We have collected a list of frequently asked questions, and arranged them by topic or product. Many of these questions will be answered in more detail in the documentation section of our website.
If you have a question that’s not in the list below, send us an email or use our contact form. We update this section of the website regularly.
If you have a question that’s not answered below, just get in touch and we’ll try to help.
What are the key advantages of EpiSensor's system?
Why is security important?
I've just received a Gateway and some nodes - give me the 5 minute getting started guide
Thanks for working with EpiSensor’s monitoring system! Let’s get started:
(a) Unpack your Gateway, connect the Gateway to your PC’s Ethernet port using a CAT5/patch cable, then plug in the power supply for the Gateway.
(b) Configure your laptop’s Ethernet adapter with a static IP address – the Gateway ships with a default IP address of 172.31.255.1, so we need to set the laptop up with an IP in the same range so we can connect to the Gateway’s web interface. On an Apple Mac this can be done from System Preferences > Network > Ethernet > Configure IPv4 manually > Set the IP address to 172.31.255.11, and the subnet mask to 255.255.255.0, and apply the settings.
(c) In a web browser (make sure you’re using a recent version of Internet Explorer, Chrome or Firefox), go to http://172.31.255.1:8081/ – you should then see the EpiSensor logo and the login screen for the Gateway. Log in using the default username/password, which is Administrator / A1.
(d) After logging in, set the system time by clicking on Settings > Time & Date. Check ‘Configure Clock’, fill in the correct time/date and submit the form.
(e) Go to the Gateway’s home page, and check the ‘Status’ of the Gateway (on the first line of the Home page) – if this is showing “OK”, then move on to step (f). If this is showing ‘ZigBee network not formed’, click on Settings > System. Select ‘Form New Network’ from the drop-down box, and click ‘Submit’. A few seconds later, a new ZigBee network should be formed. Confirm this by clicking the ‘Home’ link and checking that the ‘Status’ is showing “OK”.
(f) Next we need to add some nodes to the Gateway. Enable ‘Allow Join’ mode by going to Settings > Add Nodes. Select ‘5 minutes’ from the drop-down box, and click ‘Submit’. Confirm that allow join mode is enabled from the Home page – if successful, the ‘Sensor Network’ section will show ‘Allow Join: Enabled’.
(g) Mains powered nodes (in factory default state) will scan for the ZigBee network and associate with the Gateway automatically when they are powered on. For battery powered nodes, simply press and hold the button until the LED lights and flashes – the node will wake up from deep-sleep mode, scan for Gateways with ‘allow join’ mode enabled, and connect securely. Data will now start flowing from all ‘sensors’ that are enabled by default for that node – you can confirm this by going to the Nodes page, and clicking Action > Settings for any node that has been added. You should see a list of sensors and some recent data (Note: it can take up to 15 minutes for some sensors to produce data).
For more detailed information, see our documentation section.
Why are your product enclosures waterproof? Doesn't that increase the cost?
What's the benefit in getting a monitoring system and software application from different vendors?
We think there is value for all parties in having a monitoring system separate to the analysis software.
The advantage to the end customer is that they are not tied to a single vendor for the duration of the project – they can evaluate multiple software packages, or even export data to multiple destinations at the same time.
The advantage for the software vendor is that the lines of responsibility are clear, and problems are easier to diagnose – software vendors can concentrate on developing great software, not maintaining hardware systems on customer sites.
How can I the estimate battery life for a pulse counter or temperature sensor?
Battery powered temperature sensors are designed to achieve a 10 year battery life, reporting data every 15 minutes under normal conditions.
A pulse counter’s battery life will depend on the reporting interval (i.e. how often it sends data to the Gateway) but also the frequency of the pulse signal it is monitoring – if a low-frequency pulse is being monitored (usually 1 pulse per m3 of gas or water), then a 10 year battery life is achievable.
For more information please contact us.
How do I know if a battery level is low?
How do I replace a battery?
What wireless range is typical in a commercial / industrial environment?
What wireless communications standard do you use?
Do your wireless nodes have to be powered on / commissioned in any sequence?
Do you have battery powered range extenders?
Will Zigbee wireless interfere with other wireless systems on my site?
How many 'hops' can there be in the mesh network between a node and the Gateway?
How many battery powered devices can a range extender or other powered node accommodate?
How can I tell if a device has good wireless coverage?
What browsers is your Gateway web interface compatible with?
How can I move my Gateway onto my LAN so it can export data to a server on the Internet?
EpiSensor’s Gateway has a static IP address of 172.31.255.1 by default. To export data to a server on the Internet, the Gateway will need to be joined to a LAN that has Internet access. The following guide should help you configure this:
Do you have access to your (wi-fi) router? If so, log in and check the “DHCP client list” page. This page lists the devices that have been assigned an IP address by the DHCP server within the router. Accessing the page will be slightly different on each router – please consult your router’s documentation for more information.
We will need to configure the EpiSensor Gateway for DHCP as follows:
(1) Connect the Gateway to a computer with an Ethernet cable in the normal way – Log in, and click on Settings > Ethernet
(2) Note the “MAC Address” of the Ethernet adapter – it should look like this: c8:a0:30:ad:2a:50
(3) Click ‘Enable DHCP’ and then click ‘Save Changes’. After saving this form, your EpiSensor Gateway will restart and DHCP mode will be enabled.
(4) Connect the EpiSensor Gateway via Ethernet to your router, and check the DHCP client list again (you may need to wait a few minutes for the Gateway to restart, and then refresh the page). You should see an entry in the DHCP client list for the EpiSensor Gateway (check that the MAC address matches that of the EpiSensor Gateway noted in Step 2 above). Note the IP address that has been assigned to the EpiSensor Gateway by the DHCP server.
(5) Copy the IP address, and type the following address in a web browser on a computer that’s connected to the same router as the EpiSensor Gateway: http://192.168.2.123:8081/ (replace 192.168.2.123 with the IP address the Gateway has been assigned).
You should now see the Gateway’s login screen. If your computer has Internet access, the Gateway should also have Internet access and will be able to export data to the FTP server.