Category Archives: Projects

Napco 1632 virtual keypad project

LAST UPDATE 29/7/2018 : This will be the first unfinished project that is posted on this blog. After spending three months, I got some info that the version of the panel I have,  does not support automation. If you notice from the data sniffed from the keypad bus, only keepalives, lcd messages and time sync data exists. If for example a zone triggers an alarm, data sent to the keypad do not refer to the zone number. So you have to always grab the text of the LCD. 

Another thing that lead me to abandon this project, is that NAPCO does not provide any info on this panel like DSC etc. so it is very difficult to reverse engineer. 

I think that security systems such as alarm panels, are not so sophisticated. They stay with the same philosophy over the years, so I might begin a project on making my own security system, using an arduino or a raspberry PI. The only thing sure is that I will not invest on any NAPCO security system or any other system at all after realizing that for example the NAPCO NL-MOD module is just a simple Lantronix Ethernet-to-serial device with a custom firmware and they are selling it for 150 euros… 

I will leave this port active though, for someone who will need the info posted here.

I am currently working on a project regarding some hack on my alarm panel. It’s a napco 1632. I am trying to reverse engineer communications in order to build a webapp to control the panel remotely. There are some options provided by napco, but need separate hardware.

My system is equipped with NL-MOD-UL module that gives you the ability to configure the alarm panel through LAN. This module is connected on the serial port of the panel. The panel has the ability to send real-time status messages through the serial port and receive commands like system arm, but napco hasn’t developed any application to do that. They have only quickloader for configuration and management of the panel.

Newest modules like STARLINK or IBR-ZREMOTE give the ability to control the panel remotely, but the hardware is expensive. So, as I said,  I am trying to reverse engineer for a solution. The newest modules are not connected on the serial  port of the panel but on the keypad bus. I have already ordered a logic analyzer in order to decode the bus. But until I receive my logic analyzer, I did some attempts to read it via an arduino MEGA. I made a circuit with an optocoupler because the voltage is to high for the arduino to handle.

Here is the arduino code : ttl-debug

The bus of napco 1632 has four cables :

  • RED ( +12V )
  • BLACK ( GND )
  • YELLOW ( Keypad TX – Panel RX )
  • GREEN ( Panel TX – Keypad RX )

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