simonmason

Z-wave sniffer?

7 posts in this topic

I am trying to find a bad z-wave module in my home automation network. I have lights that turn on by themselves - presumably caused by this bad module. I need a way to sniff on the line and find out which module is sending out the commands to other modules in the network so I can diagnose this and replace the module. Is this something that can be done with the z-wave sniffer you show on the site? Thanks.

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Hello Simon,

It looks like you got your answer over on the cocoontech forums. I've had this ghost-in-the-machine syndrome as well. It seems to happen as a result of a brownout. I had an Aeotec door sensor that started turning on the bathroom fan whenever I opened the closet door. Checking the associations on the Aeotec sensor revealed that nothing had changed. At the same time one of my Aeotec micro-modules and one of my appliance modules stopped responding. I ended up white-washing the whole network and re-adding everything from scratch. I think it may not be necessary to white-wash the network. I've had some success re-adding devices over the top of themselves (without first deleting the device from the network).

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Thanks for the response. I wouldn't say I have an answer but there has been a lot of discussion! I am trying to figure out to establish a way to sniff on the line to see all of the traffic going back and forth so I can analyze it and figure out what is going on. So far I haven't figured out a way to do this without spending $3000 for a developer's kit. Your point about the Aeotech is interesting - I have three modules in the house and I should probably pull the batteries to see if they are causing the condition.

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...I have three modules in the house, and I should probably pull the batteries...

Well, in my case a brownout would not have affected a battery-powered device. I suspect that one of the line-powered routing devices lost its mind, and instead of forwarding messages un-altered from the closet door sensor, somehow transmogrified the message so that it was interpreted downstream as a BASIC_SET command, not for the intended destination device, but for the next-hop device in the repeater chain (which just happened to be the bathroom fan switch).

I'm thinking that maybe the best-neighbor table (if there is such a thing) onboard the culprit device got corrupted, and maybe just re-adding that device would fetch a fresh table from the inclusion controller. If your controller interface has a "healing" function, that may be something to try as well.

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A Wireshark plugin, like what is available for zigbee would be cool. But being able to see the raw messages would pretty much give you the keys to the Z-Wave kingdom.

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Homeseer has a routine that runs every night that force the network to re-optimize multiple times. I am not sure if this supplements that information that the nodes already have or if it wipes out the information and reinstalls it.

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A bit late reply, but I have been working on this for some time now. I have created a sniffer that show which nodes the traffic is going from/to and some basic package information. It should be enough to figure out where you have situations with certain nodes saturating your network. You can have a look here if interested: https://www.suphammer.net/zwave_sniffer/

Best regards,

Jon

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