XILO Communications Ltd. : Blog

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BLOG

Our blog includes company news, recent announcements and upcoming service changes.

Easter Bank Holiday 2010 - Opening Hours

During the bank holiday, we will have slightly different operating hours for telephone support.

Our telephone support will be closed on the following days, re-opening again at 10am on Tuesday 6th March.

Friday 2nd March - Bank Holiday
Saturday 3rd March - Weekend
Sunday 4th March - Weekend
Monday 5th March - Bank Holiday

We are unable to raise faults for action over these days to BT and other suppliers for customers that do not have Enhanced Care. For faults raised after 8pm on Thursday 1st March, will be first reviewed on Tuesday and BT’s standard SLA will start.

During the weekend, email based support will be fully functional.

In addition, we are looking at text (SMS) based support for emergencies that relate to broadband outside of general telephone support operating hours.

We hope everyone has an enjoyable extended weekend and may be even some good weather!

Credit and Debit card payment changes.

In the coming week, we will be making some small changes to the way that certain credit and debit card payments are handled.

We have been working with our merchant service provider on a way to continue to accept Maestro debit cards for recurring transactions. Many providers, not only those offering hosting services but telephony, internet and even subscription services have stopped offering recurring payments on certain types of cards, some have even gone to removing debit card payment options completely.

Under new rules announced by Mastercard last year, the recurring payment facility on Maestro debit cards would no longer be possible and that each and every transaction would need to be validated by their 3D Secure service.

Whilst this is not an issue for the first transaction on such debit card as the user would be present and have the ability to interact with the on-screen authentication, it would make automatic recurring payments impossible as there would be no 3D Secure interaction and as such, the transaction would be declined.

We refused to accept that over 60% of our customers who use debit cards to fund their accounts and make their monthly payments would need to either obtain a credit card or pay via another manual method such as PayPal, both of which would be huge inconveniences.

After working tirelessly with our merchant service provider, liaising with APACS and other third parties, we are pleased to report that we will be able to offer full recurring payments on all card types (Visa, Visa Debit, Visa Electron, Mastercard, Maestro, Solo, JCB and Amex).

Customers are not required to make any changes to their accounts and payments will continue as normal. We will still require the address on your account with us to match that registered at your bank and, if requested, to enter your password as part of the 3DSecure or VbV for a transaction to be authorised.

The ability to change a card will no longer be possible without payment of an invoice due to the new requirements of authenticating a new card used on an account for the first time (entering your 3DSecure or VbV PIN number if requested).

We’re going Carbon Neutral. Have you?

We’ve recently looked into the amount of CO2 that we output into the environment and it is generated in so many ways, from the servers we run, company mobile phones, computers and laptops that we use on a day to day basis, cars and so on.

This is always increasing, as we add more servers or visit the datacentre more to install new kit. Even as servers become busier, they will draw further power from the electricity supply, thus generating more heat and in turn CO2.

For our core systems such as our website, internal mail servers and various other services, we have already started using virtualisation allowing us to harness the full power of a server instead of having several servers running with very little load. This not only means that we’re using less electricity, but also generating less heat (and some of the racks we have seen in some datacentres can get very toasty!)

All packaging that we receive such as cardboard, paper and plastic is all recycled so that it can be re-used in the future and any old hardware is correctly disposed of in an environmentally friendly way.

Even our company mobile phones are being made carbon neutral and at the end of their useful life they will also be recycled so that none of chemicals can enter the environment.

We’ll be ensuring that all of our shared, reseller, and VPS servers are made carbon neutral too. Any dedicated server or colocation customers that want to join us in lowering CO2, can do at coco2.org for a small annual fee.

CentralNic domain transfers now supported

We are pleased to announce that we are now able to support inbound CentralNic domain transfers from other registrars.

Currently we have only added the most popular suffixes onto our system but if you have a domain in another CentralNic suffix, please raise a ticket at http://my.xilo.net with the domain and the EPP key and we will initiate the transfer on your behalf.

Standard transfers can be completed on our order form at http://www.xilo.net/order/domains/transfer/