Problems with EZRain 2007-03-23T10:39:01+00:00

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  • Anonymous
    Post count: 12
    #39706 |

    I’ve got everything hooked up, and can modify the times, however, I can never run anything. Yesterday I could run 2 of the 5 zones, but now nothing runs. Any suggestions? I’ve completely started over, but don’t get anything! I’ve tried the downloadable software and now I’ve even tried the trial Mcontrol with the same results.

    THanks!

    Anonymous
    Post count: 408

    You probably received an older version. Send an email to sales@simplehomenet requesting an RMA and you will need to send back your module.

    Anonymous
    Post count: 12

    I purchased it from smarthome.com, do you know if they will still replace it?

    Thanks!

    Anonymous
    Post count: 256

    It sounds from the description that you may have a signal problem with your network, preventing reliable communications between the PLC and the EZRain. Please check for signal filters, or other signal-attenuating devices such as surge-protected extension cords, etc that may be actually causing signal degradation.

    If the unit is defective, then it is best to return it where you purchased it. We added some features to the firmware (version 2.0) to enable linking the EZRain to a controller such as the KeypadLinc. However, the version of firmware that you have works as advertised. Should you wish your unit to be upgraded to 2.0 firmware, you can write to us for an RMA, and then send your unit postage paid for us to upgrade.

    Anonymous
    Post count: 12

    You guys were great – you upgraded my unit to the newest firmware revision – I appreciate it! By the way – Smarthome.com doesn’t even know they are shipping the old revision…

    However, I have it hooked back up and can manually control the sprinklers using the “Manual Zone Control” buttons. However, whenever I try to store times in the programs, I get an error at the bottom that says “Error Sending Message – Please Confirm EZRain Module ID or Retry Command”. Occasionally I can get it to store a time, but not consistently.

    As for signal problems I have 4 of the SignaLinc’s all linked up just fine (one of them in the garage). I have switches and stuff in the garage that work without a problem as well.

    Thoughts? I am running the 2814 Icon PowerLinc so that I can download timers to it for the lights and such. Could this be causing a problem?

    I did just notice when I went out to the garage that the LED light is not on. When I plugged it in, it blinked then stayed solid. Now – I cannot get the light to come on. And now I cannot get it to manually control sprinklers either.

    Edit to add – I just unplugged the device and the bottom rear of it is warm to the touch. Not hot, but seems abnormally warm. Is this normal?

    Thanks for any help you can provide.

    Jason

    Anonymous
    Post count: 47

    Jason,

    I also am having communication problems using the EZRain utility. When I attempt to GET or STORE times, it starts downloading the times and then hangs up, usually on the 2nd dot of the progress bar. I spoke with Simplehomenet and they concluded that it was a communication problem caused by filters or noise. I moved my PLC and EZRain unit to other circuits/outlets, set up the software on another computer, and I tried this with both my 2814 and 2414 PLC. I was told that when you first run the utility, it should show the ID of both the PLC and the EZRain units. I always see the EZRain ID, but I have to click the Reconnect Button, before get the PLC ID to show up. I can send commands to manually open and close the valves, but I experience about a 20% failure rate. When I use the Houselinc software to control the EZRain directly, I experience 100% accuracy.

    I get the same results with everything I have tried so far. I still have some more testing to do, but as of now I am suspecting that the EZrain Utility Software may be the problem.

    One further item: Once I also noticed that the blue led on the EZRain went off. I unplugged the unit, plugged it back in, the led blinked a few times, then went solid and it has not gone off since.

    I hope some of this helps.
    -George

    Anonymous
    Post count: 408

    We have made improvements to the EZRain Configuration Software for communication. I would ask that you try uninstalling your current version, downloading the latest, and reinstalling.

    Let us know if that helps.

    Anonymous
    Post count: 47

    I uninstalled the current version, downloaded a new copy and installed it. When I run the program it indicates version 110806_A. The program still does not immediately find my PLC, although it does show the EZrain Module Id.

    If I click ‘Reconnect to PLC’ it immediately finds my PLC ID.

    I entered a ‘1’ in the Zone1/Program1 box and clicked the ‘Store’ Button. Only one time I was able to complete the Store function with the status bar completely going to the right side and the status changing from ‘busy’ to ‘ready’ again. I did this several times and usually it hangs up.

    I then put a ‘1’ in the Zone1/Manual box and clicked ‘Store’. This time the I only got to 4 dots on the progress bar with the status stuck showing ‘busy’ and the box shows the ‘1’ on a light blue background. I can press the ‘Stop Diagnostics’ button to bring the status back to ‘ready’ with the edit box now showing the ‘1’ on a white background. At this point I can use the ‘Manual Zone Control’ button to turn Zone 1 on and off, but it only works some of the time.

    I shut down the utility and ran it again. Once more I had to click the ‘Reconnect to PLC’ button. I ran the Manual column ‘Get’. It started to run and then hung up. However it did read in the ‘1’ to Zone1/Manual Box so it appears the store I did above worked to some extent. I again had to use the ‘Stop Diagnostic’ button to get the status back to ready. Now I was once again manually control the zone, but only some of the time.

    Some additional information:
    System OS is XP fully updated
    SDM version is 308
    Firmware is 2.13
    PLC is 2414u Rev 2.0
    Testing was done with no other copy of SDM running.
    I can manually control zone 1 using the Houselinc Desktop software with 100% accuracy.

    Please provide suggestions as what to try next.

    Thanks,
    George.

    Anonymous
    Post count: 408

    Could you recheck which file you installed – and verify you did successfully remove the utility prior to re-installation? The latest utility is 032907 (found on the top right of the utility) – released just recently. It has better retry mechanisms and timeout mechanisms in place. The version you reference is an older version, without the communication improvements.

    We did confirm the correct utility is placed on the website.

    Anonymous
    Post count: 47

    Sorry, I am definitely running the older version. It seems that when I use Firefox to download the utility, I get the older version (283kb). When I use IE6 to download here at work, I get the new version (294kb). I repeated this several times and consistently download different versions.

    I don’t know why the browser should matter, but I downloaded the new version, installed it on and now see the correct version number (032907).

    I will download and install the new version tonight at home, and post the results.

    Thanks
    George

    Anonymous
    Post count: 192

    I had a problem with a 2414U PLC and the EZIO8SA with the EZIOXX Utility. Got the same message and had to do a reconnect. In my case it was solved with a 2414S. Yes there are known problems with the 2414U if you have any Direct Input Devices. In my case I didn’t have any but the Direct X Diagnostics crashed on the direct input tests with any Smathome USB PLC connected. 1132U 1132CU 2144U and 2814U.
    My HouseLinc desktop and Ken Millers InHomeFree are at least 2 to 3 times faster through the 2414S than the 2414U. Yes with latest PLC firmware.

    Anonymous
    Post count: 47

    BLH,
    You may have identified some of the problem. I have had a problem in the past running some programs requiring Direct X with the 2414u connected. Consequently, I usually leave the 2414u disconnected from the computer unless I need it. I did not consider the possibility of it affecting things the other way.

    Simplehomenet,
    After I installed the new version, I did some testing and basically nothing changed from what I described in my earlier post.

    However:
    If I first load HouseLinc Desktop and then open up EZRain, the PLC id is immediately identified and I can Get and Store times without it hanging up. I can open and close EZRain and it consistently works, although it is a little slow, taking about 10 seconds to process the zones 8 time settings.

    I tried to first open just the SDM and then run EZRain. Here the PLC was identified immediately, but I did get hangs when trying to Get or Store. I went back again to first running HouseLinc and once again everything ran fine.

    When I run Houselinc the SDM shows 2 connections. When I then run EZRain the SDM then shows 3 connections. If I just run EZRain the SDM shows 1 connection. If I load the SDM first and then run EZRain, the SDM shows 1 connection. I am not sure if this has any significance.

    That’s about a far as I got tonight.

    Anonymous
    Post count: 47

    I just can’t get the EZRain utility to work by itself. I first have to load the Houselinc Desktop program then load EZRain and then everything is fine. I have been able to get/store zone times, create timers and test their execution. For me this work around is ok.

    Maybe it’s the DirectX. I can’t test it, because both my machines have DirectX on them, and it is not readily removable. Maybe someone else can check this out. I do know that when the PLC is connected to either computer, they fail the dxdiag, but pass when the PLC is disconnected.

    Whatever the problem is, the Houselinc software somehow gets around it.

    Thanks,
    George.

    Anonymous
    Post count: 192

    Does the SDM3 icon show on you task bar when the utility starts?
    Besides starting SDM3 HouseLinc desktop also does a few commands to the PLM like isresponding. Look at the advanced section of the logs tab and you will see what is being sent. Maybe that is waking up or connecting to the PLM so the EZRain Utility can find it.
    If you do not have a Direct Input Device; just DirectX 9. The most I have seen is I needed a reconnect to start, but that was the EZIOXX Utility.

    Anonymous
    Post count: 408

    Reading what is going on, I actually am wondering if there may be multiple versions of the SDM sitting on your machine.
    1) Take a look at add/remove programs. How many instances of a program called Device Manager are listed?
    2) When you use just the utility, could you double click the SDM icon in the bottom right and copy the text that is displayed after the utility startsup? It may be helpful to see what is going on. Also copy the text when houselinc is used, then open the utility.
    3) This may be a bit much to propose, but have you tried cleaning your machine of houselinc, utilities, and all device managers? Then, install houselinc and then the utility. This ensures a clean SDM / driver / app setup.

    FYI: The utilities all use isresponding to see if the PLC is there and ready to go. We also try multiple instances of a connection. Also, all new versions of the utilities now use the same communication “backbone”.

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