Home Automation and CP290 with Excel

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On this page: Generalities - How Does It Work? - What The File Does - What It Does Not Do (yet) - How To Use It - Conclusion

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Generalities

If you use a CP 290 interface to do a little home automation and, for example, regulate your heating system, you need to have this pretty thing at home:

When I buy mine, it was delivered with a software : "Lighthouse" in DOS and Windows 3.1. Besides this software is English, (with the am/pm system to indicate hours), and that it is not user-friendly, the biggest problem is that it no longer works with systems like 2000, XP or Vista.

I did not find any new version or upgrade of Lighthouse on the web. So I developed the idea to use Excel in order to create a page that could drive the interface. Excel imposed itself quite logically. Because, to plan my heating I had already done a spreadsheet on the Gantt model for all the modules during the week. Then, I transcribed the different slot in order for Lighthouse that transmitted them to the interface.

Obviously, if the Excel file could itself program the interface according to the areas of the Gantt diagram, that would be very useful, and this is now the case…

How Does It Work?

It's very simple :

  1. In the file, there is a tab name "Paramétrage", write the numbers of your modules in it, as well as the room or the equipment the correspond to (there is also an abbreviated designation, about 3 letters for the forthcoming editions).
  2. Then, click on the tab "Gantt" and colour (you can choose the colour) the areas where you want the module running for the chosen days and modules,
  3. Finally, choose the tab "Lues-Reçues" and click on the "analyse Gantt " button, your diagram is translated into a board of orders for the interface.
  4. Click on the " Programmation CP 290" button and all the orders are programmed in the interface.
  5. Then, you can verify this programming (or another, if you own another software) by clicking on the "Lecture CP 290 " button, that draws a board of orders which are already programmed.

What The File Does

Everything that is explained above, more, with a single click :

  • Sending of a direct order (on/off) to a module of your choice
  • Reading the status of the interface
  • Changing the housecode
  • Changing the hour

a tab of the file (Framework) contains a "rough" version of the information received end sent by the interface.

What It Does Not Do (yet)

Optimizing the orders from the Gantt : It cannot detect that several modules are working at the same time and that it only requires a single order. For the time being, it send as many orders as there are modules to run.

It does not process peculiar commands of graphic downloading.

Its only way of commanding is "on" and "off" (no variation of intensity for the lamps) and it does not deal with the parameters like "yesterday", "tomorrow" and "today".

How To Use It

You just have to download the file cp290.xls (Excel 2000, 220 kb) to get almost everything

Your PC has to be able to use the port Com 1 (or other, see the source code of the file), see how you have to proceed on this excellent page :http://cherbe.free.fr/rs232.html

You can also download the benchmark documentation for programmers concerning CP 290 available on the SmartHome website.

Conclusion

Here it is, you can probably improve the all thing, but it is up to you to decide of what you need. Here is a few trail to follow if you feel like it :

  • Managing the running functions of luminosity (DIM)
  • Setting an optimization of the commands after the Gantt analyse
  • Etc...

Of course, if you need further information, if you want to make your contribution to the subject or give me your opinion, please send me an e-mail (see the e-mail on top of page).

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Last modified on: June 2nd 2015

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