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Man Pages

Manual Reference Pages  -  WS2300 (1)


ws2300 - LaCrosse WS-2300 weather station tool


Reading, Setting And Resetting Measures
Capturing Data
Field Expressions
See Also


ws2300 help-measures
ws2300 tty-device measure[=value|=reset] ...
ws2300 tty-device display fields [url [sample [save [insert]]]]
ws2300 tty-device record config-file-name [pid-file-name [email-address [recovery-file-name [port]]]]


Ws2300 manipulates the LaCrosse WS-2300 weather station via its RS232 interface. It can read and write values, and can continuously log data from WS-2300 to a file or SQL database.

The first form prints a list of values (measures) in the WS-2300 that ws2300 can read and set. The second form is used to read and set the measures individually. The third form is used capturing a single sample to a log file or SQL database. The fourth form causes ws2300 to become a daemon continuously saving samples to log files and databases.

tty-device is the name of the tty device the WS-2300’s serial interface is connected to. It can also have the form ws2300://host:port, which means share the port a ws2300 daemon that is running on host and listening to port is using.


This program was developed with no input from the manufacturer, LaCrosse. LaCrosse has said that using non-standard software such as this program with the weather station may damage it, and such damage is not covered by the warranty.

In the past LaCrosse has threatened to legally pursue people who publish the protocols used by WS-2300. As the source code to this program documents the protocols publishing it may put you at risk.


Measures can be displayed in a human readable format and set in an interactive fashion using the command line.

help-measures Prints a table of known measures. Measures have two names - a short one and a long one. You can use either, but be sure to quote the spaces in the long names to protect them from the shell. Other information in the table are the units used by the measure and the is position of the measure value in the WS-2300’s memory map. Eg 300:1 means the measure lives at address 300 (hex) and is 1 nybble (4 bits) long. 310.3 means the measure lives at address 300 (hex), is a 1 bit quantity and is stored in bit 3 (1 << 3). If it isn’t obvious, the measures cd, ct and cw, which print various renditions of the date of the computer running ws2300, aren’t read from the weather station.

measure Putting one or more measure names on the command line displays their current values. In addition to measure names you can supply hexaddress:length to display the raw nybbles at hexaddress, and history: recno[-recno] to display a [range] of history records starting at recno. Recno is 0 for the most recently written record, 1 for the next most recently written record and so on.

=value|=reset Appending =value to a measure sets the measure rather than displaying it. The value is supplied in the same form it is displayed by the read command. If a value contains spaces protect them from the shell by quoting them. Reset can be supplied instead of a value for min/max measure’s and their associated times. This will set a min/max measure to the current reading or its time to the current station time. History and raw memory writes are also supported. The length may be omitted when when doing raw writes as it can be derived from the data. The raw nybbles are always displayed singularly, but you can combine them to specify a large number. Their order is reversed when you combine them as the WS-2300 stores numbers in little endian order, so 1,2,3 is equivalent to 321. If commands to both display and set values are given on the command line all display commands are executed first.


When used in the third and fourth forms, ws2300 captures weather data from the WS-2300 and outputs it in a format suitable for logging or inserting it into an SQL database. Rapidly changing data (eg wind velocity) needs to be captured frequently in order to build up an accurate picture of what happened. This can generate a lot of data. To reduced the amount of data that needs to be stored Ws2300 can aggregate samples taken over a period of time and write them to a single record.

display Capture one record of data and exit. These options follow display:

fields The list of values to be stored for each record. Separate the values using the character ’!’. These values are actually Python expressions that are evaluated each time a sample is taken. They are described in the section "FIELD EXPRESSIONS" below.

url Where the data should be saved. If it has the format csv:filename or ssv:filename the fields are appended to a file as comma (csv) or space (ssv) separated values, one line per record. If filename is omitted they are printed on stdout instead. If url has the format CSV:filename or SSV:filename the file is overwritten with the new data rather than being appended to. Otherwise the url specifies the name of a database ws2300 must connect to to save the data. It must have the format sqlmodule:keyword=value,... Sqlmodule is the name of a Python module that implements the Python Database API, and keyword=value are the keyword arguments that will be passed to that modules "connect()" method. The "EXAMPLES" section has url’s for the more common open source SQL databases. If omitted url defaults to csv, so comma separated values are written to stdout.

sample Samples are taken every sample seconds. Be aware that at best, when using a cable connection, the WS-2300 updates its internal data every 8 seconds. If the sampling frequency is faster than the WS-2300 can supply them then samples will be skipped. If omitted it defaults to 1 second.

save Records are saved every save seconds. This can’t be smaller than sample. Making this N times larger than sample means N samples will be taken per record. Records are always saved at pre-determined times - at save second intervals from the start of the day. Thus the first record saved may have less samples than normal. If omitted it defaults to 1 second.

insert The SQL statement that will be executed to insert a row into the database. This should be omitted for csv and ssv urls. The statement must use the ’?’s as place holders for the values to be inserted, and the ’?’s must match the values in fields both in order and number.

record Continuously capture weather data. Ie, what display does once record does continuously. These options follow record:

config-file-name This option is mandatory. It is the name of a file that specifies what to record and where to put it. This information is described in the same way it is to display. You put the same command line options display takes, ie fields, url, sample, save, and insert, into config-file-name in the same order. Each option must start on a new line but can be split over multiple lines by starting successive lines with white space. Unlike display, record can save to several databases at once. Each field, url, etc definition is separated with blank lines or comments. A comment is a line starting with a # character.

pid-file-name If supplied and is not the character .’ (decimal point) the program runs in the background and writes its messages to the syslog LOG_DAEMON. The pid of the background process is written to pid-file-name if it is supplied and isn’t .’ (decimal point) or -’ (minus).

email-address This is a comma separated list of address to send email to if the program exits abnormally. /usr/sbin/sendmail is used to send the email. It is supplied by most ’nix SMTP servers. If this is a .’ (decimal point) no email is sent.

recovery-file-name If not .’ (decimal point) samples that haven’t been saved to disk are written to this file. When the program is next started it reads all unwritten samples from the recovery file, saving them when the time comes. If a recovery file is not used all unsaved data is lost when the daemon is restarted. If the configuration is changed such that new fields are added that aren’t in the saved data then their values are taken from the current weather station readings. This heuristic doesn’t work well if daemon is restarted a long time after changing the configuration file.

port If not .’ (decimal point) ws2300 will make its serial port available to other instances of ws2300 via this TCP port. The other instances use the ws2300://host:port syntax for tty-device to access it. As communications to the ws2300 is very slow this feature can’t be used too heavily.


The expressions in the fields parameter are Python expressions. The following variables are available. In the variable names only the short forms of the measure names may be used. The variables always return floating point numbers. In the case of dates and times this represents the number of seconds since midnight 1970-01-01, UTC.

endtime The time the save period finishes. Times recorded when a sample is taken such as cw and sw are unpredictable in that they depend on when sampling was started and when how long the WS-2300 takes to respond. The endtime on the other hand is always exactly the time the save period is due to finish, regardless of when samples where taken or how long it took to read them. For example, if samples are being saved every hour then this value will always be exactly on the hour, and thus the minutes and seconds will be 0.

None An SQL null.

starttime The time the save period started. For the first sample saved this will be the time ws2300 was started. Thereafter it always equals the previous endtime.

ws.measure[0] The first sample taken for measure.

ws.measure[-1] The last sample taken for measure.

ws.measure.avg The average (arithmetic mean) of the samples taken for measure.

ws.measure.cnt The number of the samples taken for measure.

ws.measure.max The maximum sample taken for measure.

ws.measure.median The median of the samples taken for measure.

ws.measure.min The minimum sample taken for measure.

ws.measure.std The standard deviation of samples taken for measure.

ws.wv.dir, ws.wv.speed The measure wv (wind velocity) is special. It is a vector that has two components: direction and speed. The aggregates (first, last, average, etc) are stored separately. Thus ws.wv.dir.avg is the average wind velocity direction. To get a feel for what the wind velocity is, imagine an air molecule at the sensor at the start of the recording period. It gets blown around by the wind during the recording period, and at the end of the recording period we take note of its position. The speed and direction it would take to get from the sensor to that position in a straight line over the recording period is its average wind velocity. All the other aggregates are calculated the same way its scalar cousins, ws (wind speed) and w0 (wind direction).

The following Python modules are also available:


All Python’s builtin methods are available. In addition these functions can be used:

db.DateFromTicks(ticks) Convert a time field into something acceptable for a DATE field in the SQL database being used.

db.TimeFromTicks(ticks) Convert a time field into something acceptable for a TIME field in the SQL database being used.

db.TimespanFromTicks(ticks) Convert a time field into something acceptable for a TIMESPAN field in the SQL database being used.

select(’table.field’, whereclause) Return a value from an SQL table. In csv and ssv url’s this function always returns 0. The value from the first row found by this select clause is returned:

  select field from table where whereclause

generator(’table.field’, whereclause) Identical to select, except the field in the database is incremented after each call. In csv and ssv url’s this function returns the number of records saved so far.


Ws2300 can be extended in two ways. Both require the ability to program in Python. The simple way is to write your own Python Database API module. This is not as complex as it sounds as ws2300 doesn’t actually use much of the API. Here is a example that appends the records as lines containing ’|’ separated fields to a text file:
    class Db:
      def __init__(self, filename):
        self.handle = file(filename, "a")
      def cursor(self): return self
      def commit(self): pass
      def close(self): self.handle.close()
      # Called by ws2300 each to write each new record.
      # data is a tuple containing the fields, ie the
      # result of evaluating the Python expressions
      # given on the command line.
      def execute(self, sql, data):
        record = ’|’.join([str(field) for field in data])

def connect(filename=None): return Db(filename)

To use your module simply stick it in the current directory, and pass a url like mydb:filename=’weather.txt’ to ws2300.

To do really radical things can be used as a module. Things defined in there are:

SerialPort A class defining the abstract interface to a serial port. Porting ws2300 to Windows for example would be just a case of implementing this interface under Windows and arranging it to be used instead of LinuxSerialPort.

LinuxSerialPort A class implementing SerialPort for Linux. After creating one of these using LinuxSerialPort(tty_device), call open() and call close() when you are finished with it.

Ws2300 A class that implements the protocol used by the WS-2300. Ws2300(serialPort) creates an instance of this class. You pass it an open SerialPort. read_safe(address,nybble_count) reads nybble_count nybbles starting at address and returns them in a tuple of int’s. Similarly, write_safe(address,data) writes the nybbles in the tuple data to address.

Measure Is a class that defines a measure. Instances have the fields: address, the address of the measure in the Ws2300’s memory map, conv, an instance of Conversion defining the type of data, id, the short name of the measure, and name the long name of the measure. The class variable Measure.IDS is a mapping from a measures short name to its Measure instance.

Conversion Is a class that defines a data type stored by the WS-2300. Instances have the fields: description, a string describing the type, nybble_count, the number of nybbles occupied by the data type on the WS-2300, and units, the SI units used to represent the measure. Instances have the functions: binary2value(nybbles) converts the raw nybbles returned by Ws2300.read_safe() into the number used to represent the measure in Python, value2binary(value) converts the Python number used to represent the measure into nybbles that can be written by Ws2300.write_safe(), str(value) converts the Python value into a human readable string, and parse(str) converts the string produced by str() to its Python value.

HistoryMeasure is a class defining a history measure. It has a separate class because history is unusual in two ways. Unlike say indoor temperature which has a single occurence there are many history records, and whereas an indoor temperature is represented by a single number a history record contains multiple values. The class method HistoryMeasure.set_constants(ws2300) must be called prior to use to initialise the class. The constructor HistoryMeasure(record_number) creates a Measure for the passed history record number. The instance method binary2value(nybbles) returns a HistoryConversion.HistoryRecord instance which contains the properties temp_indoor, temp_outdoor. pressure_absolute, humidity_indoor, humidity_outdoor, rain, wind_speed and wind_direction.

read_measures(ws2300,measures) Identical to the Python expression [ws2300.read_data(m.address, m.conv.nybble_count) for m in measures], except its more efficient.

A complete program that would print the indoor temperature and humidity reported by the WS-2300, followed by the same things from the first 10 history records.

import ws2300
serialPort = ws2300.LinuxSerialPort("/dev/ttyS0")
  ws = ws2300.Ws2300(serialPort)
  measures = [
  data = ws2300.read_measurements(ws, measures)
  hist_measures = [ws2300.HistoryMeasure(recno) for recno in range(10)]
  hist_data = ws2300.read_measurements(ws, hist_measures)
print [
    for m, d in zip(measures, data)]
for recno in range(len(hist_measures)):
  history_record = hist_measures[recno].conv.binary2value(hist_data[recno])
  print history_record.temp_indoor, history_record.humidity_indoor


In these examples the WS-2300 is assumed to be connected to the serial port /dev/ttyS0.

ws2300 help-measures Prints out all known measures. This is the first thing you should run.

ws2300 /dev/ttyS0 ’indoor temp’ ’indoor humidity’ Displays the indoor temperature and humidity in a nice readable format.

ws2300 /dev/ttyS0 it ih Same as the previous example, but uses the short measure names.

ws2300 /dev/ttyS0 ’lcd backlight=on’ Sets the LCD Backlight bit on in the WS-2300’s memory. As you might guess, this turns on the backlight.

ws2300 /dev/ttyS0 sd=2005-12-25 st=12:00:00 Set the weather station’s idea of the date and time to 12 noon Christmas day, 2005.

ws2300 /dev/ttyS0 sd=$(date +%Y-%d-%m) st=$(date +%H-%M-%S) If entered on a unix/linux machines command prompt this with set the stations idea of the date and time to the computers time.

ws2300 /dev/ttyS0 wch=reset wchw=reset Reset the wind chill maximum. You should always reset both the value and the time.

ws2300 /dev/ttyS0 54d:1 Display the connection type nybble, which happens to live at address 54d.

ws2300 /dev/ttyS0 54d=0,2,3 Set nybbles at addresses 54d, 54e and 54f to 0, 2 and 3 respectively. DON’T DO THIS!

ws2300 /dev/ttyS0 54d=0,32 Identical to the previous example. DON’T DO THIS!

ws2300 /dev/ttyS0 history:0 Display the most recent history record.

ws2300 /dev/ttyS0 history:0-174 Display all history records.

ws2300 /dev/ttyS0 display[0]!ws.sw Print to stdout the computers time and the current station time as as floating pointing numbers representing the number of seconds since the start of 1970-01-01, UTC. Probably not what you wanted.

ws2300 /dev/ttyS0 display ’db.TimestampFromTicks([0])!db.TimestampFromTicks(ws.sw)’ Print to stdout the computers time and the current station time as text, UTC. Still probably not what you wanted.

ws2300 /dev/ttyS0 display ’db.TimestampFromTicks([0]-time.timezone)!db.TimestampFromTicks(ws.sw-time.timezone)’ Print to stdout the computers time and the current station time as text, local time.

ws2300 /dev/ttyS0 display ’[0]![0]’ Print to stdout the indoor temperature in degrees Celsius, and the wind speed in meters per second.

ws2300 /dev/ttyS0 display ’[0]*9/5+32![0]/1609.344*3600’ Print to stdout the indoor temperature in degrees Fahrenheit, and the wind speed in miles per hour.

ws2300 /dev/ttyS0 display ws.wv.dir.avg!ws.wv.speed.avg csv 8 300 Print to stdout the average wind velocity over a 5 minute period, sampling every 8 seconds.

ws2300 /dev/ttyS0 display ws.wv.dir.avg!ws.wv.speed.avg ’kinterbasdb: dsn= Display the average wind velocity over a 15 minute period, sampling every 8 seconds, to the table ’weather’ in a firebird database running on the local machine and stored in the file /home/rstuart/weather.gdb.

ws2300 /dev/ttyS0 display ws.wv.dir.avg!ws.wv.speed.avg ’pyPgSql.PgSql: host= Display the average wind velocity over a 15 minute period, sampling every 8 seconds, to the table ’weather’ in a postgresql database running on the local machine and stored in the database weather.

ws2300 /dev/ttyS0 display ws.wv.dir.avg!ws.wv.speed.avg ’_mysql: host= Display the average wind velocity over a 15 minute period, sampling every 8 seconds, to the table ’weather’ in a MySql database running on the local machine and stored in the database weather.

ws2300 /dev/ttyS0 record /etc/ws2300/ws2300.conf /var/run/ root /var/lib/ws2300/ws2300.recovery 8192 Run in the background recording the data specified in the file /etc/ws2300/ws2300.conf. Write the PID of the background process to /var/run/ If something goes wrong (eg the WS-2300 fails to response or a database update fails) send email to root before exiting. Save unwritten data to /var/lib/ws2300/ws2300.recovery, so that if the daemon is restarted no data is lost. Make the serial port available to other instances of ws2300 via TCP socket 8192. If those other instances were running on the same machine they would access the serial port by using ws2300:// for the tty-device. If this is the contents of /etc/ws2300/ws2300.conf then three sets of data would be captured, as described in the comments.

# This first capture spec writes the data to csv text
# file, overwriting it for each new data sample.  The
# data is actually written to a temporary file which
# is then moved to the correct filename so it someone
# reading it never sees 1/2 written data.  This format
# easily digested by CGI scripts to generate web pages.
db.TimestampFromTicks([-1]-time.timezone)   !
  db.TimestampFromTicks(ws.sw[-1]-time.timezone) !
  ws.ot[-1]       ! ws.oh[-1]                    !
  ws.wv.speed.avg ! ws.wv.dir.avg                !
  ws.rd[-1]       ![-1]

# # This capture spec captures all weather data every hour. # It is written to an SQL database. # db.TimestampFromTicks(starttime) ! db.TimestampFromTicks(endtime) ! db.TimestampFromTicks(ws.sw[-1]) ! db.TimestampFromTicks([-1]) ! ws.sw.cnt ! ws.ot.avg ! ws.oh.avg ! ws.rt[-1] ! ! ! ws.ih.avg ! ws.wv.speed.avg ! ws.wv.speed.std ! ws.wv.dir.avg ! ws.wv.dir.std ! kinterbasdb: dsn="", user="sysdba", password="sysdba", dialect=3 8 3600 insert into weather_all values (?,?,?,?,?,?,?,?,?,?,?,?,?,?,?,?)

# # This capture spec captures the wind velocity data # every 5 minutes and writes it to an SQL database. # Wind velocity changes rapidly, so I like to keep a # close eye on it. # db.TimestampFromTicks(starttime) ! db.TimestampFromTicks(endtime) ! ! ! ws.wv.speed.avg ! ws.wv.speed.std ! ws.wv.dir.avg ! ws.wv.dir.std kinterbasdb: dsn="", user="sysdba", password="sysdba", dialect=3 8 300 insert into weather_wind values (?,?,?,?,?,?,?,?)

SEE ALSO LaCrosse’s home page for the WS-2300. Covers the math for to aggregating wind velocities. The code base ws2300 was derived from. Open2300 was written by Kenneth Lavrsen. If ws2300 doesn’t suit your needs perhaps open2300 will.

memory_map_2300.txt The WS-2300’s memory map. It was put together by reverse engineering the WS-2300. This was done mainly on the German language Weather Station Forum, This file should be included with the ws2300 distribution.


Russell Stuart, <>.
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Version 1.9 WS2300 (1) May 2014

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