Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus AT&T LTE, DSC Compatible Posts

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Alarm.com announced via their Release Notes for the week of 10/24/22 that they will be hosting a firmware update for the Qolsys IQ Panel 2/2Plus panels. This firmware gives a programmer the option to set the panel to report to the monitoring station if the panel is manually powered down.

In addition to this added capability, there will be various fixes implemented. This includes an issue where the panel would sometimes report a false AC Failure trouble condition in error, and also an issue with controlling garage door openers from the panel touchscreen.

There could be more in this firmware upgrade, but Qolsys hasn't yet posted the full Release Notes for it. Nor have they posted the software itself, for those who have a panel that is not connected to WIFI. Once they do, we will update our Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus Firmware Updates page.

There have been instances in the past where a firmware patch is never posted to the Qolsys site. This usually only happens if there is some prerequisite that must be verified in the panel before the firmware is applied, and Qolsys deems it necessary to have the Alarm.com server verify this prerequisite prior to downloading the new firmware. If a situation like that arises with this software, we'll let you know.

If the panel has WIFI, then your alarm dealer can simply send the firmware to the panel over-the-air (OTA). You can also request the firmware update manually through the panel touchscreen. The only subscribers who may have an issue are those whose panel cannot connect to WIFI. Qolsys and Alarm.com prevent the Qolsys panels from updating their firmware OTA if there is no WIFI connection at the panel. In other words, the firmware file can't be sent using cellular data.

If you have a Qolsys IQ Panel 2/2 Plus panel and it doesn't have a connection to WIFI, you may still be able to update it OTA. If you have a cellular hotspot, either a stand-alone or by using your cellular phone, you can allow the Qolsys panel to join the hotspot, then request the update OTA while it is connected. Technically, this uses cellular data, but it's the phone or hotspot's cellular data. This tricks the panel and the Alarm.com server into thinking the panel is connected via WIFI.

If the above suggestion is not an option, then check back on our Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus Firmware Updates page. If this firmware is made available by Qolsys for SD Card updates to the panel, we will host it on our site.


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The Smart Arming feature can be enabled for any residential customer who has an interactive monitoring plan with Alarm.com. Once enabled, the feature can easily be configured using either the customer website or iOS or Android app.

Once configured, the Smart Arming feature will automatically arm the system to the Stay Mode once the occupants of the home have gone to bed. This can be accomplished using a schedule, or by configuring certain door and/or motion sensors to work in conjunction with the feature. You can reach the Smart Arming settings by going to Security, or through the Automation page. The Smart Arming programming is listed as Goodnight for Arming, and Wake Up for Disarming.


For example, you can set the system to Arm Stay at 10:00 PM, or you can set the system to Arm Stay when no activity has been detected for 30 Minutes between 10:00 PM and 11:30 PM (this is just an example, and you can use whatever time frame you want). If you choose the latter option, you then configure which zones you want to apply this logic to.

For the Stay Arming feature, doors, windows, and motions can be used along with the feature. So, once you choose the zones to be used with this logic, if no activity has been detected on ALL of those zones for a full 30 Minutes, and the time is between 10:00 PM and 11:30 PM, the system will automatically Arm Stay. Smart Arming logic is canceled if the system is already Armed Away.

For Disarming the options are similar. You can set the system to Disarm at a specific time, or you can set it to Disarm when motion is detected on certain motion detectors within a specific time window. For example, in our screenshot below, you can see we have our system set to Disarm if the Upstairs Motion detects movement between 8:00 AM and 9:00 AM. We also have it set so that if no motion is detected, the system will still disarm at 9:00 AM, which is sort of the best of both worlds.

Notice that only Motion Detectors are now available to tie to the Disarm logic. You don't want someone opening a door to disarm the system. By the same token, be sure that no outdoor motions are configured to work with this automation.


This is an excellent new feature that can go a long way toward preventing false alarms. No more forgetting to disarm the system when you go to let the dog out in the morning. As long as you set it up so that a motion you walk past on your way to the door causes the system to Disarm, you're all set. No more laying in bed wondering if you remembered to set the alarm. Now, as long as you have configured the Goodnight options, you know your system will arm itself based on either a schedule or activity (or lack thereof) combined with a time window.

The following Alarm.com compatible panels support this feature:

Panel Compatible Motion Sensor
Groups (Arm & Disarm)
Compatible Contact
Sensor Groups (Arm Only)
2GIG GC2/e 4, 10, 23 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 8, 10, 23
2GIG GC3/e 4, 10, 23 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 8, 10, 23
2GIG Edge 4, 10, 23 All
DSC PowerSeries Neo/Pro 4, 5, 9, 10 4, 5, 9, 10
Interlogix Concord 15, 17, 18, 20 14, 16
Interlogix Simon XT/XTi/XTi-5i 15, 35 14, 16
Qolsys IQ Panel 2 17, 20, 44, 43, 35 8, 9, 10, 12, 13, 14, 16, 25
Qolsys IQ Panel 4 17, 20, 44, 43, 35 8, 9, 10, 12, 13, 14, 16, 25
Note: Sensor-based disarming is only available in the Simon XT/XTi/XTi-5i with firmware versions below 193a.

What do you think of this new Alarm.com feature? For that matter, what do you think of Alarm.com's commitment to bringing you new products and features in general? They're doing an excellent job of listening to customers and responding with great new options. Drop us a note in the comments and let us know what you think. We always look forward to hearing from you!

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Alarm panel manufacturers routinely offer panel firmware updates. This allows them to add features and correct issues. However, most DIY users don't have access to the restricted portion of the company's site where these files are housed. Alarm Grid offers the latest firmware file downloads.

Most alarm panels can be updated Over-the-Air (OTA) using either Alarm.com or AlarmNet360. AlarmNet never charges anything for these updates, and Alarm.com also offers them for free, unless they have to be sent to the panel using cellular data. In that case, the update will incur a small fee, depending on the size and number of updates that need to be sent.

Qolsys panels will not perform an OTA update unless the panel is connected to WIFI. If you have one of these panels installed in a location where WIFI is not available, then the only option is to either update using a cell phone as a WIFI Hotspot, or download the firmware files, and then install them via either Micro SD Card (IQ2/IQ2+) or Access Point (IQ4).

Honeywell L5200, L5210, and L7000

Honeywell used to offer free firmware updates for the LynxTouch panels that they pushed remotely using AlarmNet360. It was a messy process, AlarmNet tech support was required to request these updates individually, per account. So, sometime after the introduction of the Lyric panel, they stopped this practice. The Lyric can only be firmware updated using AlarmNet360, but the update can be requested by the dealer, and now, the customer can also request the firmware update via the panel. When Honeywell, now Resideo, ceased offering OTA updates for the LynxTouch panels, they released the Honeywell LYNXTOUCH-MSD Firmware Update Tool. This tool can be used to update the L5200, L5210, or L7000 panels.

When an L5200 is updated to the latest version, it becomes an L5210 internally, though there are certain physical traits of the L5200 that won't change, like the screen size. Depending on when you purchased the LYNXTOUCH-MSD tool, it may come with the latest firmware version already on the SD Card (it comes with both L5210 and L7000 firmware already loaded). However, if you purchased your update tool when they were first released, it will have an older firmware version on it, and you will need to download the newest firmware to the SD Card and update the panel again to get the most current version. The update files are housed on the Resideo website in the password-protected portion of MyWebTech, so we offer the files for download from our site:

2GIG Go!Control 2 (GC2) or 2GIG GC2e

The 2GIG GC2 and 2GIG GC2e have a couple of different methods for updating the firmware. There is the 2GIG UPDV Easy Updater Tool and the 2GIG UPCBL2 Firmware Update Cable. The updater tool is geared more toward a professional installer who will be updating multiple different panels over the course of years. It comes with a version of either the 2GIG GC2 or GC2e firmware loaded but the tool itself will then have to be updated when newer firmware is released. The files to load are available from our site and are linked below.

The updater cable is the method of update most DIY users choose to use. It requires that the user have a windows computer available. The cable is a fixed length, so the computer that will be used needs to be near the alarm panel in order to perform the update. Ideally, a laptop is used. Instructions for using the updater cable to load the latest firmware onto a 2GIG GC2 or 2GIG GC2e can be found here. Instructions for loading new firmware onto the 2GIG UPDV Easy Updater Tool can be found here. Instructions for using the updater tool to update a 2GIG GC2 or GC2e panel once it has the latest file loaded can be found here.

The 2GIG GC2 and 2GIG GC2e firmware pages are linked below. Each page has both Updater Tool and Updater Cable files:

2GIG GC3 and 2GIG GC3e

The 2GIG GC3 and 2GIG GC3e technically use the same firmware. The 2GIG GC3e was released at firmware version 3.2.1, so any GC3e panel will have at least this version of firmware already installed. Alarm Grid offers firmware versions 3.0.1 up through 3.2.4.6725 on our 2GIG GC3 Firmware Update Page. On our 2GIG GC3e Firmware Update Page, we offer 3.2.3.6713 up through the current version which, at the time of this writing, is 3.2.6.6770.

The 2GIG GC3 and 2GIG GC3e are both much easier to update than the 2GIG GC2 or GC2e. Both 2GIG GC3 versions offer WIFI, which makes OTA updates simple, as well as free. For systems that need it, an OTA update can be pushed from Alarm.com via cellular for a nominal fee. Again, Alarm Grid offers this type of upgrade to our customers at our cost, with no markup. If WIFI is not available at the panel, and a user doesn't want to pay for an OTA update, we offer the upgrade files from our site. This FAQ provides a walkthrough on how to perform the update using the files from our site. Instructions for performing the update are also listed on the page along with the firmware files.

2GIG Edge

The 2GIG Edge updates in the same way as the 2GIG GC3 and GC3e. It has a USB port located on the top of the panel. Once the firmware update file has been loaded onto the root directory of a USB drive, the drive is inserted into the port on the panel's top and the panel prompts the user to update. For full instructions on updating a 2GIG Edge, check out this FAQ.

Qolsys IQ Panel 2 and IQ Panel 2 Plus

The IQ Panel 2 and IQ Panel 2 Plus also use the same firmware version. The difference between the two panels is hardware. The IQ Panel 2 does not support PowerG, and the IQ Panel 2 Plus does. As noted above, Qolsys panels will not download firmware updates via cellular data, so the options are to connect the panel to WIFI, temporarily connect the panel to a Hotspot on a cellular phone, or update locally using a Micro SD Card. The step-by-step instructions for loading the firmware from an SD Card are shown on the firmware update page.

Qolsys IQ Panel 4

The Qolsys IQ Panel 4, like the previous IQ Panels, will not download firmware updates via cellular data. However, unlike the IQ Panel 2 or IQ Panel 2 Plus, the IQ Panel 4 does not have a Micro SD Card slot. Instead, if WIFI is not accessible by the panel, either directly or via a cell phone Hotspot, then the firmware update files have to be downloaded to a phone or tablet, then the phone or tablet must be connected to the IQ Panel 4 Access Point, and the files then loaded to the panel from the phone or tablet. Instructions for updating using the Access Point are available on the firmware download page.

Above are links to all the different panel firmware pages we offer here on the Alarm Grid site. In addition to alarm panel firmware, we also offer some firmware pages for the Honeywell Home TUXEDOW or Resideo TUXEDOWC touchscreen keypads as well as the older Tuxedo Touch firmware. We don't have a page for the older 6280 touchscreen keypads, but if you need access to that firmware, send an email to support@alarmgrid.com letting us know what you need and we can get you access to it.

As mentioned above, the Lyric panel can only be updated via AlarmNet360 and in order to update the firmware, the panel has to be actively monitored. The same is true of the newer Honeywell Home and Resideo ProSeries panels (PROA7, PROA7PLUS, PROA7C, and PROA7PLUSC). These panels must be actively monitored and registered with AlarmNet360 before an update can be applied to them.



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Alarm Grid announced in December that some Qolsys Panels, namely older IQ 2 and 2 Plus panels with AT&T LTE communicators, require a firmware update before the AT&T 3G Sunset this month. Alarm.com has been pushing those updates, but some panels still need the update, and time is running out.

As noted in December, Alarm.com has been automatically pushing the firmware update to those panels that need it. However, in order to get an update Over-the-Air (OTA) a Qolsys panel MUST have a connection to WIFI. That means if you have an older Qolsys IQ Panel 2 or IQ Panel 2 Plus with an AT&T LTE communicator built in, and your panel doesn't have a connection to WIFI, you may need to get a WIFI connection. At least long enough for the firmware update to come through. If you don't, and if your panel is one of the ones that requires this update, it will stop communicating via AT&T LTE Cellular soon after February 22, 2022.

AT&T doesn't have one big switch that they can turn off and then, "Voila, 3G is no more!" So, just because your system is still able to communicate on February 23, that doesn't necessarily mean that your panel doesn't require the firmware update. In addition, some panels will only need an update to the cellular firmware while other panels will need a panel firmware update first, followed by the cellular update. For this reason, it is best to connect your panel to WIFI and allow the Alarm.com server to connect and determine which updates, if any, need to be applied.

In order to make it as easy as possible to get a panel connected to WIFI, Alarm.com has made it possible to connect the panel to WIFI remotely using the Alarm.com customer app. To use the app to connect the panel to WIFI, follow these steps:

  1. Log into the app, completing any 2-factor authentication that may be necessary.
  2. Go to the 'Security System' card.


  3. Tap the Gear icon in the upper right.


  4. Select 'Panel WIFI'.

  5. From this point, there are two options:
    • If the network to be used is already connected to another device on the account, such as a video camera, it will display under a prompt for 'Access Ready Networks'. Since that device already has the network credentials, the panel can use those same credentials to connect to the same network.
    • If the WIFI network is not already connected to another device, then you should see a prompt that says 'Additional networks available to your panel'. Select the network, and then enter the proper password where indicated.



  6. Once the WIFI network is selected, and the password has been entered, if applicable, press 'Connect'.

  7. If you don't see your network, press 'Rescan' or tap, 'Don't see your network?', then follow the provided steps to add the device to the network manually.

If your panel simply doesn't have an option to connect to traditional WIFI, then you may need to briefly use your cell phone as a wireless hotspot, and contact your alarm dealer to ask them to manually push the update to your panel while you're onsite. Alternatively, you can visit our Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus Firmware Update Page and download the update files to an SD Card, then follow the instructions listed on the page for updating via SD Card.

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If you read our blog regularly, you know that certain Qolsys IQ Panel 2 systems that use the AT&T LTE 4G network require an update to the communicator. Without this update, these cellular units will stop communicating after the 3G Sunset. On January 10, these updates will begin automatically.

Qolsys IQ Panel 2 panels that use an AT&T LTE Cellular Communicator will need a firmware update prior to the AT&T 3G sunset, which is scheduled to occur on 02/22/22. Without this update, these panels will lose their connection to the cellular network and could leave the alarm system with no communication path. The update can be performed over WIFI, or by using an SD Card.

For those panels that have a WIFI connection, Alarm.com will begin to automatically push the update on Monday, January 10, 2022. Once these updates begin, they will continue from 8 am - 8 pm seven (7) days per week until all are completed. Some panels will require both a panel firmware update and the cellular communicator update. The Alarm.com server will determine the panels that fall into this category and will perform the updates in the correct order automatically. Once the update has been applied, the panel will reboot as part of the update process. This is normal.

If a WIFI signal is available in the location where the panel is installed, but the panel is not currently connected to it, there are a few different ways to get the panel connected:

  1. Locally: The connection can be made at the panel using the touchscreen. Instructions for connecting to WIFI locally can be found here.
  2. By the dealer, remotely: Alarm.com dealers, like Alarm Grid, can use the Partner Portal to connect the panel to WIFI. This is found on the Partner Portal website under the Signaling/Broadband Settings.
  3. By the end-user, remotely: Starting on 12/13/21, Alarm.com has enabled a tool that allows an end-user to connect the panel to WIFI through the Customer Alarm.com App or Alarm.com Website.

If you would like to go ahead and perform the update on your own, and you need to connect the system to WIFI first, from the customer's Alarm.com app click on Menu > Manage Devices > Select the 3-dots icon next to the panel's name > Select Device Settings > Select Panel WIFI. From there you can either choose an existing camera to copy that device's WIFI settings or select the SSID and complete the authentication process by entering the proper password. Once the connection to WIFI is made, the communication path will be changed from Cell-only to Dual-Path.

Panels that are on version 2.3.0 or lower must be updated to a minimum of 2.3.1 or higher before applying the communicator firmware patch. Panel firmware updates on panels that have a WIFI connection can be performed locally from the panel with a Patch Tag or can be completed remotely by the alarm dealer via Alarm.com's Partner Portal. Once the panel's firmware is on a compatible version (see the link in the paragraph below) the cellular firmware can be installed using the patch tag: ATT3GSunset

For panels that have no WIFI connection available, the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 can be updated locally using a MicroSD Card. The upgrade files, as well as instructions on how to perform the local upgrade, are available on Alarm Grid's Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus Firmware Update page. Both the panel firmware files and the ATT3GSunset patch can be downloaded from there.

This issue only affects AT&T LTE Cellular units. Verizon cellular units are in no way affected. This update is required because early Qolsys AT&T units used a provisional VoLTE Firmware Version. This later changed when VoLTE was fully released and because the difference between the two firmware versions didn't affect a panel's ability to send signals via cellular, no action was required at that time. AT&T realized that the upcoming sunset would have a detrimental affect on these early communicators and alerted Qolsys and Alarm.com of the required update.

If you are unsure whether your panel requires the update or not, contact your alarm dealer. They can verify whether or not your panel requires the panel update as well as the cellular update. This version information is only available when checked through the Partner Portal Website, and is not available from the Alarm.com Customer App or Website. You can read the full Qolsys Technical Service Bulletin regarding this upgrade here.

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Qolsys IQ Panel 2 equipment that uses an AT&T LTE Cellular Communicator requires a firmware update prior to the AT&T 3G sunset date of 02/22/22. Without this update, these devices will lose their connection to the cellular network. The update can be performed over WIFI, or by using an SD Card

If a WIFI signal is available in the location where the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 is installed, but the panel is not currently connected to it, there are a few different ways to connect:

  1. Locally: The connection can be made at the panel using the touchscreen. Instructions for connecting to WIFI locally can be found here.
  2. By dealer remotely: Alarm.com dealers, like Alarm Grid, can use the Partner Portal to connect the panel to WIFI. This is found on the Partner Portal website under the Signaling/Broadband Settings.
  3. By user remotely: Starting on 12/13/21, Alarm.com is enabling a tool that allows an end-user to connect the panel to WIFI through the Customer Alarm.com App or Alarm.com Website.

In order for the customer to connect their panel to WIFI using the customer app they will click on: Menu > Manage Devices > Select the 3-dots icon next to the panel's name > Select Device Settings > Select Panel WIFI. From there the user can either choose an existing camera to copy that device's WIFI settings, or select the SSID and complete the authentication process. Once the connection to WIFI is made, the communication path will be changed from Cell-only to Dual-Path. This may be useful for panels installed in locations where the building is not always occupied.

Starting on Monday, January 10, 2022 Alarm.com will begin to automatically deploy the firmware update to any WIFI connected panel that has not already received it. The automatic update process will proceed through the queue of needy panels 7 days per week during daytime hours (8am - 8pm panel time). As part of the update, a system reboot will occur.

In some cases, the panel's firmware may require an update before the cellular firmware update can be implemented. Panels that are on version 2.3.0 or lower must update to a minimum of 2.3.1 or higher. Panel firmware updates on panels that have a WIFI connection can also be performed locally from the panel with a Patch Tag, or can be done remotely via Alarm.com's Partner Portal. Once the panel's firmware is on a compatible version (see the link in the paragraph below) the cellular firmware can be installed using the patch tag: ATT3GSunset

For panels that have no WIFI connection available, the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 can be updated locally using a Micro SD Card. The upgrade files, as well as instructions on how to perform the local upgrade are available on Alarm Grid's Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus Firmware Update page. Eventually, Qolsys will also make the cellular firmware update patch available for download and install via Micro SD. Once they do, we will also host it on our site. As of 12/10/21, it is not yet available.

This issue only affects AT&T LTE Cellular units. Verizon units are not affected. This issue is occurring because early Qolsys AT&T units used a provisional VoLTE Firmware Version. This later changed when VoLTE was fully released. Since the difference between the provisional firmware and the released version didn't affect a panel's ability to communicate via cellular, no action was required before. If you are unsure whether your panel requires the update or not, contact your alarm dealer. They will be able to verify this information for you, as this information is only available when checked through the Partner Portal Website, and is not available from the Alarm.com Customer App or Website. Read the full Qolsys Technical Service Bulletin here.

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It seems every week we're reporting a new feature being rolled out by Alarm.com. They recently added remote Duress Code programming through the Alarm.com app or website. Alarm.com must first enable this feature for the dealer, then users will have access if their panel supports the feature.

Before any Alarm.com user can start configuring codes remotely, the alarm dealer for the customer account must have this feature enabled. If the feature is not showing up when a user attempts to remotely program the Duress Code, contact the Alarm.com dealer and ask them to enable it. They may need to contact their Alarm.com Sales Representative to get the feature enabled.

Next, be sure that the alarm panel being used supports this feature. We have an FAQ on how to set up this feature via the Alarm.com Website and another FAQ on how to set up this feature using the Alarm.com App. Both of these FAQs have a list of compatible panels, and advise if a single or multiple codes are supported by the panel.

The way a Duress Code works is simple. If a system user is forced to interact with their alarm panel in any way, though this will usually involve disarming the system, if the Duress Code is used, then in addition to performing the security system function a silent signal is sent to the monitoring station alerting them to the fact that the system user is under duress. They are being forced to do something against their will. The monitoring station will receive this signal and then process it according to the customer's pre-stated wishes, and their own policies regarding duress situations.

The key element to the use of a Duress Code is the ability for someone who is not onsite to receive the signal and immediately take action. If the security system is not monitored by a trained 24/7 monitoring station employee then the Duress Code might just as well not exist. It may be possible to send a text, email, or push notification to someone outside the home or business, but there's a good chance that person may never see it, or may not understand what they're seeing. If there is any concern that a duress situation might occur, then central station monitoring is the best way to protect the people you love.

And finally, one thing I nearly forgot to mention above, an Alarm.com dealer cannot program a Duress User for a customer through their panel programming portal. Only the Admin Alarm.com Account user, the homeowner or business owner, is allowed to affect these codes remotely. So, what do you think about this new feature? Do you like the idea of being able to control system Duress Codes remotely? Leave a comment below and let us know your thoughts. We always enjoy hearing from our readers. That's all for now, stay safe out there.

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Qolsys IQ Panel 2 and IQ Panel 2 Plus users will be pleased to learn that a new firmware update is available! Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Firmware Version 2.6.1 can be downloaded via patch tag right now. Alarm Grid recommends that IQ2 and IQ2+ users download the update at their earliest convenience.

Important Note: For those looking for the 2.6.1 Firmware File needed to update the panel using an SD Card, we will make that file available as soon as possible. Qolsys has not yet posted it. However, when the SD Card method is used, the panel will still need a WIFI connection, and active monitoring in order to be sure the panel updates properly. For this reason, unmonitored systems should not attempt this update method unless the user is absolutely sure the "Firmware2" update is not needed on the system. For those who need the "Firmware2" update, it is recommended that the Patchtag method of updating discussed below be used.

Before we get into how to download Firmware Version 2.6.1, we would like to discuss what the new update includes. This isn't a particularly loaded update, but it still includes some new features, plus some important fixes and general system improvements. For those reasons, updating at your earliest convenience is advised.

There is a new Sensor Group for motion sensors, that being Sensor Group (45) - Away/Stay Instant Non-Follower. This is just like Sensor Group (15) - Stay Instant, except that the new Sensor Group (45) will still have the system go into alarm if the sensor is faulted while the system is armed away or armed stay, even if an Entry/Exit Zone is faulted first. With the old Sensor Group (15), the system will not go into alarm if the sensor is faulted after (following) an Entry/Exit Zone. In other words, if you fault a sensor with Sensor Group (45) while the system is in its Entry Delay countdown, an alarm will occur, but if you do the same with Sensor Group (15) when the system is in its Entry Delay countdown, no alarm occurs.

For SD Card upgrades, there will be an auto-push of the "Firmware2" Patch from Alarm.com, assuming that the patch hasn't already been applied. This patch prevents certain IQ2 Panels from automatically rebooting at times. You can see more information about the Firmware2 fix from this prior blog post. The only other new feature release from the 2.6.1 release is that the IQ2 is now compliant with BS-8243 Standards in the United Kingdom.

All other changes for the IQ2 in 2.6.1 are general system improvements. As listed below:

  • Fixed an issue regarding SRF Sensors, outlined in TSB 210705. This issue prevented legacy SRF sensors from communicating with the IQ2 properly following an AC power loss condition. More information on the issue can be found here.
  • Stability improvements to dual-path communication with Alarm.com.
  • Improved push notification of message center messages while on Photo Frame screensaver.
  • Improved boot-up after performing a software update.
  • Improved doorbell camera streaming and push alerts when the panel is in the lock screen.
  • Alarm.com backend now shows username when arming/disarming from PowerG Keypads.
  • Corrected issue with an improvement from 2.6.0 so that silent and audible panics triggered from the panel are able to properly report as different CID codes to the central station.
  • Corrected issue from 2.6.0 involving daily & weekly communication tests with central station.

With that out of the way, let's explain how to apply the update! Like all of the other recent updates, users on Firmware Version 2.5.0 or 2.5.1 will need to stage upgrade to 2.5.3 first before upgrading to 2.6.1. But if you are on 2.5.3 or higher or on less than 2.5.0, then you can go right to 2.6.1. And as always, your system must be on at least 2.0.1 for any firmware update to be applied.

To get started applying the update, make sure your IQ2 or IQ2+ is plugged in and that its battery is charged. Your system must be connected to WIFI and actively monitored so that Alarm.com can determine if the Firmware2 update is required, and then send it to the panel via WIFI if it is. Begin from the main screen of the system. Press the small grey bar at the top. Pick Settings > Advanced Settings > enter the Installer Code if prompted (default 1111) > Upgrade Software > Patch Tag > enter iqpanel2.6.1 (must be entered exactly as shown) > OK > Upgrade Using Network. The update should then go through. Once it begins, do not touch the panel screen.

Remember, it will usually take about five (5) minutes for the update to be completed. You can then check the Software Version in the About Menu under the Software tab. This is good for confirming that the 2.6.1 Firmware Update went through as intended.


Please leave a comment down below with your thoughts on Qolsys IQ Panel 2 and IQ Panel 2 Plus Firmware Version 2.6.1. Don't hesitate to let us know about your experience with the panel or the firmware update. We want to hear your honest opinion and assist with any issues. Like always, stay tuned to the Alarm Grid Blog for more news and updates coming soon!

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Being in the alarm industry, we get to test out some of the newest security systems first-hand. Today, we will briefly discuss three juggernauts in the DIY security realm - the 2GIG Edge, the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus, and the Honeywell Home PROA7PLUS, and explain why they can all succeed.

Whenever you have multiple companies all putting their best offerings forward to compete in the same field, there is usually the expectation that there will be at least one winner, but also at least one loser. However, in this playing field of three wireless alarm panels, it really appears as though each company has put its best offering forward and presented something distinctly unique that can stand out and succeed in this competitive industry. Simply put, all three of these systems are winners. It was rough getting here at times. There were some mistakes and growing pains along the way. Some were really bad. We can definitely say that it took some perseverance, but we reached a point where our three most prominent security system manufacturers - 2GIG, Qolsys, and Honeywell Home - have all hit their strides. It really is a fantastic sight to behold.

Today, we're not doing an in-depth compare and contrast of these three great systems, nor are we going to provide a definitive "ranking" of these systems. Maybe that can happen another time. What we are going to give you today is just a look at one (1) feature or capability for each system that is not possible for the other two. That is a major reason why we believe all three of these systems will thrive - they each offer something that you aren't going to find or be able to achieve with their biggest competitors. In other words, each system we're discussing today has an important competitive advantage that should keep it relevant for quite some time. Also, note that we're focusing on the positive aspects today. This isn't a wish list, and we're also not going to pick apart these systems to point out any minor flaws or shortcomings. This is just a chance for us to talk about something we like about each system and why we think it's a benefit. Anyway, let's get started. Here is why the 2GIG Edge, the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus, and the Honeywell Home PROA7PLUS can all win.


2GIG Edge - Facial Recognition Arming/Disarming


Our impression of the 2GIG Edge is that Nortek really wanted to bring the alarm industry to the future. The system is loaded with advanced features and functions that certainly work to turn heads and bring the wow factor. None of those features more so than the panel's facial recognition arming and disarming capability. Sure, the IQ Panel 2 Plus also has its own facial recognition capabilities, but their system just generates an email from Alarm.com letting you know that the panel didn't recognize the face the last time someone disarmed. Only with the 2GIG Edge can you have the front panel camera scan your face and automatically arm or disarm the system, all without needing to enter a code. Facial recognition arming comes in handy if the Quick Arm feature (Q113) is disabled in order to provide arming/disarming logs. By default, this feature is enabled, which means that the system can be armed simply by pressing the Arm Stay or Arm Away button. This is convenient, but in some circumstances, such as for a business, you may want to know which user is arming and disarming your system, as well as when the system is being armed and disarmed.

The facial recognition feature of the 2GIG Edge differs from the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus in another way. With the Qolsys panel, all of the heavy lifting is done by Alarm.com. The facial profile and recognition processing all occur on the Alarm.com servers. With the 2GIG Edge, the user's facial profile is stored locally on the panel, and facial recognition processing also takes place locally. This means your facial biometric information stays safe within your own network and is never sent out into the cloud. If you're concerned about keeping your facial biometric information private, then this is very important!

On top of that, the feature works shockingly well and consistently when set up properly, and unless you have an identical twin or a doppelganger hanging around, it's not a security risk in any way. This is the kind of feature that you brag about to your friends, as it's actually cool. Plus, once you get used to it and learn how to position your face just right, the feature is super convenient as well. Being able to arm or disarm your system while your hands are full is something you will absolutely appreciate at some point or another. Manufacturers are always looking for ways to futurize their alarm systems. Well, the 2GIg Edge has done exactly that with its facial recognition feature. We recommend checking our prior blog post dedicated to 2GIG Edge Facial Recognition to learn more.


Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus - PowerG Sensor Range


As the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus is the oldest security system on this list, features that were once exclusive and unique have since been replicated by their competition. That being said, one area where the IQ2+ still reigns supreme is in the wireless range of its PowerG Sensors. With a range of approximately 2,000 feet when used with the IQ2+, you just can't go wrong. Sure, that listed range is assuming a best-case scenario in an open-air environment, with no large metal objects or other obstacles around to cause interference. Still, it blows the other manufacturers out of the water. While we haven't done any of our own testing (that may be a fun experiment for a future blog), the reports we hear from customers seem to indicate that PowerG Sensors on the IQ2+ do indeed offer a noticeably longer transmitting range than what can be achieved with the other panels on this list. We have heard multiple stories of users who have managed to get PowerG Sensors to work in areas such as warehouses and storage facilities where wireless sensors were thought to be completely unviable. If that wasn't enough, there is also the DSC PG9920 PowerG Repeater, which boosts the theoretical maximum wireless range to a distance of up to 4,000 feet!

While all of this doesn't really matter much for most users, as most users don't really need a sensor to work from 2,000+ feet away, the users who do benefit from the extended wireless range find it to be a complete game-changer. Just imagine, an installation that was once only possible with a super complex hardwired polling loop panel can now be achieved wirelessly with the IQ Panel 2 Plus! Not to mention that the PowerG Sensors offer some of the very best protection we have seen, with 128-bit AES encryption and Frequency Hopping Spread Spectrum (FHSS) Technology. We're a bit surprised other manufacturers haven't followed suit and offered something comparable to PowerG. It's not to say that their alternative sensor offerings (e.g. Resideo PROSIX and SiX Series Sensors, 2GIG eSeries Sensors) aren't good devices in their own right, but the DSC PowerG Sensors are still at the top of the food chain... at least for now. As a result, there are still occasional installations where our only option is to recommend the IQ Panel 2 Plus with PowerG Sensors. It's totally cool though, as the IQ2+ remains a great panel that is loaded with tremendous features.


Honeywell Home PROA7PLUS - IP-Only Monitoring Option


We have an honorable mention with the PROA7PLUS. Namely, it's the only one of these three systems with replaceable components, meaning that you won't need to replace the entire panel if something like its WIFI & Z-Wave card or its added cellular communicator becomes damaged. While replaceable components are nice to have, they don't necessarily sell panels like the ability to monitor across internet protocol (IP) only. Although we love getting customers on our Gold Plan, and we can talk about the benefits of cellular monitoring until we're blue in the face, the fact remains that there are some customers who just want reliable monitoring service at a low price. We see it all the time - a customer just wants no-frills monitoring service to get a homeowner's insurance discount and to provide a basic layer of protection over their household. To them, the extra cost associated with cellular or dual-path monitoring isn't worth the benefit of their system staying monitored during internet outages. All we can do is try to give these customers what they want - an alarm panel that will allow them to keep their monitoring costs down. That is what they get with the PROA7PLUS, as it is the only one of these three systems that supports IP-only monitoring.

Technically, it's not the doing of the panel that makes IP-only monitoring possible, but rather it's the monitoring platform. The other panels on this list connect with Alarm.com, which mandates that cellular connectivity is set up on all their accounts. The PROA7PLUS on the other hand doesn't use Alarm.com, but rather it uses AlarmNet and Total Connect 2.0. For the most part, Alarm.com and Total Connect 2.0 are relatively equal, but in a rare area of difference, TC2 allows for IP-only service, while ADC requires a cellular connection. The result is that when a customer comes to us wanting low-cost monitoring, after we explain the benefits of cellular, and they still want IP-only anyway, we go ahead with recommending the PROA7PLUS. That's not a bad thing either, as the system is super sleek, and it offers an incredible mix of great features and reliable performance. Though when it comes to the area where the PROA7PLUS stands out the most, it's the system's ability to be set up for IP-only alarm monitoring service. Unless Alarm.com drops its cellular requirement, or 2GIG and/or Qolsys team-up with another monitoring platform, Resideo and the PROA7PLUS will continue to dominate this market segment. There will always be people wanting monitoring service at the lowest possible price, even if it means giving up cellular connectivity. Luckily for those frugal folks, they have an excellent panel that gives them that option in the PROA7PLUS. That alone gives the PROA7PLUS plenty of opportunity to succeed. Also, just to be clear, a user can always add a cellular communicator to a PROA7PLUS and upgrade to cellular monitoring later on. We have many customers who want to start out on a low-cost plan and then upgrade to a more expensive plan later. That's perfectly understandable, and the PROA7PLUS makes that option possible.


What Do You Think?


We mean it when we say that the Edge, IQ Panel 2 Plus, and PROA7PLUS are all fantastic alarm panels. We might do a ranking someday, but to us, they are all winners. The choice really comes down to your unique needs. If the convenience of arming or disarming using your face is most important, go with the Edge. If you need the extended wireless range of PowerG, go with the IQ Panel 2 Plus. If you want low-cost IP-only monitoring, go with the PROA7PLUS. Each panel has its own advantage. There are also many other talking points that we simply don't have time to get to today. However, you can start your own discussion in the comments below! We would love to hear your thoughts, opinions, viewpoints, and personal experiences. If you have used or tested out any of these panels, then we would love to know about it. Also, our comments section is a great place to ask questions. Maybe we have something that we didn't cover that you would like to learn more about? Our team of experts are happy to help you. Leave a comment below, and we will be sure to reply. Plus, don't forget to stay tuned to our blog for more security news and discussions coming soon!

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Qolsys has released information regarding an issue affecting IQ Panel 2 Firmware Version 2.5.4 and Firmware Version 2.5.5. The issue affects the Z-Wave Home Automation functionality for IQ2 Systems on those firmware versions. The issue can be fixed by upgrading the system to 2.6.0.

According to Qolsys TSB# 210511, which can be viewed here, Z-Wave devices paired with an IQ Panel 2 or IQ Panel 2 Plus System on Firmware Version 2.5.4 or Firmware Version 2.5.5 may occasionally buffer and repeatedly send the same command to the device every thirty (30) minutes. Although it's possible that any Z-Wave device could demonstrate this behavior, Qolsys says that it is most likely to affect the GoControl GD00Z-8-GC Z-Wave Plus Garage Door Opener.

Fortunately, Qolsys also adds that the issue can be easily corrected by upgrading to Firmware Version 2.6.0. If you haven't already, make sure to upgrade to Firmware Version 2.6.0 so that all of your programmed Z-Wave devices work as intended. More information on IQ Panel 2 Firmware Version 2.6.0, including what comes with the update and how to perform the update, can be found in this helpful blog post.

Alarm Grid will provide a future update if we learn anything more from Qolsys. But for now, it can be assumed that upgrading to Firmware Version 2.6.0 will resolve the issue. Remember to stay tuned to the Alarm Grid Blog for more updates coming soon!

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