FAQ: Is there a way to see the Zwave mesh network map?

(Scott) #1

Is there a way to see how the devices communicate to the hub if they have more than one hop to get to the hub? Ie if a device is on the far end of your house and has to go through 2 other z-wave devices before getting to the Hub, can you see which devices it uses as repeaters in order to get to the hub?

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(Jesse S) #2

I second this question.


Short answer: no, ST does not provide mapping utilities, although they’ve said they’re considering it.

Long answer: maybe, if you add a secondary Z wave controller to the network and that controller has mapping utilities. But nothing native.

(Jesse S) #4

Sad face. Thanks @JDRoberts – not sure where we’d be without you!

(Beckwith) #5

Is there such an animal? It would go a long way at diagnosing z-wave issues. I’ve spent the whole day trying to isolate an issue. Very frustrating!


@geko or @Fuzzyligic or @erocm1231 might know. I haven’t tried it.


For mapping a Zigbee mesh, there is this:


Yeah, they were asking about Zwave. So it’s not going to help in this instance.

It’s a similar idea–add an additional device which has its own mapping utility. But the zigbee map is just zigbee, so you’d need a Z wave equivalent.

(Eric M) #9

Yeah, you can use a Aeon Z-Stick with Zensys tools. Zensys tools is a tool available for download from a few different sites online. You can view a topology map, view and assign routes, etc. I haven’t dived very much into it, but know that it is their.

Also, I have a Razberry Z-Wave controller that has similar abilities. Its software is kept more up to date though. Both are great tools to have.

(Ray) #10

You know you can ask ST support for this. I know they have zigbee mesh network of your system for sure cause I did asked for it just yesterday :slight_smile:. Unfortunately they couldn’t retrieve it for whatever reason. Most likely they will also have zwave so it doesn’t hurt to ask.

(Josh) #11

Can you post a link to your Razberry Z-wave controller?

(Eric M) #12

I think I bought mine from Vesternet, but I don’t believe they sell to the US anymore. You can find one on zwaveproducts.com or z-wave.us.

These are just daughter boards that connect to a raspberry pi, so if you don’t already have one of those laying around the house, it can get a little pricey.

The Z-Stick is a good option as it is a little cheaper: Amazon.

(Scott) #13

Any issues using a Z-Stick with ST as the master controller?
Once the ST is setup, how do you add and use the Z-Controller?

(Eric M) #14

I never had any issues with SmartThings v1 or v2. With SmartThings as the Primary controller, nothing changes with how Z-Wave functions (as far as the SmartThings hub is concerned). If you wan’t to use the Z-Stick as an additional automation controller (with open-zwave) or some other software, then the devices require a little bit of additional configuration. Namely, they need to be associated with the Z-Stick. Some devices don’t support multiple associations (so it is likely that you might have a motion or door sensor that only sends its state to the SmartThings hub.

At one point I did run multiple controllers in that sense, but now only use them for diagnostic purposes. SmartThings is capable of doing just about anything I can think of programmatically so I don’t really have a need for an alternate automation software running. Where a Z-Stick still comes in handy is to easily check device associations, config parameters, and update device firmware.

To set it up as a Secondary, you could use the Zensys tool I mentioned. https://aeotec.freshdesk.com/support/solutions/articles/6000110204-zensys-tool

Basically, you put the SmartThings hub in inclusion mode just like adding any Z-Wave device and in Zensys tool click the little lightning icon that says “Start Learn Mode”. In the Log, you can capture your Z-Wave security key. A few icons down from the lightning icon is a “Request Update” button. Click that if you add Z-Wave devices to the SmartThings hub down the road and they aren’t showing up on the Secondary Controller.

Adding Vera as Secondary Zwave controller?
(Scott) #15

So I don’t really want to do anything with the Z-Stick other than check out the Network map and reconfigure the hops and any parameters if needed. The Z-Stick will not be in a computer that is on all the time or anything. Basically just use it as needed.
So in this case would I add the Z-Stick as a Secondary as you mentioned?

I’m still trying to understand the concept of primary and secondary controllers, and how the work and why. How does the Z-Stick know about and able to configure all of the devices associated with the ST Hub, since devices can only be associated with one Hub?



Zwave Devices can only be owned by one primary controller.

A secondary controller in Z wave is a device which is also owned by the primary controller but which has some additional permissions above those of most of the other devices. It was really originally intended for things like the minimote where you would have a handheld controller and you could push a button and it would tell another device to turn on or off. It’s not really much more complicated than that.

The primary controller maintains the master device address tables and does all the network utilities like zwave repair. Secondary controller is given a copy of the network table by the master controller and it gets to talk to those devices and set up associations between them, but it doesn’t run the other utilities.

In a few cases, again like the minimote, the secondary controller also has permission to include/exclude new devices to the network, but it does so by telling the primary control about the new devices.

Here’s a good explanation

(Scott) #17

So if the Z-Stick is setup as the secondary controller, will it be able to make adjustments to the hop table of my devices?


sorry, I don’t understand the question.

(Scott) #19

If ST is the primary and Z-Stick is the secondary, can I use the Z-Stick with Zensys Tools to update the routing table for the devices?


I still don’t understand this question. The whole point of a mesh network is that the human doesn’t change the routing table. It’s built by the devices themselves.

The routing table is updated in two different ways. First, when a device is included/excluded to the network. And second, when you run a zwave repair utility (which affects the entire network, but is issued from the primary controller as it is the one that maintains the network address tables).

There are no permanent routes in a mesh topology – – that’s the whole point. If a particular repeater is unavailable, the originator node will try something else.

There is a table of known efficient routes which the primary controller keeps and sends out tiny pieces of to individual nodes from time to time, just to help out, but that’s not actually a required part of the system.

So the human doesn’t do anything to maintain the routing tables other than occasionally request a repair. So there just isn’t a concept of having features on either the primary or secondary controller to make adjustments to the routes. It just doesn’t work that way.

What specific problem what are you thinking of solving in this context? What is it that you would want to accomplish with the secondary controller?

You can use the mapping utilities that come with the secondary controller, but they literally just show you what the map is. You can’t Tell an individual node to route through a different neighbor. What you can see is whether a network repair is required because nodes are not using a repeater which is physically close to them. And you may also be able to identify damaged devices that need to be physically replaced. But you’re not going to edit individual routes or neighbor tables, whether it’s the primary controller the secondary controller.