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Chris@ChristmasSpirit

Live Monitoring of LOR Controllers

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Has anyone had any luck with live monitoring of controllers while a show is running?

I'd like to be able to see / be notified if one of my controllers drops out while a show is running. (i.e. loses power, loses connection, etc.)

Wondering if anyone has ever created a kind-of live diagnostic tool for this purpose.

I have all LOR controllers... with two networks. One LOR Enhanced (Serial) for AC + RGB controllers, and the other E1.31 (Ethernet) for PixCon16 Controllers

There are roughly 80 controllers spread out  over a pretty large area.

 

Any ideas for me?

Thanks,

-Chris

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Does a TCP/IP "ping" work for the Pixcons? You would not want to do very many while a show is running as it might impact the show.

How about monitoring the 'Triggers' on the LOR networked devices?  That would show up lack of power issues.

Are these hardwired or ELL?

 

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14 minutes ago, TheDucks said:

Does a TCP/IP "ping" work for the Pixcons? You would not want to do very many while a show is running as it might impact the show.

How about monitoring the 'Triggers' on the LOR networked devices?  That would show up lack of power issues.

Are these hardwired or ELL?

 

Thanks for the reply...  I think the IP Ping may be a solution for the PixCons. I can see how to write a script for that.

Any ideas for how to monitor the triggers on the LOR network controllers?

These are all hardwired.

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For an enhanced LOR network, you can't monitor the inputs.  As soon as a network starts operating in Enhanced mode, the network become one-way - outbound from the computer / director to the controllers.  The controllers are not allowed to speak on the network.  Therefore, no way to read inputs.

And yes, as previously mentioned, Ping would work fine for E1.31 devices.

 

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9 minutes ago, k6ccc said:

For an enhanced LOR network, you can't monitor the inputs.  As soon as a network starts operating in Enhanced mode, the network become one-way - outbound from the computer / director to the controllers.  The controllers are not allowed to speak on the network.  Therefore, no way to read inputs.

And yes, as previously mentioned, Ping would work fine for E1.31 devices.

 

I did not know that Enhanced had that restriction. But (continuously) triggered only starts shows, so that would be out anyway.

@ Chris How much $ are you willing to invest? IIRC there is a spare pair in the CAT5.

You could build a Separate (non-LOR) RS485 network on that, and have an addressable module in each respond to a poll on that pair (module power could be drawn from the controller, and a NO relay would monitor any second bank, power which would also kill the module power if only that bank failed)

 

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2 hours ago, TheDucks said:

I did not know that Enhanced had that restriction. But (continuously) triggered only starts shows, so that would be out anyway.

@ Chris How much $ are you willing to invest? IIRC there is a spare pair in the CAT5.

You could build a Separate (non-LOR) RS485 network on that, and have an addressable module in each respond to a poll on that pair (module power could be drawn from the controller, and a NO relay would monitor any second bank, power which would also kill the module power if only that bank failed)

 

Using the spare pair(s) in the CAT5 is a creative approach...

Can you recommend any low-cost addressable modules for RS-485 communication... and a software / protocol that would be capable of polling the modules from a PC?

(I'm not very strong in this area)

 

I'm also thinking that some additional repeaters may be necessary.... I have 3 LOR repeaters currently (which also allow for " Y's " in my topology), but I'm assuming they wouldn't also manage the additional traffic.

Getting to the spare wires at the controller level may also be a little troublesome.

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29 minutes ago, Chris@ChristmasSpirit said:

Using the spare pair(s) in the CAT5 is a creative approach...

Can you recommend any low-cost addressable modules for RS-485 communication... and a software / protocol that would be capable of polling the modules from a PC?

(I'm not very strong in this area)

 

I'm also thinking that some additional repeaters may be necessary.... I have 3 LOR repeaters currently (which also allow for " Y's " in my topology), but I'm assuming they wouldn't also manage the additional traffic.

Getting to the spare wires at the controller level may also be a little troublesome.

No idea where. RS485 is used in a lot of industrial stuff, alarms, .. It ain't cheapo, like consumer stuff

The pair access is simple. Build a breakout box ( plug, short cable, RJ45 jack :3 pair trimmed, at the terminals  the other pair NOT cut-OFF, leaving a pigtail  and available to your device.

A (simple) Y is not permitted. You are only allowed 2 Terminations on an (driven) output, and 1 is built into the LOR dongle.  The Repeater is a Buffer as well as NOT having a termination on the OUTPUT side

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