We used the ESM stuff yesterday and found out that there was an update in one of our rooms but in regards to your inital question, i dont get any updates via email.
To be fair, the Pearson stuff is a PITA but its the best exam software i have come across so far. We are currently using 2 at the mo, the pearson stuff and the ConnectPlus stuff. The connectplus stuff issued by RM is worse than the promissor software.
We have found with the new release that at times when students click on review, the program locks up.... great!
Ironically I've just had an email from them this evening saying there is an update!! Great so its a late notification and I don't even use the software anymore
We moved from that to the ASDAN online assessment system as it just works!
I don't get the emails any more (I used to though and I'm still listed as a contact so I should). As mentioned - get a few demo test sessions ordered and set aside a bit of time before the exam to make sure all is well. To be honest we don't have too many problems with it. It updates properly (albeit very slowly when downloading and with little info to tell you what's happening) and the clients pick up the new version correctly all the time.
The only notification we get is from the exams officer. The same exams officier who kindly let us know three minutes after they had started an exam that they needed it upgrading despite us asking them well in advance for details of when the next exams were so we could make sure things were upto date
To be fair, when it's up and running it's fine. I don't think we've had any issues with it once it's been updated. It's just the process of updating it that's so damn frustrating.
Specifically the annoying issue of it trying to auto upgrade whenever a student trys to use it and it likes to get itself into a loop normally meaning student has to log out and back in otherwise it keeps on popping up every 30 seconds.
We did have more issues than normal this time though. Firstly the server wouldn't upgrade properly which we were told to get round by deleting contact.ccf on the server and allowing it to recreate itself. We also had to totally uninstall it and reinstall on all the workstations it as it wouldn't update properly even with full permissions.
I've made the decission to only run it on the thin clients now to stop the hassle of having to upgrade entire rooms by hand. It's a lot more manageable upgrading on 10 servers as opposed to 150 workstations and laptops.
Last edited by Sam_Brown; 12th May 2011 at 10:29 PM.
I too have just had an email too stating that there is an Onscreen Testing Upgrade available from the 15th May
Onscreen Testing Upgrade available from 15 May
You will be prompted to upgrade your Enterprise SiteManager (ESM) and Adminstrator software from 15 May. The upgrade is to:
• Increase password security
• Enhance log file clean up to improve test performance
If you don’t want to upgrade straight away, you can postpone until 15 July 2011, after which the upgrade will become mandatory.
Before you upgrade - ensure your results are uploaded
It is important you upload all results before you upgrade to ensure they are processed. To check this:
• Log into ESM
• Go to your Inbox and check that your ESM Inbox filter is set to “show all”
• Mark all tests in your Inbox which your learners aren’t going to take as “no-show”
• Go to your Outbox and check the filter is set to “show all”
• Click on “Upload all results”; this will send all pending results back to us
Increased password security
We want to ensure that our onscreen testing software is fully secure, so we are increasing the security of the passwords needed to log in*. From 15 May you will be asked:
1. To change your password to a stronger format (see strong format details below)
2. You will now need to change your password every 60 days to ensure it remains secure.
Strong Format Passwords
1. Passwords must be a minimum of 7 characters
2. They must contain 3 of the 4 following types of character:
i. upper case character
ii. lower case character
iv. special character (any symbol which require the shift key)
*Please note that this does not affect your Edexcel Online password, which will remain the same. The log in for students will not be affected.
Guidance and Support
The upgrade process is very similar to the previous upgrades. We have produced up to date guidance on our website at Onscreen news : Edexcel.
If you would like to contact us about onscreen testing, please call us on 0844 576 0024.
Good news is it isn't mandatory until July some time so shouldn't affect any tests anytime soon.
We had the same issue with them not telling us or giving us about 6 hours notice.
Fortunately for both of us they've learnt that if they don't tell us in advance chances are the exams aren't going to work! All it takes is a 30 second e-mail a few days before and it can save no end of trouble.
Has anyone seen the update appear on their systems yet?
I checked it the other day but no sign of it.
I've instructed exams not to upgrade until after the exams to avoid any issues with upgrading the workstations!
I think if you decline it once it doesn't pop up again until it's mandatory. That's the plan anyway. Chances are they'll find a way to screw it up and force us into upgrading everything 15 minutes before the next exam!
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