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Changing NMEA2000 instances


Instances are used in an NMEA2000 network to identify multiple similar products connected on the same network. As an example, take a system with two battery monitors, one for the main battery bank, and another for the hydraulic-thruster bank. All the displays in the network need to be able to address both of them separately.

There are two types of instances: device instances and data instances. And depending on the make and model of the displays being used (Garmin, Maretron, Raymarine, etcetera), you need to change one of them or both. This page explains how to change these instances.

The device instance can easily be changed with all existing Maretron and Actisense PC software.

The data instances, for example the Battery instance, DC Detailed instance or Switch bank instance, can only be changed with Actisense PC software.

For more detailed information, see also the FAQ in our Data communication whitepaper.

Changing the device instance

  1. Open Actisense NMEA Reader
  2. Select the network view (tab selection is at the bottom left)
  3. Select the product whose device instance you want to change
  4. Select the properties tab at the bottom right and change the device instance

Changing the DeviceInstance from the CCGX command line

Instead of using Actisense NMEA Reader, it is also possible to change the device instance from the Color Control shell. To get root access, follow these instructions: CCGX: Root Access

Once logged into the shell, follow below instructions. Note that the example shown changes the device instance of a Skylla-i. The device instance of a VE.Can connected MultiPlus or Quattro can be changed as well. It will show as com.victronenergy.vebus.socketcan_can0_di0_xxxx.

Step 1. List the devices:

root@ccgx:~# dbus -y

It shows a Skylla-i (the charger). di1 in the name means that it is currently on DeviceInstance 1.

Step 2. Change it, for example, to 4:

root@ccgx:~# dbus -y com.victronenergy.charger.socketcan_can0_di0_uc12983 /DeviceInstance SetValue %4
retval = 0

Step 3. Wait a few seconds, and double check:

root@ccgx:~# dbus -y

Device instance changed successful!

Changing a data instance

Changing the data instance is possible with Actisense NMEA Reader PC software, version v1.517 and later. Download the latest version from their website. Look for the setup.exe on that page. Besides the PC software you also need the interface to hook the nmea2000 network up to your PC: the Actisense NGT-1:

We are not aware of PC software from other manufacturers that has this functionality. If you do know one, please let us know in the comments below.

Changing a data instance:

  1. Open Actisense NMEA Reader
  2. Select data view (tab selection is at the bottom left)
  3. Right click the PGN:
  4. And change the value:

Notes for BMVs, Lynx Shunt and the Lynx Ion + Shunt:

  • The Battery Instance and the DC Detailed instance are the same value. Changing one of them, will also change the other one.
  • Since the BMV sends out two voltages, the main voltage and the aux- or starter-voltage, it comes preconfigured with two battery instances: 0 and 1. When you want to change that to 1 and 2, change the 1 into 2 first, and then the 0 into 1, as they cannot be the same.
ve.can/changing_nmea2000_instances.txt · Last modified: 2016-07-08 16:24 by mvader