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OAKS Portal: Secure Browser FAQs
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Secure Browser FAQs

Is the use of a secure browser required?

Yes. ODE requires that all students use the secure browser for OAKS testing. The correct secure browser must be installed on each student machine that will be used for testing.

Can the Student Testing Site be accessed without a secure browser?

No. OAKS assessments cannot be accessed without the use of a secure browser.

My school still has the secure browsers used last school year. Can we use these for testing?

No. OAKS Online can only be accessed using the secure browsers specifically designed for the current test administration. Past secure browsers will NOT work and you may want to consider uninstalling previous secure browsers to avoid having multiple browsers present on the desktop. While old browsers will not affect the functionality of the new browsers, they cannot be used for any reason and may cause confusion for students and Test Administrators. For information about uninstalling secure browsers, refer to the Secure Browser Installation Manual.

What addresses and ports need to be whitelisted?

Schools will need to make sure information is not blocked in their web filters and that data are not cached.

Please ensure the following addresses and ports are open for TDS systems:

Browser Installation Files:
http://oaksportal.org
Port: 443/tcp (SSL)

OAKS Testing Sites:
*.tds.airast.org
Port: 443/tcp (SSL)

OAKS Single Sign On (SSO) (formerly Common Login System):
https://oaks.sso.airast.org
Port: 443/tcp (SSL)

AIR cannot determine specific firewall or content-filter issues for your school. Contact your school’s network administrator for information about your school’s configuration.

Where can I find installation instructions for the secure browser?

The Secure Browser Installation Manual contains instructions for installing the secure browser on computers and tablets that will be used for testing. This manual contains instructions for both individual and network installation options.

When should the secure browsers be installed at my school?

The secure browsers should be installed and tested well in advance of test administration to verify successful installation and identify potential issues with network configuration or security settings.

Does the pop-up blocker need to be disabled on the secure browser?

No. Due to the nature of the secure browser, no modifications or preferences (including disabling the pop-up blocker) need to be made.

Why did I receive the following error message when accessing the secure browser: Unable to establish a connection with the Test Delivery System (TDS)?

If the connection fails to connect, verify the following and try again:

  1. Ensure your network cable is plugged in OR your wifi connection is active and strong.
  2. Open another web browser (e.g., Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome, or Safari) and try connecting to a website on the Internet. If the site successfully loads, move to the next step.
  3. Ensure your network firewall is open to the TDS whitelist address (*.tds.airast.org). (Please refer to your school’s network administrator for help with firewall issues.)
Why do I see a white screen when I launch the secure browser?

You may see a white screen when you open the secure browser because the computer has not finished loading all of the required applications. After logging on to a computer, please allow the computer enough time to start the necessary resources before opening the secure browser. If this problem persists, contact the OAKS Help Desk.

Why is the dock visible on my screen when the secure browser is open (Mac OS X)?

If you are able to see the dock while you are using the Mac OS X secure browser, this is probably because it is the first time the application has been launched. By default, the dock is visible the first time the browser is launched, but will not display on subsequent launches. Although the dock is visible, external applications cannot be accessed.

As part of the installation process, the Mac OS X secure browser should be opened once prior to student use for assessment.

Will AIR provide support for updates to operating systems?

AIR may provide updated secure browsers as new updates are made to supported operating systems. Major version upgrades to an operating system that are released after May 1 will not be supported until a full year following the release.

ODE will notify District Test Coordinators of any available secure browser updates.

How can the secure browsers be installed on individual machines from the network?

Installing the secure browser on individual computers via a network can be done in one of two ways:

  • Copying the secure browser files from the network to individual computers
  • Using third-party programs to run the installers on multiple client machines over a network (e.g., Apple Remote Desktop)

The method for installing over network is very specific to the network on which the browser is being installed and the software used for the installation. While AIR can try to provide support on the network setup process, its ability to support certain networks and third-party software is limited.

For more information on network installation, refer to the Secure Browser Installation Manual.

Can students access the secure browser from a shared network drive?

In order for the secure browser to be accessible from a network drive, the extracted secure browser files must exist on the shared network. For some operating systems (primarily Windows and Mac OS X), the secure browser must first be installed on a local computer. The secure browser files are then copied to the shared network drive where they can be accessed by users on the network. If the secure browser is installed on a network drive, you will not be able to use the auto-update feature. All updates will need to be installed manually. For more information, refer to the Secure Browser Installation Manual.

Can I use Apple Remote Desktop (ARD) to install the Mac OS X secure browser on multiple machines?

Yes. The Mac OS X secure browser uses drag-and-drop installation, so you can use the File Copy feature for installation on the client computer.

I installed the AIRSecureTest Mobile Secure Browser app on my iPad or Android tablet last year. Do I need to install a new app this year?

As with other mobile apps, you do not need to uninstall the AIRSecureTest mobile secure browser app on iPads, Android tablets, and Chromebooks before updating to a new version.

If an update becomes available for the iOS, Android, or Chrome OS mobile secure browser, an announcement will be posted to the portal. Simply update the app on your device, either locally or via your Mobile Device Management software.

How can I create Chromebook accounts for my students?

You no longer need to create a Chromebook account for your students. AIR has worked with Google to create an AIRSecureTest mobile secure browser kiosk application that can be installed onto managed and non-managed Chromebooks. This kiosk application can be accessed from the Chrome Web Store.

For more information, refer to the Secure Browser Installation Manual.