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El-Gringo
Contributor
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Message 1 of 26

Remote control of central heating system

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I have just installed a Salus IT500 internet controlled thermostat connected via port 4 on my BT home hub 5. The device works perfectly until I have a hub reset, the control unit then registers “off-line” with the Salus server so I'm then unable to control the system remotely. I have to physically disconnect & reconnect the control unit cable to the hub (effectively re-booting the unit) to get the device to register on-line again with the Salus server; obviously not a lot of use if I’m out when the hub resets! I’ve spoken to Salus who suspected the control unit faulty & sent me a new one but this behaves in exactly the same manner.

 

I can't imagine this problem is unique but Salus don’t appear to be able to offer any lay/technical advice on what, if anything, I should do. Is this an inherent design weakness/fault in the Salus control unit or is there something I can do/adjust in hub settings to ensure the control unit goes back on-line with the Salus server, automatically once my hub reconnects? Playing around with hub settings is not something I fully understand at present, especially as the help menus I've been looking at don't appear to mirror what I actually see in my hub connection configuration! Can anyone offer any advice/help, is there something I can do to cure this problem or should I just give up & send the Salus back as unfit for purpose as some have suggested? 

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Distinguished Sage
Distinguished Sage
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Message 2 of 26

Re: Remote control of central heating system

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Its a home hub issue, you need to assign a static IP address to the device.

 

Using static IP addresses on your home network

 

You then need to port forward to that static IP address.

 

Port forwarding problems

 

 

El-Gringo
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Message 3 of 26

Re: Remote control of central heating system

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Thanks for the response, sorry only just seen it as my e mail post notification doesn’t seem to have worked in this case! I suspected it might be something to do with hub settings & think I may have already managed to assign a static IP address to the hub port but my hub configuration doesn’t seem to mirror what’s in the step by step BT guide so I’m not entirely convinced, it’s all been a bit hit & miss. I’ll see what happens on a hub reset &, if the problem is still there, I’ll try & work my way through the guides you’ve posted to crack it.

 

Is this a problem with all hubs or just BT? I would have thought the hub should be “plug & play” configured & the device manufacturer should ensure their device will work with all hubs out of the box; or at the very least  they should offer guidance on what to do in their user guide & detailed instructions on their web site – or am I expecting too much! I’m fairly competent around computers but not at all familiar with changing hub settings as I’ve never had to do this before, how the hell are computer illiterates supposed to work out what to do.

 

Thanks again for the advice; at least I now know it’s a hub issue & not a fault with the control unit.

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Liam_
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Message 4 of 26

Re: Remote control of central heating system

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Unfortunately UPnP doesn't seem to work properly on most Hubs.  Port forwarding can also behave a little oddly at times, sometimes ok and then not forwarding properly, then back to working again.  One of the reasons I stopped using Hubs.

A reset of the Hub will remove any custom user settings and return the Hub to defaults.  Then you need to turn off Smart Setup, split the Wifi bands and turn off UPnP and set up you ports again manually.

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Message 5 of 26

Re: Remote control of central heating system

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You may find that its less hassle to use a third party router which does support UPnP properly, and will also tell you what is going on.

 

El-Gringo
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Message 6 of 26

Re: Remote control of central heating system

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Thanks for the posts; this all sounds a bit technical, think I'll have to take a crash course to try & understand better but I learn fast & will get through it. Thanks again for your interest, any further advice or links to "self learning/idiots guide to" articles I can read would be a great help to me.

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El-Gringo
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Message 7 of 26

Re: Remote control of central heating system

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So can you advise a decent 3rd party router that supports UPnP as this may be a safer route? The whole point of me getting this kit was to control my heating remotely as I'm often away from home so if I'm going to loose everything on a hub reset, that would be a better option.

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Distinguished Sage
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Message 8 of 26

Re: Remote control of central heating system

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Not really any extra info for BT home hubs, apart from what BT choose to tell you.

 

BT themselves, do not provide support any other routers, but there is plenty of help here from forum members who do use other routers.

It may save you a lot of frustration in the long run.

 

Third party routers start at about £30.

 

 

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Message 9 of 26

Re: Remote control of central heating system

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@El-Gringo wrote:

So can you advise a decent 3rd party router that supports UPnP as this may be a safer route? The whole point of me getting this kit was to control my heating remotely as I'm often away from home so if I'm going to loose everything on a hub reset, that would be a better option.


Here is one that I use, and is used by quite a few others on this forum.

 

TP-Link TD-W9970 - replacement for home hub

 

There are more expensive ones, but its worth trying this one first.

 

UPnP is enabled by default, and there is even a status screen showing what is going on, and which ports are being mapped.

 

TP Link TD-W9970 UPnP screen

 

You can of course, manually allocate ports if you want to, using the Virtual Server configuration page.

 

The Salus manual says that port 80 and 2165 need to be forwarded, which would be easy.

 

I wonder how the Salus IT500 keeps track of your public IP address, when you get a disconnection or restart?

It must either report the change to a remote server, or use a DDNS (Dynamic DNS) service.

 

EDIT:- I see you have to register it to their gateway to track the address.

 

El-Gringo
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Message 10 of 26

Re: Remote control of central heating system

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I assume you mean register the Salus unit number to their server gateway? I've already done that but the problem is, I think & as you say, Salus server doesn’t seem to be ably to track of my IP address when the hub goes off line & reconnects but it will re-register if I disconnect/reconnect the control unit cable to the hub port but I don’t really understand why it can’t do that automatically. I think I understand what’s happening & sort of how to cure it but much of the technical understanding & terminology are going over my head at the moment!

 

Where did you find the info in the Salus manual, I couldn't find any mention of potential communication problems or port assigning unless I missed it. Is it not feasible that Salus could design their control unit so this problem doesn’t occur?

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