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Author Topic: Controling the Vera Z-Wave chip from openHAB  (Read 2736 times)

Offline lolodomo

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Controling the Vera Z-Wave chip from openHAB
« on: July 14, 2015, 05:05:40 am »
One year ago, garrettwp successfully tried controling the Vera Z-Wave chip directly from the Z-Wave openHAB binding.
http://forum.micasaverde.com/index.php/topic,25531.msg181158.html#msg181158
http://forum.micasaverde.com/index.php/topic,25531.msg181433.html#msg181433

Are there other users who tried this solution ?

I would like to discuss about the pros / cons of this solution compared to the MiOS binding solution.

Does the Z-Wave binding support today more devices than Vera (UI5) ?

is openzwave control panel still required today ? Or does HABmin support include/exclude devices in the Z-Wave devices ?

HABmin v1 can be used for Z-Wave configuration (set device parameters and define associations) ?
« Last Edit: July 14, 2015, 05:18:41 am by lolodomo »

Offline guessed

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Re: Controling the Vera Z-Wave chip from openHAB
« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2015, 01:38:57 am »
I didn't try it for very long, and mostly before I wrote the binding.

For the most part, I figured anyone wanting to "add" more Z-Wave than what UI5 supported would either:
a) add it via the MiOS extensions mechanism (zwave_products_user.xml and friends) OR;
b) pickup a UI7 device cheaply somewhere (for the Z-Wave Plus devices)

Z-Wave device support...
So far all my Z-Wave devices are directly supported by Vera.  I suspect this will vary a lot by region/location for each user, and how exotic their Z-Wave devices are.  I have a few that aren't handled by the current openHAB Z-Wave binding, but nothing that a little homework, or a Lua-based Vera Z-Wave -> openHAB Z-Wave config converter,  couldn't fix in a jiffy...

Z-Wave support...
There are a few things (like Routing) that Vera does differently, and it's using some internal/newer Z-Wave API's to support.  It also keeps certain node statistics around in order to support the additional routing functions (all part of the 3.x "Hack" stuff).  I'm not sure if the openHAB driver has this ATM, and given it's undocumented nature, and tight coupling to Z-Wave chip firmware, it may be a while to get it sorted if it doesn't already (you can work most of it out through Vera's Debug logging, if someone cares enough)

Z-Wave Lock support...
This is being worked on for openHAB, but I've not seen updates recently.  There is a LOT of interest in having that come to completion, for obvious reasons.

Device inclusion...
I tinkered with the HABmin UI using my Aeon Dongle and it seemed to do the job just fine.  I'm waiting for this to all get bundled together in openHAB 2.0 before using it more aggressively though, since the separate component installs was going to be more problematic for general users.

Z-Wave antenna extensions...
For me, Vera's Z-Wave functions stabilized in my deployment once I put the external antenna on it.  IMHO, this is one of the few reasons to use Vera "over" a dongle-based solution.  That said, I know @Ap15e was doing some home-solder mods to his Aeon Stick to let it attach an external antenna.  From chats with Aeon @CES this yr, it didn't seem to be on their roadmap to add external antenna capabilities to their dongle.  The Staples Connect (D-Link version) internally has a u.FL connector, like Vera's, so there's hope for a cheaper alternative (although this device is currently US-only, IIRC)



Q: Is there something you're missing from the Binding, that you feel the Raw-ZWave approach will yield?

Offline lolodomo

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Re: Controling the Vera Z-Wave chip from openHAB
« Reply #2 on: July 26, 2015, 05:00:28 am »
Q: Is there something you're missing from the Binding, that you feel the Raw-ZWave approach will yield?

Not at the moment.
My fear is only that new Z-Wave products in the future would not be compatible with my Vera Lite UI5.
And of course I expect more reactivity in the openHAB community to provide efficient software patches to support new Z-wave products.

Offline TC1

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Re: Controling the Vera Z-Wave chip from openHAB
« Reply #3 on: July 26, 2015, 10:07:02 am »
Though I'm not actively involved in OpenHab experimentation, I'll offer a thought/suggestion along the lines of lolodomo's idea.

OpenHab should concentrate in talking directly to one of the generic/oem Sigma Design reference USB implementations that are out there. I realize the lock/security protocol issue is still there, but if one could talk directly to something like this...

http://www.z-wave.me/index.php?id=28

Think about the flexibilty this would afford. What's great about these USB sticks is that they are universal, firmware upgradeable, and can be programmed to work in different countries by the end user.