Monday, 2 January 2012

Viewing Your Solar Panel Data Without Sunny Webbox. View Sunny Explorer Online

How to View Your PV Solar Panel Data output without an SMA Sunny Webbox? View Sunny Explorer Data Online

The SMA Sunny Webbox gives a very good way to view your solar panel electricity production data remotely but is a very expensive solution at around £400. The SMA Sunny Webbox gives you an IP address that constantly publishes your solar generation data to the internet so that you can view from anywhere.

UPDATE - see feedback below from Nick, since this post I am now using sma-uploader to automatically load my live and historic data from my Sunny Boy inverter to PVOoutput

There is an alternative way to view Sunny Explorer data online if you have some time to set it up. Although it is more clunky than the Sunny Webbox it is free and will save you the cost of buying the Webbox. This only works for SMA Sunny Boy inverters - ours is a 3000HF but I believe it will also work with the TL series such as 4000TL as well.

The essence of this solution is that you run the Sunny Explorer software on a laptop which connects to the SMA Sunny Boy 3000HF (or 2000/2500HF or 4000TL) inverters and is running during the day only using the Sunny Explorer software. The screen capture software takes a screen shot of the Sunny Explorer output every 2 minutes and saves a copy as a JPG or PNG file on your laptop.

The FTP batch file copies the screen image to your webserver where it can be viewed from anywhere in the world with an internet connection.

You can see an example of the output from this method here

What you will need:

1) Web hosting space and a domain (I already have this for other websites so no additional cost)

2) A PC or laptop that has bluetooth and can connect to the Sunny Boy Inverter using Sunny Explorer software

3) A small screen capture programme, I've used Auto Screen Capture which produces an example file as below

Sunny Webbox Alternative

4) An FTP batch file to copy the screen capture images. This link explains how to setup the FTP batch file

An alternative that I have considered is making use of the Command Line batch processing facility within Sunny Explorer to export the daily generation data to a folder on my server. This folder is replicated


  1. Why not use
    They have a full site to display the output of your array and free apps that use Sunny Explorer software to retrieve and upload the readings directly from your inverter.

  2. Thanks, that is a very good point. After I posted this blog entry I found some software that allows you to load your data to PVoutput in real time. The software I used is SMA Uploader as I had problems with PV Beancounter