Need some more
advice while you're using ACRO ?
right way to use a feature in ACRO may not be clear to you, or perhaps
the software just isn't working the way that you expect it to.
know only too well how things can quickly get very pressurised at
a competition when a rapid solution to some hold-up is urgently
You can download a comprehensive explanatory guide to
the operation of ACRO at CIVA championship events from
the main software page here.
There are two separate layers
of help built in to ACRO that should provide all the guidance you
need to move you successfully through the process you are trying
All forms have an 'Information'
button that provides direct access to the right page in ACRO's
extensive Help system. This provides clear
instructions on how to use each item, and should enable you to make
good use of all the features on the form as quickly as possible.
This is a thorough and clearly structured help system that
describes every feature in ACRO and how to make the best use of
If things are still not clear
or you think there may be a software issue that is preventing ACRO
from working as expected, you can quite easily contact Exploit Design
by email to get some advice. If the situation is urgent then a text
message to +44 (0)7773 768386 will be useful to raise attention
in case our computers are switched off. We'll do our very best to
respond as quickly as possible with on-the-spot advice.
Before you get
started here MAKE A FULL BACKUP COPY
of your precious contest data file
- you do not have to Exit to do that in ACRO.
Most ACRO menus
have a 'Back Up this contest file' command - this will instantly
make a full copy of the data file and store it in your /aerobatics/backups
folder (or on a USB memory stick if you prefer, see File > Contest
file locations) with a unique time_date prefix so you
when you did it.
The name of the
backup file will be something like the "Backup 120329_310814 - EAC
2014.ctf" example shown above here, where the date and the time of the back-up
have been coded
in the format YYMMDD_HHMMSS followed by the competition filename
and the suffix '.ctf'. You can go back and open one of these
back-ups to check any of the contest's previous details at any
time; if necessary you can re-use one to work around an error
that has been made - in this case you'll probably choose to
change the contest filename from the ACRO File menu.
Get into the habit of making
regular back-ups during your competitions, then if you need to look
at the status of your contest file at any prior point in time you
can locate and open the relevant back-up and all will be revealed.
It really is good practice
to use this simple back-up feature at least once a day during an
event, before the scoring computer is shut-down or is likely to
be left alone for a while. Back-up's are priceless but free insurance
ACRO is written using the VB.Net code
system in Microsoft Visual Studio, and to function correctly it
is essential that the .NET Support Library files are always
fully up-to-date - otherwise errors and crashes may occur on a
fairly random basis. To ensure that this library of support
files in your computer is absolutely current use this link to
visit the MS Support and Maintenance page for .NET files, click
the red Download button to retrieve the relevant installer and
then Run it - this will look through the installed .NET library
in your computer and ensure that it is refreshed with all
current and/or new files.
We do a great deal of testing before
each release of ACRO to make sure that non-compliant data
is trapped and bugs are eliminated. With over 90,000 lines
of code however ACRO is pretty complex, and things occasionally
do just go wrong. If the system crashes you'll see an error
message "Apologies, but ACRO has a fault and you may need
to shut it down and re-start ...". This error message carries
a Continue [Yes/No] option, and it is possible that clicking
'Yes' will temporarily bypass the issue. If this doesn't
get you up and running again then:
1. Make sure that
your existing ACRO system is installed correctly. Open your Windows
Control Panel and select 'Programs and Features' (Win7) or 'Add/Remove
Programs' (XP), then locate and delete the current ACRO installation.
When this process has completed you can shut Control Panel again.
Now use your Windows
Explorer and carefully check that the ACRO application folder at
c:\Program Files (x86)\Exploit Design\Aerobatic Contest Results
Organiser really is empty as it should be. If it isn't you can just
delete any remaining files and/or sub-folders; doing this may also
require you to approve a Microsoft UAC (User Access Control) query.
Finally you should download
and install the current build of ACRO again, and run it to check
that the problem is resolved.
2. Get in touch with us at ACRO Online and discuss the issue. Send us an email with the text of the Microsoft error message that
will be shown on the ACRO panel, and please attach a copy of your
contest file together and tell us what you were
doing when the problem arose. There's an easy way to do this
built-in to the File menu - select the "Contest files Copy /
Email" button and follow the instructions to get ACRO to do the
job for you. We'll run the contest file to
identify the problem, then contact you as quickly as possible
with detailed instruction on how to resolve the issue.
If all of the
above fails to resolve the problem, run a stable "Legacy"
build of ACRO as an interim measure
Click the button on the right to
download a previous stable build of the software, in this case
from August 2019.
In your computer open Windows Control Panel, select the Aerobatic
Contest results Organiser entry and Uninstall it.
Double-click or Run the just downloaded ACRO_Legacy-v01.exe
file to install it.
There are some differences in
this older build of ACRO that you should keep in mind:
It will neverdetect
a newer version of the software and offer to download it. You
must check this website to see if a newer build is available.
The 2020 version of ACRO offers separate forenames and surnames
for everyone. If you re-open a contest file that was made with
version you may see no space between the two parts of names, and
you will need to edit and correct them yourself.
Installing a download of the current version of ACRO at a later
date is a normal process that should not present any issues. And please do send an email to the ACRO Office at
to keep us informed, or we may not know!