In March 2019 I wrote a blog post about a new sensortype for PRTG Network Monitor that allows users of this software to keep an eye on the CO₂ concentration of the atmosphere. My idea was to create more visibility for this important metric by adding this sensor to dashboards of the monitoring software PRTG.
In our house we have two ventilation units from Swiss/German vendor Zehnder, one ComfoAir Q600 and one ComfoAir Q350. Since most of our energy and house tech systems are already monitored by my PRTG instance (including solar system and heatpump) to be shown on my dashboard, I also wanted to monitor our ventilation system, too.
In this article I am documenting how I use a Windows tablet (Surface Go) as always-on monitoring dashboard in our house. Upon power-up the dashboard automatically logs into Windows and starts a chrome browser with a dashboard-map of my PRTG Network Monitor account. This is an updated version of the dashboard screen that I also run on my desk.
As the founder of “The network monitoring company” Paessler AG it came quite natural to me to not only monitor our home network but also various environmental metrics in our family home. We had moved into our new home a year and a half ago and having temperature data series has been quite helpful to do the fine tuning and bug-fixing of the heating and venting systems.
Every other night we forgot to close our garage door in the evening and it stayed open all night. Obviously we needed a door monitoring that alerts us whenever the door was left open after 20:00. There were just two tiny problems: There was no close-by power outlet or ethernet port and the steel enforced concrete structure of our garage shielded off our home wifi networks.
In this article I will describe a solution which is based on the Sigfox IoT wireless network and PRTG which I use to monitor our home.
Article explains how Modbus/TCP works and shows how to monitor Modbus/TCP enabled devices with PRTG Network Monitor
The Modbus protocol has been around forever (since 1979 to be exact) and is used by many industrial systems, but also energy systems like heat pumps and solar converters. Initially it was used via serial communications, then – in 2007 – a TCP based version was created that communicates via TCP, usually using port 502.
The following article explains how Modbus/TCP works and shows how I can monitor Modbus/TCP enabled devices with PRTG Network Monitor using a simple PowerShell script.
I wish I could share a one-size-fits-all script that just works for most people. But unfortunately this task usually requires some hacking and coding…
We have solar panels on our roof which are able to generate a peak power of 10 kW. An energy controller controls the converter, our heat pump and our battery with the goal that most of the solar energy is used locally. First we use the solar energy in our home, we charge the 230V-battery, and we load the heat storage tank. Only if even more solar power is generated we send the rest into the grid.
To visualize this and I am monitoring this system with PRTG using the Modbus protocol.
On my working desk I wanted to have an always-on screen with the current status of the systems and KPIs that I am monitoring all the time. Of course I did not want to run a PC all the time, so I needed something “lighter”.
I also wanted something made from out-of-the-box systems, not an arduino system that I would need to solder together with the risk of hurting myself.
In this post I will share how I created my little desktop dashboard for around €350.