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Vacation HA Lock-up

jrfuda

Active Member
I was away from home for 2 weeks (in NC for Christmas) and returned home on the 31st. The only one home was the cat (and for an hour or so each day a friend who was watching the cat).

Anyway, about a week into vacation, I noticed that all my X10 wireless security devices had communications failures (using a W800). Rebooting the PC remotely didn't fix anything, so I figure, maybe the serial cable came undone (which has happened before, as I'm using adapters that do not allow me to "screw" the cable to the W800).

About 5 days later, I started getting "cannot send to CM11A' messages. I now started to think that my com ports were failing, except that the CM11A was on a motherboard RS232 port and the W800 on a port on my Rocketport 8-port.

After reading several posts about the "cannot send" messages, I decided that my CM11A must have gone bad. Since I've been wanting to replace it with a TI103 for a while, I figured now was the tie and went ahead and ordered one from Martin, hoping it would be waiting for me when I got home on the 31st.

Anyway, I got home on the 31st and had 2 packages. A 3-pack of Zwave modules from HST (The special they had, hopefully they won't blow on me) and the HDD for my tablet that I had RMA'd. I'll probably have the TI103 early next week.

The first thing I noticed when I got home, other than the lights thats should not be on, was that my IR543's LED was glowing steady red (It's on house code M) I then remembered about a zillion M all lights on commands in my HS log. This must be the source of the lockups.

I have the 543 located on the hood of one of my aquariums. I use it for 'local' control of the aquariums' lights and air (and also IR, just for those two devices, since I use my Ocelot for all else). There were also cat prints on the 543. It appears that the cat learned how to climb onto the fish tank, which is normally to high to jump on to, by negotiating a few other pieces of furniture first. Apparently, he placed water soaked paws onto the 543 and caused a short in the form of a continuous all lights on command. Unplugging the 543 fixed the CM11A problem - but I'm still looking forward to getting the TI103 - hopefully it will help with some other issues. Fortunately, opening the IR543 and drying it out fixed it, so it's still usable (and I didn't even have to use windex). Now the problem of the W800 remained.

I went to check the connection on the W800 and it looked fine. I thought, perhaps, it had gone bad (though I've never heard of this before). While checking the connection, I noticed that the X10 wireless video receiver that I use for a baby monitor was laying on the floor behind my entertainment center. It appears that the cat also learned how to scale the even higher shelves and managed to knock the video receiver off the high shelf it was on. During its fall to earth, it knocked the wall warts for the W800 and itself out of the socket (and broke its own antenna). I plugged the warts back in and all was fixed. A Little tape fixed the video receiver's antenna (the wire was intact, just the plastic cracked). So everything was working again.

I figured hat I was batting 1000 so far, so I decided to take the factory reconditioned HDD and install it into the tablet. Acronis True Image made this task pretty easy (although the reconditioned HDD had some bad sectors and I encountered the same errors Rupp did - fixed by error checking the disk). The tablet was up and running in about 45 minutes, but it could not get onto the wireless network.

A quick check of my WAP showed the LEDs not doing what they were supposed to do. I performed a few resets and still nothing. This is, by the way, the a replacement (RMA'd) WAP for one that went bad under warranty. Given the failure rate of these (It's a Hawking) I will not be buying another Hawking product. I guess I'll wait for a Linksys or D-Link to go on sale. In the mean time, I used some CAT5 to restore connectivity to the tablet, so at least I can use it (though tethered).

So, everything's 'working' for now. Let's see what I can mess-up installing those three Zwave devices and the TI103 ;)
 

electron

Administrator
Staff member
If there is one thing I learnt, it's to never be surprised when you leave your cat at home for a week, they will learn so much and at the same time destroy so much that it is a great reminder why you shouldn't go on vacation ;) Kinda funny that your CAT[/b5 fixed your network issue tho :(
 

jwilson56

Senior Member
Reminds me of a poster I saw at work....

I love cat


Lets share recipes....



Just kidding....


John
 

Treetop

Active Member
LOL...

Too funny, jrfuda.

Squintz,
Check your temps. I've seen machines behave like this due to overheating.
Also, you can get MCE2005 (XP OS) for $130 ;) No domains, but hey, whatcha gonna do...
 

jrfuda

Active Member
Rupp said:
John,
How much do you like that cat ;)
The cat's a full-fledged family member.

It was neat checking-in on him over the webcams.

Also, I consider cat-proofing the house a train-up for when my son starts crawling.
 

electron

Administrator
Staff member
cat-proofing a house is easy, buy a second house, as the cat will own the primary residence :D

Btw, Treetop, MCE2005 will support domains if you configure it during the install of the OS or upgrade a machine which is a member of a domain.
 

huggy59

Active Member
Did your cat look anything like this when you left? hehehe
 

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hhnew

Member
Didn't you know that when you leave a cat alone for a long time (actual length of 'long' is determined by each individual cat) especially one who is a full-fledged family member that somehow, someway, you will pay for it?

I once left my cat with a house/cat sitter for 10 days while on vacation. On about day two the cat moved 5 houses down the street and settled in with a family that had two young children. She spent the next 8 days convincing all four of them that they were madly in love with her and made my life miserable when I got home and took her back. They were convinced that I must abuse her and that is why she ran away and they kept coming by for months to check in on her. I felt like I had gotten involved with social workers doing spot checks.
 

jlehnert

Active Member
Incidents like this are why I always take the words "pet immune" with a (very) large grain of salt. The only "pet immune" anything is the item that is locked up in a closet, in someone elses house (assuming that they don't have pets also).
 

electron

Administrator
Staff member
hhnew said:
Didn't you know that when you leave a cat alone for a long time (actual length of 'long' is determined by each individual cat) especially one who is a full-fledged family member that somehow, someway, you will pay for it?

I once left my cat with a house/cat sitter for 10 days while on vacation. On about day two the cat moved 5 houses down the street and settled in with a family that had two young children. She spent the next 8 days convincing all four of them that they were madly in love with her and made my life miserable when I got home and took her back. They were convinced that I must abuse her and that is why she ran away and they kept coming by for months to check in on her. I felt like I had gotten involved with social workers doing spot checks.
lol, I know that's really sad/cruel, but that's also very funny! The worst I have ever had to deal with was when I left our cat alone for 3 days, as I took my wife to the Pocono's. When we got back, the cat was so pissed that it destroyed the house and turned the entire house into a litterbox. Pretty nasty!
 

jrfuda

Active Member
That's why we always have someone check on the cat if we're away for more than a day. I was fortunate that I found someone who spent at least an hour with him everyday, so he wasn't naughty, just expanded his territory a bit.
 

huggy59

Active Member
I doubt you'd have to worry about your son jumping up on the aquarium, tho he might throw things or climb places... Kids can be worse, though! hehe You'll find out! ;-)
 

Squintz

Senior Member
LOL, that is one heck of a adventure.

My goal for the holiday was to get my ATI AIW 9600 to put out a nice picture on my infocus x1. I wanted to watch the ball drop on the big screen. It took me 3 hours just to get the image to come up on the screen and once it did i had to deal with the issue of my computer crashing 1 an hour. Its been doing this for the last few months. I'v been trying everything to try and fix the issue but im afraid that it may be my video card going bad. So at 11:30pm last night the pc crashed and restarted itself. I started the tv again and was able to actually see the ball drop. Now i have to decide if i want to spend $150 on a full version of windows xp pro or just continue to deal with the pc crashing.
 
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