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Author Topic: GE 45600 Remote Problems, Buttons Cause Multiple Scenes  (Read 9744 times)

Offline beachboync

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GE 45600 Remote Problems, Buttons Cause Multiple Scenes
« on: March 06, 2013, 06:21:05 pm »
After weeks of work, we (Julian at MCV, thewizardofoz, and I) have definitely determined that the cheap GE 45600 remotes do not work. The problem is that when you press a key on the remote, it does send in a correct keypress indication to Vera, but it also sends another, erroneous and different keypress. This causes other things to happen that you don't expect.

For example, I have a scene that shuts off all lights, and set up to trigger on key 9. But when I press key 6 (which actually has no trigger assigned at all) then the remote sends codes for both 6 and 9, thereby turning off all my lights. I have other examples also.

See http://forum.micasaverde.com/index.php/topic,13408.0.html

Thanks to all the help on this forum and from Julian. Unfortunately, he knows of no workaround. I am going to try to get my money back from Amazon - it's not the money, it's the principle. They shouldn't be selling these things.

Can anyone recommend a similar handheld remote that does work OK?

Thanks, Bob (beachboync)
« Last Edit: March 08, 2013, 03:50:14 pm by beachboync »
Bob (beachboync)

Offline Z-Waver

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Re: GE 45600s are JUNK - Do Not Buy!
« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2013, 08:23:18 am »
Though I understand your frustration, at $5 or less, I don't have very high expectations of the absolutely cheapest Z-Wave device sold.

I have a couple of the 45600 remotes that I have as secondaries in the event that Vera dies on me. Though limited in their functionality, they work fine for me on the rare occasions that I use them.

I do recall, based on older posts in this forum, that there appear to be two different(firmware) versions of the 45600 remote. I remember that the older firmware has some limitation, but don't remember what the limitation is or how to identify the different versions.


As for other remotes that you can use, I assume that you will choose to avoid the 45601. Aeon Labs and Leviton offer remote controllers. I haven't tried either one and wouldn't expect much from the Aeon Labs. Other Leviton Z-Wave stuff has been great, so I would expect the remote to work well, but it's $145 not $5.

Another popular alternative is a smart phone or tablet app.
« Last Edit: March 07, 2013, 10:20:11 am by Z-Waver »

Offline oTi@

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Re: GE 45600s are JUNK - Do Not Buy!
« Reply #2 on: March 07, 2013, 10:04:01 am »
@beachboync,

Keep in mind that using these remotes in conjunction with Vera, to kick off scenes, is not necessarily the intended application of the device (from GE's point of view).

- Do I understand that MCV have determined that the observed behavior has nothing to do with the way MCV sets up the scenes in the device to trigger Vera?

- Did you try setting up scenes with the device, natively, as secondary controller? That is, you don't define any scenes in Vera, but program them directly on the remote, per the manual. Same issue?

(In other words: did Amazon sell you a remote that would allow you to use it as a Z-Wave primary or secondary controller and define scenes on the remote to control other devices, per its manual; or did they sell you a device that would allow you to run scenes in MCV Vera?)
« Last Edit: March 07, 2013, 10:05:41 am by oTi@ »
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Offline aa6vh

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Re: GE 45600s are JUNK - Do Not Buy!
« Reply #3 on: March 07, 2013, 10:26:30 am »
What oTi said.

I was never able to get Vera to respond to the GE Remote. But I had no problem programming the remote directly. I have a bunch of the remotes scattered around. (at $3, who can resist?)

You do have to "include" the remote to the primary ZWave controller (i.e. Vera) once to get it into the network. I did find that once included, I could then clone the GE Remote's programming from one GE remote to another.

Offline beachboync

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Re: GE 45600s are JUNK - Do Not Buy!
« Reply #4 on: March 07, 2013, 12:36:58 pm »
Thanks all.

Yes, MCV determined (after many tries) that it was seeing two separate keypress "messages" if that is the correct term. It was not a problem with how they handle scenes or triggers. In fact, Julian accused me of actually pressing two keys and not telling him! No problem here, he was just doing his job investigating.

I do use apps for most of my remote requirements. My wife and I have apps on our phones and our iPads. My primary reason for having the 45600 around is the rare times when the phone is not available. For example, I have a remote at my bedside to turn off my lamp when I go to bed. By that time my phone is turned off and on its charger, so not available.

Yes, I understand that I can set the remote as a secondary controller and use it directly, but that is more bother than its worth and would (I think) require setting up "parallel" scenes in both the Vera and the remote. More work than its worth, especially with no display on the 45600.

I have a potential code work around that I am going to post on my other thread and also send to Julian.

Bob (beachboyc)
Bob (beachboync)

Offline oTi@

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Re: GE 45600s are JUNK - Do Not Buy!
« Reply #5 on: March 08, 2013, 09:13:58 am »
Yes, I understand that I can set the remote as a secondary controller and use it directly, but that is more bother than its worth [...]
Well, I'm not (necessarily) suggesting you use it that way, but was probing about the test methodology that led to the conclusion that the GE 45600 is junk, and Amazon is selling junk. Without having tested the remote in its intended (from GE's point of view) way, or at least that's how I interpret your response, I would have assessed things differently.

Quote
Yes, MCV determined (after many tries) that it was seeing two separate keypress "messages" if that is the correct term.
Mmm, I'm surprised it took many tries. Should be straightforward. And in fact, has already been documented / presented to MCV many months ago, as part of the bug reports on file.

Quote
It was not a problem with how they handle scenes or triggers. [...]
My assessment was that the remote is sending sensible/usable triggers, but they are incorrectly interpreted/mapped by Vera. In case of the 45600 two ways to communicate the button presses to Vera are used. One of them is used twice, for a total of three 'button press commands'.

In all three cases the same 'button number' is used. The first message is sent using one mechanism, and Vera seems to incorrectly map that to a scene. The second and third message use another mechanism, and Vera appears to correctly map that to a scene. The third message is actually ignored as a duplicate of the second message.

This results in the correct scene being executed, as well as, possibly, another scene. Which I believe is what people have been reporting.

Revisiting this yesterday: what scene that is, depends on the history of what scene controller like devices you have included/excluded. Appears also consistent with the fact that users have reported different incorrect scenes being run.

The wrong mapping seems to be the result of not handling the associated map (held internally in a variable) as intended.

Why both mechanisms and three messages are used, is another question. At least part of that is under Vera's control, I imagine.

Quickly looking at a 45601, it is only used with the second mechanism, so the wrong mapping does not come into play.
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Offline beachboync

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Re: GE 45600s are JUNK - Do Not Buy!
« Reply #6 on: March 08, 2013, 01:41:08 pm »
Thanks oTi@, and it looks like you did some moving around of posts and topics, which was good and logical. I am still getting used to this place...

I can't disagree with your analysis of the 45600 trigger problem as I have little background in Z-wave technology (but I am learning!). You seem to have more of a handle on what is going on than MCV does.

I think the pivotal point here is that I am basing my comments on what I have determined from working with MCV support. It did take quite a while to look at the problem. I first had to learn how to look at the logs, and finally got to the point where I thought I had taken analysis of the problem far enough to seek further help. In the beginning I assumed it was my newbie problem.

After I did take out a trouble ticket, it took a number of interactions with MCV to look at the problem. There were at least two different times where they turned on verbose logging, let me reproduce the problem, and went away with the logs to study. On more than one occasion, they felt that I had in fact pressed two buttons during the test when in fact I had not.

The final analysis of it looking like the 45600 was sending multiple button indications was theirs, not mine.

You do make one very good point in that the results people are seeing are generically similar, but differ in detail - especially what "extra" scenes are triggered. I did believe fairly early in the game that it had to do with older or deleted scene triggers that somehow remained active but did not show on the U15 screens. These points would support the theory that it is a Vera code problem, as I would assume that even if the 45600s fail, it would be consistent.

But the bottom line is that if MCV can't fix it (or recognize the problem) its not going to get fixed anyhow.

Sorry for the long post, I do appreciate your help on  this.

Bob (beachboync)
Bob (beachboync)

Offline oTi@

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Re: GE 45600s are JUNK - Do Not Buy!
« Reply #7 on: March 12, 2013, 11:31:07 am »
Thanks oTi@, and it looks like you did some moving around of posts and topics, [...]
Yup; split off the 'alternative to 45600' posts into a separate topic, and moved it all to the Remote Control board.

Quote
But the bottom line is that if MCV can't fix it (or recognize the problem) its not going to get fixed anyhow.
To that end, I did update the bug report with the observations, posted on the private beta board and sent an email to MCV's Z-Wave and Senior Software gurus for comment...

@beachboync,
If you're up for it, we can take a look at your system and see if things are consistent with the observations in my test sytem. I'll send you a PM.

« Last Edit: March 12, 2013, 11:36:44 am by oTi@ »
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Offline NickTheGreat

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Re: GE 45600 Remote Problems, Buttons Cause Multiple Scenes
« Reply #8 on: March 12, 2013, 05:44:24 pm »
I was about ready to take my shotgun to mine over the weekend, but I got it to work.  But mine was closer to $6 or $7 off Amazon.  I guess you get what you pay for  ;D

Offline beachboync

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Re: GE 45600 Remote Problems, Buttons Cause Multiple Scenes
« Reply #9 on: March 13, 2013, 04:23:01 pm »
You can get it to work a bit, but you have to be careful. You have to find the right buttons. For example, my button 6 also triggers 9 - you have to find the pairs (good, false) and set the triggers to where the false action does nothing, and therefore there is no action to cause a problem.

I was able to get my nightstand remote to work in this mode, and that is the only place I really need it because I don't have my cell phone active when I go to bed.

The other remotes I set up for my wife, etc. have been taken out of service and are sitting on my desk here awaiting some new news.

oTi@: did what you asked and reply sent in PM


Bob
Bob (beachboync)

Offline beachboync

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Re: GE 45600 Remote Problems, Buttons Cause Multiple Scenes
« Reply #10 on: March 18, 2013, 10:24:26 pm »
Status update:

oTi@ has worked with me and has come up with an analysis that indicates the problem is NOT the 45600, but rather a problem in Vera code. We were able to get my remotes running correctly, but in limited circumstances. We are thinking through how to proceed.

I have forwarded our analysis to MCV support and oTI@ is also pursuing his contacts at MCV.

All for now, but will keep you posted. Public thanks to oTi@ who is pretty sharp!

Bob
Bob (beachboync)

Offline beachboync

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Re: GE 45600 Remote Problems, Buttons Cause Multiple Scenes
« Reply #11 on: March 25, 2013, 12:36:35 pm »
oTi@ and I have decided to release the result of our work on the 45600 scene problem. Please be aware that:

1)   This is a workaround, not a fix and it may not apply or work in future firmware releases
2)   It is only tried, and will probably only work, in a 45600 only environment; if you have other scene controllers or remotes it will probably not work and you shouldn?t try it


In order to be able to use the workaround you need to be fairly experienced in running Lua and in reading and understanding logs.

If you send me a PM I will PM back the directions to you. Please understand again the experimental nature of the work and all disclaimers apply - use at your own risk - we are not responsible.
Bob (beachboync)

Offline Dignan17

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Re: GE 45600 Remote Problems, Buttons Cause Multiple Scenes
« Reply #12 on: March 29, 2013, 12:28:33 am »
Thank you for this thread. I thought I was going crazy with my 45600 remotes, which were doing really bizarre things like you describe. It's extremely frustrating, and you'd think it wouldn't be possible for it to communicate this badly with Vera. It's too bad, because these are easily the cheapest remotes on the market, and more than that could potentially offer far more control than most of the ones out there that cost 12 times as much!

Oh well. Before I had Vera, I had a half dozen of these remotes scattered throughout my home. Now I just have a few that seem to work okay with Vera. Otherwise I use the advanced remotes...

Offline SmashSE

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Re: GE 45600 Remote Problems, Buttons Cause Multiple Scenes
« Reply #13 on: April 20, 2013, 10:42:01 am »
I have the same problem.  Buttons 1 and 2 seem to work fine, but 6 and 3 are linked for ON.

I'll PM you once I figure out the post limit so I can PM.

Thanks Bob and oTi@ for working on this.

Offline SmashSE

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Re: GE 45600 Remote Problems, Buttons Cause Multiple Scenes
« Reply #14 on: April 21, 2013, 04:16:10 pm »
OK, the fix isn't working for me, wondered if anyone wanted to chime in.  Now, I only have a single remote.  However when I go into Automation I have a #2 Scene Controller, and my MBR Remote.  #2 is ID 2, and MBR Remote is ID 14.

When I get the variables for Scene IDs, it appears that it is the "<remote ID>-<button>=<Mapping to a trigger?>".  Well, long story short is that when I remap my 14's.  I can break and fix individual buttons this way.

So, where would they store the trigger ID's? 

Smash