Jump to content

PLM Goes Mute, Then Deaf


paws

Recommended Posts

To celebrate my going on a trip thousands of miles away, where it would be difficult for me to hit it with a hammer, my PLM went mute. Think "Tommy" from the eponymous rock opera - "...he hears but cannot answer to your call." The log showed sensor activity and the programs responded, but their instructions went unheeded.

 

In desperation I tried a PLM Restore. The PLM then went deaf, as well. All that is now in the log are the timed programs.

 

The main problem here is that I am still, and will be for several weeks, on a different continent, which makes button pushing and module swapping tricky. I can call on my neighbor for the simplest of tasks, but his total knowledge of the system is that it misbehaves on all my trips in increasingly unpleasant manners. I can log onto the Administrative Console (3.1.10) fairly regularly after battling my way through the dozens of warning messages about being unable to communicate with this and that. Any difficulty with the login is most likely derived from the fact that the local Internet provider seems to be running broadband through two tin cans and a really tight string. No luck with Telnet.

 

I suspect a PLM problem, based on virtually no science whatsoever. The ISY-99 seems to think the deaf and dumb thing is fine: Only the PWR light is lit (no RX light), and it reports the status as "v72 / Connected".

 

With really nothing to lose at this point, I was going to try a "Restore Devices", since I could do that remotely... I thought. Then I ran across the dialog box about putting the TriggerLincs and RemoteLincs into linking mode. I suppose I could talk (text) my neighbor through that, but I'm tempted to just ignore them and, if necessary, remove and replace them when I get home.

 

So, finally, the questions:

 

Ignore the Trigger/RemoteLincs? Any problems with that?

 

Does this sound like a PLM issue?

 

If so, I'm going to order a replacement to be waiting upon my return. I see Smarthome still sells the 2412U with the internal power supply and pass-through, but no dual-band. I actually use the power and pass through. Is the dual-band that much better than having an access point or other dual band device nearby?

 

Sorry to ramble on!

 

Jim

Link to comment
Share on other sites

A v72 PLM is pretty old. Just not sure from the post what is actually working and what is not. If that is a 2412 PLM they are no longer being sold. The new PLM is a 2413 Dual Band which does not provide 12v power to the ISY. An external power supply is required if moving to a 2413 from a 2412 PLM. Probably not something a neighbor should be doing.

 

I would have the neighbor power down the ISY and the PLM. Restore power and see what happens.

 

Cannot use a USB PLM with the ISY, it must be Serial. Only option is the 2413 Dual Band which requires an external power supply for the ISY and has no passthru outlet because they interfere with RF activity.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hope this isn't a duplicate reply: My previous attempt vanished to points unknown.

 

Thanks for the info about the USB vs. serial PLM's. Yes, the 2412 Smarthome sells is USB (2412U), so I guess I'm going to have to go with an external power source. Not a huge deal: I have a whole drawer full and the ISY has that wonderfully broad power range.

 

The power down and back up was the first thing I tried: I had had a couple vaguely similar episodes over the last year and it worked. One wrinkle, though: When I (and in this case, my neighbor) did the process, I/we just unplugged the PLM, as it also powers the ISY. Could it help to have the neighbor unplug the PLM, then unplug its connection to the ISY so that the PLM could start first, then plug the ISY back in?

 

As far as what is working and what is not, the ISY seems to be working flawlessly, but in a vacuum: It does not receive any inputs from the EZIO's, etc., and can neither control nor even query modules. This is why I suspect the PLM, as it is the gateway to the outside world. I think the lack of hearing is a result of something I did in the Restore PLM, as it was receiving signals up until then. The original problem was the lack of control: The programs would run, but no actions were taken, nor could I control anything via the web interface.

 

Jim

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's quite possible that you have some other electronic device going bad and causing so much noise that the PLM can't speak or hear over the noise. Are you seeing attempts to comnunicate in the event log?

 

-Xathros

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There should be no advantage to uncabling the PLM.

 

The Restore Modem (PLM) clears the PLM, then starts the restore. If the PLM does not accept link records the ISY will not be aware of device state changes because link records do not exist. A Show PLM Links Table will indicate if the link records have been restored.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'll leave the event log running for a while just to make sure, but on a quick glance yesterday I saw nothing whatsoever. After reading this topic I did fear interference, but when it went mute it seemed to be getting all the signals okay, but given that no one was home to throw switches, etc., I can only base this on that the sensors reported my neighbor's visits. So it would seem that there wasn't any interference, but if I learned anything from reading this topic, interference is rarely as it seems.

 

It looks like the links have disappeared. When I generated the PLM Links table yesterday all I got was what I assume are the headers. This was after I did the PLM Restore, though. My guess is that they were there before, as it was still listening up until then. I'm going to try yet another Restore, as this certainly aggravated the situation: Maybe I somehow had two bad Restores? Still doesn't explain the original (non-transmitting) issue.

 

Okay, as I typed this the Restore finished (nice to have a relatively small system). I get an error message:

 

"Failed resetting the PLM

[-200000/-30]

-----------------------------

Subscriber didn't reply to event: 1

[33]

 

Unrelated matter: Does everyone else have to log in a second time when they push "Submit", and lose the entire text of the reply? It happens to me each time. Not a big deal, since the first disaster I now just Copy All and paste once the screen pops back up blank. Just kind of strange.

 

Jim

Link to comment
Share on other sites

By the way: The Event Viewer watched the PLM restore and reported that each of the link replacements was successful, but there is still nothing in the links table, so maybe the problem is in that final act, the reset, as the error message stated (duh!). The Event Viewer reported the reset, but not its outcome, as it had each of the link replacements.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is the way a Restore Modem (PLM) commands look at the beginning of the restore. There is nothing special at the end. Just the last link record written.

 

I’m beginning to think the PLM may have failed if after the restore there are no link records retrieved by the Show PLM Links Table.

 

Tue 09/18/2012 12:33:27 AM : Reset PLM

 

Tue 09/18/2012 12:33:29 AM : [RST-ACK ] 02 67 06

 

Tue 09/18/2012 12:33:29 AM : [sET-CNF-RSP ] 02 6B 80 06

 

Tue 09/18/2012 12:33:30 AM : [MNG-LNK-RSP ] 02 6F 41 A2 09 01 DB B6 07 07 00 06

 

Tue 09/18/2012 12:33:30 AM : [MNG-LNK-RSP ] 02 6F 41 A2 0A 01 DB B6 07 07 00 06

 

Tue 09/18/2012 12:33:31 AM : [MNG-LNK-RSP ] 02 6F 41 A2 0B 01 DB B6 07 07 00 06

 

Tue 09/18/2012 12:33:31 AM : [MNG-LNK-RSP ] 02 6F 41 A2 0C 01 DB B6 07 07 00 06

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm obviously doing something wrong in getting the diagnostics. Other than the date/time group, mine look nothing like your hexadecimal stuff. This is the beginning and the end of my restore on the event viewer. Everything in between is just more of the three line groups for each device.

 

Mon 09/17/2012 08:43:56 PM : [ F 43 46 1] Restoring PLM

Mon 09/17/2012 08:43:56 PM : Optimizing Device Databases

Mon 09/17/2012 08:43:56 PM : [10 E7 30 1 ] Using engine version i1 for 'Bottom Lower Parking Feed Out'

Mon 09/17/2012 08:43:56 PM : [ 10 E7 30 1] Replacing PLM links (locally and in PLM)

Mon 09/17/2012 08:43:56 PM : [ 10 E7 30 1] Replacing PLM links Successful

Mon 09/17/2012 08:43:56 PM : [10 E7 3E 1 ] Using engine version i1 for 'Amino OutletLinc in DVR Box'

Mon 09/17/2012 08:43:56 PM : [ 10 E7 3E 1] Replacing PLM links (locally and in PLM)

Mon 09/17/2012 08:43:56 PM : [ 10 E7 3E 1] Replacing PLM links Successful

.

.

.

Mon 09/17/2012 08:43:57 PM : [F 80 BD 1 ] Using engine version i1 for 'Cache Entrance Halogen'

Mon 09/17/2012 08:43:57 PM : [ F 80 BD 1] Replacing PLM links (locally and in PLM)

Mon 09/17/2012 08:43:57 PM : [ F 80 BD 1] Replacing PLM links Successful

Mon 09/17/2012 08:43:57 PM : Reset PLM

Mon 09/17/2012 08:51:28 PM : [All ] Writing 0 bytes to devices

Mon 09/17/2012 08:52:18 PM : [ Time] 20:52:19 8(0)

 

Not sure if this is significant, but there is a long period (eight minutes) where a progress bar creeps across the screen between the last replacement and the final two entries, yet nothing is recorded in the viewer.

 

I should probably just plan on a new PLM. Even if it turns out not to be the problem, a spare would be nice to have, given the catastrophic failure they can create.

 

Jim

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Let me guess: 3.1.10 didn't have a Level 3? My Event Viewer levels are:

None

Status/Operational Events

More Info

Device communications events

 

None produces the output of your example.

 

If so, I might as well update from the other side of the Pacific: Might be safer given the trend of things worsening as I try to fix them. This way I won't be home when the house burns down, falls over, and sinks into the swamp.

 

Jim

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't remember there being an issue with the Event Viewer levels back at 3.1.10. However, that is a Beta with 3.1.16 being the official release for 3.1.x Beta sequence. There is a later official release 3.2.16 at the end of the 3.2.x Beta sequences. The latest Beta is 3.3.2 with 3.3.3 coming in a week or two.

 

I suggest upgrading but not doing it remotely.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I guess I'll put this on hold until my return in early October. I'll have a replacement PLM waiting for me, but before I go that route I'll do the update and come back here to post the results, just in case it isn't the PLM, or, worse, whatever it is is killing the PLM. Doubtful, maybe impossible, but I ran into that sort of situation years ago... in a life-critical system. Not good.

 

Thanks, I'll be baaack!

Jim

Link to comment
Share on other sites

No thermostats. Nothing really exotic: Standard modules, a couple of TriggerLincs, and some Simplehome (or whatever they are called now) modules.

 

The one very odd event was that around the time the system began to fail the two analog inputs on an EZIO8SA went berserk to the tune of twenty thousand lines in the log in less than a day. This may be a red herring, though: I had just done some rewiring on it so I may well have accidentally loosened the grounding of those inputs. The problem went away while the PLM was in its hear-but-can't-talk mode, so I don't really know what to make of it.

 

Jim

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks! Now I have some confidence that I won't have an extra PLM sitting around for the rest of my life! And if I do, as I wrote, it's not the end of the world.

 

Hopefully I'll let you know that all is well in about three weeks!

 

Jim

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Jim,

 

I wanted to share with you my experience from just today. Over the last few weeks upon doing a standard review of all Insteon devices. I found that my PLM LED was extremely dim green. When it had always been fairly medium bright (if that makes any sense) :oops:

 

Upon power cycling the PLM the standard bright green to normally dim green did not appear. I also noted that just today some programs did not fire off and execute as expected.

 

In this case it was the central fan not turning off and my GF had to manually do so. :evil:

 

Regardless, I decided to perform a PLM restore and experienced the exact same error message you posted up in the beginning of this OP.

 

Attempting to hard reset and power cycling and restoring the PLM via the ISY proved fruitless. :cry: After about 45 minutes of simply wasting my time and patience. I pulled the plug and replaced it with a back up PLM I had on hand.

 

One of the things I experienced was the fact that performing a PLM restore with the back up PLM did not invoke a full restore to this PLM? :?: After about another hour of performing the exact same task, it finally worked.

 

One thing is that at certain points an actual removal and power cycle of the PLM is required. This of course is NOT possible from your location and has some have suggested. To attempt a remote firmware upgrade is just tempting fate! :(

 

Now, another thing to keep in mind is the following: If your friend simply unplugs the ISY this will not bring the unit back to *awareness* of the various Insteon devices. I have noted many times that a forced reboot is required to *Push* the ISY into reading all devices listed in its recorded tables. As times when you select the query all, nothing happens, until you either reboot, or a combination of hard reset and than reboot which invokes the ISY into calling out to the devices.

 

At the end of the day I just wanted to share with you my *todays frustrations* as it was really pissing me off!*

 

But, I made it through only because the power of the ISY allowed me to restore a new PLM and all the links in one fell swoop! Rest assured, if that was not available the whole running around like an idiot pushing buttons would have been required and I would have called it quites long ago.

 

Teken . . .

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

I'm using a 2413S PLM (not the older model). I'm setting up a web-based power switch configuration on my systems to allow for remote cycling of power for my ISP modem, router, ISY and devices since I don't have daily access to this location. I wanted to know if I should consider adding the PLM to a remotely controlled power switch for the purpose of cycling it's power too. I'm not sure if this device ever locks-up and needs to be recycled. On the surface, I would say "why not" add this ability since the switch has enough recepticles to support another device.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hello dano,

 

How will be accessing your web-based switch if the router is down?

 

Rebooting ISY by brute force is never a good idea. ISY might be in the middle of committing changes to the file system and brute force increases the likelihood of corrupted configuration files.

 

From our perspective, ISY was designed so that you will never have to reboot it. Of course we have had some bugs (including one we found recently whereby DirecTV Media Share caused a system hang) but we also have systems that have been running since 2007.

 

As far as the PLM, the only thing you have to make sure is that your web switch does not negatively impact INSTEON signals.

 

With kind regards,

Michel

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The web switch will only cyle the ISY if it doens't respond to a ping. I can control the individual switches and set-up an auto-ping to each device on the network (ISP modem, router, etc). If it doesn't respond, I can cycle it. I know the ISY has been very reliable in my set-up. However, I wanted the ability to cycle if necessary. I do not have this on a reoccuring basis (i.e. daily). It only cycles if the switch loses communication (via ping). The only filtering the switch has is a single 3600 Joule MOV (metal oxide varistor) for surge protection. Do you see any issues?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.


×
×
  • Create New...