Strange Things Are Happening

Posted on
Sun Apr 26, 2020 11:57 pm
jltnol offline
Posts: 468
Joined: Oct 15, 2013

Strange Things Are Happening

So for some reason, I' had a rash of strange things happen with Indigo. Usually, very dependable, it seems to be getting somewhat erratic. At first I thought I might have a bad Insteon KPL... the green light/line at the bottom of the main page where traffic is displayed is sometimes solid green, even tho the event log says nothing is happening. When that happens, I can't disable either the Z-Wave stick or the modem used for Insteon. I usually have to re-start the computer.

Something is wrong, but the system is so complex I'm not even sure where to start to trouble shoot, as the "strange things" don't seem to have much in common. I did just get a new router, and have always used the default ports for Indigo, and those ports are open to the public, but I'm assuming they'd have to know my password to actually do anything. I'm going to change those ports and the password first and see if that helps. But I'm honestly at a loss to even explain some of the events I've seen.

For instance, today, I turned on some lights in the garage, which turns on a button on a KPL inside. Not sure if that button went on, but another button on the same KPL turns on the alarm, and that's exactly what happened. The alarm was activated by a different button on the same KPL that has the button for the lights in the garage. I've turned those lights on and off many times, and Indigo always responds correctly. Even after I tracked down what happened from the event log, repeating the same exact steps didn't arm the alarm.

As I was going to bed, the lights in the Hue Lights in the living room came on, and I found out that the fan in the office was stuck in a loop, turning on and off a button on a KPL. And on that same KPL, one button does activate the Hue Lights. Just like with the garage light and the alarm, the fan activated a different button on the KPL that turned on the Hue Lights.

I know programming is normally the culprit, but usually those are confined to a small segment of what Indigo does.

I guess I'm just curious if anyone else has had strange things happen lately, and more importantly, any tips or suggestions on trying to trouble shoot what the problem might be.

Posted on
Mon Apr 27, 2020 6:12 am
peszko offline
Posts: 211
Joined: Mar 07, 2012

Re: Strange Things Are Happening

jltnol wrote:
I guess I'm just curious if anyone else has had strange things happen lately, and more importantly, any tips or suggestions on trying to trouble shoot what the problem might be.


I had. I found that this is related to both noise and malfunctioning insteon devices, especially keypadlinks. I had random things turn on or off, including very inconvenient garage door left open all nite as example. Or all lights turned on in the middle of the nite as another. Wife was not impressed.... In my investigation, I found that Insteon (especially the older devices) are not very good at confirming their signals and with quite a few devices installed start reacting to spurious noise as commands. In my case, and from my research, in many cases the worst offenders are wireless modules and keypadlinks. After I replaced most of my wireless insteon modules and keypadlinks with z-wave devices, my systems is now very solid. I plan to replace the rest of the wireless ones as time goes by. I got rid of all but one of they keypad links, and replaced the last one with the latest version. So far this has solved my reliability issues.

And yes, those spurious commands don't show up in the log, but are still clogging up the insteon channel, which make it even worse, as Insteon doesn't handle collisions that well in my opinion.

In your case, I would suspect that one (or more) of your modules went bad, and is sending out a lot of garbage, that in some cases gets interpreted as commands. I would suggest you try to find the one by disconnecting devices one by one, until things settle down. I'd start with keypadlinks, then the wireless ones.

Posted on
Mon Apr 27, 2020 8:40 am
jltnol offline
Posts: 468
Joined: Oct 15, 2013

Re: Strange Things Are Happening

disconnecting devices one by one


This was actually going to be my plan. Overnight, I also considered an issue with the modem... Think I'm going to unplug the modem for awhile first, and see what happens. And then disable comms from the KPL's one at a time.

Like you, my house is a mix of Z-Wave and Insteon, but I've decided Insteon isn't the way forward, so all new stuff will be Z-Wave. However I have far too much invested to just start over. And as much trouble as KPL's can be, I love the fact they can be so customized, and can do so much, it's going to really hard to give them all up, as I don't see much on the horizon that is equal. Lastly, I started with all this HA stuff about 6 years ago, and have been hoping that Insteon would move to a WiFi communications protocol, which would make me more likely to replace stuff, but so far, that hasn't happened, although I can think of lots of reasons why it should.

Regardless, thanks for your reply. While hacking wasn't really the first thing that came to mind, its good to hear that others have had similar issues.

Posted on
Mon Apr 27, 2020 11:23 am
peszko offline
Posts: 211
Joined: Mar 07, 2012

Re: Strange Things Are Happening

jltnol wrote:
However I have far too much invested to just start over.


Same here. I found that if. you use the newer Insteon modules and only as responders, they seem to be reliable.

jltnol wrote:
And as much trouble as KPL's can be, I love the fact they can be so customized, and can do so much, it's going to really hard to give them all up


That is why I couldn't get rid of all of them. I couldn't find a good z-wave equivalent. It's now over a year since I did the big change, and only noticed spurious signals twice. When I have the time (and budget) I'll get rid of all gen 1 Insteon devices.

Posted on
Mon Apr 27, 2020 1:31 pm
jltnol offline
Posts: 468
Joined: Oct 15, 2013

Re: Strange Things Are Happening

how does one tell if I have...
newer Insteon modules
?

All have the i2CS engine, but firmware ranges from 10(thermostat) to 48(On /Off Module)



And lastly, with the Insteon modem disabled... physically disconnected from the server, what could cause this?:

Image

Posted on
Mon Apr 27, 2020 3:58 pm
peszko offline
Posts: 211
Joined: Mar 07, 2012

Re: Strange Things Are Happening

In firmware field you either have i2 or i2CS. The i2CS is the new one. I'm not sure if the firmware can be updated. I'll have to investigate it.
Attachments
Screen Shot 2020-04-27 at 5.51.04 PM.png
New firmware
Screen Shot 2020-04-27 at 5.51.04 PM.png (48.11 KiB) Viewed 187 times
Screen Shot 2020-04-27 at 5.50.09 PM.png
Old firmware
Screen Shot 2020-04-27 at 5.50.09 PM.png (52.7 KiB) Viewed 187 times

Posted on
Mon Apr 27, 2020 5:13 pm
matt (support) offline
Site Admin
User avatar
Posts: 19964
Joined: Jan 27, 2003
Location: Texas

Re: Strange Things Are Happening

Firmware cannot be updated. i2cs is the latest major version though and really i2 is fine as well.

Regarding the progress area, Indigo will show the interface in red like that if you unplug it from the Mac. The progress area "full" of green might just be stuck outgoing messages that cannot clear because you unplugged it. They are sitting in the queue and will be sent the next time it reconnects successfully. Note there are 2 outgoing queues, 1 for Insteon and 1 for Z-Wave. The progress area only has one progress bar, but just because there are pending Insteon messages does not mean Z-Wave messages cannot be sent/received. Those will still go out since it is independent of the Insteon queue.

Image

Posted on
Mon Apr 27, 2020 5:55 pm
jltnol offline
Posts: 468
Joined: Oct 15, 2013

Re: Strange Things Are Happening

Pretty much exactly what I thought, but as it turns out, that pic was taken after the modem was unplugged from the computer, AND after a computer re-start, so that might indicate issues with the Z-Wave network as opposed to Insteon, right ?




And this, later:

So I'm still having a green line of varying length in the traffic meter. When I re-load the Z-wave interface, it goes away, and everything is back to normal. But when the green line shows up again, and I try to dis-able the Insteon Modem, it freezes... The Interface menu item doesn't have the green dot, but the modem is still in green at the bottom, no red type and no red line. In trying to escape this, I tried to stop the server, so I can recover, but the server won't shut down. and obviously I can't re-enable the Insteon Modem, and actually have to restart the computer to get back up and running.

I'm really hoping this additional bit of info can shed some light on where to look and/or what might be broken. Don't think this is an issue with the program, but with either the Z-Wave stick, or the Insteon Modem.

Posted on
Tue Apr 28, 2020 9:12 am
jay (support) offline
Site Admin
User avatar
Posts: 16212
Joined: Mar 19, 2008
Location: Austin, Texas

Re: Strange Things Are Happening

Disable the Insteon interface entirely (no need to disconnect the PowerLinc) and let it run. If you see queueing backups (solid green bar) then you know the issue is the Z-Wave interface.

Jay (Indigo Support)
Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn

Page 1 of 1

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest