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# 171904 5-May-2015 09:32
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I am wary of not breaking any forum rules here, so I hope it is ok for me to post a link to a blog post I just added to my store. It is not a marketing piece, but a tutorial about how to setup a Z-Wave home automation controller using a Raspberry Pi2, an Aeon Labs USB Z-Stick Gen5, and openHAB.

I thought it might be quite useful for those tinkerers and *geeks* on here who are interested in getting into home automation but have been put off by the initial costs sometimes involved.

Apologies if this is now allowed, please remove this post if I have stepped outside the rules by doing this, but I do think it is a useful piece showing how easy it is to setup one of these systems.

Welcome any feedback!

Here it is;

http://www.smartthingsnz.co.nz/store/build-your-own-z-wave-home-automation-controller/

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  # 1298106 5-May-2015 09:46
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That is cool! 



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  # 1298121 5-May-2015 10:03
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Thanks Stress - pretty easy when you know how ;)!

 
 
 
 


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  # 1298131 5-May-2015 10:16
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whats the speed like of the raspberrypi 2 and memory usage of it on openHAB?

openHAB on my windows machine can quickly get up to around 500MB and sometimes goes higher.

I've been thinking about moving it off my PC, since everytime I need to reboot my home automation can go down for a while until the zwave comes back up (which can be very slow for god knows why).



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  # 1298138 5-May-2015 10:23
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I have only been running it for a day (the new Z-Stick Gen5s only arrived yesterday) but the RPi2 seems to be handling it just fine. I am running the openHAB demo config along with the Z-Wave binding and it is currently using just 11.7% of memory (stable) and idling at about 0.7% CPU.

Startup is taking less than a minute, including initialising the Z-Wave network (for one device only).

The RPi2 is a device that seems more than capable of running openHAB, whereas the original RPi was definitely under-powered. For well under $200 (RPi2 for $50 and Z-Stick Gen5 for $120) you have a pretty useful combo IMO.

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  # 1298145 5-May-2015 10:28
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I've found the delays in zwave messages where the openhab binder tries to resend a failed message over and over really kills the zwave network.  I had this issue when a device appeared as dead, whenever it tried to turn that light switch on, zwave didnt work for about 10 minutes or so.

been thinking about using the mios binding and add the zwave devices back to that (except for the recessed door sensor which doesnt work in mios) but keep using openhab for the rules (sorry completely off topic, well slightly).

adding/removing devices is a lot easier with the usb zwave stick, but openhab binding isnt nearly as good as mios/vera IMO.  but openhab engine is far superior to mios/vera engine.  great thing they work well together :)



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  # 1298157 5-May-2015 10:46
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Are you running the latest snapshot version of the ZWave binding? There has been a load of work/changes to it for the upcoming v1.7.0 release. Definitely worth a look if you haven't already.

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  # 1298170 5-May-2015 10:48
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its probably a couple of months old, was 1.7.0-snapshot, but im guessing the name hasnt actually changed.

can you post a link to where the latest is at?  I remember it took some digging to find the actual latest (well im pretty sure it did)



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  # 1298171 5-May-2015 10:49
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Latest snapshot builds are here - https://openhab.ci.cloudbees.com/job/openHAB/

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  # 1298175 5-May-2015 10:56
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I'm curious about Home Automation, but haven't got into it (yet) so could you explain for me please... What's the advantage of Z-wave over ordinary WiFi?

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  # 1298192 5-May-2015 11:02
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zwave are usually for power devices, motion sensors, door censors etc.

so for turning lights on/off, turning on/off switches (e.g. for heated towel rails, coffee makers, tvs etc), where you cant really use wifi, then zwave lets you do this.  its a similar wireless network, but designed so powered devices (switches) will repeat the signal so the more devices you have the stronger the network.

wifi is great for devices like computers, detected if tvs are on, presence detection via mobile phones etc.  it can turn lights on/off, but when someone turns the light switch off, the wifi bulbs stop working :)

so you generally use a mixture of technologies, thats why openHAB is so great, theres many different support technlogoies.

I use

 

  • zwave
  • network/wifi
  • mqtt
  • raspberry pi with sensors
  • fritzbox for caller id/notifications
  • sonos
  • pop3 to check my voicemail and notify me when i walk past a wall mounted tablet if i have a voicemail waiting



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  # 1298199 5-May-2015 11:03
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Mainly the products that are available.

You can buy micro-relays which sit in behind your normal light switches, inside the flush box, allowing the normal switch to work as expected, but also give you the ability to switch the lights via software. There is nothing that I know of that can do this using WIFI. The same goes for the dimmer models and roller shutter controllers.

There are also many other Z-Wave devices which are battery powered and have very good battery life (1-2yrs), due to the efficient nature of the Z-Wave protocol. Whereas a battery powered WIFI device would potentially only last days or weeks. The Z-Wave protocol was designed from the ground up to support these types of battery powered devices, so it really does excel in this area, even though they can be a little tricky to get setup initially.

Another benefit is the ability of the Z-Wave devices to form a mesh network throughout your home and give much better coverage. Once you start installing a few (non-battery) devices, they build up a mesh network which greatly improves the reach of your network, for even the largest houses.

There are plenty of WIFI v Z-Wave v ZigBee type comparisons on the net that can probably give you a better insight.

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  # 1299320 6-May-2015 18:20
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Hi I’m just getting into setting up OpenHAB and I’m looking at installing a multi split heat pump system, am I best to go with the Daikin system that already has OpenHAB bindings or are there better options available?

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  # 1299372 6-May-2015 19:49
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I have a panasonic heatpump system and using a intesishome wifi controller for it.  They recently released an API for it, but its a invite only API (which is really really stupid), I have a form I need to fill in (by hand) and email back to them to get access to the API.  I just havent had the chance to do this (I have to hook up a printer to print it out :)).

currently im manually turning on the heatpumps via smartphone/wall tablets/pc, but eventually Ill make it so the house turns them on when presence is detected and a few other conditions are met.



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  # 1299380 6-May-2015 19:56
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@Blanch - I know of a few people using my Daikin binding for openHAB which is working well, and I also know of a couple of guys who are currently testing/extending it to work with the newer WIFI modules that the new Daikin models have. So it looks like that should be all working pretty soon. Otherwise, it depends on what brand you choose and whether it has an open API for control/monitoring. As reven has pointed out, Panasonics look like they might be ok, but only time will tell. The other option is to use an IR blaster to control your heatpump - I tried this route with the Daikin but they have notoriously difficult IR codes to simulate so was unable to get anywhere. Hence the native openHAB binding! If you can get your hands on an IR blaster that will work with your heatpump then that will work, but obviously only for one-way control.  

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  # 1299466 6-May-2015 21:28
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Thanks guys, I will check out both the Daikin and Panasonic units, sales people out next week so I will probably have more questions. Very keen on hearing how the API works out reven. Sumnerboy the units are being installed into bedrooms so I would need to setup IR blasters in each room :( I will need one of the Aeon Labs USB Z-Stick Gen5 if I go keyless entry on the front door.

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