Understanding and Installing the Spektrix Box Office App

Billy Fluck
Billy Fluck
  • Updated

If you want to print tickets and/or take Chip & PIN payments, you'll need to install the Spektrix Box Office App on each PC that a printer or PIN pad is attached to. For more information on how Spektrix works with hardware, and why you need to use the Box Office App, see our article on hardware and Spektrix.

This article looks at the Box Office App in a little more detail – what it actually is, how to install it, and how to troubleshoot it. If you're after a bit of technical information then you might want to read the whole article. However, if you just need to know how to install or troubleshoot it, you can skip ahead to the relevant section by clicking one of the links below:

How does the Box Office App work?

The Box Office App is a small downloadable local application that needs to be installed on every computer that is connected to a ticket printer and/or a PIN pad.

NOTE: the Box Office App is a Windows-only application, and can't be installed on a Mac.

The Box Office App allows Spektrix to access hardware devices which it otherwise wouldn't be able to. Specifically:

  • Ticket printers: Spektrix needs to be able to format tickets correctly for printing, and this can't be done directly through a web browser
  • PIN pads: these need to communicate with software installed locally on the computer, which can't be done through a web browser
  • Cash registers: these are USB devices so can't be accessed through a web browser

The Box Office App is everything you need to be able to connect to hardware devices, other than the devices themselves (and their relevant drivers). It even allows you to connect to a ticket printer from any computer, without needing to spend any time networking your printers. As long as the Box Office App is running on a computer that has a printer attached, you can print to that printer from any other computer, anywhere in the world. You could even set your batch prints to run in the box office from the comfort of your own home!

How do I install the Box Office App?

Before you start the installation process, there are a couple of things you need to check first.

NOTE: you only need to install the Box Office App on a computer if it has a printer, PIN pad or cash drawer attached.

Required permissions

You'll need to make sure that you have the correct permissions to be able to download, install, and register the Box Office App. You'll need:

  • Windows Administrator rights to the computer you're installing the Box Office App on – without these you may not be able to download and install the App
  • The General Administrator user role on your Spektrix login – without this you won't be able to register the App to the computer

Microsoft .NET Framework

Assuming you have the correct permissions, the next thing you'll need to do is check to see if Microsoft .NET Framework version 4.7.1 or later is installed on the computer you're working on. If it isn't already installed or you're not sure, speak to your IT team.

The .NET Framework is one of those complicated technical things that's hard to explain, but important to have. Essentially it needs installing because the Box Office App is built to refer to code contained within it – without having it installed, the App won't work.

You'll need to make sure you keep Microsoft .NET Framework up to date to ensure the best experience, so make sure you're regularly checking here for updates/the newest version. 

Proxies and firewalls

If you're using a proxy or a firewall, you may need to set exceptions to allow the Box Office App to properly communicate with Spektrix. Here's what to make exception for:

  • *.service.signalr.net on port 443

If you're not sure whether you need to do this, we'd suggest you check with whoever looks after your local IT setup. You can find more information in our article on How To Access Spektrix.

Older installations of the Box Office App

You'll need to make sure that there are no previous installations of the Box Office App currently on the computer. Click the Windows button in your toolbar and type Add or remove program. From here you can check to see if a version of the Box Office App is included in the list of installed programs – bear in mind that it could be listed as Spektrix App, so remember to search for that, too!

If you find an existing version of the Box Office App on your computer, make sure to uninstall it before you get started. You will also need to delete the folder where the App was installed, as this can interfere with the functionality of the new installation. This folder is usually located at C:\Program Files (x86)\Spektrix Ltd.

The computer that you're installing the Box Office App on needs to be connected to the Internet!

Installation

Note: The computer that you're installing the Box Office App on needs to be connected to the Internet.

Installing the Box Office App itself is then very simple. First, follow this link and then navigate to the Spektrix Box Office App section to download it.

Depending on your browser, you may be able to run the downloaded file straight away from within the browser, or you may need to navigate to your Downloads folder and run it from there.

Either way, once you run that file it will install (usually to C:\Program Files (x86)\Spektrix Ltd\LocalApp) and you should see the App icon appear in your system tray in the bottom right-hand corner of your screen.

To begin with, the icon will be orange, with a red exclamation mark, like this:

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This denotes that the App is running, but isn't connected to Spektrix, either because it hasn't been registered to your Spektrix system yet or because it has subsequently lost connection.

Registering the Box Office App

Once the Box Office App has been installed, you need to register it – this just involves providing the necessary information for the App to link up to your Spektrix system.

To register the Box Office App, right-click on the icon in the system tray and select the Register option; you'll then see this pop-up:

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You need to enter four pieces of information into this popup:

  • Your Spektrix clientname: in the URL in the address bar when you're running Spektrix, this is the bit between system.spektrix.com/ and /client. For instance, the screenshot below shows what this would look like for an organisation called Example Theatre – the clientname in this case would be exampletheatre (make sure you enter this without any spaces):

NOTE: see this article for more information about how to find your clientname.

  • Your computer name: a name to identify which computer you're using. You'll want to use something easily recognisable to box office and IT staff, like Box Office 1; this will display when you're choosing devices in Spektrix, later on
  • Your Spektrix username: the normal username that you log into Spektrix with
  • Your Spektrix password: the usual password you use to log into Spektrix with

NOTE: you can use any valid Spektrix login with the General Administrator user role to register the Box Office App – it doesn't have to be the login of the person who's going to be using Spektrix. This way you only need to register the App once, regardless of how many people might use Spektrix on that computer.

Once you've filled all of that information in, click Register and you should be good to go. If you've filled everything in correctly, in the system tray in the bottom right-hand corner of your screen, you should see the App's icon turn green, like this:

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If the icon isn't showing on your taskbar, have a look at this section of our troubleshooting article.

Adding devices to the Box Office App

The Box Office App should now be installed, registered and running – with everything set up, you just need to add devices to the App.

NOTE: before you add a device, make absolutely sure that it's correctly installed and set up. If you're not sure how to do that, check out these articles on installing ticket printers and pinpads. Once you're happy with it, you're ready to go.

To add a device to the Box Office App, right-click on the icon in the system tray and click Open. You will see a screen with four options – Printers, Chip & Pin Terminal, Cash Drawers and Connection. We'll take a quick look through each of the three main sections here, but Connection isn't used very often, so you largely won't need to worry about it.

Adding a Printer

When you open the Box Office App it will default to the Printers screen, where you can see a list of available printers on the left hand side:

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To add a printer for use with Spektrix, just select it from the list on the left-hand side, then click the > button to add it to the right-hand side. This opens up a further screen where you can add or edit information about that specific printer:

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You'll need to add a Spektrix printer name so that you can identify the printer when you come to select it in Spektrix – give it a clear, recognisable name that you'll be able to easily spot in a list. In this example the printer has been named Box Office BOCA 1.

NOTE: if you leave this field blank, the system printer name does not get pulled through into Spektrix instead.

The Ticket layout and FGL sections allow you to choose some specific settings on the printer – for more information see the article on Installing a Ticket Printer.

When you're happy with your settings, click OK.

Once you've added a printer, it's worth running a test print to check that everything is working. Start by restarting the Box Office App, either by restarting your PC or resetting the App itself – see this section of our Box Office App troubleshooting article for more information). Once that's done just click the Test printer button from within the Box Office App. If a test print doesn't happen, check that you've correctly installed the printer and added it to the App.

Adding a Chip & PIN pad

While you can connect multiple printers to a single Box Office App, you can only connect a single chip & PIN pad per App.

The first thing you need to do is determine whether which payment service provider you're using:

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NOTE: YesPay (YesEFT) is an older payment provider; this option can be disregarded.

If you're not sure which payment service provider you use, either check with your finance team or give the Spektrix Support team a call.

The process for adding a PIN pad is similar for both Opayo (formerly SagePay) and WorldPay, but we'll break each one down individually.

Adding an Opayo PIN pad

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To add an Opayo PIN pad to the Box Office App, select SagePay (Integral). There are three pieces of information you need to enter:

  • Terminal name: this is the name of the PIN pad, so go for something clear and memorable, e.g. Box Office Left
  • Merchant name: your organisation's name; this will display on card receipts
  • Address: your organisation's address; again, this will display on card receipts
  • Guardian V14: tick this check box if you're using a P400 Chip and PIN pad

Once you've filled those in, just click Ok and you're good to go.

Adding a WorldPay chip reader

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To add a WorldPay chip reader to the Box Office App, select Element (Vantiv). There are three pieces of information you need to enter:

  • Terminal name: this is the name of the PIN pad, so go for something clear and memorable, e.g. Box Office Left
  • Merchant name: your organisation's name; this will display on card receipts
  • Address: your organisation's address; again, this will display on card receipts

You don't need to change the Lane Id, Config file path or Terminal Port fields.

Click Ok to save your settings.

Adding a cash drawer

Spektrix can integrate with a USB-powered cash drawer, so that when you take a cash payment the drawer will automatically open. We integrate with the SS-102-B-USB - International Cash Drawers SS-102 Cash Drawer.

NOTE: unlike other pieces of hardware, you'll need to order cash drawers directly from the source, not via Spektrix.

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You choose your cash drawer in exactly the same way as your printers – just click on it in the left-hand side and add it to the right-hand side using the > button, then click Ok.

Choosing devices in Spektrix

The first time you want to use a device, you need to select it in Spektrix – to do this, open the Control Panel in the bottom left-hand corner of your screen:

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Then click Change local settings:

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Clicking this option brings up a window split into three sections: one one each for printers, chip and PIN pads, and cash drawers:

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Each of these sections will display all available devices (i.e. all devices which have been added to an App registered to your organisation, and which are currently online). To select a device, just click on the one you want; this will then be highlighted (as in grey above). Once you've selected all the devices, click OK. You won't need to go back to Change local settings again unless you want to change over to a different device sometime later.

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The Box Office App is a pretty straightforward program and should for the most be very easy to install and use. If you find that you need to troubleshoot the Box Office App, however, then take a look at this article.

If you have any other questions about the Box Office App, please don't hesitate to get in touch with the Spektrix Support team.

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