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Thread: UPS (XP - SR2)

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    UPS (XP - SR2)

    I recently had to re-install my system. One of the things I've been having difficulty setting up is my APC UPS.

    If I'm remembering correctly, there was a setting in the Control Panel under the Power Options for how to use the Windows UPS setting. Perhaps I'm remembering this wrong, though, because I can't find anything there. Not on the tabs, or in the options under any tabs.

    I went to another Control Panel choice -- Administrative Tools/Services, and highlighted Uninterrupted Power Supply Service and then clicked to "start" the service.

    I got the following message --

    "Could not start the Uninterrupted Power Supply Service on the local
    computer.

    "Error 2481: The UPSService is not configured correctly."


    I have no idea what this means or how to configure it correctly, but perhaps that could in part explain why there was no Windows option for UPS.

    Two other things I could mention -- my UPS is not listed under Device Manager/Hardware. I don't know if it should or not, but I just mention it. Also, I haven't yet re-installed the APC "PowerChute" software -- because I vaguely recall a conflict the last time I installed it, which is why I was using the default Windows settings previously.

    If worse comes to worse, I know I can install this software that came with the UPS. But all other things being equal, I'd at least like to figure out how to get the Windows UPS setting up and running again.

    If any of this makes sense, I appreciate the time in advance...


    Bob

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    Plutonium Lounger Leif's Avatar
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    Re: UPS (XP - SR2)

    You should find some help under Start > Help and Support and search on "UPS" - you should end up with instructions such as:
    <hr>To configure a simple-signaling Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) device
    You must be logged on as an administrator or a member of the Administrators group in order to complete this procedure. If your computer is connected to a network, network policy settings might also prevent you from completing this procedure.

    Open Power Options in Control Panel.
    On the UPS tab, click Select.
    In the UPS Selection dialog box, under Select manufacturer, select Generic.
    In Select model, select Custom.
    In On port, select the COM port where the UPS device is connected, and then click Next.
    In the UPS Interface Configuration On dialog box, set the UPS signal polarities as appropriate for:
    Power Fail/On Battery
    Low Battery
    UPS Shutdown
    Caution

    Before changing these settings, see the documentation that came with your UPS device.
    Click Finish.

    Notes
    To open Power Options, click Start, point to Settings, click Control Panel, and then double-click Power Options.
    Using Power Options in Control Panel, you can adjust any power management option that your computer's unique hardware configuration supports. Because these options may vary widely from computer to computer, the options described may differ from what you see. Power Options automatically detects what is available on your computer and shows you only the options that you can control.<hr>

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    Re: UPS (XP - SR2)

    Dear Leif,

    Thanks very much for your response.

    Unfortunately, the problem precludes your suggestion -- when I go to the Control Panel/ Power Options area, there *is no* UPS tab.

    When I install the manufacturer software, then the UPS tab does appear -- however, when I select the setting for either APC or "generic," my computer senses a need to shutdown, as if there's no power, and does so. (This was a problem previously to my sytem re-install and SP-2 upgrade, which is why I had been using the default Windows UPS setting. And it had been working fine.)

    So, I changed the setting back to None. However, that blanks and grays out the Status. And it displays a message that the UPS Service is not active.

    I've double-checked my UPS cable connection, and a balloon pops up to say the battery backup is connected to my PC and working normally. Under any configuration I try, however -- with the manufacturer software installed, or uninstalled or whatever, when I unplug my UPS from the wall it immediately shuts down.

    Everything was running fine before my system re-install and loading of SP-2. I have no idea if either of those are affecting anything, or if I'm simply doing something very wrong that's easily overlooked.

    The UPS is fairly new; from this March. I've written a note to the manufacturer, because that might be the only option. But regardless, thanks again, and thanks to all here.


    Bob

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    Re: UPS (XP - SR2)

    My UPS came with software, did yours, and did you install it?

    Now running HP Pavilion a6528p, with Win7 64 Bit OS.

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    Re: UPS (XP - SR2)

    Not sure which APC model you have but since you state that you have the APC PowerChute software I might suspect that your connection is via the USB port.

    I have the APC Back-UPS XS series model BX1000 and it uses a USB 2.0 port. The PowerChute software along with the connected USB port provides all the needed support. I believe the Power Panel menus as suggested by Leif are meant for serial port connected UPS devices. In my environment, the Power Panel menu gives the impression that my UPS is not connected. But with the USB connection and PowerChute I can run self-tests that indicate all is well.

    The current version of APC PowerChute Personal Edition software is v1.5.0 and can be downloaded from here.

    Cheers, Bob
    Regards,
    Bob

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    Re: UPS (XP - SR2)

    Thanks very much for your time and advice. Also, I've sent an inquiry to APC and have started some exchange of email there, but thus far (in the early stages) it's only covered the basics, which I've already tested.

    And I took your suggestion and downloaded the version 1.5 of PowerChute and installed it. (I'd had version 1.3)


    > Not sure which APC model you have but since you state that you have the APC PowerChute software
    > I might suspect that your connection is via the USB port.

    It's the Back UPS ES 500. And yes, it's connected via the USB port.


    > In my environment, the Power Panel menu gives the impression that my UPS is not connected.
    > But with the USB connection and PowerChute I can run self-tests that indicate all is well.

    Unfortunately, even with PowerChute 1.5, the problems are the same as before.

    First, though, a very basic question -- when I don't have my PowerChute software installed, and I go to Control Panel/Power -- there is no UPS tab. Should the UPS tab be there at this point?? I seem to recall a while back (when I bought the APC UPS) that there was, but that could just be a bad memory.

    When I install PowerChute onto my computer and reboot, then the UPS tab appears in Control Panel/Power. BUT...as soon as I configure it to either APC or Generic, my computer senses that it has to shutdown, and does. When it reboots, the same thing happens within a minute. So, I have to "un-configure" it from APC to "None."

    It gets more strange. The PowerChute software says that the battery backup is working normally. It says the battery is charged. It seems to say that all is well. BUT -- if I unplug the UPS from the wall...the computer instantly shuts down.

    Still.

    I do appreciate peoples' efforts here. Thank you. And again, as I said, I'm also in contact with APC.

    Everything was running fine two weeks ago with the same set-up. The only difference is that I had to re-install my system and programs, and I upgraded to SP-2. I don't know if any of that has any impact, but I pass it along for information's sake.

    I have this nagging feeling that I'm overlooking or not doing something so basic, but for the life of me I can't figure out what it is. This should be a no-brainer, as far I can tell...

    But thanks, regardless.


    Bob

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    Re: UPS (XP - SR2)

    Bob,

    The UPS tab will not appear unless you have the appropriate software installed. In this case, PowerChute. You MUST have PowerChute installed in order for the battery backup unit to be effective. Once the PowerChute software is installed, it will communicate directly through the USB port on your computer to your ES 500. In my opinion there is no need to go into the UPS tab and make any changes because that configuration only deals with COM ports. PowerChute and your USB port perform all the required tasks.

    You stated... "It gets more strange. The PowerChute software says that the battery backup is working normally. It says the battery is charged. It seems to say that all is well. BUT -- if I unplug the UPS from the wall...the computer instantly shuts down.. The UPS is like a power bar in that household current passes through the UPS and then directly to your computer. Pulling the plug on the UPS with remove all power from your computer and other components that are attached to the UPS.

    Cheers, Bob
    Regards,
    Bob

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    Re: UPS (XP - SR2)

    >> Pulling the plug on the UPS with remove all power from your computer...

    If the plug in question is the mains power to the UPS, then it shouldn't remove all power from the computer! By definition, an Uninterruptible Power Supply should carry on supplying power, unless the battery is shot, or the unit is faulty, or it has been set up with zero hold-up time...

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    Re: UPS (XP - SR2)

    Bob,

    Have a similar setup and you're correct about having the PowerChute software installed and performing the required tasks. But, why does the computer shut down <font color=blue> immediately </font color=blue> upon power disconnect? Shouldn't the battery maintain power? In the "Runtime configuration" of PowerChute with "Preserve Battery Power" selected, the minimum runtime is one minute. If it shuts down immediately, would that not indicate a defective battery?
    John
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    Never Regains Its Original Dimensions

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    Re: UPS (XP - SR2)

    Leif,

    You are of course 100% correct. I was having a senior moment there. The question / comment should have been... "Is the computer power cord attached to one of the UPS' outlets that provides battery service?" For my APC unit, I have 6 outlets that provide battery backup power and 2 stand alone outlets that are surge protected only.

    Bob
    Regards,
    Bob

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    Re: UPS (XP - SR2)

    Bob,

    I made a dumb statement in my earlier response. I stated that pulling the plug would cut the power and your computer would shut down. I should have made the following comments / suggestions:

    1) Make sure that your computer power cord is connected to the battery protected outlets on your ES 500. There are 6 outlets in total for the ES 500. 3 with battery and surge protection and 3 for surge protection only.

    2) After installing the PowerChute software, don't fiddle with the settings... just accept the defaults.

    3) According to APC, if you are drawing the maximum load of 300 watts for battery protection, the ES 500 will only allow 1.6 minutes of standby. Check the PowerChute application to see how much power is being drawn from the battery outlets. If over 300, this could cause an immediate shutdown.

    4) Ensure that only your system unit and monitor are attached to the battery outlets. For other devices like printers or scanners use the surge protection outlets only.

    Again, sorry for misleading you with that other comment. Let us know how you make out.

    Bob
    Regards,
    Bob

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    Re: UPS (XP - SR2)

    John,

    You, like Leif, are correct in that pulling the plug should switch to battery power without a hitch. As I said to Leif, I must have been having a senior moment.

    In "Runtime Configuration" I kept mine at the default of "Keep my computer on as long as possible" with a shutdown setting of 5 minutes. Perhaps the "Preserve Battery Power" with a setting of 1 minute might cause a problem. Under the "Sensitivity" tab, I elected to keep the default of "High". And under the "Voltage" tab I also kept the default of 138/97.

    Not sure if Bob (RJE) is monitoring this thread, so I'll send him another note.

    Bob

    P.S. I have another APC unit that is intended for my wife's system but she is too busy to allow me access to her beast. I'll attach her APC to a spare PC that I use for testing, change the settings to bare minimum and pull the plug to see what happens.
    Regards,
    Bob

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    Re: UPS (XP - SR2)

    I agree that Bob must have his unit plugged into the surge only outlet. ( or a bad battery )
    I have an ES500 with my system box, monitor AND my DSL modem plugged in. I went over and yanked the power plug out almost ten minutes ago and obviously it's still on since I'm here on the Lounge yet as I type.

    Also, In the power Options of Control Panel, it shows no UPS working and if I try to add the APC unit under select, it has a greyed out PORT number, so Obviously it doesn't look at USB type UPS. Power Chute appears to be running fine here.
    ( still here at over 12 minutes )
    BOB
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    Re: UPS (XP - SR2)

    Hey Bob, don't sweat about making mistakes. If there was a forum here for confessions, it would be filled to capacity... specially with mine!!! <img src=/S/grin.gif border=0 alt=grin width=15 height=15>.

    WRT "1) "Check the PowerChute application to see how much power is being drawn from the battery outlets." I did check the app, but couldn't find any information about power draw. Where would it be located?" Power being drawn can be found under the Monitor System | Current Status tab. See snapshot attached.

    WRT "2) "You MUST have PowerChute installed in order for the battery backup unit to be effective." I thought that one could run a UPS device on the native Windows UPS service, without the APC software installed. So, by "effective" do you mean "to work at all" or do you mean simply "to work at its best"?" Your ES 500 requires that PowerChute be loaded in order to work at its best. I understand that APC did provide MS with support in providing the UPS facility in Windows XP. However, that is for general support. If there is specific software for a specific UPS then that should be used.

    WRT "3) "After installing the PowerChute software, don't fiddle with the settings... just accept the defaults." The Sensitivity default is "Medium." Though I've never found in the past that the power here goes on and off very often, I take it you still recommend this setting, rather than "High"?" It is my personal preference to use app suggested defaults. If they do not provide desired results then I would consider tinkering with them.

    Finally... glad your environment is running to your satisfaction.

    Cheers, Bob
    Regards,
    Bob

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    Re: UPS (XP - SR2)

    Bob,
    Checked your screenshot and then mine. I don't have any of the power drawn by the system information in that or any other location. I AM running version 1.5 though. ????
    So far as sensitivity settings, I have mine at LOW but only because at times the "power" supplied by our mighty Electric company is not the most stable in the world. I once took an oscilloscope and looked at the AC line in our outlets. OK, in theory, it should be a nice clean sine wave but this looked like the most outrageously ragged signal you could imagine. I called the "power" company and they said: Do your lights go on OK? Fridge gets cold? etc. What more do you want???. So the settings are on LOW.
    BOB
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