EC-Net 4 and EC-BOS-8 Frequently Asked

EC-Net 4 and EC-BOS-8 Frequently Asked
EC-Net™ 4 and EC-BOS-8
Frequently Asked Questions
EC-Net 4
Q: Is the newer visualization/Web feature essentially the same, but just based on HTML5?
A: Common end users views will now be available in HTML/HTML5. These views include Charting,
Scheduler, Alarm Console, Database Manager, User Manager, Hierarchy Navigation, Search and
Property Sheet.
Q: Is the JAVA applet completely gone?
A: No, most engineering views are still rendered in JAVA applet technology. However, most end user
views have been converted to HTML5. The applet will still be available to anyone who chooses to use
it, though using it is not recommended.
Q: What about BajaScript?
A: BajaScript v1.0 applications will need to be re-factored to be compatible with EC-Net 4, which utilizes
a more modular and efficient BajaScript v2.0.
Q: Is it true that BajaScript v2.0 makes it more difficult to create custom UIs?
A: No, that is not true. BS2.0 is more modular, efficient and flexible, making it easier than ever to create
custom UI in Niagara by leveraging open Web technologies (HTML5, JSON, JavaScript, CSS3, etc).
Q: Does EC-Net 4 support SVG (vector graphics)?
A: Yes, in fact there is a new SVG graphics library included. You will have the ability to zoom in and out
without any degradation of the image quality, which means that graphics will display equally well on
small devices such as phones as they do on large screen monitors.
Q: How is security being improved with EC-Net 4?
A: Here are some examples of the security enhancements that have been made to EC-Net 4:
Data in motion and sensitive data at rest are encrypted (foxs/https/platformtls)
Supports features such as strong hashed passwords, TLSv1 for secure communications and
certificate management tools for authentication
EC-Net 4 can be integrated with existing enterprise identity and access management systems,
such as LDAP and Kerberos
Employs a Role-Based Access Control (RBAC) for simplified configuration of user access and
permission controls
All user actions, along with any security issues, are recorded in an audit log for increased
Q: How can charts be output directly from the station?
A: There is an Export feature that will allow charts to be saved as PDF files.
Q: Will an EC-Net 4 license work with EC-Net
Net Pro 3.7 for example?
A: EC-Net 4 and EC-Net
Pro, the same way a 3.8 license worked for EC-
have different licenses, although both can be present on the same PC.
Q: What about the current "office demo" license that needs to be renewed yearly? Will that be
A: Yes, demo licenses for EC-Net 4 Supervisor and EC-BOS-8 will be available. In fact, EC-Net 4
versions of all current EC-Net Supervisor, EC-BOS-3 , EC-BOS-6 and EC-BOS-7 demo licenses
are already available at no extra cost.
Q: Is maintenance mandatory? Will this be a mandatory recurring cost for customers?
A: A Software Maintenance Agreement (SMA) must be purchased alongside an initial purchase of ECNet 4 Supervisor or EC-BOS-8. A minimum 18-month SMA must be purchased or an optional 3- or 5year SMA can be purchased instead. You can choose whether or not you want to extend or renew the
SMA by purchasing a 1-, 3- or 5-year SMA before or after the initial maintenance period expires.
Q: When does this 18 months of the SMA start?
A: The SMA period begins when the license for the product is created, i.e. just after it is ordered.
Q: If a 3-year SMA is purchased, does that make the SMA period 4 years (1 year included + 3
A: The SMA 3-year option that is available at initial purchase is for a period of 3 years.
Q: Where can I find the EC-Net 4 technical documentation?
A: EC-Net 4 technical documentation is accessible from several places:
1. Complete EC-Net 4 technical documentation is included in the EC-Net 4 Installation Directory
under the "docs" folder with every "Released" image of EC-Net 4.
2. Also, technical documentation is available in the EC-Net 4 Pro Help system, as HTML. Select
"Help" from the EC-Net 4 Pro main menu.
3. Finally, new and updated technical documents for EC-Net 4 (not complete legacy set of
documents) are located on SmartSource here:
Development Roadmap
Q: What if I need a driver for a proprietary/legacy system within an EC-Net 4 station?
A: You will need an EC-Net 4 version of that driver even if an EC-Net version already exists. Many of
these drivers have already been re-developed for EC-Net 4 and will be available from Distech Controls.
Q: Have you entertained UUKL (UL864)?
A: Distech Controls offers a UUKL UL864 certified EC-BOS-6 . If you have a project that requires an
EC-Net 4 based UUKL UL864 certified system, please contact your Distech Controls Regional Sales
Manager or
Q: Will all EC-Net
EC-Net 4?
based products currently offered by Distech Controls be re-developed for
A: Yes, EC-Net 4 versions of almost all EC-Net based products are being developed including
ENVYSION, EnerVue and, Security. We encourage you to keep an eye out for related release
communications from Distech Controls Marketing. Release dates may vary from product to product.
Q: In terms of compatibility, what is supported versus what is not?
A: Below is a summary of the compatibility between EC-Net
and EC-Net 4 systems:
Communication Compatibility Between EC-NetAX and EC-Net 4
EC-Net 4 Platform
EC-NetAX Pro
EC-Net 4 Station
EC-Net 4 Station
EC-NetAX Platform
EC-NetAX Station
EC-Net 4 Pro
Points, schedules, and
histories can be manually
added to EC-Net 4.
EC-Net 4 Pro provides
support necessary for
transitioning from EC-NetAX to
EC-Net 4, as well as most
ongoing EC-NetAX platform
EC-NetAX Station
EC-NetAX Supervisor
Some restrictions.
EC-Net 4 Station
Minimum required versions for EC-Net
communications compatibility with EC-Net 4: 3.6U4+, 3.7U1+,
Q: How is Distech Controls assisting customers with upgrading the EC-Net
EC-Net 4?
platform to
3.8 station to
A: Distech Controls is providing an EC-Net 4 Migration Tool that will convert an EC-Net
an EC-Net 4 station.
Q: Do you need to upgrade to 3.8 first, in order to migrate stations to EC-Net 4?
A: Yes, the Migration Tool needs a 3.8 station as input.
Q: Will program objects migrate to EC-Net 4 without some modification?
A: Possibly. The Migration Tool will identify all program objects in a station and attempts to compile
them. Even if they compile successfully, it is highly recommended that you verify the functionality, as
the behavior of the Niagara APIs may have changed.
Demo Site
Q: Is there a live EC-Net 4 demo we can access?
A: The EC-Net 4 demo site is currently being developed.
Q: Does EC-Net 4’s improved "designed for mobile" interface mean that no Niagara Mobile App
services are necessary?
A: Niagara Mobile Apps are not necessary for EC-Net 4, just as they were not necessary for 3.7 or 3.8.
However, there are Niagara Mobile Apps available for some Niagara-based software that do enhance
the mobile experience.
EC-Net 4 Supervisor
Q: Is it possible to run EC-Net 4 and EC-Net
Supervisor on the same PC?
A: Both versions can be installed on the same PC, and both can run, but not at the same time. So, if
you are using them as engineering tools, they both can be installed and used when needed. If you are
trying to run them both at the same time on the same server, it will not work, as there can only be one
Niagara daemon running (either the EC-Net or the EC-Net 4 daemon).
Q: Can EC-Net 4 Supervisor communicate with EC-Net
for the existing customer?
or EC-Net R2? Is there a migration path
A: EC-Net 4 Supervisor can communicate through Fox to EC-Net stations. EC-Net R2 stations can be
connected through oBIX the same way EC-Net Supervisors are connected to EC-Net R2 stations.
Existing customers can use the EC-Net 4 Migration Tool to convert EC-Net 3.8 stations over to ECNet 4.
Q: If sites have a mix of EC-Net
and EC-Net 4, what version must the Web Supervisor run?
A: As with EC-Net , the Web Supervisor should always be at the highest version in the system
architecture. This means that if there are any EC-Net 4 instances in the system, the Web Supervisors
should be based on EC-Net 4.
Q: Do you need an EC-Net 4 Supervisor to have a mix of EC-Net
and EC-Net 4?
A: If there is a Supervisor in the system, it would need to be EC-Net 4.
Q: Are any drivers included with EC-Net 4 Supervisor?
A: Yes. The following standard open protocol drivers are included: BACnet IP (Client/Server), BACnet
Operator Workstation (OWS), BACnet Advanced Workstation (AWS), LonWorks IP, Modbus TCP,
Modbus TCP Slave, SNMP, KNX & EIB, oBIX.
EC-BOS Hardware
Q: When migrating from EC-Net
EC-BOS hardware first?
to EC-Net 4, should you start by upgrading the existing
A: No, you should upgrade the Supervisor to EC-Net 4 first.
Q: Which EC-BOS
models can be updated to EC-Net 4?
A: The EC-BOS-3 , EC-BOS-6 , and EC-BOS-7 models, as well as the EC-BOS-603
EC-BOS-645 replacement boards can be upgraded to EC-Net 4.
Q: Can I have a mixed EC-Net /EC-Net 4 job?
A: Yes, however the Supervisor needs to be running the highest version of EC-Net .
Q: What’s the roadmap for phasing out the EC-BOS
A: The EC-BOS-3 , EC-BOS-6 , and EC-BOS-7 models, as well as the EC-BOS-603 and
EC-BOS-645 replacement boards are currently still available for purchase and will remain so even
after the release of the EC-BOS-8. Those models will eventually be sold as legacy products, mainly as
replacement units.
Q: Will my EC-BOS-3 , EC-BOS-6 , or EC-BOS-7
EC-Net 4?
have device/point limits if upgraded to
A: No, they will not have device/point limits if upgraded to EC-Net 4.
Q: How do I transition my EC-BOS-3 , EC-BOS-6 and EC-BOS-7
buy it when you’re rolling out a new software maintenance policy?
to EC-Net 4? How do you
A: Before and after the EC-Net 4 release, you will need to add a maintenance part to existing EC-Net
EC-BOS units to upgrade licenses to EC-Net 4.
Q: Are you able to revert back to EC-Net
from EC-Net 4?
A: The conversion .dist file will clean the EC-BOS and convert it back to the EC-Net
licensing server will host both EC-Net and EC-Net 4 licenses.
system. The
Q: Will all features be available for different versions (3.8 versus 4.0)?
A: Some features may have a min/max. Features not applicable to a version will have a strike-through
when you view the license on the licensing server.
Q: Which EC-Net
controllers are compatible with EC-Net 4?
A: Any EC-BOS that runs the Oracle HotSpot JVM will be compatible with EC-Net 4, including the
EC-BOS-3 , EC-BOS-6 , EC-BOS-603/645 and EC-BOS-7 .
Q: Can I still order EC-Net
A: Yes, they will ship out as licensed for 3.8, and you would need to purchase a software maintenance
agreement (SMA) for EC-Net 4.
Q: Can I buy more than 1-year SMA at a time?
A: Yes, an SMA can be purchased for 1, 3 or 5 year periods.
Q: How will multiple quantities of SMAs appear on a license?
A: Dates will run consecutively (i.e.: buy qty 2 = 2 yrs). Date will show in license header details and in
license view.
Q: What if I choose not to renew my EC-Net 4 SMA?
A: You would not have access to any new versions, update builds or patches for EC-Net 4. Gap
charges will apply if you choose to renew once the SMA has expired.
Q: Is maintenance the same as it is today (when upgrading versions)? What is included?
A: SMAs include access to all new EC-Net 4 versions, update builds and patches.
Q: I want to get an update build, but my SMA is expired, so what do I do?
A: You will need to purchase an SMA again, but gap charges will apply.
Q: Are SMAs required on Supervisors?
A: Yes, SMAs are required.
Q: Which connections are standard on the EC-BOS-8?
A: The EC-BOS-8 comes standard with the following connections: 24VAC/DC Power Supply, (2)
isolated RS-485, Wi-Fi, 1 type A USB (Backup & Restore), 1 micro USB (Serial Shell), and (2)10/100
Ethernet Ports.
Q: By upgrading to the EC-BOS-8, can we move away from JAVA?
A: While EC-Net 4 still utilizes JAVA technology, you no longer have to use JAVA as a Web
visualization technology. EC-Net 4 offers users the opportunity to choose open technologies such as
HTML 5 when building/viewing information over the Web.
Q: Are any drivers included with the EC-BOS-8?
A: Yes. The following standard open protocol drivers are included: BACnet IP (Client/Server), BACnet
MS/TP, LonWorks over twisted pair, LonWorks IP, M-Bus, Modbus RTU, Modbus RTU Slave,
Modbus TCP, Modbus TCP Slave, SNMP.
Q: Does the EC-BOS-8 have RS 232?
A: RS 232 is available through an expansion module. The base EC-BOS-8 does not have an RS-232
connection. If accessing serial shell, that can now be done through the micro-USB port on the
Q: Does every EC-BOS-8 have Wi-Fi capability?
A: Yes, all EC-BOS-8 controllers come with Wi-Fi capability.
802.11a,b,g, and n networks are supported. Or, the EC-BOS-8 can be ordered from Distech Controls
with Wi-Fi permanently disabled, if required.
Q: Is there an antenna option to get the wireless signals outside of a metal enclosure?
A: The antenna uses a standard SMA connector. An extension can be used to route the antenna and
install outside of the enclosure.
Q: Can the EC-BOS-8 be configured to automatically save the history trending data to the
Supervisor computer?
A: Yes.
Q: Will existing NDIO modules work with the EC-BOS-8, such as with an adapter cable?
A: No.
Q: What Agency certifications does the EC-BOS-8 meet?
A: The EC-BOS-8 meets UL, CE, FCC, and numerous other standards. Please refer to the EC-BOS-8
datasheet when posted on Distech Controls’ SmartSource.
Q: What is the default IP address for all EC-BOS-8 units?
Q: Will an EC-BOS-8 route IP data between Ethernet ports?
A: No.
SD Card
Q: What is the onboard EC-BOS-8 storage capacity of the SD card?
A: Each EC-BOS-8 comes with a 4GB microSD card. User space is set at 2GB.
Q: Are you able to upgrade to a larger SD card for more space?
A: EC-BOS-8 microSD cards will need to be purchased through Distech Controls. This ensures that the
EC-BOS-8 performs as expected and has a long life. Distech Controls reserves the right to change the
card capacity in the future.
Q: What happens if the microSD needs to be replaced?
A: Distech Controls recommends that you utilize a Supervisor or new EC-BOS-8 USB Back-Up &
Restore to back up your EC-BOS periodically. Similar to an EC-Net EC-BOS today, licenses can be
transferred over to new hosts and a backup .dist can be loaded. Contact your Distech Controls
Regional Sales Manager or for replacement SD cards.
Q: Can an SD card Host ID be generated on an engineering laptop and then transferred to the
A: No.
Q: Can the license, station and drivers be transferred from one EC-BOS-8 to another via the
microSD card?
A: Yes. The new EC-BOS-8 will need the system password from the old EC-BOS-8.
Q: What input power does the EC-BOS-8 need?
A: The EC-BOS-8 accepts 24VAC/DC without additional modules. Distech Controls offers a standard
line voltage adapter for the EC-BOS-8.
Q: Can I use a USB flash drive with my EC-BOS-8?
A: Yes. After inserting a USB flash drive, you can do a complete station backup or restore. See
EC-BOS-8 documentation for additional details.
Q: Using the USB flash connection, would we be able to export history to an external drive in
real time?
A: The USB connector is defined for temporary use and is not meant to support permanently installed
Q: How is the EC-BOS-8 licensed?
A: All EC-BOS-8 controllers come licensed by devices and points. After determining how many devices
will be integrated into the EC-BOS-8, select the license with the appropriate amount of capacity. For
example, if you are integrating 20 BACnet, 10 LON and 10 Modbus devices, the NC-8050 device core
could be selected to support up to 50 devices.
Q: How will using the EC-BOS-8 in EC-Net
be licensed — by Devices or Resources?
A: The EC-BOS-8 will initially be available with EC-Net 4.1. We are looking to release a 3.8U build in
the future that will offer EC-BOS-8 support. Similar to EC-Net 4, the EC-BOS-8 will be licensed by
devices and points.
Q: With the Device/Point licensing, are they both hard limits? For example, 8010 can support 10
devices or 500 points. Is there flexibility to exceed one of those limits? For example, 12 devices
with 10 points each?
A: The EC-BOS-8 device/point license applies to which limit you reach first. In the example above, 12
devices exceed the 10-device limit, even though only 120 points were used. The device/point license
are hard limits, however upgrade packs will be available to upgrade the license.
Q: Will my EC-BOS-3 , EC-BOS-6 , or EC-BOS-7
EC-Net 4?
have device/point limits if upgraded to
A: No.
Q: On licensing, will it still be possible to upgrade an existing license to a license with more
capacity? For example, if a project is expanded during construction.
A: Yes, upgrade device/point packs are available.
Q: Will the points being used by the EC-BOS-8 be viewable?
A: Yes. Station summaries can be viewed from the resource manager.
Q: What are the device and point packs being offered?
A: The EC-BOS-8 is available with 5, 10, 25, 100 and 200 device base licenses. Additional device/point
upgrades can be added to any base license. They are available in 10, 25 and 50 device upgrade packs.
Upgrade Packs
Q: Is there a limit to how many Device upgrade packs I can add to an EC-BOS-8?
A: While there isn’t a hard limit on the number of upgrade packs that can be added, users should
monitor CPU utilization, heap usage and integration bus limits when adding device upgrades.
Q: If we have an 8200, and we have 200 controllers connected, can we add one additional
controller without another EC-BOS? Or are we absolutely locked to controller number?
A: Upgrade packs are available to enable more than 200 devices.
Q: When does software maintenance start on the EC-BOS-8?
A: Software maintenance starts when the EC-BOS software license is purchased.
Q: Are Maintenance and Warranty the same thing?
A: No. Software maintenance enables access to the latest Niagara build with new features and software
updates. Warranty covers the EC-BOS-8 from manufacturing defects.
Q: Does the EC-BOS-8 automatically include a software maintenance agreement at the time of
A: Not exactly. Purchase of a minimum 18 months initial maintenance is mandatory, but you can opt for
a 3 or 5-year SMA instead.
Q: Can I buy more than 1-year maintenance at a time?
A: Yes. SMAs can be purchased for 1, 3 or 5 year periods.
Q: How will multiple quantities of SMAs appear on a license?
A: Dates will run consecutively (i.e. buy qty 2 = 2 yrs). Date will show in license header details and in
license view.
Q: What if I choose not to renew my EC-Net 4 maintenance?
A: If the SMA has expired on the EC-BOS, it will continue to run the station. However, the EC-BOS will
not have access to any new versions, update builds or patches for EC-Net 4. Gap charges will apply if
you choose to renew once the SMA has expired.
Option Modules
Q: How many accessory cards, or expansion modules, can we add?
A: Up to 4 in various combinations. Please refer to the EC-BOS-8 datasheet when posted on Distech
Controls’ SmartSource.
Q: Will we have the ability to place the modular expansion cards on a bus? Or do they have to
"snap" together?
A: Option modules will need to be directly connected to the EC-BOS-8.
Q: Which add-on modules will be available at launch?
A: The 2X-485, LON and RS-232 modules will be available at launch.
Q: How many LON Option Module cards can be attached to the EC-BOS-8?
A: Up to 4 can be attached.
Q: Do I need to be EC-Net 4 certified before I purchase EC-Net 4?
A: Yes, certification is required before purchase.
Q: Which instructor-led classes do you offer?
A: We offer several classes for systems integrators and one for end users as well. For a listing of all
training classes, please refer to
Q: Do you offer eLearning or Web-based training?
A: With the launch of EC-Net 4, we will begin offering the EC-Net 4 Crossover training for AX-certified
system integrators as an eLearning course.
This offering will allow existing EC-Net -certified professionals to certify on Niagara 4.
Q: When will you offer training for EC-Net 4?
A: With the launch of EC-Net 4, we will be offering certification training to existing EC-Net
professionals via the Niagara 4 Crossover eLearning in May 2016. New users will be able to obtain
EC-Net 4 certification via the EC-Net 4 TCP class starting in October 2016.
Q: Do you offer classes for EC-Net R2?
A: We no longer offer EC-Net R2 classes.
Q: Where do you offer classes?
A: We offer classes at several locations globally. For a listing of all training classes and schedules,
please refer to
Q: Do you offer classes onsite at a customer location?
A: Yes. Please contact your Distech Controls Regional Sales Manager or
to make a request.
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