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Standard User Ancient_Mariner
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Mon 21-Dec-20 18:39:39
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Central Heating Control via WiFi


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Our local village hall which last year had BT Business Broadband installed along with two Ubiquiti Unifi Wireless Access Points, is now considering a Central Heating Control System which will control the three existing heating zones.

This system will likely use a tablet running Android to locally interface with the controls and additionally allow remote control so that variations in hall bookings can be accommodated.

Presently the BT Hub due to the building construction can only give reliable WiFi in the manager's office where it is situated. Hence the two Ubiquiti Unifi Wireless Access Points to give Public WiFi access in the various rooms.

So, we have the BT Hub's SSID with a password which we keep secret and a SSID for the wireless access points which we make public (There is of course the BT public access SSID which for this we can ignore.)

Is it possible to have a second SSID on the two Wireless Access Points which would be the same as the BT Hub's SSID and password? This so that the interface of the three zone units, tablet and the control unit can inter-communicate and also for remote access from the likes of me or our Secretary?

Many thanks.

Cheers!

Clive

Andrews & Arnold Home::1 FTTC DrayTek Vigor 2762ac Cisco SPA112 and HUAWEI E5776 with O2 Data SIM
Standard User caffn8me
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Mon 21-Dec-20 21:09:01
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Re: Central Heating Control via WiFi


[re: Ancient_Mariner] [link to this post]
 
Yes, it's easy to run a second SSID on the Unifi access points. You can run more than that but in your case there's no need.

If you have guest policies enabled for the public network on the Unifi access points, folks who connect to that won't be able to see your heating controllers.

Sarah

--
If I can't drink my bowl of coffee three times daily, then in my torment, I will shrivel up like a piece of roast goat

Spiders on coffee - Badass spiders on drugs
Standard User Ancient_Mariner
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Mon 21-Dec-20 21:52:08
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Re: Central Heating Control via WiFi


[re: caffn8me] [link to this post]
 
Thanks Sarah; That is just what I wanted to hear, especially "If you have guest policies enabled for the public network on the Unifi access points, folks who connect to that won't be able to see your heating controllers."

The current heating control system is three domestic type 7-day programmers in a box which are sort of easy enough to program, but checking through the whole week is a pain.

I get 30-minute gas consumptions the following day from SSE and end up wondering just why the heating for the main hall was on overnight on a Sunday etc! Especially as the boiler can consume 60 kWh of gas in the first 30 minutes on a cold morning...

Thanks again.

Cheers!

Clive

Andrews & Arnold Home::1 FTTC DrayTek Vigor 2762ac Cisco SPA112 and HUAWEI E5776 with O2 Data SIM


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Standard User caffn8me
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Mon 21-Dec-20 22:17:24
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Re: Central Heating Control via WiFi


[re: Ancient_Mariner] [link to this post]
 
That's good to hear Clive.

Certain more recent firmwares can be problematic for Unifi access points and 'internet of things' devices. I generally run 4.0.80.10875 because it has faster throughput than more recent versions and is very stable - which is quite important when most of the Unifi installations I look after are about a thousand kilometres away smile

If you have any problems, let me know.

Sarah

--
If I can't drink my bowl of coffee three times daily, then in my torment, I will shrivel up like a piece of roast goat

Spiders on coffee - Badass spiders on drugs
Standard User NJSS
(member) Tue 22-Dec-20 09:44:26
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Re: Central Heating Control via WiFi


[re: caffn8me] [link to this post]
 
I use Evohome to control my central heating remotely, and very good it is too.

Worth a look: here.

Standard User tdw42
(member) Tue 22-Dec-20 15:11:48
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Re: Central Heating Control via WiFi


[re: caffn8me] [link to this post]
 
You can have multiple SSIDs, but they would connect to the same underlying network as the BT Hub can't do VLANs to segregate traffic.

Doesn't the UniFi guest policy require a controller to be online? If these APs are cabled to the BT Hub they could well have been configured standalone with the app and there not be a controller installed.
Standard User caffn8me
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Tue 22-Dec-20 23:31:29
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Re: Central Heating Control via WiFi


[re: tdw42] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by tdw42:
You can have multiple SSIDs, but they would connect to the same underlying network as the BT Hub can't do VLANs to segregate traffic.

Doesn't the UniFi guest policy require a controller to be online? If these APs are cabled to the BT Hub they could well have been configured standalone with the app and there not be a controller installed.
A guest portal requires a controller but applying guest policies doesn't. A portal is entirely optional. Once guest policies are set everything runs happily and traffic segregation is done by the access points.

Clients connected to a wi-fi SSID with guest policies active are blocked by default from accessing other wi-fi clients on any SSID or anything on the LAN. They also see no broadcast traffic from anything apart from the default gateway. You can block traffic to any other host or subnet you specify too. Guests can still access the internet via the default gateway and there's no need to use VLANs to achieve this. It's possible to specify a list of permitted devices (hosts/subnets) that guest clients can connect to - for example a streaming device or a shared printer.

By doing this at one site I manage, visitors are able to see and control SONOS devices in open areas but not in private parts of the building. This is a bit more complicated to configure but setting up a new SSID with default guest policies would achieve everything Clive wants to easily. It would just work.

Sarah

--
If I can't drink my bowl of coffee three times daily, then in my torment, I will shrivel up like a piece of roast goat

Spiders on coffee - Badass spiders on drugs

Edited by caffn8me (Tue 22-Dec-20 23:39:44)

Standard User caffn8me
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Tue 22-Dec-20 23:36:00
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Re: Central Heating Control via WiFi


[re: NJSS] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by NJSS:
I use Evohome to control my central heating remotely, and very good it is too.

Worth a look: here.
Yes, that does look very interesting. I have very little experience with smart heating control systems (beyond rewiring a Nest Heat Link that the heating engineer had connected incorrectly) but that looks to be a much better in terms of controlling multiple zones. Thank you.

Sarah

--
If I can't drink my bowl of coffee three times daily, then in my torment, I will shrivel up like a piece of roast goat

Spiders on coffee - Badass spiders on drugs
Standard User caffn8me
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Tue 22-Dec-20 23:42:51
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Re: Central Heating Control via WiFi


[re: Ancient_Mariner] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by Ancient_Mariner:
I get 30-minute gas consumptions the following day from SSE and end up wondering just why the heating for the main hall was on overnight on a Sunday etc! Especially as the boiler can consume 60 kWh of gas in the first 30 minutes on a cold morning...
Ouch! I can see why you want to monitor that and make sure it isn't left on when it shouldn't be.

Sarah

--
If I can't drink my bowl of coffee three times daily, then in my torment, I will shrivel up like a piece of roast goat

Spiders on coffee - Badass spiders on drugs
Standard User joconnell
(experienced) Tue 09-Feb-21 11:59:07
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Re: Central Heating Control via WiFi


[re: caffn8me] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by caffn8me:
In reply to a post by NJSS:
I use Evohome to control my central heating remotely, and very good it is too.

Worth a look: here.
Yes, that does look very interesting. I have very little experience with smart heating control systems (beyond rewiring a Nest Heat Link that the heating engineer had connected incorrectly) but that looks to be a much better in terms of controlling multiple zones. Thank you.

I also recommend EvoHome, it's very flexible in terms of heating control though I wish Honeywell also provided wireless room thermostats that weren't TRVs, as my wife took one look at the EvoHome wireless TRVs on the radiators and decided she hated them and wanted them removed, so now the only benefit I get from EvoHome is a WiFi controllable on/off switch for the central heating.
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