June 2013
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New High-Performance BACnet Router with Built-in Diagnostic Capabilities

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Downers Grove, Illinois (April 2013) – Contemporary Controls has expanded its BACnet router portfolio with a high-performance BACnet router having advanced features including built-in diagnostics that aid in commissioning or troubleshooting BACnet MS/TP networks in the field.  With a high-speed 32-bit processor and expanded memory, the BASrouterLX is ideal for larger sub-netted BACnet/IP networks subjected to heavy device discovery traffic.  The BASrouterLX provides stand-alone routing between BACnet/IP, BACnet Ethernet, and BACnet MS/TP – all at the same time.  It can also route between two BACnet/IP networks while supporting Network Address Translation (NAT) router traversal.  Its advanced features include auto-discovery or manual configuration of MS/TP slaves, MS/TP frame capture and storage for use with WiresharkŪ, authentication, remote storage of configuration settings, and easy firmware upgrade via a web page. As a BACnet/IP Broadcast Management Device, it can handle up to 50 BBMD entries to its Broadcast Distribution Table and 147 entries to its Foreign Device Registration table.

The BASrouterLX has two physical communication ports — a 10/100 Mbps BACnet/IP Ethernet port and an optically isolated EIA-485 port for MS/TP. The Ethernet port supports auto-negotiation and Auto-MDIX thereby automatically matching connections to the attached equipment.  The optically-isolated EIA-485 serial port allows for connection to either 2-wire or 3-wire MS/TP networks up to 115.2 kbps while supporting all available data rates in the current BACnet standard.

MS/TP network traffic can be monitored remotely over an IP network connected to the BASrouterLX.  With Wireshark installed on a remote computer, MS/TP captures can be initiated through a web page on the BASrouterLX and viewed immediately for analysis with no additional interfacing equipment required. The status page on the BASrouterLX has been expanded to include more information on the MS/TP state-machine within the router thereby gaining an insight into the health of attached MS/TP devices.  The convenience of remote monitoring when troubleshooting a tough MS/TP problem should not be minimized.
 
MS/TP slave devices are accessible using either Manual Slave Address Binding or Automatic Slave Discovery. MS/TP slaves can be addressed throughout the complete MS/TP address range.  A standard web browser is all that is needed to access the features of the high-performance router.

Reliable Controls The BASrouterLX is DIN-rail mounted and can be powered from a shared 24 VAC/VDC supply.  Resident EIA-485 termination and bias can be removed for mid-span installations. 

Capturing MS/TP Traffic
The BASrouterLX can capture MS/TP traffic and present that traffic to a PC connected on the BACnet/IP side of the BASrouterLX. If the PC has the Wireshark protocol analyzer installed, Wireshark can decode the packets sent over MS/TP thanks to its built-in BACnet decoder.

Capturing serial data remotely is a handy feature when verifying proper MS/TP network activity without the requirement of installing specialized interfacing hardware to the MS/TP bus. As a background task, the BASrouterLX continuously records the last 3900 messages sent over MS/TP including both data and token passes. By depressing the Generate MS/TP Wireshark File, those last 3900 messages are converted to a “pcap” format file for viewing by a Wireshark. Once the conversion is made, depressing the View MS/TP Traffic button sends the captured file to the attached PC for Wireshark viewing. BACnet protocol decoding is built into this free but powerful protocol analyzer so the system integrator can study the traffic for any anomalies while verifying that all serial devices are participating in the token pass. No special configuration is involved. Any properly installed BASrouterLX is ready to transfer captured MS/TP at anytime.

The BASrouterLX is part of the BASautomation family of BACnet devices. For more information, visit www.BASrouterLX.com



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