Kohler Electric Generator Oncue issues
bdegnan
Newbie

I have Verizon FIOS (TV, Internet) with an Actiontec router.  I also have an Kohler generator with Oncue software.  Oncue allows remote access to monitor and control the generator. Oncue is an application that runs on a PC.

The issue I am having is the generator seems to be able to send emails (i.e. outbound) but Oncue cannot connect to the generator.  This is despite the fact that the generator passes the router connectivity test.  Oncue is also able to connect to the Kohler Oncue server.  It seems like the router will not allow an inbound connection to the generator's controller.  This is the case with software firewall (McAfee) turned off and Actiontec security set to lowest setting.  Required ports are forwarded properly.  Verizon tech guy confirmed this.

Kohler says the issue is the Actiontec router and that other Kohler customers have resolved the issue by replacing the router with a Netgear router.  This requires the other router to be in front of the Actiontec I believe.

I am looking for someone that has FIOS and a Kohler generator with Oncue who has gotten Oncue to work.  Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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25 Replies
Cynicalguy
Newbie

I just started having this issue when I upgrade my FIOS to 150/150 from 100/100.  I had to switch to the Quantum Router and get my internet via ethernet vs coax.  Has ANYONE resolved this yet?

Thanks

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IronEdison
Newbie

I am a Kohler Certified Maintenance Technician, and have seen this problem before.

Here is the official solution, as detailed in the manual:  

1.6 Internet Configuration and
Security (Firewalls)
 
When using the OnCue PC application from a remote location behind a firewall, it may be necessary to configure the firewall to open port 808. 
 
The firewall may prompt you to allow OnCue to use port 808.   Contact your network administrator for assistance, if necessary.
 
When the generator set is connected to an intranet network behind a firewall, for example in a commercial or industrial setting, it may be necessary to configure the firewall to open port 5253 to permit an outbound connection. 
 
Contact your network administrator for assistance if necessary.
 
 
You can download the full manual for OnCue here:  http://ironedison.com/kohler-oncue
 
The manual is saved on the top right side of the page.
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obmd1
Enthusiast - Level 2

I am working with a Kohler tech now to get oncue to even add the genset. He worked with the company and they were able to get in and remotely start it, so I know the connection is working... but the password generated by the machine is not recognized when I log in via the consumer side. could this still be a port issue? The IP address is issued, and server communicates...

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IronEdison
Newbie

I left out some important instructions on how to enable port forwarding.

Here is a link to the NetGear page that details how to enable port forwarding.    http://kb.netgear.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/24046  

If this link ever becomes disabled, just search "Port Forwarding" and the make / model of your router.  You can find the model of your router on a sticker on the bottom of the device.

Good Luck Everyone!

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smith6612
Community Leader
Community Leader

Just out of curiosity, has the following been attempted to see if one of these helps with keeping the Generator on the network?

  • Assigning a Static IP / Using DHCP Reservation to reserve an IP for the Generator
  • Checking to see if for some reason, the generator's control unit is entering a funny power save mode due to a lack of communication, that isn't caused by connectivity to another router (Eg: the Comcast Gateway as pointed out above).

I didn't catch anything in this thread about whether the Generator was connected Wired or Wirelessly. Just to note some things, I've found with home automation appliances and also printers of all things, tend to cooperate on a Wired connection a lot better than they do on Wireless. Lots of software bugs I'm sure are to blame.

Second, here at home I use a Wi-FI connected thermostat. In the documentation, it is pointed out that the thermostat may not behave correctly if it does not have a Common Wire attached. Even though the unit will recharge it's battery and run off of the power supplied from the HVAC unit. If you don't connect a C Wire, the thermostat will still use Wi-Fi, but it will enter aggressive power saving modes to converse power. These aggressive power savings can cause the radio to only transmit periodically each second to maintain a session, but can cause the thermostat to respond to a ping in about 500ms. Additionally, the thermostat will POWER DOWN it's radio from time to time, especially as power runs low, and will connect to the network periodically to synchronize with a server on the Internet for weather data, temp data, and so on. WIth a C wire, the thermostat will keep the radio powered constantly and will not enter a power saving mode.

Third, the reason why I suggested a Static IP here, is in case the Generator happens to be doing something funny where it is releasing it's IP address due to a power saving setting, OR because the unit is having problems with IP address Conflicts, or in the case of the thermostat I use here at home, software bugs cause the thermostat to fail to renew it's IP address with DHCP. A Static IP can ensure no other device gets the IP that is otherwise being used by the generator, and overall makes troubleshooting a whole lot easier.

Just some food for thought.

EDIT: Glad to see the Static IP part was attempted. Good move. I'd keep it on Static/DHCP reservation for the sake of troubleshooting.

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viafax999
Community Leader
Community Leader

it would appear that possibley OnCue may be using port 502 for external access abd that you would need to forward that port to the generator bridge for remote access

See page 19 at this link

http://www.apelectric.com/v/vspfiles/pdf/t1486g9.pdf

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PCMacTechnician

I am having  avery similar issue on 2 Generator installs with 2 Fios Actionteks - the weird thing is , the company I work for installs these all week long, same generator, and plenty of fios customers. 

This issue - the only thing unique is that the fios customers have an Ethernet connection from their ONT to their Actiontec, and and we are not having this issue with clients connected via COAX. 

I have played with all of the port forwarding, I have been in contact with both verizon and our Kohler support rep.  Just today I tried IGMP proxy disable - and it was not helpful at all. 

Our specific sympton is that we can not add the generator to OnCue, during "Reading Initial Configuration" I get a device disconnected, and it kicks the generator off the network, it then takes about 40 seconds for the generator to reconnect to the fios router and then it starts over again.

Would be very grateful if anyone else finds a solution to this problem.

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jking519
Newbie

I too am having trouble with OnCue connectivity and I also have FIOS.  When I first installed OnCue, everything connected and appeared to be working fine (or so I thought).  After a few days, it stopped connecting and OnCue says the "device is not connected...".  Occasionally, I get lucky and it connects but about after 30 seconds, it drops the connection.  I have verified the Generator status display shows "Connected"  when I am able to connect and and then it shows "Disconnected".  I've tried multiple network cables and don't know what else to do. 

 

Does anyone have any suggestions?

 

Thanks,
Joe

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bdegnan
Newbie

I started this thread and am a bit relieved to see that others are having this issue and it is not just somthing that I have overlooked. 

Kohler is saying the Actiontec router is the issue and that at least one other FIOS user resolved the OnCue connectivity issue by replacing the Actiontec router with a NetGear 600 router.  To do this, I would need to place the NetGear router in front of the Actiontec, connect cat5 from the generator to the NetGear router and then connect the Actiontec router to the NetGear router.  I have seen some guidance on the internet regarding the specifics of how this is done.  I will post URLs to this information in the next day or so and report any progress that I am seeing.  Would like to know if anyone has tried this approach.

I will also ask Kohler for any specfics they can provide regarding OnCue customers who overcame this issue.  It is ridiculous to me that people have to struggle with this without much support and apparently need to reinvent the wheel over and over again.

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gs0b
Community Leader
Community Leader

Since you have FiOS TV, you have a coax connection to the ONT.  Verizon won't enable Ethernet for the WAN if you have TV service. The Actiontec router connects to the WAN over coax using MoCA.  It also creates a MoCA LAN for the set-top boxes.  It's difficult to replace the Actiontec router, as it really needs to be at the center of your network.

There is hardware out there that will bridge MoCA to Ethernet, however you'll be creating a setup that isn't supported by Verizon.  There are posts here and on other sites that describe this setup.  Note that Verizon won't support such a setup.

From the outside looking in, it looks like to me that Kohler assumes a completely open connection to the internet.  This is a bad assumption and I think this is their fault.  It may have to do with the back-end software they are running on their web site.  If so, it's unlikely to change until they are willing to spend (a lot) more money to fix it.

One last thought; have you tried setting the generator as a DMZ host?

Good Luck.

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bdegnan
Newbie

Yes, I tried DMZ.  it does not work, much to my surprise.  I thought it was supposed to force the device to be fully accessible over the internet.

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jking519
Newbie

bdegnan,

Can you tell me what model Generator you have an what is the OnCue firmware version?

I have the 20RESL DC2 running firmware 5.2.0 (the latest).  My 2 friends with Fios are running without any problems are running firmware 4.7.1.   Just wondering if these issues have anything to do with the firmware version.

Thanks.

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jmschnur
Newbie
Has this issue been resolved? If so how. I have 5.2 firmware with a Kohler, fios, and actiontect I. I am considering on cue.
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bdegnan
Newbie

Not resolved.  I gave up and am checking to see if a new version of Oncue might fix the issue.

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JoeyD1973
Newbie

I'm having all the same issues reported in the previous posts....The kohler dealer came on-site and had Verizon Fios tech support on the phone......A lot of finger pointing and ultimately swiched out my Verizon Actiontec router with a neighbors Verizon Router and bingo Oncue connected-  In the interim I had Verizon send me out one of the new routers (red and black Actiontec)-  I installed the new router and all worked flawlessly for 5 days and then bang...no connection.  I'm convinced it's a verizon issue.....  I ran a 300' ethernet cable from my generator to a neighbors comcast router.....funny, it connected without issue...

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bdegnan
Newbie

On a whim tonight, I started Oncue.  In 2 years, it has never worked for me.  It did tonight!  I have changed nothing with the router and have not upgraded OnCue (not even sure there is an Oncue upgrade).  The only thing that has remotely changed with my network is that I installed a couple of Samsung Smart TVs, which have internet connectivity.  Not sure if they somehow changed some setting in the router.  All I know is Oncue is working.  I keep restarting Oncue to see if I am dreaming.  I am not.  It is working and I am psyched!.  I just hope it keeps working.  My guess is that some FIOS firmware upgrade got downloaded and that made the difference but not sure.  This stuff is total black box to me.  There are so many variables, so who knows.

I have the Actiontec MI424WR-GEN3I router firmware version 40.21.10.3

Would be interested to learn if others now try again and have the same luck.

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tns2
Community Leader
Community Leader

@gs0b wrote:

Since you have FiOS TV, you have a coax connection to the ONT.  Verizon won't enable Ethernet for the WAN if you have TV service. The Actiontec router connects to the WAN over coax using MoCA.  It also creates a MoCA LAN for the set-top boxes.  It's difficult to replace the Actiontec router, as it really needs to be at the center of your network.

There is hardware out there that will bridge MoCA to Ethernet, however you'll be creating a setup that isn't supported by Verizon.  There are posts here and on other sites that describe this setup.  Note that Verizon won't support such a setup.

From the outside looking in, it looks like to me that Kohler assumes a completely open connection to the internet.  This is a bad assumption and I think this is their fault.  It may have to do with the back-end software they are running on their web site.  If so, it's unlikely to change until they are willing to spend (a lot) more money to fix it.

One last thought; have you tried setting the generator as a DMZ host?

Good Luck.


This is incorrect.  They will enable Ethernet connection.  In fact for the fastest two tiers, 150 and 300, They must.  Yes you still need a Verizon router in the configuration if you have FIOS TV.  With the basic one they give you, you end up with both MOCA (lan) and Ethernet enabled.  The TV's, and any other devices that support moca, still connect to the router over the coax.  The router then uses the wan connection over the Ethernet cable to the ONT. 
 

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gs0b
Community Leader
Community Leader

Thanks for the correction.  I know that Verizon prefers coax over Ethernet whenever possible; I didn't realize they finally admitted Ethernet can be used with the TV setup.  This makes sense, as the new speed tiers are faster than MoCA.

The bottom line is even with an Ethernet connection to the ONT, it is difficult to replace the Actiontec router as the center of the network and keep all FiOS TV functionality.  Another thread posted links that describe various options.  The one that removes the Actiontec as the gateway to the internet requires three total routers and is fairly complex to setup and administer.

http://forums.verizon.com/t5/FiOS-Internet/Planning-to-use-a-different-router-rather-than-ActionTec-...

From the descriptions about the Oncue issues, this appears to me to be a problem with the design of the connection between the Oncue server and the generator.  It appears not to be setup to handle any NAT that can get in the middle; which is a bad design for a consumer product.  In my opinion, it should work with through the Actiontec router.

Enjoy.

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Justin46
Legend

@gs0b wrote:

Thanks for the correction.  I know that Verizon prefers coax over Ethernet whenever possible; I didn't realize they finally admitted Ethernet can be used with the TV setup.  This makes sense, as the new speed tiers are faster than MoCA.

.......


Just a historical note: I had FiOS TV installed in Sept. 2005 and I have always had an ethernet connection from the ONT to the router, still do. Of course there is also a coax connection to the ONT for the TV. Originally the router used, a D-Link, did not have a coax connection at all, so there was an additional box, the Motorola NIM-100, that provided the coax-ethernet interface to support the Guide, VOD, etc.

But fore sure these days, Verizon prefers to use coax-only to the ONT for most installations, saves installation time and cost.

__________________________________
Justin
FiOS TV, 25/25 Internet, and Digital Voice user
QIP7232, QIP7100-P2, IMG 1.9.1
Keller, TX 76248 (VHO 1)

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jking519
Newbie

Thanks for all the info.  Let me share some other info that I have regarding my problem:

1) I have a lot of trouble just pinging the generator.  It will work for a while and then just stops.  I get Timeouts sometimes and other times I get  "Destination host unreachable".  I tried both Static and Dynamic IP and same results.

2) I tried bypassing the Verizon router by using a Switch to connect my laptop to generator.  This too had inconsistent results.  I got a lot of ping timeouts.

3) I know 2 other people with FIOS - 1 of them has never had any trouble at all.  The other could not even get OnCue to connect to the Generator.  He replaced that FIOS router and his trouble appears to have gone away (so far).  I know 5 other people that do not have FIOS and have no problems.

4)  I purchesd then  new version of the ActionTec Router- REV I.  I'm having the same trouble.

5) I tried forwarding all applicable ports - no difference.  I have the 20RESL DC2 model. This has different instructions than what was posted a few posts ago.  There is supposed to be no configuration, port-fowarding, etc required. The doc can be found here if anyone is interested.

It really seems like it is an issue with the Generator, but I just don't know what I can do.

Thanks.

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