SSO and Digiboxes: Problems, Alternative Solutions and Suggestions.

4 Conversations

Working Draft1

A Few Words First:

As we all know, the new Single Sign On Registration Process [SSO] has caused many problems to PC and Digibox Users...

This entry will focus more on the Digibox problems as, unfortunately, it was impossible to test the machine on the testing site due to the site's URL2.

One of the aims for this entry is to list in one space all the problems encountered by Digibox Users when trying to migrate their original accounts. Many have been already mentioned in various threads on h2g2 and in a little while most of these Convos will have links added on here3.

What Else?!

The main problem for the Technical Team is that they don't always have all the details regarding the problems encountered by Digibox Users as mentioned in the BBCiTesters Forum4:

'We are working at trying to fix the problems that Digibox Users are having but we need a bit more information about the exact problems you are having.

Please could you let us know in detail the problems that you are facing, any error messages that you see etc.

We will do our best to find a solution.'

There you have it, it's rather difficult for people who are not Digibox Users to get all the details needed for them to fix the problems or at least some of them.

One way would be for those who are encountering difficulties to email this address: [email protected] with as many details as possible so that the informations can be forwarded/pasted to the Technical Team.

[You do not have to say who you are and you're welcome to send it through another email account if you have concerns about your private details being known by strangers5.]

If you choose this option [especially for those who can't post on here yet] do please write h2g2/SSO in the subject line as the account mentioned on here is spammed on a regular basis and your email might not be noticed.

If you don't want to email the details and can post on here, you're welcome to give the informations needed by the Technical Team by contributing to the threads listed on here or/and by starting a thread at the bottom of this page.

Problems Identified While Trying To Migrate Accounts:

Naming Convention:

While not just strictly speaking a Digibox problem, some Researchers have found that particular part rather confusing at times...

The name chosen to register/migrate does not have to be the same than the nickname/screen-name used on h2g2 [which as we all know can be rather lengthy at times]. So, when you are asked for your BBCi member name, only type your registered one, not the full handle seen on your homepage or when you post a message...

But, it is also important to remember that your registered name will be seen when/if you contribute to some other BBCi sites, so avoiding some names which could be seen as offensive is still a good move, just in case...smiley - winkeye

The confusion can arise from the number of characters being asked for the BBCi member name as, while we are asked for a name with a minimum of 6 characters, it is not always made clear that some names which appear having more than the required number will not qualify...

One example would be a member name like lara.croft6... Apparently, there are more than 6 letters in that name but, the Researcher trying to migrate their account will still be faced with a list of suggestions for a new name, ranging from amazinglara.croft to nakedlara.croft to list but a few...

Why?!... Because the software counts the number of letters/characters before the full stop [.] and not the whole name's number of characters.

Changing lara.croft to laracroft, for example, will solve the problem and save a lot of typing everytime you log in...

The good thing is that, whatever you choose to type for your BBCi member name, it won't affect your h2g2 nickname/screen-name anyway...smiley - bubbly

Email Validation:

Again, not specific to Digibox Users but still important to know: Your Email Address will only need to be validated if it hasn't been validated since you've registered to h2g2 or any DNA sites...

Chances are that, if you have been using the same Email Address since your first day as a DNA member, you won't need an Email validation when you migrate your account.

Email Validation and Link:

Digibox Users will not be able to click on the link provided in the Email validation sent by the BBCi...

The official answer for that is that all the Digibox Users need to do is to reply to it without changing anything...

The alternative way would be to forward the email to yourself first as shown further down this page.

Nowhere To Click:

Something which has been mentioned by many Digibox Users: In Plain Skin there is no button to click next to the 'New Membership' and 'Returning BBCi Membership' bits and when clicking on the 'Login' button on the left handside they find themselves confronted to a blank page with only the BBCi registration banner at the top and a text about changes in the sign in process at the bottom but still nothing to click on...

This is due to the software used in the SSO and, without going too technical, the digiboxes do not somehow agree with the use of Javascript and Flash...

This problem will hopefully be fixed by the Technical Team soon...

Some Alternative Solutions:

There have been quite a lot of alternative solutions offered to help Digibox Users migrating their account and accessing h2g2 again until the SSO related problems are fixed once and for all:

Asking a PC User:

Probably the first alternative solution that came up, but because of the need to provide personal informations for the migration process such as Username, password, date of birth and the secret question it is not advised and should only be done if you know the PC user very well.

Changing some of the details like the password is highly recommended once your account has been migrated if you have used this method.

Email Validation Clickable Link:

As already mentioned the Digibox users can forward the Email Validation to themselves and just before clicking on 'send', add <a href=" before the BBC link and >& Click Here</a>at the end... It will become a Digibox clickable link once forwarded.

'Account Already Migrated But Faulty Link?' Solution:

If for any reason you can't go back into your already migrated account, create a new membership using exactly the same details you have used for migrating your account and you will be asked at some point if you think you are already a member...

Click on yes then enter your password plus answer your secret question and your old space will re-appears.smiley - magic

The 'Collective Trick':

In the good old tradition/legacy of the old and pre-plain skin era '360 trick', there is an equivalent one using the Collective Site with a Signing In form ready to use.smiley -
Click Here to access it.

NB: The Collective Site might not be Digibox Friendly to all the machines unfortunately.

The Final Alternative Solutions?!:

The following alternative solutions could make the difference when it comes to accessing h2g2 in a relatively hassle free method...

One way is to use this link:
changing 'user' for your username [not nickname/screen-name as explained earlier] and 'pass' for your password [for more details see SSO Link].

NB: This link needs to be made into a digibox clickable one by sending an email to yourselves having added <a href="
before http and " target="_blank">Login to h2g2</a> after your password.

Another method is to send yourselves a link without your username and password like this one:

http: //
adding <a href=" before 'http' and "target="_blank">Login to h2g2</a> after 'password='.

Or, you could add your U number [for example U123456] to those links like with this one:
with the usual <a href=" and "target="_blank">login to h2g2</a>.

Some Suggestions:

Keep It Simple:

The use of a simpler sofware for the SSO pages has been suggested so that not only the Digibox Users but also the MAC users be able to access them without hassle...

We will definitely keep you posted on that issue as soon as we've got some news.

Informations Not Accessible Through Digiboxes:

Some informations supposed to be read while going through the migration process are not accessible through a digibox [a bit like the 'who's on line' on the left hand side of this page] because of their format.

Some of them being of major importance due to the fact that they are supposed to be read before signing in, an entry containing them and viewable for all has been suggested a while ago by some of the BBCiTesters Group members. This entry is now being almost ready and will be available for viewing soon.

The link to it will be added Here once ready.

Related Threads

Digibox Sign In
Digibox Users
Problems with the plain skin since the update
This page's Convos

More links to be added soon...


General Acknowledgements:

Thanks to everyone who has contributed towards trying to solve the SSO problems for digiboxes by pointing out some of them or/and raising the issue of Digibox Users and SSO in some of the threads on h2g2 or/and through the BBCiTesters Forum. Most of them being now [or will be soon] listed in this Page's Entry Data.

Special Acknowledgements:

A special thank you for Jab, Kow, Venus, Rho, SEF and Spelugx to name but a few for their contributions/work regarding the listed alternative solutions and/or suggestions.

And Last But Not Least:

A big Thank you to the Technical Team members who are working hard trying to fix once and for all those SSO bugs affecting PC and Digibox Users.

If You Haven't Received The SSO Digibox Friendly Email Yet:

With so many Digibox Users not having been able to access their accounts, chances are that some of them might not have got an email with one of the links. If you are one of them, click here and then fill in the form...smiley - magic7

Something To Remember The Migration?!:

Here is a badge made by Amy the Ant for those who managed to make the migration:
I Survived Single Si4gn-On

The Blob number is: B4414813... Enjoy.smiley - winkeye

1As in 'not completed yet'... So no smiley - tomatosmiley - tomato throwing until it's completly finished, please...smiley - ta2The testing site's address not starting with '' it can only be accessed through the digibox when a certain Cable provider's firewalls are down...smiley - sadface3Feel free to carry-on contributing to those threads, this page is in no way a replacement to them...smiley - smiley
Regarding this issue, we would welcome anyone pointing out to us new threads on the subject or/and any convos which have been forgotten/missed out...smiley - cheers
4Where the idea for this page came up...5Though the addy of the sender will be automatically taken off before the email is forwarded to the Technical Team.6The original example was but it came to our attention that there was already a Researcher called jamesbond on h2g2...smiley - whistle7Idea inspired by Jab's SSO link on his Personal Space...smiley - cheers

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