This page shows you how to configure the MaxMon app. It assumes you have already configured your Android phone and installed the MaxMon app. If you have also purchased a Quatropus bundle then it's a good idea to get the built-in phone sensors working first (see below) before attaching your Quatropus.

License

When you first run the MaxMon app (and when you subsequently update it) you must accept our terms and conditions (license). We've tried to make it short and genuinely readable. If you click "Accept" the MaxMon app will run, otherwise it will exit or keep presenting you with the MaxMon license.

Home screen

maxmon-home-config

The MaxMon app home screen is a mouse hole with the faint outline of a cat (or minus a cat in older versions). If you see a more substantial cat you've been unable to resist touching the big buttons beneath the mousehole. Touch the 'Monitor' button again to make the cat go away. An empty mousehole means MaxMon is in CONFIG mode, because before proceeding you need to configure MaxMon. Be patient ... like the cat.

Settings

To configure MaxMon press the phone MENU button (or the ≡ icon at the top of the screen, see Q: Where is the MENU button?), then select "Settings" from the resulting menu.

This brings you to the main MaxMon settings screen, which is divided into categories. Select the "General" category.

In future we will refer to these categories as "Settings>General", "Settings>Sensors", "Settings>Actuators", etc.

General settings

This is what you would see if you could see all the "General" settings at once (you will have to scroll up and down to see and set them). But don't worry, they're all pretty obvious. To get started just configure the following settings:

  • Site: change this to a short label for your remote monitored property, e.g. MyBoat.
  • Email: to receive email reports/alerts enter the new Google account details you created in Configuring your Android phone into the "Email username" and "Email password" fields, enable "Email reports/alerts" and enter a comma-delimited list of "Recipient(s)" email addresses.
  • SMS: to receive summary text reports enable "SMS reports/alerts" and enter a comma-delimited list of "Recipient(s)" phone numbers.
  • Remote control: it's worth enabling MaxMon remote control from the outset (so you don't forget to do it later) since it enables you to remotely configure and control the MaxMon app from a web browser. If you forget to configure something before leaving the phone at a remote location it's a life saver. Enable "Email commands" and enter a secure "Passphrase" (and record it in a safe place). You will be prompted for this passphrase when you send remote control commands to the app from our web site.
  • Arming: while you are getting used to MaxMon temporarily reduce the arming delay to 5 seconds.

To find out more about specific settings see Help: General settings (or select the Help option from the MENU button or ≡ icon).

maxmon-settings-general-helpFor now you can ignore the other "General" settings. But before you leave this screen press the phone MENU button or the ≡ icon at the top of the screen. Every MaxMon app screen has a "Help" menu option, which will take you to detailed online help (see Help: Getting help). In this case it will take you Help: General settings where you can read about the other settings.

Press the BACK button to return to the MaxMon settings screen.

Sensors

Click on the "Sensors" category.

The sensor settings screen lists the sensors available to the MaxMon app. If you have not connected a Quatropus unit they will be those built-in to the phone. You may see a different list depending on your phone and MaxMon app version. Touching a sensor row brings more detailed sensor settings (which we will ignore for now).

Stay on the sensor settings screen and disconnect the phone from its power source. Within a few seconds you should see the "Power" sensor go to its alert state (value changes to "OFF" and two ** and red text shows the alert). You will also see the "Battery(%)" very slowly declining. This  assumes you had the phone connected to a power source. If not, connect it to power now and watch the alert state go away and the "Battery(%)" slowly increase.

Actions

maxmon-settings-actions

We are going to ignore "Actuators" for now, since they have their own How to use MaxMon actuators tutorial (and require a Quatropus accessory).

Go BACK to the MaxMon settings and select "Actions".

maxmon-settings-actions-1MaxMon's action settings are split into four tabs (under "Settings>Actions").

The "Actions" tab lists predefined actions you can configure to happen on a scheduled basis or in response to sensor alerts - such as creating reports or taking photos and sending them to the email or text recipients you configured in "Settings>General". Some of the actions are delays, which are useful when defining sequences of actions (see below).

Sequences

maxmon-settings-sequences

Select the "Sequences" tab.

Sequence are user-defined sequences of actions that you can configure to happen on a scheduled basis or in response to sensor alerts. The MaxMon app includes an example sequence that delays for a second before emailing a photo to the recipient(s) configured in "Settings>General". Press on "Example sequence" to show/hide its actions. We don't use sequences in this tutorial but you can read all about them in Help: Sequences.

Alerts

maxmon-settings-alerts

Select the "Alerts" tab.

Alerts are where you connect actions or sequences (see above) to sensor alert conditions, and specify how often you want them to repeat (and in what order). In this tutorial we will just accept the default alerts created by the MaxMon app, all of which pertain to the phone's built-in sensors.

For more information on alerts see Q: How do I configure alerts? and Help: Alerts.

Tasks

maxmon-settings-tasks

Select the "Tasks" tab.

Tasks are scheduled actions or sequences (as defined on the "Actions" and "Sequences" tabs), such as sending daily or weekly reports to the recipients(s) configured in "Settings>General". In this tutorial we'll accept the default tasks (morning and evening daily reports plus a weekly report on Friday) but you can read all about configuring your own tasks in Help: Tasks and Help: Actions.

Note that to receive scheduled task reports:

  • The corresponding task must be enabled.
  • Email or text (SMS) reports must be enabled in "Settings>General".
  • The MaxMon background service must be running.

Diagnostics

For now we'll ignore the "Devices" settings, which is where you check MaxMon app and Quatropus firmware compatibility and update the MaxMon app or Quatropus firmware if required (see Help: Devices).

Go BACK to the MaxMon settings and select "Diagnostics".

You don't normally need to use these diagnostic settings (they are for help in troubeshooting problems) but "Email test" provides a quick way of testing the phone and app email and network settings. Selecting it should send an email to the recipients(s) you configured earlier in "Settings>General".

Android

Go BACK to the MaxMon settings and select "Android".

This screen provides a useful checklist of Android settings (as opposed to app settings) that need to be configured for MaxMon to work. The entries listed on this screen corresponds to the step-by-step settings in Configuring your Android phone.

Scroll down this screen and verify that the Android settings listed are configured correctly (see Help: Android). A warning icon shows that a required Android settings has not been set or conflicts with a MaxMon app setting. Lack of a warning icon does NOT mean Android is correctly configured - you should manually check each Android setting. Touch a setting to be taken to the corresponding Android setting screen.

Press the BACK button to return to the MaxMon home screen.

Run mode

maxmon-home-config

For MaxMon to proactively do things it needs to be put into MONITOR or ARMED mode (see Q: how do I arm/disarm the MaxMon app?). Click on the 'Arm' button.

NOTE: Older versions of the MaxMon app only have a single 'start/stop' button. Time to update your MaxMon app!

maxmon-home-arm-delay

Wait for the resulting countdown to complete (while familiarising yourself with MaxMon you can reduce this 'arming' delay on the "Settings> General" screen).

maxmon-home-armed

A substantial cat should appear in the mouse hole and a notification at the top of the screen (which you can pull down to read) tells you that MaxMon is monitoring and 'armed'. This icon will stay in the notification bar while MaxMon is active.

MaxMon is monitoring your mouse hole!

maxmon-settings-tasks-addTo test scheduled reporting:

  • Enable email or text/SMS reports (see "Settings> General").
  • Go to "Settings> Actions> Tasks", press the MENU button and select 'Add'. Create a task for 5 minutes in the future whose action is 'Report (day)' and press 'Save'.

Tum-te-tum. Yes, well, there's not much to see while MaxMon is running (in fact you can exit the MaxMon app and it will keep running in the background - see the MaxMon icon in the notification bar). You now have to wait 5 minutes until the task executes.

Reports

5 minutes later the MaxMon app should email a report to the configured "Recipient(s)". It will have a summary (similar to a text/SMS report) stating the current, min and max values logged for each sensor and actuator over the report period. Below the summary are graphs for each sensor and actuator, highlighting normal (green) and alert (red) values. These graphs will look sparse because you have only gathered 5 minutes of data.

See MaxMon reports/alerts for a detailed description of text and email report formats.

Below the graphs is a table of the raw log data gathered over the 5 minutes by the MaxMon app.

Note that the readings are only logged every 10 minutes (600 seconds), in the absence of any sensor alerts, which is the default "Log interval (secs)" in "Settings>General". Sensor alerts are logged whenever they occur (subject to their repeat interval - see below).

Alert reports

You don't need to set the "Log interval (secs)" to a low value to quickly respond to alerts. The log interval is the interval between routine log readings. To see this make sure that the MaxMon background service is running, "Log interval (secs)" is set to 600 seconds and power is connected to the phone. Wait a few seconds then disconnect power from the phone. The phone should almost immediately send an alert email. You can tell it's an alert because ALERT is in the subject line and alerting sensors are highlighted in the summary - see Email reports/alerts.

Note that if you add and remove power again from the phone you will not receive another alert for some time. This is because there are sensor settings to prevent too many alerts from being sent for the same alert condition. This is also where sensor alert thresholds are set. You can access these settings by touching the sensor on the "Settings>Sensor" screen.

On-phone reports

A useful feature of the MaxMon app is that while you are configuring MaxMon (and have access to the phone) you can view the same reports you will receive via email, on the phone. Go to the MaxMon app home screen, press MENU and select "Reports".

These on-phone reports offer shorter time period options (than email or text reports) so select "Last hour" to see what's been going on while you've been configuring MaxMon.

You should see the same type of report as you were previously emailed.

Note that location tracking data is attached to these reports as a KML file , which can be viewed using Google Earth on desktop computers. To view KML tracks on low-end Android phones try installing the MaxMonKML companion app.

That's it!

You've now pretty much seen every aspect of MaxMon and created a basic configuration. Next steps are to attach a Quatropus and external sensors, learn about how to use MaxMon actuators and read through the online help.