I purchased the Computer Interface and USB Cable (CM15A) but can't get it to work. This is the first X10 product that I have ever had trouble with. I've unsuccessfully done all the problem solving steps. Is there an expert out here that can help?
I did all the standard testing that X10 Tech Support told me to do. Things like; don't use a surge suppressor, tried different outlets, tried various lamp module/lamp setup tests, and removed the batteries to reset the unit.
Yes, it was plugged in. 8^P
The one thing they didn't tell me to do was try different USB connections. So that's my next step.
Okay, here we go. I have the CM15A plugged into one of 6 USB ports and plugged into a wall outlet. I have ActiveHome Professional running and have a New Room created with a LM465 Lamp Module placed into the room.
The LM465 Lamp Module is plugged into a lamp on the same circuit. The lamp was tested without the module to confirm that the lamp works.
The LM465 was set as A1 and the Lamp Module was set as A1. The was lamp plugged into the LM465. From the ActiveHome Professional application, the LM465 Lamp Module has no affect on the lamp.
I've tried the other USB ports with the same result, unplugged the CM15A to clear its memory, and have also rebooted the computer with no luck. I also confirmed that the LM465 Lamp Module is good by installing and testing it in my working X10 system.
Hardware Interface Configuration was checked and it was set to monitor house code A which confirms that A1 should have worked. The Find Other Computer reports that A1 is good. I also tested with the module set to P16 and had no luck there.
The Activity Monitor produces an On/Off transmit report that looks ok.
with a long extension cord, plug the cma15a into the same outlet as the lamp module and see if it works. (Long cord so you can keep the USB connected)
plug the lamp module into the same power strip as the cm15a, and plug the strip in as far away from the computer as possible.
If it works, what I'd suspect is a "signal sucker", more than likely the PC or the monitor (I've seen both). Some cm15a don't put out a strong signal, and some power supplies can "suck them up" to the point they don't go far. A UPS may do it too....
To correct it, you can get an x10 filter - Smarthome sells them as a "FilterLinc". Plug the computer/monitor into the filter.
Thanks. I tried the recommendations but no luck. I even tried an extra long extension cord and plugged in on my second circuit.
Here's what I also noticed. For this round of testing, I used a radio. Plugging the radio with no X10, I got a clear radio station. However, when I plugged the radio into the LM465 the radio station signal degraded into static. So I'll purchase the FilterLinc and retest as recommended.
1) In general the best way to troubleshoot systems is to have at least one spare "known good" component that can be substituted for each unvalidated/untested component in the system.
Can you substitute some other X-10 powerline signal control device for the CM15a preferably one that doesn't require a computer, say a maxi controller? Do you have any other modules or switches other than the single LM465?
2) Unless I missed something, nothing in this thread indicates that you've eliminated the possibility that the lamp module itself doesn't work.
And we also haven't positively eliminated the possibility that the load of the lamp is itself the culprit. You've discovered that powering a radio with a lamp module isn't very satisfactory. 1) The current load of the radio may be insufficient for the module to work and 2) you may damage the radio or get poor performance if the lamp module is used in 'dimmed' mode.
Do use at least a 40 watt incandescent lamp (not fluorescent) to test the lamp module. If you plug in the lamp, and turn the manual switch of the lamp on and off a few times, this _should_ trigger the lamp module and therefore the lihght to turn on. If it doesn't, it is defective. Even if it does light the lamp, it still may have defective powerline communication. If so, see #1 in the first paragraph above
Thanks for the info. Just fyi, sorry mate, you did miss it above; the LM465 lamp module was successfully tested in my working X10 system (DS7000 Protector Plus Home Security System). Yes, I have done tests with lamps before but I'm willing to give it another try since I really would like this thing to work.
This morning I retested using your recommendations with a regular lamp and a 60 watt incandescent bulb with both the CM15A and LM465 plugged into the surge protector. Using the max length of the USB wire and an extension cord, both the CM15A and LM465 were moved as far away from the computer as possible. I turned the lamp's manual switch on and off a few times to trigger the lamp module (great tip!!) then tried the ActiveHome Pro, LM465 module application, to turn it off. Test failed.
I have one more test to do tonight by eliminating the surge protector and plugging both directly into a wall outlet.
Just the same, all suggestions have been appreciated.
Crazy question, but what about the batteries in the cm15a? Are they fresh?
There used to be some screwy things with the cm15a, and removing the batteries for a few hours and unplugging it fixed them. Also, seems to me, in the early days, you had to wait until you plugged in the cm15a to install the batteries.. Maybe someone else can remember....
(I had one of the very first cm15a's, and they did have to swap it out for HW changes, so my memory might be foggy.... The good news, is I've had one now for years and it still works fine - but with my SW and not Activehome.)
On my initial efforts I installed batteries and did the same process of uninstalling them to clear the memory. For the latest round of testing, no batteries were used. Just did a quick X10 site check, could you tell me what SW is please?
Found a FireCracker Computer Interface (CM17A) module, but it doesn't look like it works with Activehome since it has its own software interface.