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Preliminary review of HAI Web-Link II Software

The HAI Web Link II software works with both HAI OmniPro and OnQ HMS home automation controllers that are version 1.8 and newer firmware. It might work with AEGIS systems too – but I know of no one with that to test on. I may hack it enough to work on Linux too, given enough time.

It requires Windows XP Pro (or newer), IIS v4 (or newer), and Windows Media components (for video feeds)… I know, the irony of controlling a home security system with something as insecure as Windows and IIS is not lost on me… it’s compounded by the fact that out of the box the whole thing is plain old clear text HTTP services with no obvious option to encrypt all the traffic. I will have to investigate wrapping the entire server in SSL encryption myself, or putting it on a private LAN with VPN service access only.

It makes turning thermostats on and off very easy, but re-programming them is not an option (which is a shame, as the HAI thermostats are amazing devices that support multiple programs, but they are a real pain to re-program at the keypad; way too many options and features.

I have no access to the Rules section mentioned in the manuals; which means I can’t update the programs in my controller. I am not sure if this is a limitation of my old OnQ HMS 1050 – or if I just have not found the section in the software yet. I am still programming the system with PC Access.

Initial connection was a bit of a mystery as my old OnQ HMS 1050 had never had Names associated with each Code number on the keypads. I had to fire up the old PC Access software to assign a name, then the Web Link software could use it.

Only one of the two can be connected at a time, but that is as easy as changing the com port to the Web Link software so it can’t hang onto the MODEM while you re-use the old PC Access software, then change it back.

The software claims it can send email alerts and a whole slew of other features I have been completely unable to access so far… but I am just beginning to get familiar with it so I will allow it just being non-obvious.

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