Advice for using InfoEx with weak internet connectivity
InfoEx works best with a reliable internet connection. Many functions can be performed offline too (see the Working offline in InfoEx section below for details). Working with a weak, intermittent or overstretched internet connection can be a frustrating experience. The following work methods are recommended in these circumstances.
Functionality that requires an internet connection
The list below are things that should be done online either in the front-country with a strong internet connection or at a time you have the strongest internet connection you can get in your remote location. Consider other users of your network e.g. when guests are not using the network, or when co-workers are in the field rather than online, and plan your online work when there is the least competition for your limited bandwidth.
- Sign in whilst online to ensure your location catalog and other essential information is cached.
- Creating a new operation PWL via the Operation PWL menu. You cannot create a PWL when executing an offline workflow.
Overview of a recommended workflow submission process
- If you need to create a PWL this must be done online prior to starting the workflow. (Assessments for previously created PWLs can be made in an offline workflow execution).
- If workflow submissions for your operation may have been made from a different computer since you last submitted on your current computer and you may have a strong enough internet connection then start the workflow whilst online. This will pre-fill your workflow with the latest information. If the pre-filling fails you will be informed, and given the option to proceed despite the failure, or abort the workflow (if you choose to abort go to step 3). Once pre-filling has completed go offline by disconnecting from your network or by clicking on Click to Work Offline in the top right corner of the InfoEx window, then complete all the modules and go to step 5.
- Go offline by disconnecting from your network or by clicking on Click to Work Offline in the top right corner of the InfoEx window (see the Working offline in InfoEx section below for details).
- Start a new workflow and complete all its modules.
- At the workflow summary screen if you believe you have a strong internet connection go back online and submit. The green checks will confirm successful submission. Otherwise, click submit whilst still offline.
- If you submitted whilst offline, the next time you (or a co-worker with submission moderator or operation administrator privileges) are signed in to InfoEx on the same computer for your operation and there is an internet connection (this will be your current session if you go back online before closing InfoEx down) the workflow will be automatically submitted. A message will inform you of this.
- WARNING: If the internet connection is lost whilst this is being done, the workflow will not be submitted and you may lose the data. So you will want to manage this scenario carefully. This is a recognised weakness and it is hoped that improved uploading functionality will be available soon - unfortunately, this is a highly complex situation to handle.
Working offline in InfoEx
- InfoEx saves a range of data, allowing you to use some of its functionality offline.
- All the information about working offline is in the offline status indicator in the top right hand corner of the page.
- You can tell if you're working offline, because the offline status indicator will have a red background with the text 'Working Offline'
- The status of the network connection is shown by the green/red circle and the Connection Online/Offline text.
- InfoEx will automatically go into offline mode when a network connection is lost.
- If you want to force InfoEx to work offline, click on the offline status indicator. This forces InfoEx to use only the data stored locally.
- You can go back to working online by clicking this area again. InfoEx will not allow you to go back online without a network connection.
- When you go back online, anything that you have submitted offline (observations, attachments, workflows, etc) will be sent to the InfoEx server.