Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's)

Hamline University upgraded their administrative information system (Banner) to version 7 on October 31, 2005.  This document is designed to answer some of the potential questions that may arise regarding how things are "different" or how they work in the "new" system.

Q: When I click on the "Banner" icon on my Windows desktop, the option to go into the Production database (PROD) does not appear.  How do I get into Banner? 

A: Banner 7 runs in an Internet browser.  You can no longer use the "client/server" Windows application to access the production database.  Just point your browser to Banner.  The first time you access Banner from your Internet browser, Banner will want you to install an Oracle Java tool used to interact between the browser and your desktop.  You need to click on the "Allow Always" button.  (You may need to press the Alt-Tab keys to force this security dialog box to the front of the set of stacked windows in order to actually see it.)

 Q: Banner no longer fits on my computer display.  I have to scroll back and forth in order to see the entire Banner window.  What can I do? 

A: Banner 7 uses much more of the screen than Banner 6.  Screen resolution of 800x600 pixels is no longer high enough to display the entire Banner system.  Display settings should be changed so that the resolution is 1024x768 pixels or higher.  To do this in Microsoft Windows, select Start | Settings | Control Panel | Display | Settings | Screen Area.

Q: Whenever I open up a Internet Explorer shortcut (Piperline, Class Schedule, etc.) on my desktop, my Banner session disappears. Why is this happening? 

 A: The browser window that is launched during a Banner 7 session must remain open and unused.  If this window is closed or directed to a new page, your Banner session will disappear and you will have to login again.  To correct this behavior in Internet Explorer you must go to Tools | Internet Options | Advanced and un-check "Reuse windows for launching shortcuts".

Q: What password should I use?  Is it the same as it was when I left work on Friday, October 28? 

A: Yes.  The password stored in the database will be the same as before the upgrade.  Now that there are additional password restrictions (length and content), anyone with an "old" password that does not comply may be asked to change their Banner password.

Q: My mouse doesn't work when I first go into Banner.  How can I fix that? 

A: The first time you access Banner from your Internet browser, Banner will want you to install an Oracle Java tool used to interact between the browser and your desktop.  You need to click on the "Allow Always" button.  (You may need to press the Alt-Tab keys to force this security dialog box to the front of the set of stacked windows in order to actually see it.)  Once you have accepted this security message, Banner 7 should run fine.

Q: On my favorite Banner form, there used to be links in a yellow frame on the left.  They are gone now.  Where did they go? 

A: To best utilize as much of the Banner window "real estate" as possible, the "options" links are now hidden.  From any Banner form, simply pull down the "Options" menu or Right-Click on the "canvas" (that area of the Banner form that is tan colored and doesn't contain fields of data) to navigate to these additional links.

Q: When I log on to Banner, I receive a message that my password will expire in 7 days.  What should I do?  Can I still use Banner? 

A:  Whether Banner tells you that your password has expired or will expire in 7 days, you should change your Banner password as soon as you receive the message.  (Failure to change your password, even during the grace period, may cause jobs and reports to fail).  See the question "How do I change my Banner password?" below for more details.

Q: How do I change my Banner password? 

A: To change your Banner password, click on the "Change Banner Password" link on the right side of the main menu or go directly to the GUAPSWD form.  Enter your "old" password followed by a new Banner password (twice).  See the question "What are the restrictions when deciding what my new Banner password should be?" below for information about length and content restrictions on the Banner password.

Q: What are the restrictions when deciding what my new Banner password should be? 

A: Because of the sensitive and confidential nature of the data in Banner, and because Banner is now available over the Internet, it is especially critical to secure this system with passwords that are not easily "cracked".  In Banner 7, passwords must contain both numbers and letters, and must be at least 8 characters in length.  All Banner passwords will expire every 90 days.  After three unsuccessful login attempts, your password will become locked for 30 minutes.

Q: Can I keep this new Banner password forever? 

A: No.  All Banner passwords will expire every 90 days.

Q: Will the jobs I have scheduled in GJANITE need to be re-scheduled in Banner 7? 

A: No.  All jobs scheduled to run in Banner via GJANITE will continue to run after the Banner 7 upgrade, even after you change your Banner password.

Q: What do I do about the recurring jobs running in Crystal? 

A: Unfortunately, your (encrypted) Banner password is stored with any Crystal Enterprise report that you have scheduled to recur.  If you have Crystal jobs that run automatically, you will need to re-schedule them after each Banner password change, so that the new Banner password is used when running the job when you are not there to provide it.

Q: When I returned to my desk after a long lunch, Banner stopped working.  I get the message "Oracle error 1012".  What should I do? 

A: All Banner sessions will "time out" after 90 minutes of inactivity.  You can re-connect to Banner by selecting the options: Help | Technical Support | Reconnect to Database.  This method of reconnecting is quicker than exiting and re-starting Banner, and also has the advantage of allowing you to resume what you were doing before the timeout.

Q: How come the Social Security Number (SSN) field in SPAIDEN contains nine asterisk (*) characters?  Shouldn't I be able to look up what a person's SSN is? 

A: Because of the sensitive nature of the SSN, Hamline has elected to utilize a new feature of Banner called "Value Based Security".  Only those individuals who prove they have a critical "need" to be able to enter or view anyone's Social Security Number will have that permission.  All others will see this "masked value" instead.

Q: I used to be able to enter the Social Security Number (SSN) of a person in the ID field in SPAIDEN.  Now, when I do that, Banner is unable to find the person in Banner.  Can't I look up a person if I already know their SSN? 

A: Hamline has continued to support the modification to Banner that allows you to enter the SSN in the ID field in Banner (if you know it).  What is different from Banner 6 is that this option is no longer available in the "IDEN" forms (SPAIDEN, APAIDEN, PPAIDEN, etc).  Try using a different form (like SPAPERS) when you know the SSN and you want to be able to enter it in the ID field.

Q: When I try to view my report output by clicking the "View a File" link on the GJADONE form, I don't see the results window come up.  Is there something wrong with my computer?

A: Since the "View a File" option displays report output in another browser window (a pop-up window), it may look like this is failing if you have some type of pop-up blocker enabled.  In order to use the "View a File" feature of Banner, you may need to configure your browser so that it allows "pop-ups" from

Q: When I use the "Extract Data" option from the "Help" menu to view the Banner extracted data, a window appears and then disappears.  How can I get the Extract Data functionality to work in Banner 7? 

A: To be able to export data in a Banner 7 form in a Windows XP environment you must perform the following tasks:


  1. Exit out of Banner 7, as well as other Internet Explorer (IE) windows
  2. Open IE
  3. Choose Tools | Internet Options
  4. Click the Security tab
  5. Click the Trusted Sites icon
  6. Click on the Sites button
  7. Uncheck "Require server verification (https:) ...", if not already unchecked
  8. Fill in the textbox with "*"
  9. Click the Add button
  10. Click OK until all the windows are closed


Q: When I try to access Banner using my Internet browser from home, I keep getting the "Page not Found" message.  Isn't Banner 7 available to anyone from anywhere on the Internet? 

A: No.  Hamline has configured Banner 7 so that the general public may only access Banner from on campus.  A "proxy server" has been configured to allow designated (authorized) members of the Hamline community access to Banner from anywhere.  If you are authorized to use the Banner proxy server, go to Banner from this off-campus link.  You may obtain authorization from the Data Management Committee member representing you and your department.

Q: I'm using Google Chrome (or FireFox) to access Banner, and it gives me an error page stating that a "plug-in is not found".  Can't I use Google Chrome to access Banner? 

A: Microsoft Internet Explorer is the officially supported browser at Hamline University.  If you are able to use IE, that would solve these issues.  If you have a strong preference for Google Chrome or FireFox, you may try a few other options.  First of all, make sure that you select the alternate link from the Banner 7 web page (the one in the paragraph of text below the "Banner 7 PROD" heading).  If that doesn't work, you may wish to install the Oracle J-Initiator directly (link available at the same page ( prior to going into Banner.

Q: Why did ITS decide to upgrade this particular weekend?  Did they really need four days to do this upgrade? 

A: The Data Management Committee, made up of representatives from many areas of the university, meet monthly to discuss, plan, and implement this type of major computing change.  In the spring of 2005, the committee discussed and committed to the weekend of October 27-30 as the best time to take the system down for this upgrade.  The upgrade to Banner 7 and move from a client/server to a web environment was the most significant change to Banner since we began using it in 1990.  Preparations have been taking place (by various Hamline offices as well as ITS) for over 6 months.  The actual upgrades included all Banner and Piperline processes, and took nearly the whole weekend to complete.


Need more help? Please contact the Help Desk by email or by phone at 651-523.2220