Exhibitors are forced to use passwords they do not know

Article ID: 121003
Category: Online Entries
Date Added: 1/15/2008
Date Updated: 2/2/2017


New exhibitors cannot register online because they are forced to use a password that they do not know.


Upload your data without any exhibitors or pre-assign passwords to existing exhibitors.


ShoWorks requires unique names for exhibitors to prevent two or more people with the same name from receiving the wrong premium check or wrong judging, etc. This is preferred to the remaining option of supplying a guaranteed unique value for exhibitors that each exhibitor would know, such as Social Security Number. Such an approach of using Social Security Number is not practical for most fairs for several reasons: inaccessible to proxy registrants such as club or school leaders, young exhibitors, and further poses a security and liability concern.

When making online entries, if an exhibitor name already exists in the system the user must provide credentials proving that they are indeed that same exhibitor. This is done in the form of a password. Otherwise, the exhibitor must choose a different name that does not already exists - in which case, they may choose to create a variation of the name, such as John A. Doe, rather than John Doe.

When setting up the ShoWorks for online entries, the fair has two choices when uploading their data file: A) upload without any exhibitors and let them register as new each year, or B) upload with existing exhibitors from last year.


Option A (preferred and most popular option): Upload your data without exhibitors

This allows anyone to create any name (as long as it isn't previously taken) and therefore create their own password.  Even if you already have the same exhibitors in your local ShoWorks data file, the default setting will upload all other data (divisions, classes, etc) except exhibitors. Even if an exhibitor is in the local copy of database and the same name is created online, during the download the newest information for that exhibitor will overwrite the older.

Advantages of not uploading existing exhibitors from year-to-year:

  • Always ensures the most current information about each exhibitor (address, etc.)
  • Prevents phone calls and emails to the fair office when exhibitors forget their password - despite the ability for an exhibitor to click ‘Forgot Password’, the chances of the exhibitor having a different email address than the one from last year is reasonable enough that even a small percentage of thousands of exhibitors can be a burden on the fair office.

Option B (not preferred): Uploading your data with exhibitors from last year and/or assigning passwords to existing exhibitors added locally

This option allows exhibitors that already are in your system from last year to login with a password that they already know ( however you should take note that if they forget their password, the system can only e-mail them their forgotten password if their e-mail address is still valid and does not block the ShoWorks emails - a situation that is reasonable and therefore would cause undue phone calls/emails to the fair office.).  Steps when needing to assign/update passwords to existing local data file:

  1. Turn off the password masking option under Tools>Options>Field Formatting in ShoWorks.
  2. Assign passwords to exhibitors in your existing data file (you should use something they will already know, such as the last 4 digits of their social security number). 
  3. Upload your data file and place a check in the box "Exhibitors" in the third step of the upload wizard (even if you already have web activity, this will not overwrite existing entries/exhibitors made online).
  • You can always upload and re-upload your data without worry of overwriting data that has already been entered online.

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