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Connect ISY *and* s/w package to the Elk concurrently?


IVB

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I'll ask on the Elk forums, but anyone here try to connect the Elk *and* a s/w package like CQC or HomeSeer to the Elk at the same time?

 

It might be interesting to have a firmware product like the ISY do some of my Elk rules that would be a PITA if Windows fails. (I have a few toggle switches wired into an Elk zone, CQC monitors and turns zWave lights on/off. M$ has hung twice in 6 months resulting in no response, unfortunately both times was when the wife tried it).

 

I need to have CQC monitor the Elk for many other rules, not sure if Elk (or UL) permit two concurrent connections.

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If your intent is to follow and abide by all UL / cUL rules and regulations you will have found out none of what you're intending to do is approved.

 

As far as I am aware none of the freeware on the Internet unless made by the hardware manufacture is UL / cUL tested, endorsed, certified, etc. It should also be noted the ISY Series Controller is also not UL / cUL security certified for use.

 

The reality is lots of people have various levels of 3rd party / freeware applications & hardware in use with the ELK system and have great results.

 

For the average consumer none of this is too critical in the big picture but the end user must balance life and safety vs convenience(s). My personal views on the topic at hand is quite well known in this forum and many others. In that I believe security related hardware should always be a separate entity from other home automation elements.

 

There is nothing wrong with integrating HA elements where it simply provides status / condition(s).

 

But at no time should unapproved software / appliance hardware have direct command & control of the security alarm panel. 

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Apologies I'm not tracking. I'm not using the ISY to do any security related items, I'm using it to send a zwave command based on the open or closed position of an elk zone. Security is still fully contained within the Elk.

 

Or did I misunderstand something?

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Apologies I'm not tracking. I'm not using the ISY to do any security related items, I'm using it to send a zwave command based on the open or closed position of an elk zone. Security is still fully contained within the Elk.

 

Or did I misunderstand something?

 

Hello IVB,

 

Let me back up a little just so we are on the same page. Do you have the ELK Module installed on the ISY Series Controller? Are your long term plans to connect to the ELK via CQC which resides on a computer system?

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Hello IVB,

 

Let me back up a little just so we are on the same page. Do you have the ELK Module installed on the ISY Series Controller? Are your long term plans to connect to the ELK via CQC which resides on a computer system?

 

No Elk module on the ISY. I currently have CQC monitoring the Elk and performing some actions (99% of it is lighting). I know ElkRP kicks CQC out when it connects, but I didn't know if that was an ElkRP specific thing or an M1XEP 1 connection at a time thing.

 

If two TCP cxns are allowed then I'd buy the ISY Elk module and move the lighting stuff from CQC into the ISY, to avoid lighting rules not working because Windows took a dump.

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No Elk module on the ISY. I currently have CQC monitoring the Elk and performing some actions (99% of it is lighting). I know ElkRP kicks CQC out when it connects, but I didn't know if that was an ElkRP specific thing or an M1XEP 1 connection at a time thing.

 

If two TCP cxns are allowed then I'd buy the ISY Elk module and move the lighting stuff from CQC into the ISY, to avoid lighting rules not working because Windows took a dump.

 

So essentially your intent is to passively interact with the ELK system. Meaning the CQC software monitors say a armed conditions and then does XX with the lights, correct?

 

Does the CQC software have the ability to control the ELK alarm panel at all while in this passive (monitoring) state?

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So essentially your intent is to passively interact with the ELK system. Meaning the CQC software monitors say a armed conditions and then does XX with the lights, correct?

 

Does the CQC software have the ability to control the ELK alarm panel at all while in this passive (monitoring) state?

 

Well yes passive interaction is the primary value.

 

It can arm/disarm/stay, and I have a screen for that but to be honest it hasn't been used in over a year. If there's a material reason to take it down I can do so, although those apps mentioned above do the same thing. I apologize if this is a stupid question, but does external arm/disarm/stay interfere with the security/stability of the Elk? 

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Well yes passive interaction is the primary value.

 

It can arm/disarm/stay, and I have a screen for that but to be honest it hasn't been used in over a year. If there's a material reason to take it down I can do so, although those apps mentioned above do the same thing. I apologize if this is a stupid question, but does external arm/disarm/stay interfere with the security/stability of the Elk? 

 

Before I answer your question I am going to preface the following: Every industry has rules which govern how things should be done. As I am sure what ever environment you work in you follow specific codes of conduct and policy.

 

Life is very much a balance of risk vs rewards . . .

 

A person is surrounded by risks everyday and makes decisions every waking moment and balances those risks. Having laid out the above in a consumer / residential setting its entirely up to you to decide if those risks are worth the benefits. My initial reply to you was based on the fact you called out UL / cUL requirements.

 

If UL / cUL rules and standard industry practices are your over all intent - then connecting the CQC or any un-certified software / hardware is not allowed.

 

As you noted the computer system which contains the CQC took a dump. Imagine the CQC software or the operating system became corrupt and locked up the alarm panel?

 

As you noted the CQC software has the ability to control the alarm panel from arm, disarm, stay, etc.

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got it, thanks for the education.

 

Interestingly enough, quantifiable risk management is actually a core component of my job (management consulting). We create risk scores on probability * impact. True, the impact of what you outline is very high. My personal assessment of probability is ultra low (connected CQC to it 9 years ago, has never happened once, nor has it happened to anyone I know or have heard of), which puts the overall score at within personal tolerance.

 

Thanks for the heads up. I'll likely delete that GUI screen so it would bring the probability of this even lower. CQC would have to accidentally send the right field in the right driver the right sequence of characters to corrupt it, which puts me even further at east.

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The Elk M1XEP can only accept a single TCP connection at a time, so the ISY will be kicked off when another device connects. At least that the experience with ElkRP when connected....

 

ElkRP puts the M1 into a special binary connection mode when it connects, excluding all other connections. But for the normal ASCII serial API, multiple connections are permitted and supported. In fact, when ElkRP is connected, the other clients do not disconnect, they just receive a notification that ElkRP is connected and that they won't be able to send or receive any commands.

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