Powerhome, Insteon, and Elk


Senior Member
I am curious how exactly Powerhome is creating the records in the PLC for the ELK to use for Insteon groups. From my experience, all that is required to get a group setup for a PLC is to have the device id in the PLC and no master link. Then just have a slave link in the controlled device. But I have also seen Jon Ort's Insteon plugin for Homeseer actually create the master link in the PLC as well.

Do you guys who are using this setup for your ELK see Master links in your PLC or just the device addresses?
My current setup is the M1XSP with a serial PLC and a 2nd PLC (USB) off the PC with PowerHome. I have about 20 Insteon devices loaded into the XSP but the Elk PLC showed NO initial links in it using PowerHome.

I used PH to add the Elk PLC as a responder to all my devices so the M1 would see any devices turning on other than through the M1. Only then did any links show up in the Elk PLC.

I used PH to create a group in the XSP's PLC with 4 devices. Now they all respond using the appropriate M1 lighting device number.

Not sure if that info is what you were looking for...
I thought you had to plug your ELK PLC to your PC, update it with powerhome and then move it back to the elk. Is this true? Or do you do your updating with the serial PLC still connected to the M1XSP?

What I was really looking for was if PH is actually creating links in the PLC? But if you aren't moving it, I don't think that is possible. So that may answer my question. It would probably just be putting the slave links in the switches and not really adding the master link to the PLC.

The PLC's link tables are a little harder to manipulate, they don't respond to the same SDM commands and the only SDM commands listed require the PLC to be attached.
Well, I can probably answer that question better than anybody :). PowerHome does not create master links in the PLC. The master links are only necessary for group cleanup commands and since the PLC doesnt send group cleanups, no need to worry about the hassle of creating PLC group master links.

Wasn't sure what you were asking, glad the expert himself jumped in...

You might be confusing updating the PLC with PowerHome vs updating the M1XSP serial interface using the elkinsteon utility. You do have to plug the XSP into a PC serial port. elkinsteon.exe can read/load insteon id's into the XSP and boy is it a lifesaver. Just recently shut down my M1 to hook up some motion detectors and when I restarted the M1 all my insteon id's had vanished from the XSP. elkinsteon.exe has saved me hours of work several times (thanks Dave!!)..
Eeek! I didn't even think about the M1XSP having to be updated. I have my own VB app that creates links. I guess I just assumed the M1XSP would just call the groups and if the slave links are there it would work.

I'll have to do some experimenting, but right now I have way to much yard work to do! F'n spring :)

I didn't mean to leave you out, thanks bmil.
If you just want the XSP to turn on/off a PLC group you don't need to load anything into the XSP. Just use RP to set the appropriate M1 lighting device number (193+) to use the serial expanion board and that should do it as long as you already have set up the groups in the PLC.