RFXtrx Plugin Notes

This post contains information about the installation and use of the RFXtrx plugin for Vera. The post will be modified and updated as the plugin evolves.

Installation

* Upload all plugin files except the icon(.png) files to the Vera hub. This should be done using the Apps tab -> Develop apps tab -> Luup files tab-> Upload button. Doing it this way will cause the files to be uploaded to the correct folder and compressed which is the normal condition of plugin files on the Vera hub.
* Icon files must be copied to /www/cmh/skins/default/icons/ There are several ways to do this but the easiest way is to use WinSCP. The Vera hub upload process should recognize icon files and handle them properly but at this time it does not.
* Create an RFXtrx device. Using the Apps tab -> Develop apps tab -> Create device tab fill the following fields:
      o Device type: urn:schemas-rfxcom-com:device:rfxtrx:1
      o Description: name it any way you like
      o Upnp Device Filename: D_RFXtrx.xml
      o Upnp Implementation Filename: I_RFXtrx.xml
* Click the Create Device button
* Set up the serial port
      o Be sure the RFXtrx transceiver is connected to the Vera hub either directly to the Vera USB port or using a USB hub
      o Go to the Apps tab -> Develop apps tab -> Serial Port Configuration
      o You should see at least one serial port available. The settings should be:
            + Baud: 38400 Parity: None
            + Data Bits: 8 Stop Bits: 1
      o Select the Used By Device drop-down and select the name of the RFXtrx transceiver you assigned above.
      o Click the Save button.
* If the Vera hub ever restarts or does an Luup reload with the RFXtrx transceiver disconnected, the serial port assignment will need to be configured again.

The plugin tabs
Protocol Settings
Select the protocols that are needed to receive messages from your 433.92 Mhz devices. You can determine what you need by looking at the RFXtrx User guide available for download from RFXcom.com. The RFXtrx transceiver can transmit using any protocol at any time. The enabling of selected protocols only relates to receiving messages in that protocol from any devices that use it. Since enabling some protocols may negatively impact the receipt of messages in other protocols it is advisable to only enable those that you need. Refer to the RFXtrx User guide for protocol interaction information.

Plugin Settings
These settings allow choosing between English or Metric units for values displayed by sensors and for setting the voltage to be used for devices that measure power usage. There is also a means of enabling or disabling the debug option. Collecting debug messages in the LuaUPnP.log is useful for isolating problems in the plugin but it will cause the log to grow more quickly. It should only be enabled when necessary.

New Device
This is the tab to use to add new devices that will communicate with the Vera hub through the RFXtrx plugin. Use the drop-down to select the device to be added. Device specific identifying information (ID, house code, unit code, etc) will be needed. Not every device that appears in the RFXtrx User Guide will be in this list. Sensor type devices will not be in this list and can be added by enabling auto-create (see Managed devices below) as long as the proper protocol for that device is enabled.

Managed Devices
Selecting this tab will display all the devices being monitored or controlled by the plugin. Selecting a SINGLE device may enable some optional commands available for that device. This tab also provides the ability to delete one or more devices and optionally prevent sensor device from being re-created when auto-create is enabled.

Temperature and Humidity Data
This tab will display data for each temperature or humidity sensor monitored by the plugin.

Advanced
As with any device recognized by the Vera hub, this tab provides access to all the parameters and variables associated with the RFXtrx transceiver.

Specific Device Notes
Window cover devices
Window cover devices now have a new variable MaxMoveTime. The value of this variable defaults to 10 seconds. It should be set to the time it takes for the blind/shade/awning to go from completely closed to completely open. Once that is set, moving the slider will hopefully command the blind to travel from its current position to the desired position (percentage of full travel) based on the percentage of the full travel time. It won’t be precise but should be a good approximation. I don’t have any motorized window covers with which to test this functionality properly. I hope that the users can provide feedback.

Somfy devices
Be sure to follow the information in the RFXtrx User Guide to add these devices for control by the plugin.

Light Switch Devices
The plugin can now control light switches using the Lighting4 protocol. I believe there are a number of these available on Amazon. I’ve purchased two different brands of these switches (Denwenwils HRS101B and BN-LINK ES1513U-1) and can confirm that they work well and are pretty inexpensive. These devices include a remote to control them. If your device includes the remote you can add it to control by the plugin by following these steps:

* In the Protocol setting tab of the RFXtrx enable only the Lighting4 protocol. You don’t need to save this protocol setup permanently.
* In the New device tab select the Lighting4 category, give it a name, and click Create.
* Once the new device appears in the devices page of the Vera, using the remote that came with the switch, click the On button one or more times.
* Then click the Off button one or more times.
* Now you should be able to go to the Advanced tab of the new device, click the Variables tab. You should see the correct values for the OnCode, OffCode and SigPeriod variables. The default values for these variables are G, G, and 100. These are not valid values for the OnCode and Offcode and should now have been changed to the correct values. If they’ve been updated you should now be able to control the switch with the remote OR with the Vera UI for the device.
1 Like

Hi Tinman,

Thanks for the article. Gives some more inside.

I wonder is there a specific location to look for the Plugin updates? Searching through all the posts I ended up with version 1.96. I think it would be very handy if you add the updates to this article.

Kind regards.

Hi Sunnydutch,Tinman

Where did you find version 1.9.6 version of the plugin. I recently got the RFX433XL - and have loaded the files from Trunk158 (http://code.mios.com/trac/mios_rfxtrx/browser/trunk), but serial port configured and communicating with the RFXCOM - but can’t seem to add new devices… any suggestions appreciated.

Thanks Hamish

You can download the files from this posting: Plugin update Version 1.96

Great thanks Tinman for the fast response - I’ll give it a go.

Hi Tinman

I’m considering updating Rfxtrx setup on my Vera Plus, but I would like some suggestions to do it without the need of pairing managed devices again.

I have only windows coverings on Rfxtrx433E, Somfy and Dooya-Yooda

Current installed version is:

Plugin version: 1.31

RFXtrx firmware: 1005

RFXtrx firmware type: Ext

RFXtrx hardware: 1.3

All coverings work flawless, what drives me to update setup is the new variable MaxMoveTime feature, with the current plugin theres no way to know the current position and sliders switch from 0% to 100% only with this variable, as you explain is a good approximation and slider should work.

I’ve always wanted this feature and I pleased to test it, of course I would give feedback from my experience.

The plugin and firmware are both pretty outdated. As for the plugin it shouldn’t matter. Upgrading to the latest version (1.96) should not be a problem but there have been 24 versions since 1.31 so I can’t be absolutely sure. As for the RFXtrx firmware it’s difficult for me to say. I would guess that the only possible issue might be the Somfy devices. Those might be the only ones that the RFXtrx actually keeps information on.
My upgrade to operation of the Somfy devices needs improvement. I’ve had some problems reported. I have no Somfy devices for testing and it seems I can’t purchase here in the U.S. the Somfy device itself that I’d like to have. I think I’d have to purchase it installed in custom blinds and perhaps even have them installed in my home. As a DIY’er that’s hard for me to swallow. I’ve been working on some home improvement projects here and have not taken the time to get back to improving the Somfy interface. I’m going to do that soon but I can’t say exactly when.

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