the LGfL Support Site, select the "My Account" tab, then choose "LGfL’s deployment" from the menu, then select the "Documents" tab. A school representative will need to confirm the route within the LGfL Support Site for the installation to continue.
For Off-Net sites, the route will be agreed between the site representatives and the BT planner at the end of the survey and will not be posted on the LGfL Support Site. BT will then plan the work and contact the site when they are ready to proceed with the installation.
BE AWARE of the points below, as they may delay your connection
Any delay in the approval of route will delay the installation date, therefore, it is important to review and approve the route as soon as possible once it is available on the LGfL Support Site.
The site representative who is authorised to approve the route, and anyone with a concern regarding the cable route must attend the site survey. If re- visits are requested due to staff not being present, subsequently requesting a change of route, may incur an additional charge of at least £250.
4. LGfL seek approval from building owner for civil engineering works
As part of the installation of the LGfL broadband, some sites will need to have some civil engineering works (‘civils’) undertaken in order to complete the route of the new fibre onto the site and into the building.
To proceed with the civil engineering, permission will be sought by Virgin Media Business from the site owner (e.g. LA, Diocese, Academy or Foundation) for the route and associated works. This permission is called "Wayleave".
Once the Wayleave has been agreed and signed, then the civil engineering works can commence. These works occur both offsite and onsite within the school building. Onsite works will be undertaken with your cooperation in providing access to key parts of your site. These works are generally completed within working hours.
BE AWARE of the points below, as they may delay your connection
Because the department responsible for signing the Wayleave agreement feels little or no impact if they do not take swift action to support the site’s installation, this process can be subject to significant delay.
Some of these organisations have sought to levy charges for handling the agreement or declined to agree a bulk Wayleave. This can sometimes introduce an additional cost and significant delays for installations.
If your school becomes aware that the Wayleave issue is blocking their installation, you are strongly encouraged to contact the site owner to point out the establishment’s requirements and timescales.
5. School test and sign off broadband connection
For On-Net sites, Virgin Media Business engineers will fit the cable into the agreed location, usually your network cabinet. They may fit a fibre tray and some termination equipment at this stage. You will need to witness several simple tests to demonstrate the new service is working and confirm a record of this. This will be via a sign-off sheet presented to you by the Virgin Media Business engineer.
For Off-Net sites, BT engineers will fit the cable into the agreed location, usually your network cabinet. They may fit a fibre tray and some termination equipment at this stage. They will then test the circuit. If testing is successful, BT will advise Virgin Media Business and Virgin Media Business will then contact the site to arrange a date for you will need to witness several simple tests to demonstrate the new service is working and confirm a record of this. This will be via a sign-off sheet presented to you by the Virgin Media Business engineer.
BE AWARE of the points below, as they may delay your connection
If testing is not successful, this may require works to take place off-site and thus a second site visit may need to be scheduled.
Setting up access to support, resources and services
School confirm details of who needs access to LGfL Support Site
In order to access support with transition to the LGfL service and raise support ticket as part of the service, the school need provide details of staff within the school that can act as "Nominated Contacts", who are users that have the permissions to access a range of resources to configure and manage their establishment’s service. An establishment can normally have up to five Nominated Contacts.
Nominated Contacts are the only users able to access the service support resources, configure service options and obtain assistance relating to any aspect of the LGfL service.
A Nominated Contact can also view and manage the transition process, via the LGfL Support Site
A Nominated Contact is created by authorisation from the Head teacher/Principal, or other legal ‘data controller’.
LGfL use Adobe Sign to simplify the process of providing detail of Nominated Contacts, and for the Headteacher to sign online or on their mobile. Headteachers will receive a link to the documents to sign.
We have produce a quick guide for Nominated Contacts, "Get Started with the LGfL Support"
School Headteacher can delegate their role of Data Controller for your school
The provision of LGfL’s services involves interactions with ‘personal data’ as defined by Data Protection legislation. The Headteacher in a school has, by default, the role of ‘Data Controller’ (as defined under the Data Protection Act) and carries with it a number of special responsibilities.
As Data Controller, the following should be noted:
A number of services which, due to their sensitive nature or security implications, require a Headteacher's authorisation (in their capacity as ‘Data Controller’) in order to be used, once they recognise the possible implications for the school
A Headteacher can authorise such services by either
completing a Adobe Sign form to authorise services in bulk, avoiding the need for the Headteacher to log into the LGfL Support Site
logging in to the LGfL Support Site with their LGfL user account and ticking a box to indicate that they agree to the activation of individual services
For convenience, a Headteacher may elect to delegate the ‘Data Controller’ role to a senior staff colleague which will then give the latter the authority to authorise the relevant services. You will be provided with details of how to do by your Customer Success Manager.
School set up Staff and Student User Accounts for access to resources
In order for your establishment to make full use of our services and resources included with your LGfL connection, LGfL user accounts should be created for staff and pupils. LGfL user accounts can be created and maintained by several methods:
We can use information (normally overnight) from your establishment’s MIS system (where supported) to provide tailored services, such as a class mark book, the automation of user account creation and updates (for example, joiners and leavers). The Headteacher, as the Data Controller for the establishment needs to authorise this first. Once authorised, the AutoUpdate from MIS will need to be configured, for details, see How to configure AutoUpdate
Alternatively, a Nominated Contact may create a single account at any time via the LGfL Support Site, and click on the the "User Accounts" tab, select "User Request (Single)" and fill in the online form.
If your MIS system is not supported, LGfL user accounts can be created for a whole school by submitting a spreadsheet. A pre-configured spreadsheet template is available to download from the LGfL Support Site. Output from a Management Information System (MIS) such as SIMS can be imported into this spreadsheet template and the file uploaded via a dedicated page on the support site. More details on how these techniques work are to be found in the online LGfL Support Site User Guide.
School register any IT Organisations supporting the school
If a school uses an IT Organisation to support them, with the Headteacher's authorisation, LGfL can set up this organisation to access LGfL services and the LGfL Support Site to aid in the transition to LGfL and provide ongoing support to the school.
The school will need to authorise someone within the IT Organisation to act as point of contact, and they will then be able to set up their staff to act as Nominated Contacts for the school.
As soon as possible, the school should confirm details of any 3rd party organisation used for IT support. LGfL will get in contact with these organisations to obtain the authorisation from the school and then set them up.
School set up secure Remote Access
LGfL offers all staff in schools the ability to remotely access resources located inside your network (i.e. to access school machines from home). This is accomplished by a set of tools collectively referred to as Freedom2Roam which is based upon industry- standard Cisco remote access technologies and hardware.
To make use of this technology at your establishment:
The Headteacher (or appointed delegate) must log into the LGfL Support Site access the "Service Desk" tab and then choose "Remote Access resources" from the menu.
The Headteacher must tick the box to "Enable Freedom2Roam access for this school".
After the service is enabled, a Nominated Contact will have full access to configure the service.
Full instructions on configuring this resource and an explanation of the various configuration options are found in the LGfL Support Site User Guide.
LGfL has categorised other, third party, remote access products into three categories. Some pose potential security risks, for further information on remote access and the various options visit www.policies.lgfl.net and download the LGfL Security Guidance document.
School set up two-factor authentication for key staff
Two-factor authentication increases the security of LGfL user accounts, in addition to a username and password, the user will need to enter a passcode randomly generated. Their are a number of authentication apps, including Google, Microsoft and Apple which are supported and are free to download from the Apple Store or Google Play Store. The passcode will typically last for 30 seconds before being updated and replaced with another.
The LGfL Support Site not only contains a large amount of potentially sensitive data (including user details of both staff and pupils) but also allows Nominated Contacts to manage key LGfL hosted services for the school.
For this reason, schools are advised to consider the use of second factor authentication for its key account holders (Nominated Contacts and / or the Headteacher).
Two-factor authentication is not mandatory for school staff, however, there are a small number of services where they are mandatory due to having a higher security risk profile.
Two-factor authentication is mandatory for 3rd party organisations providing support to your school.
Preparing for the transition to LGfL Broadband
School confirm and review IP address range
As soon as possible we would ask that you can provide confirmation of your existing schools IP address range, this can be obtained from your existing provider.
Where possible we will endeavour to reserve your IP subnets that match your existing IP range to reduce the impact of the move to LGfL.
In some cases, this might not be possible, and you may need re-address your internal network and devices, you can access details of your IP allocation via the LGfL Support Site.
School review web filtering policies
Part of the transition involves updating the web filtering service within your school. By default, once your school is connected to LGfL it will be subject to default filtering policies which define access to all websites outside the school’s own network.
These policies have been designed to provide a level of filtering that attempts to balance the requirements of schools to access the maximum number of sites with the minimum level of inconvenience. The default rules block access to certain content categories that most schools would wish to be denied to their pupils.
All default filtering policies can be amended by a filtering administrator in your establishment, so there is a large degree of flexibility available to schools to modify the policies to suit local needs and levels of supervision.
Nominated Contacts can access the WebScreen filtering service by going to https://webscreen.lgfl.org.uk. You use your LGfL user account to access this service.
Schools can modify existing policies and create additional ones, by allowing or blocking whole categories, individual sites or even keywords. Schools also choose how, when and to whom each policy is applied.
Active Directory integration can be deployed to further enhance the filtering and reporting at a user level.
Instructions, including self-help videos and advice for school-level management of the Webscreen filtering system can be found here https://webscreen.lgfl.org.uk/UserManual/index.html
Free training courses are available on how to use the web filtering solution, details of upcoming courses can be found at https://www.lgfl.net/training/
School confirm firewall configuration
LGfL operates a secure network and this means that our firewall policies are set-up to protect the schools across our network. This default configuration may be different to your current firewall configuration. We can make changes to the firewall rules on request, and will provide advice on the risk of any requested firewall configuration changes.
Please ensure that you have spoken with your previous service provider to ascertain whether changes need to be made to the default firewall configuration. It might be that a particular service used in your school relies on ports being opened on your firewall. These settings will need to be replicated and it’s important that we know about these before you switch over to the LGfL service.
It is recommended that before plugging your local network into the LGfL firewall, that appropriate testing has been carried out. To do this, we would suggest plugging a laptop into the LGfL firewall and testing services that you would usually expect to be able to access.
School advise LGfL of planned switch over date
It is important that before you switch over your to the new LGfL broadband connection that you let LGfL know. This is so we can ensure that all the prerequisites have been met and so that we can provide support remotely to you on the day.
Please discuss with your Customer Success Manager the date you plan to switch over.
School update DNS forwarders for external DNS Lookups on day of switch over
Schools need to designate a DNS server on a network as a forwarder by configuring the other DNS servers in the network to forward the queries that they cannot resolve locally to that DNS server. By using a forwarder, you can manage name resolution for names outside your network, such as names on the Internet, and improve the efficiency of name resolution for the computers in your network
On the day of switch over, and after the pre-requisites above have been carried out, you should arrange the schools internal DNS forwarders to be updated.
Your Customer Success Manager will advise you of the IPs to use for your school.
School configure backup and DR to the cloud
As part of your LGfL service, schools are provided with free encrypted storage on our secure offsite backup storage platform GridStore, the size of storage available to the school is dependent on the type of school.
If you would like to use this service, please log on to the LGfL Support Site and raise a "Support request", selecting "GridStore Service Order" as the topic.
A backup agent will be configured for your school and provided to you as a download to install onto your servers. You do not need your LGfL Internet connection to be live before you start using this service as the backups can be securely sent to LGfL’s Data Centres over the Internet.
School configuration VoIP telephony and test
If your school uses a Voice over IP (VoIP) telephony system, you will need to test it prior to switch over to the LGfL connection, as their may be specific configuration required to ensure it works. You may need to arrange changes to your system with your VoIP supplier.
Please discuss this with your Customer Success Manager.
School migrate Website hosting
As part of the LGfL service a web hosting platform is provided for school websites. This offers a fully resilient hosting environment balanced across multiple UK data centres with all content backed-up on a nightly basis. Schools have full control over the management and content of their websites with access via a simple, user-friendly web-based interface.
Website hosting is included at no additional cost as part of the LGfL service. Schools are able to use either an IIS (Microsoft) or Apache (Linux) resilient platform with a starting limit of 15GB per site.
To make use of the LGfL web hosting service please raise a support case via the LGfL Support Site and ask for it to be enabled. You will receive details on how to access your web space once int has been set up.
The web hosting service may be set up and activated in advance of the installation of the physical connection but not before the Nominated Contacts have been created.
Externally hosted sites
It is possible that your school website is hosted (stored) ‘in the cloud’ (i.e. on a remote web server rather than on a server on your local network). If so, the transition to LGfL will not affect your access to it.
However, if your website is hosted with your current internet service provider (ISP) it may cease to exist when you disconnect from their services. Therefore, the school will need to move it to the LGfL platform before the end of your existing contract or to another cloud platform.
You will need to know the following details, to be able to move it away from the existing provider:
Who it is hosted with?
Who controls and manages the domain name (most important)?
Who designs and updates the website?
Internally hosted sites
Establishments that run their own internal web site servers need to request an internal IP address to be mapped to be a real-world IP (a ‘MIP’ or managed IP address).
To request a MIP, log into the LGfL Support Site, select the "My Account" tab, then choose "LGfL’s deployment" from the menu, then select "Firewall and Mail Relay" tab, and select "Request a MIP"
The domain DNS settings would then be changed to reflect the change of the real- world IP address.
School migrate Domain Name Services
As part of the service, LGfL can host and manage your DNS free of charge. If your current Internet Service Provider manages your DNS, you will need to move this to LGfL.
If you need to do this, raise a ticket via the LGfL Support Site
School migrate mail services
If your existing Internet Service Provider provide you with an email service, you will need to migrate to a cloud based mail system, such as Google or Microsoft, or you can migrate to LGfL propriety mail services: one designed exclusively for staff users cand another for pupils called LondonMail. This will need to be done before you existing service terminates.
If your school hosts its own local mail server (for example, a Microsoft Exchange system) then the internal IP address of the server will need to be mapped to be a real-world IP (a ‘MIP’ or managed IP address) and the relevant ports opened to allow it to be accessed. To request a MIP, log into the LGfL Support Site, select the "My Account" tab, then choose "LGfL’s deployment" from the menu, then select "Firewall and Mail Relay" tab, and select "Request a MIP"
Please discuss your existing email service with your Customer Success Manager, so that they can advise on the options available to you.
Mail Protect setup (Optional)
LGfL uses the industry-leading email filtering system, MailProtect, to remove viruses and inappropriate content and attachments, at the same time as preventing spam mail reaching your inbox (you can opt to receive by email a daily digest of the spam items which have been filtered out so you can check for any you might want to see and help the intelligent system learn and improve).
Already using Microsoft O365 / Google
The LGfL email filtering service (MailProtect) offers a hosted 'Software as a Service' solution that removes the need to manage complex, locally installed software, and its typically costly hardware, freeing technical staff to undertake other essential work. The service aims to provide a relatively 'low footprint' and unobtrusive solution for your organisation and can be used to add an increased layer of protection to your existing cloud email environment.
To get set-up with MailProtect, please raise a support case on the LGfL Support Site
For more information on MailProtect visit, https://www.lgfl.net/services/mail-protect