Below is a list of industry related resources anyone in the building automation field may find useful.
Control related podcasts
- BACnet website
- BACnet International
- BACnet International hosts training material, published articles, whitepapers and forum.
- BTL listings
- I often check the PICS statement for third party devices. BTL’s website makes it easy to search for devices and has all the relevant documentation for each listed device.
- Troubleshooting BACnet with Wireshark
- Troubleshooting 485 based networks with a multimeter
- BACnet basics and troubleshooting with oscilloscope from Niagara Summit 14
- RS-485 Basics
- Chipkin Automation Systems – BACnet for Field Technicians
- Capturing BACnet MS/TP
- Look under software downloads for MS/TP capture utility. Works with USB adapters and has no issues capturing at 76.8k baud.
- Discovery Software
- YABE – Yet Another BACnet Explorer
- BACnet Discovery Tool
- Distech Network Guide
- Covers BACnet and Lonworks networking
- Protocol specification
- Troubleshooting software
- Both of these will allow you test Modbus slaves with your PC. They support Modbus/IP and Serial RTU & ASCII. 30 day free trial on both.
- Modbus Poll –
- Modscan –
- Chipkin Modbus Scanner –
- This is a free scanner for personal use.
- USB to RS-232/485 converters are fairly common these days. Capturing serial Modbus and BACnet MS/TP requires an adapter. I would recommend finding an electrically isolated converter. This will protect you and your laptop from wiring mistakes. If 24vac and higher finds a path through a cheap adapter it almost always destroys the USB controller. Sometimes it will take out the motherboard as well. I normally use the USB-COMi-SI-M. This is widely available and provides support for 485 & 422 with 2kv of isolation.
- There is also a version that supports 232, 485 & 422 with isolation. Amazon is full of cheap non-isolated adapters for less than $50. Working on Modbus power meters, keep in mind wiring mistakes could result in high voltages being present.
- Honeywell Grey Manual
- Battelle DDC Control Fundamentals
- PDH Center – Fundamentals of HVAC Controls
HVAC Actuators & Valves
- Packet Capture –
- Network Host Scanning
- Nmap –
- Angryip –
- IPCONFIG –
- Outputs all the IP addressing of all network adapters. Normally use with -a for all. You can also flush the DNS cache and release/renew DCHP addresses.
- ARP –
- Outputs all the entries in the ARP table of the host machine. Can be used as a quick way to find an IP of a controller your connected to.
- NETSTAT –
- Useful to check the status of TCP/UPD ports on a machine. Can be used to track down which application is listening on a specific port.
- TRACERT –
- Helpful to find routing and connectivity problems.
- Using SSL with Let’s Encrypt –
- Not for the faint of heart and likely overkill on most sites.