OpenCheck accepts free form text messages

OpenCheck will now allow for free text messages to be configured by each school in your LA.

The system still allows for the selection for a standard set of messages which now include a number that cover holidays and weekends.

In addition Head Teachers, Deputy Heads, Bursars and IT contacts can now set the status of schools.

Configure your schools settings in the support site at

Home : Resources : School OpenCheck

Yet another tweak to OpenCheck

We have added another slight tweak to the way OpenCheck works as a response to end user requests.

If you select a school from the pull down list in the map report page you will see that the selected school is highlighted by a flashing icon rather than a solid one.

Here is an example page for a London LA

Select a school from the drop down menu on the left to see the effect.

Swine Flu outbreak & OpenCheck

OpenCheck status options
OpenCheck status options

Since the World Health Organisation recently raised the Epidemic Alert to Level 5, signalling a belief that a pandemic is imminent, and urged countries to implement their pandemic plans we have made a small modification to the school OpenCheck service which is part of Atomwide’s USO service.


A wider range of options for the school status has been provided to the system allowing school ITmanagers to select the date at which the school will re-open from a pull down list.

Configuration of your schools status is made in the support site at

Home:Resources:School OpenCheck

This service is available to schools and LA that have purchased full versions of USO

The service can be accessed here

TXT system

For a limited period of time we have enabled a txt service in USO, if you log in to the support site, go to the ‘My Account’ tab and then go to ‘Account details’ you can register your mobile phone in the contact section. You can also get your members of staff to do the same.

Then go to the ‘User Accounts’ tab and select ‘sms messaging’ and you can send txt messages to specific users or custom groups of users in your school or LA – the whole service right now is free of charge and we would welcome your feedback on it’s functionality.


USO database migration

As part of a programme of planned maintenance, the USO database will be migrated to new clustered hardware in the first week of the Easter holidays.

For resilience purposes copies of the database are held in several secure locations which will also require replication. Disruption will begin on Tuesday 7th April with all affected services suffering potential disruption on that day. It is anticipated that major outages will be limited to that day, but the 8th and 9th are also marked as contingencies, and there may also be minor outages on those days as various aspects of the configuration are tidied up. 

All services which are authenticated using USO may be affected 

Shibboleth-authenticated services may be affected; however this will only affect services/users which use the WAYF login screen.  Additionally, it is planned that one IdP (identity provider server) will remain available throughout the work in order to minimise impact.


School OpenCheck

OpenCheck LA view
OpenCheck service is now available allowing you to publish the status of your school to the Internet.

The service can be accessed here

Details of how to embed the data into your own web site can be found here

Configuration of your schools status is made in the support site at

Home:Resources:School OpenCheck

This service is available to schools and LA that have purchased full versions of USO


At BETT 2009 we launched the CachePaq2 as a replacement to our original CachePaq product.

This product has been developed to support the new Espresso Clipbank product but will also include a number of new modules including per user filtering linked in to the USO database and to the WebScreen product.

I would be interested to hear of filtering features that end users would like to see added to the system of this type.



For users of USO-fx we have added a number of features to the product including

  • Save personal groups of recipients
  • Only recipients with OTP tags to receive data files
  • Sub Select from profile criteria, head teachers at Primary and Junior schools only

These features may be found at  Home:USO-FX:Upload on the support site

USO blog

This blog is provided to allow end users and the developers of USO a forum to discuss the functionality and future development of the product from Atomwide.

This is your opportunity to suggest changes and improvements that you would like to see made to the product. It’s also your chance to air your views with the rest of the user community of this product which now covers in excess of 40 local education authorities.