Remote power controls for the Hut

Some time ago I got a Web Power Switch 4 for the hut to remote control power for the scope, cameras, and PC and future stuff like roof control and a light to illuminate a webcam.  I believe this is now replaced by the Web Power Switch 5, but they seem to be pretty similar.  It’s connected to the network via Ethernet and has 8 outlets than can be powered on or off remotely using a web interface. Also, there are 2 “always on” outlets.

Web Power Switch 4

The gadget works fine with Macs, but there doesn’t seem to be any documentation at digital-loggers.com for Mac setup.  So here’s a stab at that.

For your Mac to communicate with your Web Power Switch (WPS), you need to be on the same subnet.  First, you need to find your your IP address.  From the Apple menu, open System Preferences.  Select the Network pane.

Network Pane

In this case, the IP address is 192.168.0.34. So 192.168.0 is your subnet.  This subnet should work happily with the power switch as is.  The example below assumes your network uses a different subnet.

Connect the web switch to your network, and try the default admin address, http://192.168.0.100 in your browser.  If it loads, you’ll see a user name and password field, and you’re good to go.  But chances are you have a different network setup, and the page will fail to load.

To get the switch and the Mac to talk, you need to connect the Mac to the switch with an ethernet cable (does not need to be a cross-over cable), change the Mac’s network settings to the WPS’s subnet so they can communicate.  Then, in the switch’s admin page, you can modify the switch’s settings to match your network.  When that’s accomplished, disconnect the cable between the mac and WPS.  Re-connect the WPS to your network, and reconnect the Mac to your network.  Restore the Mac’s original network settings.  Now you should be able to open the WPS admin page using the new settings.

Here’s more detail.
Collect your current network settings from the Mac System Preferences – Network panel.

If you are currently using Wifi, you can just turn off Wifi off, and select the Ethernet settings.  You are going to note your current settings so you can restore them to get back on your network.

jj mbp network settings

Select the advanced button.
Note your current settings:
IPv4 Address  192.168.1.146
Subnet  mask 255.255.255.0
Router  192.168.1.1

Connect an ethernet cable between your Web Power Switch and  your Mac.  With a modern Mac, it doesn’t need to be a crossover cable.

Turn your wifi off, if on,  from the Network settings or from the menu icon.
On your Ethernet settings TCP/IP tab:
Select “Configure iPv4 Manually”
Set IPv4 address to an address on your Web Power Switch subnet eg, 192.168.0.10
Subnet:  255.255.255.0
Router: blank is ok
Set Configure iPv6  to link-local only
Click OK
Click Apply

Open a browser and connect to to the Web Switch admin at 192.168.0.100.  Login with the default user name and password.
Click the Setup link on the left.
Change your password;  it’s recommended, if only to eliminate the annoying beep on startup.  You also may not want strangers to turn your stuff off.
Change network settings to an address on your subnet, for example
192.168.1.100
Subnet 255.255.255.0
router  192.168.1.1
WPS settings after change
You decide if you want the “Same subnet access only” box checked, depending on your needs.
Click Submit, this will update your settings and disconnect you.

Now back in Mac System Prefs network settings, restore your network settings to their original state and click OK and Apply.
Turn on Wifi, if that’s your normal network.
Close and reopen your browser, then test your settings on an external website, then test the Web Power Switch admin page, now at http://192.168.1.100.