Introducing Wacnet: a BACnet Webserver

Here it is! A free open source BACnet webserver to help everyone with their BACnet networks!

  • Run without any installation;
  • Can run directly from a USB flash drive;
  • No licence or limit on the number of BACnet objects;

Rationale

The purpose of BACnet is to provide interoperability between devices from multiple manufacturers.

The idea is that if all devices speak the same language, no one will be ‘trapped’ with a proprietary protocol, forcing him to always buy at the same place.

This common language also have other advantages, such as making it easy to gather data and make advanced analysis. Simply checking the historical data plotted on a graph is enough to find and solve most problem.

However, despite all BACnet’s promises, the landscape is still mostly occupied by a handful of manufacturers.

In addition, BACnet is pitched as an ‘open protocol’, but the standards need to be ordered; even bacnet.org doesn’t provide a link to download the specs. This isn’t making it easy for newcomers. Want to see and try BACnet? Well, send us money and we’ll send you a boring pdf, and maybe, maybe you will stick with us.

For the developers, there’s some highly cryptic application that will provide some support, but for the newcomer that’s simply counterproductive to even try them.

This results in an horrible situations for the users. Building managers are often clueless as to what to do with a BACnet network. They don’t know what’s in it, nor do they know how to browse it. (Of course manufacturers will offer their own software… for a price.) There’s nothing wrong with selling software, but for such a basic need, browsing the network, a free software should be available. It’s like comparing Notepad and Word. Sure, sell Word, but the user should at least be able to write basic stuff in notepad.

Wacnet is a humble try to ameliorate the situation. By enabling an easy and almost instantaneous setup, anyone can at least see what’s on the network. Newcomers can explore the different properties and learn them.

Usage

Getting the application

If you know Clojure, download the source and do lein uberjar.

If you do not, download the pre-packaged version at https://bacnethelp.com/how-to/wacnet.

Running the application

No installation necessary and can run from a USB key!

The standalone jar file can be started on any computer with Java installed. We recommend starting it from the command line as such:

 java -jar <filename>

For example:

 java -jar wacnet-0.1.1-BETA-standalone.jar

You can of course start it by simply double-clicking on the .jar file, but you might have a hard time finding the ‘off’ switch. (You will have to manually kill it.)

Once the application is started, go to http://localhost:47800 and browse your network!

Advanced usage (REPL)

The REPL is an interactive evaluation environment to enable power users to use tools tailored to their needs. If a feature is lacking, it’s even possible to add it on-the-fly!


4 responses to “Introducing Wacnet: a BACnet Webserver

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

%d bloggers like this: