Information about compatible insulin pumps

"Can I do OpenAPS with this pump?"

Currently, only the following Medtronic MiniMed models allow us to remotely set temporary basal rate commands, which is required to do OpenAPS:

523/723 (with firmware 2.4A or lower)
554/754 (European Veo, with firmware 2.6A or lower; OR Canadian Veo with firmware 2.7A or lower)

NOTE: For European/WorldWide users who have access to a DANA*R insulin pump, you may be able to use AndroidAPS, which leverages OpenAPS’s oref0 algorithm but allows you to interface using an Android phone and Bluetooth to communicate directly with the DANA*R pump. See here for instructions and details related to AndroidAPS.

How to check pump firmware (check for presence of PC Connect)

To check firmware, hit Esc on the home screen and scroll all the way to the bottom. You can also go into the Utilities menu and “Connect Devices” menu and look for a PC Connect option. If that is present, the pump will not work for looping. If it’s absent, it should be able to receive temp basal commands.)

If you have one of the above mentioned pumps, but it has buttons that do not work, use the instructions found on this Imgur photo album to repair your pump.

Why do I need a certain pump firmware

Due to changes in the firmware, the openaps tools are only able to function in full on the above pump models. Security features were added after the firmware version 2.4 in the US that prevent making some remote adjustments via the CareLink USB stick. Each pump series is slightly different, and openaps functionality is still being ironed out for some of them. For 512/712 pumps, certain commands like Read Settings, BG Targets and certain Read Basal Profile are not available, and requires creating a static json for needed info missing to successfully run the loop (see example here).

If you are not based in the US, some later model pumps and firmware may be compatible. Check for PC Connect presence to determine compatibility.

Tips for finding a compatible pump

If you need to acquire an appropriate pump check CraigsList or other sites like Medwow or talk to friends in your local community to see if there are any old pumps lying around in their closets gathering dust. MedWow is an eBay-like source for used pumps. SearchTempest is a great tool for searching Craigslist nationally all at once. In addition to searching for listings, consider posting an offer to Craigslist or ask around local community groups.

Note: If you’re buying a pump online, we recommend you ask the seller to confirm the firmware version of the pump. (You may also want to consider asking for a video of the pump with working functionality before purchasing.)

Make sure you understand your pump basics

If you are considering moving from Multiple Daily Injections (MDI) to an insulin pump - or changing brands/types of pumps - it is important that you have VERY detailed knowledge about the way a pump works. Insulin pumps use both basal and bolus settings for dosing and only use fast acting insulin. If you just purchased a compatible pump you are probably eager to start closing the loop. OpenAPS uses the settings and information that is manually set by the user (usually with help from their Healthcare Provider) into the pump to make dosing adjustments. First things first: make sure you understand how to safely use your pump in “manual mode” before proceeding.

Battery usage

Repeated wireless communication with the pump drains the battery quite quickly. With a loop running every five minutes, a standard alkaline AAA—recommended by Medtronic—lasts somewhere between four to six days before the pump goes to a “Low Battery” state and stops allowing wireless transmission. Lithium batteries last significantly longer but do not give much warning when they are about to die, but alerts can be created in Nightscout to provide warning about the status of the battery. For further information on batteries, see this study on AAA battery use in a looping pump.