Friday, October 8, 2010

Glitch in RF Ticket Readers: Many Denied Entry in the Stadium

You may have a ticket for your favorite Commonwealth sports event, but this doesn’t necessarily mean your entry to the stadium will be hassle-free. After several spectators complained that they faced problems while entering the stadium as the radio frequency ticket-readers failed to recognize the tickets Delhi Police conducted an internal inquiry which has detected a major problem in the central system set up by ECIL.

While some ticket-holders were turned away as their names could not be found in the system, many others whose names were displayed on the system who had accreditation were forced to go back as their pictures were not uploaded on the system.

ECIL officers, however, said these were only minor glitches which were promptly taken care of by their engineers. ‘‘We will sort out all the problems in the next couple of days. There are multiple agencies involved and it is a matter of time before all systems get perfectly integrated,’’ said an officer.

According to cops, these glitches were a result of the frequent failure of the LAN network connecting all the machines to the venue server and the WAN network connecting the central ECIL server with the venue servers. Networking professionals attribute the problem to ‘‘unstable and insufficient bandwidth’’ that is causing the WAN network to snap. Due to the same, photographs from the central server are not getting uploaded on venue servers.

Cops point out that the company never went for a ‘‘stabilization’’ process or trial run of the setup. ‘‘In any technical setup, there are always some teething troubles. So, a test run is important to identify the problems and come up with solutions before the actual process starts,’’ explained a senior police official, who did not wish to be named.

What complicates matters is that the installation of the system was worked out by multiple agencies for wiring, placing the switches and supplying power. This seems to have resulted in problems in integration, claimed the official. Cops now want the company to upload photos of spectators from its central server to the venue servers and then download the entire data on the laptop to ensure availability of updated data on individual venue servers.

ECIL, meanwhile, blamed Delhi Police for the hitches, claiming the data came late because of which uploading all of it in time became difficult. The cops denied this saying all the data had been first given to the company by the organizing committee on CDs. ‘‘We only got the updated data,’’ said a Delhi police officer.