Event computing workflowUsing AutoDownload & SPORTident kit

Autodownload Screenshot

Autodownload Screenshot

Last Updated: Thu 13 Sep 2018

A walkthrough of what's involved in using SPORTident and AutoDownload to produce results at an event.

Time sync the SI units

The stations internal clocks need to be synchronised before every important event or every month (whichever comes sooner) using the blue SI-Master station (this also doubles as the “Clear” station).

  1. Insert the purple card marked “Service/Off” into the blue SI-Master station, the display will cycle through its 3 modes of use. The third one “EXT MA” is the one you want, remove the card when it appears.
  2. Insert the black coupling stick with the thin end sticking out the bottom.
  3. Wake all the units with the “Service/Off” key.
  4. Place the SI-Master station on top of a control station, after a few seconds it will beep twice, the time has been synchronised.

When all the stations have been done, including the Start, Finish and Print stations, insert the Purple “Service/Off” card into each one (including the SI-master) until it beeps, this switches them off and conserves the batteries. The LCD display goes off when they are off.

See the Additional Info at the end for more details about time synching all equipment.

Important, clear old data from units

You must remove any old data from the Start, Finish and PrintStation units prior to use or you will not be able to use them for a safety check later. Insert the purple ‘clear backup’ card. If you have time synced the units as described above they are cleared as part of that process.

Open AutoDownload

If the database settings opens, select the events one and Save

You should now see a list of events

Optionally update the database of SI-cards:

Select SI-Card Archive from menu

Select Import AutoDownload File

Browse for the latest version of the file: Dropbox/BASOC/SI kit/sicardArchive_1234567.csv

Membership type = BOF

Encoding = Western European (Windows)

Read File

It takes a few minutes to update

You can also go direct to www.sportident.co.uk/sicard_archive/clubs/ select the club and enter the password ‘highland’ to get the latest version.

If you have an event backup file prepared from another computer or user.

Back to the main menu

Select Restore Event

Select Restore type (normally Insert)

Browse for the file eg.: Dropbox/BASOC/Areas/Nethy_Bridge/2014-03-04/Pre-event AD backup.zip

Read file

Back to main menu and select the event

Create a new event in AutoDownload

Select Add Event

Fill in the details over the next few screens and Save

**For evening events set the earliest punch time in step 2**

Select the new event

Select Courses and then Import XML Courses

Browse to the file you created from Condes

Read File

If you have pre-entries from Oentries

Select Entries > Import/Export Entries > Import/Export CSV entries

Choose Import

Browse to the file you got from Oentries

Select the Import Mode

Encoding is usually Windows

Read File

*** Check that the course names are the same in the course and entries files***

Pre entries collecting hire cards

You can either use:

Entries on the day

Download at the event with a laptop

Select Download

SI-Card Downloads

Choose one, normally Manual on Error or mispunch

Refresh the COM port list

Port: SPORTident USB Device(138242)

Splits Printer: select (Windows)EPSON TM-T88V
or to use the battery splits printer, select (Serial)SPORTident USB device.

Tick box to interactively request hire cards returned


You are now ready to accept downloads from competitors.

Download errors and problems

If the printout doesn’t start it usually means that some form of input is required. You can just fill in any missing details and then Save it and the printout will start or Skip it and fix it outside the download screen. Possibilities include:

Safety Check

To ensure no one is still out in the forest you need to check that everyone that punched the start box has downloaded.

Data Collection > Read Punches (Slave) Place the start unit on top of the download box with the coupling stick


Repeat for any other start boxes or any other units.

Check outstanding Competitors

Using the PrintStation if no computer at event

Make sure you have cleared the backup of the PrintStation before you start downloads

When you get home, open AutoDownload and select the event or add it if you haven’t already.

Select Download > Print/Master Station Downloads

Manual will make you enter the names etc. of people not in the database for each download as you go along, probably the easiest if few competitors.

Automatic, Manual on Error is best for small number of entries, where you fill in bits as it goes along.

Automatic, Non-Stop is best for larger numbers of entries. But you will need to go into Entries and then edit each one with any data missing.

Plug the USB box in and place the PrintStation on top with the stick in the holes.

Refresh COM Port list

Select the SPORTident USB unit

Set Master/Slave to Slave


Follow instructions

Producing results

Select Results

Select Course

Do they look OK?
If the results have issues with missing/wrong names etc. you will need to go to Entries, click search to show all, then select one to view it, then select Modify Entry to edit and then Save when done.

Select HTML Results

Browse to the directory you want to put the results, suggest same place as all the other files.

Export Type = One page with all splits, no results without splits

Write Files

This will create an index.html file in the folder.

Rename that file to eg. 2014-03-04-event-name.html

For RouteGadget and Winsplits you also need to export an OE file, which is a CSV (comma separated values).

When everything is complete go to Backup Event and create a backup in the same folder as all the other related event files.

Up to get back to the Entry list.

Publish on the BASOC website

Open the event entry in BASOC ExpressionEngine

Go to Results field

Create a new line

In the Splits box Add File and browse to that file you just renamed and upload it

Save the entry and you are done.

Additional Info

Use a PrintStation as a USB input device

If you connect the USB adaptor to the PrintStation it can also be used for Punch registration, allocation and downloads. Sometimes when you try and connect it you will get a warning that it needs to be re-programmed for this use, accept the offer.

If you have used a PrintStation for downloads or registration it will need to be re-programmed as a PrintStation afterwards, select Reset Printout Station from the main menu.

Have you got the latest software?

Check if there is a newer version of AutoDownload: www.sportident.co.uk/autodownload/download.php

This page also has a User Guide and installation instructions.

Download and run the file to install the update.

Synchronise the time on the laptops and controls

The clocks in all the equipment drifts over time and needs to be checked prior to a major event to ensure that the clocks in all the computers and controls, start, finish etc. are the same. This should be done before you give the controls to the planner to put out.

On the laptop open www.time.is and it shows any differences. If it is out by more than a second you need to force Windows to update the time. This is complicated.

Open the Control Panel > Clock, Language and Region > Date and Time > Set the time and date > Internet Time > Change settings and then click the Update now button. Sometimes it fails, click Update again until you get a success message. Re-check www.time.is

Now open SI Config+ and set the time for the USB box and then put an SI-Master station (blue clear) on top and set the time for that. Then use that Master Station to time sync all the other units.

Changing the ‘On’ time for controls

Normally this is 30 mins for local events but for larger events it should be extended. The exact time depends on when and if you plan to ‘wake up’ the units before competitors start. 2 hours is usually enough to keep them awake for everybody after the first competitor wakes it up. But if you wake them up in advance (which is the recommended practice) you need to work out the maximum time from then to the first competitor getting to the control. This will probably be at least 4 hours.

Whatever the ‘on’ time of the blue SI-Master station is will be transferred to all the units you time sync with it. If you want to give particular controls a much longer time than most you adjust them individually using Si-Config+.

Resources for Computing & SI kit on Dropbox

This is a "read only" link to the files, you can download them but not update them. If you would like an edited version or a new file added send it to

AutoDownload Help

Don't forget that at the top right of every page in AutoDownload is a Help link, this is context aware, meaning that you will get help for the page you are actually using at the time. You can resize the window and leave it open all the time.

You can also have several instances of AutoDownload open at any one time, so you could have one open doing Downloads and another with Results or Entries. just resize the windows so that two fit side by side.

BASOC SPORTident kit

Previous entry about our kit, with photos.

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