Groov as an autodialer?

Has anyone devised a way to use a groov box as an autodialer substitute? We have an upcoming project to update an I/O panel; one of the jobs the panel handles is sending alarms to an old-school autodialer. Digital output modules trigger the multiple inputs on the autodialer.

The good thing about the autodialer is it’s ability to dial any telephone number. Land line or mobile. I am not sure of any way the groov could handle this function.


One of the ways that I have been ‘handling’ this type of question is to think about groov as a web browser tab…
It can be open, it can be one of many tabs open, it can be the tab that you are viewing, it can be in the background… It can be closed. The tab can close, or the browser can close… Its all up to the user…

So, should a web browser tab handle autodialer functions?
Can a web browser tab dial phone numbers with no user interaction?
Duno. Im not the user of this application…

If I was, I would have a nice groov page allowing the user to set up the digital inputs and the resulting phone numbers that the controller will dial if they go high, but the actual logic would be in the controller.
This way, no matter what the web browser tab state, the autodialer would auto dial… And anytime the user wanted to change a number, they could do it from any PC, Linux, Mac, Windows, from any tablet, iOS or Android or Windows, or from any smartphone.

Not really an answer to your question I know, but this is how I would start thinking about it…

Hope that helps.

Thanks for the reply!

Since I have not yet used a groov, I am still “stuck” in the PLC / PAC with I/O mindset. As in outputs firing to inputs, etc.

I will have to try to visualize how the groov & web interface would work.

I think that we will still have to have an autodialer unless the controller could dial phone numbers and “speak” a message.

We have used Opto for this very effectively. Using the Groov device to variable input or something like that would be possible.

/Jaime White, Dalco Instruments

Groov does not have any I/O so it alone cant trigger the digital event you are asking for. We recently upgraded a Waste Water plant that was using Wonder Ware with SCADA Alarm to dial out. We took a radical new approach that our customer was skeptical of at first. We got rid of the dialer, now they love the solution. Here is what we did: When there is an alarm at the plant Text messages are sent from the PAC controller(s). These text messages contain current information on the nature of the [B][I]specific[/I][/B] alarm, levels, flows, ORP values, amperage’s, etc… Operators then look at a Groov interface on their phones to see the overall condition of the plant. Some screens even allow then to change parameters. This buys them time to drive to the plant. It is much more powerful and flexible than auto dialers. BTW using PAC PRO Display over upgrading Wonder Ware saved us about $30,000 allowing us to win the bid.

Thanks for the feedback! We are a water treatment plant, and have a PAC controller that uses digital outputs to trigger an autodialer; the autodialer calls telephone numbers and delivers various “canned” voice messages to both mobile phones and landlines. We plan to upgrade this particular I/O panel to the new SNAP I/O and thought that this might be a good time to update the autodialer concept. The problem with using the Groov solution seems to be delivering the canned voice to a land line.

As a side note, we did replace our Wonderware HMI with the PAC Display a while ago and have saved a lot of support expense. We do continue to use the Wonderware Historian as it is a great application.

Thanks for the info, glad PAC Display can help keep down expenses. BTW, what features of the Wonderware Historian do you especially like? (I’m assuming they are features not found in PAC Display’s historical logging?)

Also, there are a few options for converting email to voicemail, might those work for you if something in your new system did/could send an email? Sending a text via email is trivial – most cell providers give you an email address that maps to a text cell number as Ben mentions [U][B]in this thread[/B][/U], which also includes another option & example shared by and OptoFan sending SMS messages directly out the serial port on his PAC-S controller… is that an option you’ve pondered?

Thanks for the information. We are going to ponder the Groov for this application; I think that we will eventually get one anyway. We just need to get a good handle on it.

The WW Historian is very robust, is very fast, and stores a LOT of data with it’s unique compression ability. It can also grab data from a variety of sources including the Opto data and our laboratory data and provide the data for trends or a query.

Hi mfox,
If you PM me I can send you a link so you can see a Groov screen for an operating treatment plant. The operator loves that he can change things from his phone. It also makes his walk arounds easier because he can see all his values as he checks instruments. We use MS SQL Server and Opto Data Link for data logging and reporting. It is nice because it is built on standards and integrates well with Office products. So we were able to completely leave WonderWare behind.

Hi Norm,

My e-mail is and that is the easiest for me. I would like to switch to a pure MS SQL Server back end someday too. I am using Opto OPC Server with WW FactoryGateway without problem to send data to the WW Historian. I am having trouble getting the Opto Data Link to send data to SQL Server tables, although it sends data to a text file just fine. Thanks, Malcolm