Now that OVMS units of are shipping, and getting installed, I've been asked to create a thread for people to discuss installation issues (physical, as well as SIM/network related).
This is mostly going to be links to get you started. Useful to put them all in one place.
- The web site for OVMS is www.openvehicles.com/.
- The features/overview page for the Tesla Roadster v1.2 release is here.
- A PDF user guide covering car module installation is available here.
- The hardware module you need is this one (don't forget antenna and cable).
- The Apple iOS App is available here (iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad) - you will need iOS v5.0 or later.
- The Android App is available here.
- Tesla Motors Club are providing the server for users of this project (much appreciated). That server is tmc.openvehicles.com (22.214.171.124), and you should set that in both the car module and the Apps.
- A PICKIT 2 compatible programmer is required for updating firmware, or find someone from the list below willing to assist.
- Tom Saxton's OVMS Firmware Update Guide.
The module that fits in the car looks like this, and it comes with an external antenna:
Once you've got the module, you need to install it in the car. There are many different ways to do this, and it is really up to you. Our recommended method is documented in the above user guide. You would put the module in the footwell of the passenger compartment, just next to the DIAG connector that the car has there. Then, you would route the antenna through the space under the fuse box and stick it to the windscreen/windshield somewhere unobtrusive. It is a 10-to-15 minute job and you will need a screwdriver and short (12"/30cm) guide wire.
The module itself requires a GSM SIM card for the wireless network connection. You can set this up either by SMS message (easiest, but you need an SMS plan on the SIM card, at least initially), or by programming the settings directly into the module (using a PIC programmer called a PICKIT - versions 2 and 3 are available and either should work fine). Should you ever need to update the firmware in the module, you will either need a PICKIT or send it in to a developer to do it for you.
Day-to-day, you can just use a simple SMS plan to get charge-interruption alerts, and to be able to enquire on battery/charging status and GPS location.
Or, you can use a GPRS data plan and smartphone apps (both Android and Apple iOS are currently supported, including iPads). If you choose GPRS (and smartphone apps), you don't need any SMS plan other than for initial setup.
- Which server?
You should use 126.96.36.199 in the car and tmc.openvehicles.com in the Apps. In particular, the iPhone App defaults to www.openvehicles.com and if you have the car talking to one server and the app talking to a different one, things are not going to work. On the iPhone you configure this in Settings / Open Vehicles.
- iPhone App crashes when starting a charge
The default is not to permit the module to write to the CAN bus, to limit the chance of impact on the car, and the iPhone App handles this badly. We'll fix it in the next version. If you need this feature, you need to enable it. Using the Control / Features menu option in the App, set feature #15 to 1, and then reboot the car module. You should then be able to control the charge, as well as do things like lock/unlock the car.
The following developers have offered assistance (primarily with firmware update) in their regions:
- Germany: nikwest - Support contact for Germany.
- Hong Kong: foxium - Installation and firmware support.
- Hong Kong: markwj - Installation and firmware support.
- Netherlands: fuzzylogic - Hardware and firmware support.
- Switzerland: pi.uhl - Installation and firmware support.
- USA: PV-EV - I would be willing to reflash any US user's OVMS if that is necessary in the future for firmware updates. The owner would need to send the unit to me along with return postage for US Priority mail.
- USA:S-2000 Roadster - Firmware support and general car module issues (Seattle area in particular).
- USA:smorgasbord - Willing to help out owners in SF Bay area
- USA:adelman - Santa Cruz, California - Installation and firmware support
- USA:Timothy - Santa Barbara, California - Willing to help out owners in Santa Barbara area with updates
(anyone else willing to help out fellow owners, please let me know by PM/email, and I'll add you to the list)
- Canada: Rogers "PAY AS YOU GO" Prepaid SIM
APN "internet.com", username "wapuser1", password "wap".
- Guam: Docomo Pacific GO! PREPAID "UNLIMITED Local SMS"
APN "gcpre "(no username/password, so use "-" for both)
Cost: Initial: $14.95 for SIM and $5 prepaid card. Recurring: $0.50/day + $0.001/KB (so approx $16-17/month for typical 1-2MB/month OVMS usage)
- Hong Kong: Three HK Prepaid SIM
HK$98 for the SIM and package. Charges are HK$18/month for 50MB of data plus unlimited ThreeHK SMS messages. APN is imobile.three.com.hk and username/password can be left blank.
- USA: AT&T GoPhone SIM
Buy SIM card, put US$100 on it to guarantee 12 months, then a 200SMS/month plan and pay-as-you-go data. APN is WAP.CINGULAR and username/password can be left blank.
- USA: "ATT Telemetry SIM for business"
Charges are US$8.99/month for unlimited data (no SMS). APN is ISP.cingular (user/password blank).
- Europe: Maxitel, Datamobile, Swisscom have all been recommended.
- Global: GeoSIM - this is the recommended SIM for anyone that doesn't have an obvious local solution, or just wants a data-only SIM with hassle-free plan.
If you can add anything specific, please let us know.
- Do I need a paypal account to order?
Maybe. Depends on your credit card and what paypal require. You can try without - when you get to checkout, just try to enter the credit card details without creating an account. FastTech ($99.00 OVMS Car Module v2 at FastTech - Worldwide Free Shipping) is handling the logistics for us, for hardware distribution.
- Do I need an account on Open Vehicle Systems
Yes. This will be used to manage your cars on the OVMS servers for smartphone Apps. Even if you are doing a group buy, we recommend each end-user get their own Open Vehicle Systems account - they are free and easy to setup.
- Do I need a SMS plan if I want to use a smartphone app?
You will need SMS initially to setup the module. You can put in a temporary sim to do this, or get a SMS plan initially and cancel it later. Alternatively, you can use a PICKIT to directly program the settings in to the module.
- How much data will this use for GPRS?
Very little. With the latest firmware, we estimate between 300KB and 1MB a month for normal use.
- I'm concerned about the installation, how easy is it?
The only tricky bit is the antenna. If you are concerned, we suggest you try to get together with other owners in your area and do a joint installation. It really is not too difficult, and only requires routing the antenna cable through the area under the fuse box. You don't need to take the fuse box out, splice any wires, or anything nasty like that.
- What SIM plan is best for me, in country X?
Please look further down in this forum post. We encourage users to feedback what plans they are using, how much they cost, GPRS APN settings, and any other hints/tips they have.
- How will the module alert me?
The car module can alert you to charge interruptions or low battery SOC either by SMS or GPRS data Push notification (or both).
Please note that this is a non-profit, charitable project, with free open-source software and community support. We think the price (US$99) is incredible, and only just covers the cost of the hardware. If you agree you are getting a great deal then please contribute the difference to your favorite charity.