How the Update Management module keeps your PIS cybersafe and your passengers up to date

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Updating your on-board railway systems’ software and content can be a time-consuming and expensive – but absolutely essential – process: your passenger experience and systems’ security depend on it. If you think managing updates is a real hassle, the possibilities of Televic GSP’s Update Management module will be music to your ears. Find out how this feature simplifies rolling out required updates – remotely and automatically, saving you both time and costs!

Need for speed(y updates)

The days of static passenger information systems are gone. With fleets transforming into fully interconnected ecosystems, keeping track of software and content updates, upgrades and optimizations has become indispensable. Missing or skipping one might have disastrous consequences, such as:

  • A drop in passenger satisfaction: travelers expect consistent, up-to-date information readily available during their journey to optimize their experience.
  • Regulatory penalties: if updates of trains’ journey databases aren’t deployed in a timely manner, governments might issue fines for showing incorrect or obsolete travel schedules.
  • Security breaches: an unpatched entry point in the elaborate interconnection between rail vehicles, on-board devices and wayside data centers increases the risk of malicious attacks.

Stable, secure and reliable PIS systems

“In order to keep your passenger information systems stable, secure and reliable, you have to perform updates on a regular basis”, says Niels Bouten, product manager at Televic GSP. “Don’t wait until your five-yearly PIS refurbishment if you want to benefit from enhanced performance over time. Security improvements are being released every few weeks, and passenger information or schedules might need real-time adjustments.”

Update management: a challenging mission

The importance of regular updates is clear, but the road towards them can be blocked by Excel sheets and manual interventions.

Niels explains: “Many train operators are currently using Excel sheets to manage software and configuration versions on their fleet. Once an update is flagged due, they have to call in each vehicle separately for maintenance, and perform the update on board.” Unfortunately, this approach is timeconsuming and prone to errors, which might ultimately cause a stand-still in operations.

“What you need is a centralized real-time overview of all media and software assets and their versions that are dispersed across multiple subsystems. And, more importantly, an easy-to-use solution to distribute updates remotely to your entire fleet.”

Update Management module in LiveCoM Suite

Other industries, like automotive, are already tackling similar challenges with over-the-air (OTA) updates – enabling manufacturers such as Tesla to send updates remotely to their electric cars from a cloud-based server. Niels: “At Televic GSP, we’ve developed our own feature with over-the-air updates to simplify update management tailored to the rail industry.”

The Update Management module is a vital component in LiveCoM Suite, Televic GSP’s set of software services to streamline the management and operation of passenger information systems. It enables and connects with a number of other functionalities in the Suite, such as the Content Management and Transit Data Management modules.

With the Update Management module, you get:

  • A real-time cross-fleet overview of the installed content database, schedule and software versions. Pinpointing required updates is straightforward: filter out vehicles with outdated versions of a certain artifact in your fleet in a single view, or retrieve the full version configuration of a vehicle in one click.
    Niels: “The version overview can also considerably improve efficiency when coupling rolling stock. Retrieving vehicle configurations and comparing them side by side enables you to quickly check the subsystems’ version compatibility of the vehicles you want to connect beforehand.”

     

  • Flexibility to remotely push over-the-air updates, without impacting the vehicles’ operations – thus avoiding costly manual interventions. By leveraging the Update Management tool, you can dynamically keep your content and schedules up to date at all times, roll out software feature updates, bug fixes and security updates as soon as they are available and instantly tackle patched security vulnerabilities.
    Niels: “If only a small section of a certain artifact version has changed, you can choose to limit the update to the part that’s strictly necessary – the delta update. You can roll out updates to target the entire fleet, a subset of vehicles or a single vehicle. This way the transfer time and cost can be minimized. In addition, scheduling updates to be deployed after certain conditions are met, increases efficiency and reduces the need for manual follow-up.”

Monitoring and managing on-board databases made easy

Do you still think update management is a hassle? It doesn’t have to be. LiveCoM Suite offers you intuitive, user-friendly tools that centralize all the content, schedule and software information you need, and enable you to push updates whenever and wherever you want.

The Update Management module enables you to keep your passenger information systems up to par with informational, functional and security requirements.

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