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Thread: AX - Cooooool

  1. #1
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  2. #2
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    Now that you mention it I ran into another "Cooool" thing this week.

    Lynxspring has written a driver to allow their JENESys PC-1000 to hang on an N2 bus as a "VND" device.

    I about freaked out when they told me what they wanted me to do with it but it worked sweet. Now I have to figure out how to map the points into the NCM350.
    Last edited by Cagey57; 02-11-2010 at 08:48 PM.
    If sense were so common everyone would have it !

    All opinions expressed are my own. Any advice provided is based on personal experience, generally accepted fact or publicly available information. As such, it is worth exactly what you paid for it, not a penny more not a penny less !!

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by NINAX View Post
    Good day Ninax,

    Tridium already supports N2 via the FX-60... How is this different? Could it be that the current N2 support by Tridium is by a JCI supplied N2 driver and that this posting of yours implies that Tridium has there own N2 driver? If this is the case, I hope someone gets it right, as I have recently seen some really silly N2 issues on the FX-60...

    Cheers,

    Sam

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    This is concerning to hear we have a FX40 with N2 driver to all the N2 controllers on a project that is performing horribly and the vendor is recommending going to a FX60 supposedly due to much better performance using the N2 drivers with a FX60. What are you referring to as silly N2 issues on the FX-60. Please elaborate

    Regards, Chet

    Quote Originally Posted by s2sam View Post
    Good day Ninax,

    Tridium already supports N2 via the FX-60... How is this different? Could it be that the current N2 support by Tridium is by a JCI supplied N2 driver and that this posting of yours implies that Tridium has there own N2 driver? If this is the case, I hope someone gets it right, as I have recently seen some really silly N2 issues on the FX-60...

    Cheers,

    Sam
    Life is too short not to enjoy life to the fullest - Don't be bogged down dealing with difficult people -who try to inflict their problems in life onto you or other good people...

    "Instead return the mutual respect to the good people who respect you - Forget about the one's who won't" .....what Chet lives by.....

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chet1508 View Post
    This is concerning to hear we have a FX40 with N2 driver to all the N2 controllers on a project that is performing horribly and the vendor is recommending going to a FX60 supposedly due to much better performance using the N2 drivers with a FX60. What are you referring to as silly N2 issues on the FX-60. Please elaborate

    Regards, Chet
    Good day Chet,

    The first one was something that I thought would have been tested thoroughly. Here if you disconnected (either the N2 bus or power down the device) an operating and mapped in VND device (with some AI, AO, and BI points), the FX60 would no longer write and read the VND data points. I went so far as to analyzing the N2 traffic to confirm this (we have some internally designed software/hardware tools that allow us to do some really intensive analysis of the N2 bus). Fortunately, a newer N2 jar update resolved this issue... However, it certainly does not give me the warm and fuzzies that a condition so fundamental was not tested. That being said, I did not test and confirm if this happened with JCI specific devices (UNTs, AHUs, etc).

    The second one I am still working on and I have not had time to capture and analyze the N2 traffic. Here, the FX60 appears to not remember the last value that an AO was set to. If one cycles power to a VND device, the FX writes a default value which may or may not be acceptable. I have seen this type of problem on some NCM-350 firmware versions. Some were smart enough to return a point's value to it last commanded value... others would not. I have confirmed that the device is recognized (by the FX60) as being offline and has been reset... but that is about it. I need to go back to the site and do a series of tests and N2 bus captures to see what exactly is transpiring.

    Lastly, I was involved in a project some time ago where I was asked to review the N2 traffic from some older Jace's on a site that had a lot of N2 issues. I was not impressed with what I saw, as the N2 communication from the Jace (supervisory) had some really fundamental problems... problems that I really should have never made it out to a field/customer location.

    Now, do I think the FX60 is bad as far as the N2 bus is concerned? No, but one has to understand, recognize, and accept that firmware issues can exist within these devices. I am just amazed/disappointed that some pretty fundamental issues have seemingly got past their internal testing. My contacts tell me that Tridium is pretty good at resolving issues providing you can get past the JCI first level support. So for now, I would say that VND devices may have some issues... other devices like UNTs, AHUs, etc may be fine.

    Cheers,

    Sam

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by s2sam View Post
    Good day Ninax,

    Tridium already supports N2 via the FX-60... How is this different?
    Driver v. Tons O Junk appliance w/driver

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by s2sam View Post
    Good day Chet,

    The first one was something that I thought would have been tested thoroughly. Here if you disconnected (either the N2 bus or power down the device) an operating and mapped in VND device (with some AI, AO, and BI points), the FX60 would no longer write and read the VND data points. I went so far as to analyzing the N2 traffic to confirm this (we have some internally designed software/hardware tools that allow us to do some really intensive analysis of the N2 bus). Fortunately, a newer N2 jar update resolved this issue... However, it certainly does not give me the warm and fuzzies that a condition so fundamental was not tested. That being said, I did not test and confirm if this happened with JCI specific devices (UNTs, AHUs, etc).
    I did see that in the fix list. I have not experienced that with any VND devices. Maybe this was more directed at the FX field controllers.

    The second one I am still working on and I have not had time to capture and analyze the N2 traffic. Here, the FX60 appears to not remember the last value that an AO was set to. If one cycles power to a VND device, the FX writes a default value which may or may not be acceptable. I have seen this type of problem on some NCM-350 firmware versions. Some were smart enough to return a point's value to it last commanded value... others would not. I have confirmed that the device is recognized (by the FX60) as being offline and has been reset... but that is about it. I need to go back to the site and do a series of tests and N2 bus captures to see what exactly is transpiring.
    This doesn't make sense to me. What kind of AOs? Locally controlled and overriden?

    Lastly, I was involved in a project some time ago where I was asked to review the N2 traffic from some older Jace's on a site that had a lot of N2 issues. I was not impressed with what I saw, as the N2 communication from the Jace (supervisory) had some really fundamental problems... problems that I really should have never made it out to a field/customer location.
    jci quality control.
    N2 bus is a PIG.

  8. #8
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    My question is, is the Tridium driver a Slave or a Master. My understanding was that JCI was not allowing anyone but themselves to do a N2 Master. Lynxspring and many others are and have been doing "Integration" with Slave drivers that bring 3rd party stuff into the N2 world as VND/N2Open devices.

    Does that mean that JCI is going to abandon the N2 and leave it up to 3rd parties ? If so where does that leave the FX-20/60 and the FX-Field devices that are N2 ?

    The idea of more people creating Slave compatable stuff really opens up the whole SI field. The JENESys I mentioned is interfacing a Trane Intelipak via LON to an existing N2 system as a VND on the N2-Bus.

    "the N2 communication from the Jace (supervisory) had some really fundamental problems... problems that I really should have never made it out to a field/customer location." s2sam. This is encouraging....not !
    If sense were so common everyone would have it !

    All opinions expressed are my own. Any advice provided is based on personal experience, generally accepted fact or publicly available information. As such, it is worth exactly what you paid for it, not a penny more not a penny less !!

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by CCIKelly View Post
    My question is, is the Tridium driver a Slave or a Master. My understanding was that JCI was not allowing anyone but themselves to do a N2 Master. Lynxspring and many others are and have been doing "Integration" with Slave drivers that bring 3rd party stuff into the N2 world as VND/N2Open devices.

    Does that mean that JCI is going to abandon the N2 and leave it up to 3rd parties ? If so where does that leave the FX-20/60 and the FX-Field devices that are N2 ?

    The idea of more people creating Slave compatable stuff really opens up the whole SI field. The JENESys I mentioned is interfacing a Trane Intelipak via LON to an existing N2 system as a VND on the N2-Bus.

    "the N2 communication from the Jace (supervisory) had some really fundamental problems... problems that I really should have never made it out to a field/customer location." s2sam. This is encouraging....not !

    Slave solutions? whats the point?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by freddy-b View Post
    Slave solutions? whats the point?
    Now that you mention it, good question.

    So where will that leave Big Blue, doomed to retrofit/upgrade of existing installed systems with nothing left to "Bring to the Market place" ?

    Almost sounds like they are allowing their own phase out due to lack of new product development.

    It almost looks like Tridium is going to beat them at their own game. The only thing the MSEA offers over AX (FX) is passthrough to N2 Devices. Definitely a deal breaker when it comes to large network retrofits.

    Hey, what do I know ?
    If sense were so common everyone would have it !

    All opinions expressed are my own. Any advice provided is based on personal experience, generally accepted fact or publicly available information. As such, it is worth exactly what you paid for it, not a penny more not a penny less !!

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by NINAX View Post
    I did see that in the fix list. I have not experienced that with any VND devices. Maybe this was more directed at the FX field controllers.


    This doesn't make sense to me. What kind of AOs? Locally controlled and overriden?


    jci quality control.
    N2 bus is a PIG.
    Good day Ninax,

    In response to your comments:

    Quote Originally Posted by NINAX View Post
    I did see that in the fix list. I have not experienced that with any VND devices. Maybe this was more directed at the FX field controllers.
    Indeed, this issue was on a FX60... although I have not tested this issue on a FX40, etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by NINAX View Post
    This doesn't make sense to me. What kind of AOs? Locally controlled and overriden?
    Actually both Local and non-local control. Interestingly, an AO's Output value, by N2 definition, can only be changed by an Override command. JCI's N2 Open Protocol it clearly states that you cannot change an AO's Output Value via a Write command.

    However, I need to capture and view the N2 traffic here to see what the FX60 is doing.


    Quote Originally Posted by NINAX View Post
    jci quality control.
    N2 bus is a PIG.
    It is funny, but it seems that some JCI products that are built and manufactured elsewhere seem to be better (i.e. DX-9100 series, etc)

    Quote Originally Posted by NINAX View Post
    N2 bus is a PIG.
    Are you referring to the supervisory controllers for the N2 bus itself? If the N2 Bus, then please explain your reasoning.

    Cheers,

    Sam

  12. #12
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    Confused

    Quote Originally Posted by CCIKelly View Post
    My question is, is the Tridium driver a Slave or a Master. My understanding was that JCI was not allowing anyone but themselves to do a N2 Master. Lynxspring and many others are and have been doing "Integration" with Slave drivers that bring 3rd party stuff into the N2 world as VND/N2Open devices.

    Does that mean that JCI is going to abandon the N2 and leave it up to 3rd parties ? If so where does that leave the FX-20/60 and the FX-Field devices that are N2 ?

    The idea of more people creating Slave compatable stuff really opens up the whole SI field. The JENESys I mentioned is interfacing a Trane Intelipak via LON to an existing N2 system as a VND on the N2-Bus.

    "the N2 communication from the Jace (supervisory) had some really fundamental problems... problems that I really should have never made it out to a field/customer location." s2sam. This is encouraging....not !

    Good day CCIKelly,

    In response to your comments:

    Quote Originally Posted by CCIKelly View Post
    My question is, is the Tridium driver a Slave or a Master. My understanding was that JCI was not allowing anyone but themselves to do a N2 Master. Lynxspring and many others are and have been doing "Integration" with Slave drivers that bring 3rd party stuff into the N2 world as VND/N2Open devices.
    None of the JCI licensing documents I have seen ever prohibit one from making a Master/Supervisory controller. That being said, JCI may not release some protocols in order to reduce the number of "competitors". Remember the N2 bus is a generic bus in a sense in that there are 3 different protocols that actually coexist on this bus: the N2-Open, DX-9100, and VMA protocols. The N2-Open is the only one that JCI will routinely release. The other two are a different story.

    Quote Originally Posted by CCIKelly View Post
    Does that mean that JCI is going to abandon the N2 and leave it up to 3rd parties ? If so where does that leave the FX-20/60 and the FX-Field devices that are N2 ?
    Personally I think JCI would like to get rid of the N2 bus only because it would force customers to migrate to their new architecture/bus... which could mean lots of $$$ for JCI. This approach would be a big problem for a lot of JCI Tier-1 customers, as these customers have mega $$$ invested in N2... and the cost to migrate would be equally huge. I suspect that is what is keeping JCI from killing the N2 bus, as if a customer has to retro-fit all of their N2 infrastructure, the customer may and should look at other competitor solutions... something that JCI would not want.

    Also, the N2 bus is not that bad. It is limited in speed/bandwidth, but remember we are dealing with data that does not have to be hard real time... we are not dealing with the control signals of an aircraft or something that requires super fast response. Secondly, the slower speed of N2 is actually quite forgiving in terms wiring and the number of controllers connected.

    Quote Originally Posted by CCIKelly View Post
    The idea of more people creating Slave compatable stuff really opens up the whole SI field. The JENESys I mentioned is interfacing a Trane Intelipak via LON to an existing N2 system as a VND on the N2-Bus.
    Creating a N2 VND device is trivial. Anyone with a clear understanding of the N2-Open protocol can create the JCI VND firmware portion in a matter of days. We do it all the time. The time consuming part is the work designing the hardware and the firmware portion (and software at times) that interacts with the proprietary equipment.

    Cheers,

    Sam

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by s2sam View Post

    Indeed, this issue was on a FX60... although I have not tested this issue on a FX40, etc.
    You said VND devices. I said FX field controllers, ie FX07, FX16.
    Actually both Local and non-local control. Interestingly, an AO's Output value, by N2 definition, can only be changed by an Override command. JCI's N2 Open Protocol it clearly states that you cannot change an AO's Output Value via a Write command.
    Still doesn't make sense. I haven't seen this issue.
    However, I need to capture and view the N2 traffic here to see what the FX60 is doing.
    So this is speculation?

    Are you referring to the supervisory controllers for the N2 bus itself? If the N2 Bus, then please explain your reasoning.
    Granted, it probably was a huge improvement over S2, L1, L2 buses, but it's time has passed.

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