xAP Home Automation

An open standard for the home

xFx Viewer

viewer screenshot thumbnail

xFx Viewer is a Windows GUI application that lets you see all the xAP messages on your home network. It is used by xAP developers to observe what is happening on their xAP networks at the individual message level in order to configure devices and debug new xAP applications. And by others that are just curious to see what goes on.

Download xFx Viewer v4.

Last Updated 18 Oct 2010, Viewer version 4.1.3943.37662.

Viewer v4 released

Oct 18, 2010 by Edward

xFx Viewer has been almost completely re-written.

A new internal message database, re-implemented user interface components and an (XML-based) message import/export system all bring Viewer up to the performance levels required by today's busy xAP networks.

The user interface has been streamlined while remaining familiar and all the functionality of v3 has been retained.

Significant new features include:

  • Built-in support for the BSC schema including a BSC device view and the ability to send BSC command messages.
  • The ability to save a message stream as a file and then replay it with the original message timings to re-create debugging scenarios.
  • Network error checking for duplicate UID's and source addresses.

v3.3 release

May 12, 2008 by Edward

Mostly a bug fix release:

  • Fixed defect causing crash with empty message list.
  • Fixed off-spec validation of target addresses.
  • Optimised message validation routines for performance.

v3.2 release

Nov 10, 2007 by Edward

Various improvements:

  • Extended support for xAP v1.3 UID formats.
  • Message class filter functionality: you can specify a regular expression match to include and/or exclude message classes.
  • Improved regular expression error syntax handling.
  • Various reliability improvements.
  • More user feedback during message filtering operations.
  • Tested on Vista.

A little history

May, 2007 by Edward

The original version of Viewer was developed by Stuart Booth as part of his xAP Framework project. I took over development of the viewer, framework and other projects that were key infrastructure for xAP after Stuart moved on to other things in 2006.

The first round of work was to port framework and viewer to .Net 2.0, address the accumulated list of bugs and add support for the proposed xAP v1.3 extended UID structure. While doing this work it became clear that there were performance improvements that could be made to the framework which would significantly improve the performance of Viewer so these were implemented as well.

 xAP networks have grown in complexity and size significantly since the early versons of Viewer. While the performance gains made in the framework have helped alot, the performance of Viewer remains a challenge. The next few revisions will look to squeeze as much performance as possible out of the existing code base but there are decreasing returns to be made here. I'm considering significant changes to Viewer's innards for v4.