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Author Topic: Wireless (WiFi) enabled CM15A interface  (Read 28084 times)

pwalde

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Wireless (WiFi) enabled CM15A interface
« on: December 16, 2008, 07:34:52 AM »

It would be great if someone made a WiFi enabled wireless computer interface or a USB dongle you could attach to where the USB cable goes on the CM15A ActiveHome Pro module so you could operate with a laptop or a PocketPC
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Alan V

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Re: Wireless (WiFi) enabled CM15A interface
« Reply #1 on: December 16, 2008, 12:01:54 PM »

It's not likely to happen.  The microprocessor in the CM15A would need to be changed to one that can provide USB host capabilities.  Also, the microprocessor firmware would need to be re-written to handle the WiFi stack.
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HA Dave

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Re: Wireless (WiFi) enabled CM15A interface
« Reply #2 on: December 16, 2008, 02:59:46 PM »

It's not likely to happen. 

Your so right Alan V! But pwalde's wish is still valid.

Right now (almost) everyone can get Internet connectivity to their Home Automation using AHP and the CM15A... ether through the X10 servers or "other" [third-party] software. The only difference is currently a Home Automation computer MUST be in the loop. Of course the same could be accomplished by adding a big enough microprocessor and firmware to the interface... basically making the interface a tiny little computer. Unfortunately.... tiny little niche computers are expensive. Fortunately full sized computers have gotten cheaper and cheaper.

I have been running a Home Automation Computer (24/7) for a couple years now. I know... Many people still bulk at the idea of running a Home Automation computer. But the additional "smartness" that I get from all that processing power.... is too much to pass up.

I do perform all my own computer repairs and setups which does save a bunch of money. I also use old [what I call] curb-side computers. Curb-side computers can actually be found setting beside the trash cans (on the street curb) on trash pick-up day. Although it's best to ask around and find computers that have been replaced... and are currently only gathering dust and blocking walkways.

My setup uses an old P3, XP computer. I did need to upgrade the RAM... and found that [used] at a flea market. The computer ain't much... but it does make a difference. I have a Home Automation video at YouTube < link.
« Last Edit: December 16, 2008, 03:03:17 PM by Dave_x10_L »
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cnpalmer

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Re: Wireless (WiFi) enabled CM15A interface
« Reply #3 on: December 16, 2008, 03:39:25 PM »

Actually using a wireless USB hub would work as well.

You would plug the CM15A into the wall outlet, run the USB cable to the wireless USB hub and then plug the wirelss USB transmitter to your PC/laptop.

They aren't cheap... +$100 or so... here's a link to one...
http://www.buy.com/prod/d-link-wireless-usb-4-port-hub-d-link-4-port-wireless-usb-2-0-hub-x-4/q/loc/101/205814249.html

And another...
http://www.buy.com/prod/iogear-ultra-wideband-wireless-usb-2-0-hub-and-adapter-iogear-4-port/q/loc/101/205130621.html
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HA Dave

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Re: Wireless (WiFi) enabled CM15A interface
« Reply #4 on: December 16, 2008, 04:55:08 PM »

It would be great if someone made a WiFi enabled wireless computer interface or a USB dongle you could attach to where the USB cable goes on the CM15A ActiveHome Pro module so you could operate with a laptop or a PocketPC

Actually using a wireless USB hub would work as well.

You would plug the CM15A into the wall outlet, run the USB cable to the wireless USB hub and then plug the wirelss USB transmitter to your PC/laptop.

They aren't cheap... +$100 or so... here's a link to one...
http://www.buy.com/prod/d-link-wireless-usb-4-port-hub-d-link-4-port-wireless-usb-2-0-hub-x-4/q/loc/101/205814249.html

And another...
http://www.buy.com/prod/iogear-ultra-wideband-wireless-usb-2-0-hub-and-adapter-iogear-4-port/q/loc/101/205130621.html


By golly.... I do think thats what pwalde asked for! You get a HELPFUL from me cnpalmer.
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Alan V

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Re: Wireless (WiFi) enabled CM15A interface
« Reply #5 on: December 16, 2008, 05:01:47 PM »

Actually using a wireless USB hub would work as well.

You would plug the CM15A into the wall outlet, run the USB cable to the wireless USB hub and then plug the wirelss USB transmitter to your PC/laptop.

They aren't cheap... +$100 or so... here's a link to one...
http://www.buy.com/prod/d-link-wireless-usb-4-port-hub-d-link-4-port-wireless-usb-2-0-hub-x-4/q/loc/101/205814249.html

And another...
http://www.buy.com/prod/iogear-ultra-wideband-wireless-usb-2-0-hub-and-adapter-iogear-4-port/q/loc/101/205130621.html


Good point about using the wireless usb hub.  I had forgotten about those.  Still, it would be kind of a drag to have to lug around a laptop with the wireless USB dongle hanging off of it.  And to use it with a Pocket PC, the Pocket PC would have to have USB host capability as well.  And they say that the range is about 30 ft.  I know that wouldn't work very well in my situation.
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HA Dave

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Re: Wireless (WiFi) enabled CM15A interface
« Reply #6 on: December 16, 2008, 05:38:04 PM »

Good point about using the wireless usb hub........ And they say that the range is about 30 ft.  I know that wouldn't work very well in my situation.

My CM15A is located in a corner in my basement.... because that's where my office and HA Computer are. I have thought about moving the Home Automation Computer upstairs to improve the CM15A's range.... but didn't wish to sacrifice WAF. If the wi-fi USB hub would allow the CM15A to be raised a floor or two... and leave the computer in-place... that could be very helpful.

As a side note: I have no cell phone reception in my basement office. But I can leave the cell phone upstairs and stick the bluetooth thingy in my ear... and use the cell phone in the basement.
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cnpalmer

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Re: Wireless (WiFi) enabled CM15A interface
« Reply #7 on: December 17, 2008, 07:54:23 AM »

By golly.... I do think thats what pwalde asked for! You get a HELPFUL from me cnpalmer.
Thank you! I know I don't post much but am on the forum a few times a day.

The 30ft. range does present a challenge in some instances and the USB dongle could cause a hinderance. In my situation where I move the laptop room to room it would work out fairly well.

There is another option where you can purchase adapters to attach to the end of a CAT5e (RJ45 jack) cable that allows for you to plug it into a USB jack.
http://www.amazon.com/Usb-Ethernet-Network-Rj45-Adapter/dp/B000BL3M3U

The proper adpaters are availble to plug into your computing device and the CM15A as well. Theoretically you could plug the adpater into the CM15A, plug the CAT5e cable into that, run the cable to where your computer is, attach the second adpater and plug that into your USB port.

This allows you to keep you CM15A where it is located and get a run of up to 500' feet with the CAT5e cable. That might be helpful too as long as you don't mind running the cable. You'd also have to purchase the Type A to Type B and gender changers too, but for a total of under $20.00 with shipping is a lot better than the $100+ for the wireless option.
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HA Dave

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Re: Wireless (WiFi) enabled CM15A interface
« Reply #8 on: December 17, 2008, 10:44:32 AM »


There is another option where you can purchase adapters to attach to the end of a CAT5e (RJ45 jack) cable that allows for you to plug it into a USB jack.
http://www.amazon.com/Usb-Ethernet-Network-Rj45-Adapter/dp/B000BL3M3U

The proper adpaters are availble to plug into your computing device and the CM15A as well. Theoretically you could plug the adpater into the CM15A, plug the CAT5e cable into that, run the cable to where your computer is, attach the second adpater and plug that into your USB port.


Whereas... I do think the wireless USB ports would work... I don't think the USB to Ethernet adapter will work. Once again we get back to the "needing a processor" to talk to the device (and the CM15A can't handle that). But the wireless USB hub remains an idea worth trying... and although a little pricey now.... prices on such devices tend to drop quickly.

I've seen a digital picture frame that is wi-fi enabled... and can access a Home Automation Computer folder for recent images. some are even motion activated too. So... with a little setup.. you could walk up to the picture frame and see what happened around the house while you were at work. Computers with Touch-screen displays are dropping in price too. Mix that with Speech Recognition (I already use the Speech Recognition) and even Geordi La Forge would be impressed.

If the economy was to remain solid... and very likely IT WON'T...... technology would allow many new items at the edge of development to become affordable. So I am not waiting... in the here and now having a dedicated Home Automation Computer does some very futurist stuff. Sure HA it may be a heck of alot easier to do in the future... but I don't want to wait. And... right now a HA Computer gives the biggest bang for the buck.
« Last Edit: October 16, 2009, 12:10:54 AM by -Bill- (of wgjohns.com) »
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pwalde

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Re: Wireless (WiFi) enabled CM15A interface
« Reply #9 on: January 06, 2009, 12:17:51 PM »

I read all the replies and tried to find a cheaper wireless USB port.  Could you use this US Robotics wireless print server at http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/searchtools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=3516163&SRCCODE=PRICEGRABBER&cm_mmc_o=2mHCjCVybgwTyz__wyCjCVqHCjCdwwp it is a wireless USB print server.  Plug the USB cord from the CM15A into the Wi Fi print server and use my laptop's wifi to connect to print server.
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HA Dave

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Re: Wireless (WiFi) enabled CM15A interface
« Reply #10 on: January 06, 2009, 02:33:07 PM »

...  Could you use this US Robotics wireless print server...
 

I don't think so... and even the wireless USB is at best a good guess.

Since this thread was started I loaded AHP (and BVC) on my laptop. I was surprised when AHP loaded the CM19A drivers also. I had heard that others had used the CM19A with AHP... so I tested it out. And although I haven't completely grasped exactly what all changes I'd need to make to my setup (the CM19A doesn't use PLC)... I am sure there is some potential there.

Also other Home Automation PC users have also reported using LogMeIn. That allows them (as I understand it) to log in to the HA PC and make alterations and changes as needed. Although I have never used LogMeIn I have heard great reports about it.

And... don't over-look an antenna modification of a CM15A (or even CM19A) to extend what it can do. I have found that there are many great old PC's going to waste (and by waste I mean landfill) when they could be put to use as a HA PC. IMHO... The benefits of putting processing power [a computer] into a home automation setup... can't be overstated.
« Last Edit: October 14, 2009, 11:58:22 PM by -Bill- (of wgjohns.com) »
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Dan Lawrence

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Re: Wireless (WiFi) enabled CM15A interface
« Reply #11 on: January 06, 2009, 05:20:43 PM »

What version of AHP also loads the CM19A drives on install and where would they be located?
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HA Dave

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Re: Wireless (WiFi) enabled CM15A interface
« Reply #12 on: January 06, 2009, 05:55:13 PM »

What version of AHP also loads the CM19A drives on install and where would they be located?

AHP Version 3.203 loaded the CM19A drivers. A install pop-up said what drivers were being installed. It appears that on my Vista laptop they at in C:\Windows\System32\Drivers\x10ufx2.sys

I was as surprised as anyone... and although I always like finding a new ability... I haven't really taken any advantage of it yet. I Picked up the CM19A as part of an X10 deal that included I think... the Lola mouse and software. I was looking for a way to extend my RF transmit range... but found a solution with a CM15A internal antenna mod.
« Last Edit: January 06, 2009, 06:06:14 PM by Dave_x10_L »
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Dan Lawrence

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Re: Wireless (WiFi) enabled CM15A interface
« Reply #13 on: January 06, 2009, 07:33:14 PM »

Thanks for the "where".  I just found it and deleted it, since I have no need or want for the CM19A.
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