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3352 posts

Uber Geek

# 238047 30-Jun-2018 20:51
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I have a simple need for monitoring, a black box.

It send an email when circuits changes from open/closed. I'd like to monitor three circuits at least.

Checking the circuits once every few second is plenty fast.

The black box should be robust, and cheap. It only needs to send emails, not receive.

My ISP is Voyager. For email, they use
* an IMAP server,
* that uses authentication
* non-default ports

So the email client is a little complex. Anyone have suggestions?

My research has found these

Raspberry Pi and PiFace


Not sure if these will work though.

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22727 posts

Uber Geek


  # 2046574 30-Jun-2018 21:39
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Chuck something like IFTTT in the mix and it can send using your google account or similar so not be at the mercy of the ISP. Plenty of tutorials out there on using an esp8266 wifi microcontroller to go the other way, but something from adafruit might show how to use it to trigger a rule rather than the internet triggering its outputs.


95 posts

Master Geek

  # 2046609 30-Jun-2018 23:34
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I've done this with Raspberry Pi and PiFace, sending emails via SMTP.
As far as I know, IMAP still sends email via SMTP so your provider should have an SMTP server available.


I've had 2 of these monitoring outputs and sending alerts for just shy of 2 years with no issues, I'm no programmer so the code isn't flash but happy to sanitise and share it if it will help.


3352 posts

Uber Geek

  # 2046621 1-Jul-2018 07:52
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Chuck something like IFTTT in the mix and it can send using your google account or similar so not be at the mercy of the ISP. Plenty of tutorials out there on using an esp8266 wifi microcontroller to go the other way, but something from adafruit might show how to use it to trigger a rule rather than the internet triggering its outputs.

Using IFTTT with Adafruit IO to Make an IoT Door Detector. Know who is comin'

Way cheaper than a guard dog who can use an iPhone, this project will show you how you can use an Adafruit HUZZAH ESP8266 WiFi microcontroller board with a door sensor to email/tweet/text you when your door has opened! + IFTTT

This tutorial will show building a full IoT project using Adafruit.IO and a Huzzah board, adding sensors, and then connecting it to IFTTT (if-this-then-that) an API gateway that can communicate with to give your project tons of connectivity options

What hardware works with IFTTT?

All the things that can talk to all the things using IFTTT.

"IFTTT is an awesome service that lets smart things talk to other smart things. Even if the two smart things don't speak the same language!

Think of the service as a sort of messenger. Maybe you would tell your little brother or sister to go ask mom something when you were kids; IFTTT is like your little brother or sister and will carry a message from one thing to another and talk to both in a way they can understand. The magic behind it is super complicated and sometimes building a recipe that gets things working together can be, too. But because not every smart gadget supports every home assistant or smart hub, it's often the only way to get things working.

The best part is that a lot of companies build products that will work with the IFTTT service. You have the names you know, like Amazon, Google, LG, or Samsung as well as ones you've never heard of before. And just about every type of gadget is supported, from Wi-Fi routers to tea kettles, as well as the services that run on gadgets like Gmail or Cortana. Yes, you can use IFTTT to boil tea every time you get an email if you want."

Things You Should Know Before Using ESP8266 WiFi Module

Things you should know using ESP8266 WiFi module for its safety and easiness as it's very delicate module to use.

"ESP8266 is a 3V WiFi module very popular for its Internet of Things applications.

ESP 8266 maximum working Voltage is 3.6V and its very important to note. You must know how to power it, how to serial-connect it with Arduino safely, how to ping and many other things. "

3352 posts

Uber Geek

  # 2046626 1-Jul-2018 08:45
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dup. Sorry

3352 posts

Uber Geek

  # 2046628 1-Jul-2018 08:46
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This swiss guy's channel, BitlunisLab, has many videos about home automation, including automating a dumb washing machine.

An advanced video, talking about creating a dashboard for several "Internet of things"

He uses "Node-RED"

You can skip to 3:20 to skip the setup

281 posts

Ultimate Geek
Inactive user

  # 2046664 1-Jul-2018 10:02
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Voyager has SMTP for you to submit email:

You don't mention what you are monitoring. A switch closure? An LED? Doesn't matter. I'll assume you have some circuit between your black box and a GPIO.

I recommend a Raspberry Pi running a simple Python script. It's a lot more versatile than an Arduino for this application.

3352 posts

Uber Geek

  # 2046873 1-Jul-2018 15:45
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It's an infra-red "fence" used outdoors.

It's already wired up to my alarm, which sends me a text. However I have to keep a SIM in it, so I was looking for a cheaper long-term solution.

I thought I'd hook it up to my doorbell also.


3352 posts

Uber Geek

  # 2048387 3-Jul-2018 16:00
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"Want to make your project talk to the Internet? Connect your existing project to the Internet to log, stream, and interact with the data it produces? What about all this Internet-of-Things (IoT) stuff?

Adafruit IO is a platform designed (by us!) to display, respond, and interact with your project's data. We also keep your data private (data feeds are private by default) and secure (we will never sell or give this data away to another company) for you. It's the internet of things - for everyone!

Why We Built Adafruit IO

Here at Adafruit, we sell all of these amazing components, but we couldn't find a good way to interact with them over the Internet. There are certainly a lot of great services out there for datalogging, or communicating with your microcontroller over the web, but these services are either too complicated to get started, or they aren't particularly fun to use. So, we decided to experiment with our own system, and that's Adafruit IO. is a cloud service - that just means we run it for you and you don't have to manage it. You can connect to it over the Internet. It's meant primarily for storing and then retrieving data but it can do a lot more than just that!

What can Adafruit IO do for me?

Display your data in real-time, online

Make your project internet-connected: Control motors, read sensor data, and more!

Connect projects to web services like Twitter, RSS feeds, weather services, etc.

Connect your project to other internet-enabled devices

The best part? All of the above is do-able for free with Adafruit IO

Dashboards can handle and visualize multiple feeds of data. Want to display data from a temperature-humidity sensor alongside data from an air quality sensor and add a button to turn on the air-conditioner in your room?

No problem! Dashboards are a feature integrated into Adafruit IO which allow you to chart, graph, gauge, log, and display your data. You can view your dashboards from anywhere in the world.


Use triggers in Adafruit IO to control and react to your data. Configure triggers to email you when your system goes offline, react to a temperature sensor getting too hot, and publish a message to a new feed. "

281 posts

Ultimate Geek
Inactive user

  # 2048444 3-Jul-2018 17:08
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Looks ok. It's in "The Cloud", which basically means "Someone Else's Computer". You'll still need hardware to interface to the fence sensor.

You could do it with an ESP8266 if you wanted something smaller and cheaper than a Pi. I'm pretty sure microPython does SMTP to send emails.

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