Elk Disarm Reporting...


Active Member
Hi All,

I've been scratching my head on this one and can't figure it out:

I have about 5 people who have access codes to disarm my Elk M1.

Currently, if ANYONE disarms the system then my Elk sends a text message to my cell phone as well as an email message to my work.

Ideally, I would like to write a rule that if anyone OTHER THAN MYSELF disarms the system then send me an email.

I know I can write an individual rule for each user but that takes up space on the Elk and is a PITA to manage in the current rules editor.

If the Elk people could figure out how to program correctly they would have added a NOT operator in the rules programming: i.e; WHENEVER system is disarmed and Last User was NOT Administrator THEN Send Email Message.

I work with Microprocessors for a living (at the machine-code level) and have been doing so since 1976. EVERY processor since then has the NOT operator built in (and an OR operator as well!). Why Elk can't figure out how to put this into the system is beyond me. I would suggest firing (or demoting) the current programmer and getting someone in there that knows how to program on something other than a beginner level.

My apologies for venting , but this is frustrating as heck only because it is such a simple thing to include.

Heck, while I'm at it, would it be so hard for Elk to put on thier website what features are being expected in the next release of firmware or software? It wouldn't have to be written in stone but at least would give us faithful customers something to look forward to.

Hobbled Elk in Houston
HoustonFirefox said:
Currently, if ANYONE disarms the system then my Elk sends a text message to my cell phone as well as an email message to my work.
I agree that the lack of OR, NOT, ELSE, etc, makes programming a big PITA, and I'm sorry I don't have a solution to offer. But if you don't mind my going OT for a moment... I assume you are getting emails through the M1XEP interface, and txt messages through the same interface as an email to an address that forwards to your phone? If so, would you mind sharing any details it took to get that to work? I can't seem to get mine to email out, and searching the Elk site looks like most are having this problem. I've tried using both my ISP's smtp server name as well as IP address, but neither has worked. :D
I hesitate to reply OT because there are several threads that address this. First, email won't go if you are connected via RP. Next, make sure you have latest XEP firmware, then make sure DNS is right - even try putting the IP instead of the addr.
Or and Not would be a nice addition to the Rule Engine and may come later. In the Event driven Rule Engine, there is no such thing as ELSE. ELSE statements would require constant scanning of the RULES. :D
Spanky said:
In the Event driven Rule Engine, there is no such thing as ELSE. ELSE statements would require constant scanning of the RULES. :D
I assume you mean specifically in the event driven rule engine the M1 uses? I do Access programming, which is event driven, and use ELSE statements all the time. Of course, in all the cases I can think off off the top of my head, they also require more sophisticated nesting than we can do in the M1.

Steve, thanks for the reply - I'll look for the related threads. I hadnt' searched here yet, just the Elk forum, but figured I'd ask since Houston seemed to be having better luck than those on the Elk forum. I did make sure to disconnect RP, I have the latest firmware, and being behind a router, I just use that for DNS, as it just forwards the requests. Based on what I read in the Elk forum, it appeared that it simply doesn't work for most... but if there are people here getting it to work, I'll keep trying. Thanks!
There is a new XEP software upgrade that fixes many email accounts that require authentication coming out in the next couple weeks. If your current email account requires authentication, the current XEP software revision may not work for sending email.

We have found one email system that requires SSL authentication. This type may not be in the next release.

Understood about the ELSE statement but it could also be a conditional (very limited) whereas it would ONLY be evaluated on a WHENEVER Event. Once and only once if the event was fired, not evaluated on a continual basis.

WHENEVER Alarm is disarmed
AND last user was abc
THEN send email to xyz
ELSE Announce "Alarm Disarmed"

I know the syntax is way off but this ELSE statement would only be evaluated on the WHENEVER condition. Once, and only once. It would be a bit tricky with the current software to implement a ELSE THEN situation but it could be done. To make things easier (for now) you could restrict the ELSE statement to one-per-rule just to get it in place. The M1 possibilities with only a single ELSE statement would be phenominal.

* * *

Sending email.

I use Houston.rr.com as my email provider and worked out how to get the M1 Ethernet expander though my Linksys BEFSR41 router to send email by simply:

1) Delete username and password from the M1EXP setup, it's not required.
2) Use the IP address (PING SMTP-Server.houston.rr.com to find it)
3) Set up an email account in the M1EXP to send the messages to along with the message to send (sure wish a variable could be used here!).
4) My cell phone is on Cingular wireless so I send an email to [email protected] and it goes through without a hitch.

Works like a charm.
A Spanky explained, having an ELSE rule can be tricky because of the nature of ladder logic. The Ocelot does have an ELSE statement and it will test true whenever the whole logic test is false. This has been a programming trap for beginners who did not understand the whole conept clearly.

The type of ELSE that HoustonFireFox is asking for actually a nested ELSE, because its "elsing" with the AND condition, not the WHENEVER. What would happen if you had several AND statements? This would be even trickier to implement properly.
Thanks for the suggestions. We put all the suggestions into the wash. The really good ones float to the top and are worked on first ELSE the squeaky wheels get greased first.
Thanks Spanky.

I'm in the software business and know full-well that when you give the customer a great product (like the M1) then they just want more, and more, and more, and more... you get the idea.

The M1G is very close to being the beat-all, end all of not only security, but home automation as well. Keep up the good work.