On Exam Day - iPad Troubleshooting

Most of the time issues with the application or server will manifest during the startup of the application. Application always shows the startup screen where the error messages are displayed if an error occur. User is given an option to Retry the operation so it is possible for the recoverable errors to be resolved.


[User] - Examiner, Marshall, Student using application to enter the marks, take an exam and so on.

[Admin] - Certain tasks (usually troubleshooting) are protected by the Administrator password, we refer to the user performing those tasks as Admin

Accessing diagnostic information

In order to provide support Fry-IT may ask you to provide diagnostic information such as iOS version, Practique for iPad application version and so on, these are accessible via Application details, see screenshot.

To access Application Details

  1. Open Practique for iPad application
  2. As application initialises you will be presented with the Startup screen, Exam list or Login screen.
  3. You can access Application details from any of those screens tapping (info) icon at the bottom right corner.

Application Details information

  • Version of the Practique for iPad & build number
  • Is application Online or Offline (meaning it can communicate with the Practique Server)
  • Is application using Single Application Mode
  • Is application using Configuration profile
  • Device name
  • iOS version
  • Available disk space
  • Synchronisation details (pending messages, status of the synchronisation)
  • Network configuration

iPad is not connected to the Wi-Fi

If the iPad is connected to the Wi-Fi network there is a Wi-Fi signal strength icon  in the top left corner of the screen otherwise iPad is not connected to the Wi-Fi network.

It is normal for an iPad to drop the Wi-Fi connection especially if device is moving from room to room or building to building as the signal strength will fluctuate. The iPad should, and most of the time will reconnect to the Wi-Fi automatically as it will periodically search for the Wi-Fi access points and connect to the one with the strongest signal. As of iOS8 there was an issue with the re-connection algorithm Apple used which resulted in the situation called "sticky clients", this means that the iPad will hold onto the access point despite its signal is already very weak (as you move away from the access point) instead of quickly jumping to the next access point with the stronger signal. This is normal and can be mitigated by access point settings, please contact your IT department.

If you encounter problems with the Wi-Fi connection on your iPad please try following steps to reconnect

  1.  Check your Wi-Fi settings of the iPad Settings > Wi-Fi and make sure it’s correct. For example, check that you are using the correct network & password or security settings.
  2.  Turn the Wi-Fi on and off in Settings > Wi-Fi. This will reinitialise Wi-Fi connection which may help as iPad may choose different access point.
  3.  Restart the iPad if necessary and 1), 2) does not help

I can see “Your iPad disconnected from the backend. Functionality will be limited until it reconnects.” red bar.

Practique application keeps persistent connection between the iPad and server. When this connection is broken for any reason iPad will display this notification message. Before you continue with more troubleshooting please check “iPad is not connected to the Wi-Fi” section first.

Application uses active ping mechanism to make sure it’s connection to the server is fresh and live. Active ping sends tiny piece of information to the server every 5 seconds and requires server to respond within 5 seconds. If server does not respond, Practique application will tear down its connection to the server and schedules an automatic reconnection in random intervals up to 5 seconds. It will keep trying to connect to the server until connection is established.

The reasons why the connection can be broken include:

  1.  Application network configuration is not correct
    1.  Check Application details and make sure information in the Network configuration section is correct (eg. HTTPS/HTTP, server address, port)
  2.  Server is not reachable through connected Wi-Fi network
    1.  Make sure Wi-Fi network you’re using is connected to Internet (eg. LAN cable connected).
    2.  Is server reachable via connected Wi-Fi. Try to access Practique server via web browser from different device connected to the same Wi-Fi.
    3.  Check that the Wi-Fi network is configured properly including firewall settings (eg. there are correct ports open). Seek assistance of your local IT team.
    4.  When using 4G routers, make sure router completely initialised its 4G connection.
  3.  Wi-Fi network has very low bandwidth, high latency, congestion or poor signal which will trigger active ping disconnect
    1.  Move devices closer to the access points (if possible)

Marks for an Examiner/Candidate are not visible on the server or the Marshall’s iPad but have been submitted on the Examiner’s iPad

Examiner’s marks are always stored on the iPad. This is done while an Examiner is marking as well as at the point of the mark sheet submission. When an Examiner submits marks, the application adds submitted marks to the synchronisation queue, marks are then automatically synchronised to the server. There may be cases where synchronisation may not be possible at the time of submission. When a synchronisation error occurs, you may try to force synchronisation using the following steps.

  1. Check iPad is connected to the Wi-Fi
  2. Check iPad is connected to the server
  3. In order to force synchronisation you can close Practique for iPad application using iPad Home button and open the app again, it will re-initilaise and automatically initiate synchronisation during that process. If problems persists follow step 4).
  4. Check pending messages & message exchange status in the Application details
    1.  There are pending messages. Use Retry last exchange to force synchronisation
    2.  There are pending messages and exchange status is 'Failed'. [Admin] Use Delete pending messages button to clear pending messages in the queue. You will need to know you Practique for iPad administrative password.

Make sure marks has been extracted before using "Delete pending messages" from the iPad otherwise this action may lead to potential irreversible data loss!

I see “This device is not approved” red bar

The Practique Server allows only approved devices to communicate with it for security reasons. Devices which have not been approved by the administrators in the Device management section on the the Practique server will be declined communication attempts.

  1.  Check that device is allowed on the Practique Server using Device management (Settings > Devices). Approve device if necessary. You can find iPad Device name in the Application details.
  2.  Use Retry button on the device to retry communication attempt and continue.

I can’t see document/resource on my iPad

  1. Logout and check all packages are downloaded using Resource packages section in Application details.
  2. Use Force download of packages in Application details to retry the packages download.
  3. Use Delete downloaded packages in Application details to clear downloaded data and Force download of packages to initiate new download.

I can’t login with my Examiner or Marshall credentials

  1. Check that you’re using the correct examiner/marshall credentials including the random letter prefix.
  2. Check in the Practique Server that the user credentials are correct.

Application refuses to log-in user with message “This user is already logged in” red bar

  1. Check that there is not another iPad where user with the same credentials is logged in.
  2. Force logout user using Logout button on the Login details for session screen under Current exam > View Logins.

iPad runs out of battery

  1. Issue new iPad for the user and keep the old iPad aside while charging.
  2. Once new iPad has been issued it will synchronise with the server and user can continue exam from the point iPad run out of the battery.
  3. [Admin] Charge the iPad, open Practique application. Application will initiate synchronisation and once it has finished check that there are no pending messages using Application details.

I can’t quit Practique application using home button

Guided or Single Application Mode is enabled, contact Administrator to unlock the iPad. You can verify if this is a case using Application details > Single Application Mode will be Yes or No. When the guided mode is controlled by the device, it is possible to exit guided mode by triple clicking on the home button and enter the device password. You may need to consult your local IT Team to obtain the passwords and any further instructions on how to exit guided mode. 

Marksheet for a station is missing observation criteria or has other discrepancies

There may be case that exam team observes errors on the marksheet just before the exam or during the exam (usually reported by Examiners). In such cases the best course of action is to use paper to collect the missing/correct information and process it after the exam finishes using tools for mark adjustment in Practique Server.