In this section server the purpose to manage every option related to tickets: which type of tickets are available and whether they are time-based or traffic-based, their rate -i.e., how much the user pays per unit of time or data-, and the creation of expendable tickets. The options are grouped in three categories, shown in the Tickets submenu: Rates, Quick Ticket, and Ticket Generator.
New in version 2.5-2013-May: Cyclic tickets
The Endian UTM Appliance gives the possibility to define several ticket rates in the Add Rates page, by selecting different combinations of the payment (post-paid vs. prepaid) and measuring (traffic-based vs. time-based) options from the appropriate drop-down menu. Depending on the combination chosen, the price for unit of use or for the whole ticket can be set. In particular, postpaid payment allow to define the price per one hour (time-based) or per 10 MB (traffic-based). The prepaid payment, instead, allows the definition of a more precise price and even the unit. In this case, indeed, even the amount of time (in minutes, hours, or days) or traffic (in Mb or Gb) and either the ticket price or the unit price can be supplied.
When entering the ticket price, the price per unit is automatically calculated, and vice versa. This proves useful when offering different prepaid types of tickets and verify, for example, that the cost of four prepaid, 15 minutes duration tickets are more expensive than one prepaid, one hour duration ticket.
New in version 2.5-2013-May.
Cyclic tickets are a new type of tickets that can be offered to Hotspot users. The idea behind the introduction is to assign to a user the same amount of traffic within a period (cycle), that can be repeated an arbitrary number of times (cycle duration). Every user can be assigned one cyclic ticket at a time.
More in details, a cyclic ticket consist of three parts:
Although all types of ticket can be purchased at any moment and being used immediately, there is one exception: Cyclic tickets whose cycle duration is Monthly always start a cycle on the first day of the month and expire on the last day of the month. As an example, consider a monthly cyclic ticket purchased on the 20th of June. While it is possible to start using it immediately, the first cycle will finish on the 30th of June. It is therefore suggested to start the validity of this ticket on the 1st of July, so the first cycle will expire on the 31st of July.
Cyclic ticket can only be prepaid, i.e., they must be purchased in advance. Residual traffic within a cycle is not added to the next one, ie., it must be used before the end of the cycle or is lost. Cyclic rates can not be used for quick tickets, smartconnect tickets, ticket generator, and account generator: They must be explicitly assigned to an existent user or during the creation of a new user.
The tickets offered can even be made available for SmartConnect™ transactions (see below).
The available types of tickets are shown when opening the Ticket
page in a table composed by several columns, which correspond to the
options that can be defined in the Add Rates page. The
tuples can be ordered by rate name, payment, or measuring mode. The
ordering criteria can be reversed if the Reverse Order
checkbox is ticked. To search for a particular rate name or to filter
among them, fill in the input form located on top of the table with at
least one character and press
Enter. The columns of the table
carry the following information:
The ASA code for the ticket rate. Although used only for the ASA hotel management system, this field is mandatory. In case there is no ASA management system, fill it with any character or string.
When not using ASA, use the same string for the rate name and for the asa ticket code.
Similarly to the previous, this shows whether this rate can be used for the creation of new quick tickets: In this case a icon will appear in the list, otherwise a is displayed. A click on the icon toggles the stuatus of the rate.
New in version 2.5-2013-May.
When the choice of the Rate type is Cyclic, the rates editor changes slightly, displaying the following configuration options, instead of Price:
In the rates editor, one additional setting can be specified for the ticket:
This option defines the expiry dates for the single tickets created out of this type and appears only in the rate editor. The four possible values, chosen from the drop-down menu are:
Always, unlimited validity
From ticket creation allows to specify the length of validity of the ticket, measured in either minutes, hours, days, weeks, or months from its creation.
From ticket first use like the previous one, but the validity starts when the ticket is first used to access the hotspot.
Until the end of the day, the ticket shall be used within the current day.
These values will be the default for the new tickets that will be created, though they can be overridded on a user basis when associated to a user under.
After one ticket rate has been saved, only the rate name, the rate code, or the availability for SmartConnect™ transactions are changeable. Indeed, changing anything else would lead to have inconsistent accounting data. Hence, in order to modify a price for a rate, rename the existing rate and create a new rate with the original name. Suppose for example that there is a rate called hourly whose cost should be modified. First, rename that rate to something like OLD-hourly, then create a new rate with the original name “hourly”.
This page is used to create a new, single user account, whose username and password are automatically generated. To do so, optionally supply the first and last name of the user, then click on the desired rate among those displayed.
Only rates available for SmartConnect™ are available for quick tickets.
After clicking on the rate button, the username, password, and rate are shown on the screen: At this point the selection of the language for the user is possible. These accounting data can be printed by clicking on the Print information button. The new account inherits all the default settings -defined in - and is listed in the Accounts page. It is a normal account on which all actions can be carried out.
With the ticket generator it is possible to create a specific number of tickets which share common settings, including a predefined ticket rate. This option proves useful when there is the need to create a large set of prepaid ticket codes for customers that can directly use it on SmartConnect™ to access the hotspot, or even to use them as demo or evaluation codes. To be able to use a ticket, however, the customer must be registered: If she is not, she will be required to create a new account, an operation that can be easily carried out by the customer herself without the necessity of interaction of the hotspot’s administrator.
The Ticket Generator page is split into two boxes: On the upper side the input forms can be filled in to quickly create new tickets, while the lower side contains a table listing the already generated bulks of tickets. After at least bulk of tickets has been produced, a link will appear between the two sides, Show generated tickets, that can be clicked to show all the tickets available (see below).
There are two groups of options available in the generator to create new tickets:
To generate the bulk of tickets with the specified settings, click on the Generate tickets button: A sample of the first 5 ticket - code combinations will appear. The whole bulk will be generated only after clicking on Confirm, otherwise a click on Cancel will delete even the 5 samples shown.
Beneath the ticket generator options, all previously generated bulk of tickets are listed in a table whose columns are:
There are three available actions on each bulk:
Load Settings, to load the setting used to create those tickets and reuse them to generate a new bulk.
Delete tickets, to remove all the tickets created in that generation. This action will only delete tickets that have not yet been consumed.
Export as CSV, to export the list of tickets combination in CSV format.
Clicking on the Show generated tickets link leads to the page showing a table with all the generated tickets, that can be (reverse) sorted by either the ticket’s code or creation date, with the option to hide unused or expired tickets. Specific codes can also be searched for using the input form next to the Code: label.
The table shows the ticket code, which user has used or has been assigned a ticket -if any, the ticket rate, the ticket creation date, and an optional link to either delete a single unused ticket code or to expire a ticket code in use. When the table contains a large number of tickets, pagination is available to split the list.