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'drvwymon' is a program that runs on your computer, and monitors your wireless driveway equipment, then sends a TXT message to your cellphone when events are observed. This is done with the most inexpensive hardware possible, namely by tying into the undoubtedly unused parallel port on your computer. This allows us to keep the price very low.

Our recommended sensor equipment is the Dakota DCMA-2500 sensor and base station. MSRP is $189.99, I got mine with a simple google search for just over $100. More on drvwymon sensor equipment.

Please note that Dakota sells a Two-Way handheld unit for MSRP $110. This does about the same thing as DrvwyMon - you hang their unit on your belt and you'll be immediately and reliably alerted when a sensor is triggered. It's also a walkie-talkie that lets you talk immediately to others carrying these units. But you and your employees already own cellphones, so why spend the money for their handheld units? Here's why: there is one caveat with DrvwyMon, namely that it is only as reliable as your TXT message reception, so if 100% accuracy and immediate notification is mandatory, you may be better off with the Dakota handheld product.

Obviously you must have your receiver somewhere that it can communicate with the motion detector, perhaps on the inside of a wall to the outdoors. You must also have it within reasonable cabling distance of a computer. Pretty much any wire will do, ideal would be the old 4 conducter telephone wire they put in the walls of your house. You could use telephone cord or modern network wire, but it'll be up to you to make connections.

Lastly, you will need to have some mechanism to send a TXT message via your computer. If you already have this, fantastic, let us know and we'll try to set up an interface mechanism for you. If you're already not sure what we're talking about, have no fear, you can get this via a free account on GoogleVoice. If you already have a gmail account, you're halfway there.

Computer requirements:

  • You must have a computer that is always on, or is on at all times when you'll need monitoring.
  • The computer can be running most any operating system, Windows (2000/XP/Vista/8 whatever), Mac, Linux/Unix, etc. - DrvwyMon is a Perl script which is platform independent. We recommend ActiveState Perl.
  • The computer must be in reasonable cabling distance from your sensor base station.
  • The computer must have a parallel port.
  • The computer must be continuously on the Internet (wired DSL or Cable recommended, however if your wireless connection is solidly reliable it should be fine).
  • In summary, an old otherwise-too-slow-to-use-for-any-real-work computer is ideal for this job!
Useful Links:
Jan's Parallel Port FAQ
Downtown Doug Brown's Parallel Port Tester

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