Author Topic: Goodbye Vera  (Read 9552 times)

Offline kigmatzomat

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Re: Goodbye Vera
« Reply #30 on: March 01, 2017, 09:58:33 pm »
Hi fuzzysb,

Sorry to see you leaving.

If it's something we can do to change your mind, or if you decide to come back, don't hesitate to let us know.

Let's count the ways you could change users' minds.....

*Start doing soak tests. Release new firmware to 10% of the user base after QA is complete, wait a week, and see what bugs appear.

*Do QA.

*Stop making the UI less functional for prettier layouts. Pretty took away my thermostat's heat/cool set point. Friday it was 80F and then 30F on Saturday. A single set point don't cut it.

*Scene editing should be fast. There are no device updates to refresh. That should be the one place that flies. The pretty makes things slow.

*Luup scripts are core functionality; broken support for common operators is totally unacceptable. My firmware is 5 versions behind because it works and I can live without the new features.

*Why am I going to trust you with Alexa when your security model only keeps people from viewing logs and energy?  They can unlock my house if they get on my wifi but God forbid they see my electricity usage.

*Why is your security model cloud based when this is a self-contained unit? 

*Why do I need cloud authentication to read logs on a USB drive?

*Find the top 10 most popular devices (zwave, wifi, Zigbee, Bluetooth) that vera doesn't support and fix that. I really have trouble believing that manufacturers aren't willing to provide you their command APIs so they can sell more stuff.

*Repeat the above at least quarterly.

Offline SirMeili

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Re: Goodbye Vera
« Reply #31 on: March 02, 2017, 08:12:12 pm »
So I left Vera in May of 2015 to go to homeseer and haven't looked back. I think Vera has its place, but it wasn't in my house. Yes it is relatively expensive and yes plugins can cost money.

Some thoughts:

Don't buy the pro version.

Consider buying the non pi version (windows/Linux) and then running that on a pi if you want. This way if you want to move to a different platform, you can. The pi license is only good on pis. There is information on this on the forums.

Plugins do cost but I found I didn't need all the ones I had in my Vera. For instance I had my nest in my Vera, but for the first 1.5 years of being on homeseer I didn't. I just didn't need that automated for the most art (I work from home so the normal nest scheduler works great for me). When I did need it. I got the plugin.

Look for the free alternatives to plugins. Some, like the hue, have multiple paid versions and free ones. Especially look up jon00s plugins.

Look into the z-net z-wave interface. Holy cow! My Vera (with the antenna mod) would constantly miss messages.  With the z-net most of my devices talk directly to it and there are no missed messages. Even my locks work great! And you can get and run multiple interfaces (USB, z-net, etc)

Wait until May or November to buy. They do 50% off software then.

And about the paid plugins. Yes they cost, but note that by far these are user created and supported plugins. That means that the bulk of the money goes to the developer (I think HS takes 30%). So you are supporting a fellow user when you pay for it.

Utilize the free 30day trial. For the main software and before you buy a plugin. It really helps you know what you're getting into.

Finally some observations:
I don't have to restart anything after every little change.  Homeseer runs for months without restarts and small changes take affect instantly.

There is a learning curve to using homeseer. There event engine is different than the Vera but once you get used to it, it's very powerful.

I think that's it. Vera was a great starting point for me, but I outgrew it fast and that was without a lot of devices/logic.


Sent from my XT1585 using Tapatalk
« Last Edit: March 02, 2017, 08:14:51 pm by SirMeili »
VeraLite (Live); ISY 994i (Live); Vera 3 (Waiting to replace VeraLite); Vera Edge (Waiting for all the bugs to be fixed); Xuan StackBox (Testing and waiting for more plugins and for it to mature)
Countless z-wave and insteon devices :D

Online integlikewhoa

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Re: Goodbye Vera
« Reply #32 on: March 02, 2017, 11:24:34 pm »
So I left Vera in May of 2015 to go to homeseer and haven't looked back. I think Vera has its place, but it wasn't in my house. Yes it is relatively expensive and yes plugins can cost money.

Some thoughts:

Don't buy the pro version.

Consider buying the non pi version (windows/Linux) and then running that on a pi if you want. This way if you want to move to a different platform, you can. The pi license is only good on pis. There is information on this on the forums.

Plugins do cost but I found I didn't need all the ones I had in my Vera. For instance I had my nest in my Vera, but for the first 1.5 years of being on homeseer I didn't. I just didn't need that automated for the most art (I work from home so the normal nest scheduler works great for me). When I did need it. I got the plugin.

Look for the free alternatives to plugins. Some, like the hue, have multiple paid versions and free ones. Especially look up jon00s plugins.

Look into the z-net z-wave interface. Holy cow! My Vera (with the antenna mod) would constantly miss messages.  With the z-net most of my devices talk directly to it and there are no missed messages. Even my locks work great! And you can get and run multiple interfaces (USB, z-net, etc)

Wait until May or November to buy. They do 50% off software then.

And about the paid plugins. Yes they cost, but note that by far these are user created and supported plugins. That means that the bulk of the money goes to the developer (I think HS takes 30%). So you are supporting a fellow user when you pay for it.

Utilize the free 30day trial. For the main software and before you buy a plugin. It really helps you know what you're getting into.

Finally some observations:
I don't have to restart anything after every little change.  Homeseer runs for months without restarts and small changes take affect instantly.

There is a learning curve to using homeseer. There event engine is different than the Vera but once you get used to it, it's very powerful.

I think that's it. Vera was a great starting point for me, but I outgrew it fast and that was without a lot of devices/logic.


Sent from my XT1585 using Tapatalk

Well said I forgot when I left to HomeSeer (a little over a year I'm guessing) and you pretty much said all that I could have. I also recommend a non pro version of full HS3. I also tested Pi and altho it works better then VERA I'm a windows person and it was alot easier and powerful to run it on a mini pc.

Offline John M.

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Re: Goodbye Vera
« Reply #33 on: March 03, 2017, 04:20:59 am »
Hi fuzzysb,

Sorry to see you leaving.

If it's something we can do to change your mind, or if you decide to come back, don't hesitate to let us know.

@John M.

 Hope you have read all of the posts in the thread.. The comments on this forum have been pretty much consistent for quite some time. Many of us are still on UI5 and plan to stay there until the stability problems are fixed.

Z

Hey Guys,

I'm not here just to annoy you, so please don't bash me. I have a pretty complex setup of devices at home as well, and I often encounter the same hiccups. Some things I even sort out with information from here, on the forums, so we all understand the importance of this community.

I can re-assure you that every constructive feedback from here, will be seen by our R&D in one form or another.This is pretty much my job here.I gather feedback, and give a hand on the spot with things that stand in my hand to do so.

I wish as well, everything to be perfect starting from tomorrow, but the there are a lot of things going on in the background, that make things harder than we'd like. But this doesn't mean we will ever slow down our paces or give up.We see it just another challenge to conquer. Our team has grown tenfold in the last two years and will continue to grow.
« Last Edit: March 03, 2017, 02:12:07 pm by John M. »
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Offline BOFH

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Re: Goodbye Vera
« Reply #34 on: March 03, 2017, 01:57:41 pm »
I don't run a real intricate setup but so far it's been pretty stable for me apart from some hiccups with firmware updates on my Vera 3 running out of room. I probably have more Vera's then most as I run a dual non bridged unit setup that uses http calls to cooperate with each other as to spread the load. I have enough mains devices and both Vera 3's have the antenna mod so the mesh is pretty well covered. Apart from those I have an Edge and a Plus that are intended to replace the duo of Vera 3's to take advantage of Zwave+ and the faster CPU and more memory.

That migration is not going as fast as I had planned as I want to make sure to have a stable UI7 firmware before I make the jump. The Alexa integration is a plus for me so I'm waiting for that to come out of beta (both FW and integration) before starting. I'm looking at a weekend as I plan to start from scratch rather then do a backup & restore. With 4 Vera's in the house, each with it's own mesh, I'm pleasantly surprised by them getting along and not interfering with each other.

heads up from the Vera team is appreciated in these forums. I for one don't have a Facebook or twitter account so whatever your team posts there I am oblivious to.  8)

On the Alexa front, there have been several requests for a dedicated Alexa sub forum. Any chance you can put in a good word for that?

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Offline John M.

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Re: Goodbye Vera
« Reply #35 on: March 03, 2017, 02:15:09 pm »
Thank you for the good words BOFH,


Connected Objects board is live : http://forum.micasaverde.com/index.php/board,84.0.html



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Online integlikewhoa

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Re: Goodbye Vera
« Reply #36 on: March 03, 2017, 04:29:10 pm »
Your problems are what many of us faced. You say you don't have a intricate setup but yet have multiple vera's running different tasks. Your not a novice user as you might think you are. 

I probably have more Vera's then most

I had 6 vera's for two houses at one point. Was upgrading every year (actually less at one point starting with lites, then edge, then the plus is when I threw in the towel on each house) due to lack of RAM and performance from a under powered hardware platform. People think switching to a competitor is expensive, but I think they forget to look at full scope of things.  Vera even if it was only 99-149.99 each unit cost me alot more not to mention my time or frustration, just talking physical hardware.

That migration is not going as fast as I had planned as I want to make sure to have a stable UI7 firmware before I make the jump.

[/quote]

The truth on this is ui7 has been out since mid 2014 officially and in beta before that. We are very close to 3 years of ui7 and waiting to get "stable". If after 3 years its not there, well you can fill in your own assumptions.

Vera has its place and I still have a unit going that I monitor for a relative that got some of my old parts. Its a great community and I learned alot starting off here. I watched my mentors leave before me and never understood why until I did myself. I just waited way too long to realize cheap can be expensive and got cought up in thinking veras plugins and the versatility couldn't be matched (I was wrong). It's like that first ugly girlfriend you don't want to let go of, and after you bagged the next one you look back thinking your an idiot for waiting so long for find better. Hope others don't have to make the same mistake I did.

Offline gwichman

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Re: Goodbye Vera
« Reply #37 on: March 03, 2017, 05:04:00 pm »
I've found this thread to be incredibly helpful..

For what it's worth and in an attempt to be constructive, what truly pushes me to look for green pastures are:
  • by far the worst is when you can't connect to your vera. You can't even control your house when you're away from it like when the vera app won't connect because the vera stops responding. And it's not until you get home and power cycle it that you regain control.
  • second worse is when you execute an action in the vera app and it either doesn't work at all (despite being connected), or there is some kind of wacky 5-10 second delay before it does what you told it to. e.g. execute a scene that turns a bunch of lights on and you're standing there in your dark house and nothing happens. you walk around turning them on manually before going to power cycle the vera and then halfway through that everything turns on.
  • third worst is how LUA wants to restart everytime i cough. If I add so much as a single new light to the system, It takes me 2 minutes per scene that i want to update regarding that light to teach each scene to turn it on or off because each time it restarts LUA. annoying..
  • when geofencing doesn't work reliably for ANY reason it is frustrating.
  • to a lesser extent, the interface does have annoying things about it. The biggest is why there is only 1 set point for thermostats set to auto (and why this hasn't changed in 2+ years?).'
  • adding devices that are the #1 sold zwave device (e.g. light switch) on amazon and having to add it as a generic device while you thumb through a long list of devices wondering who even buys those gives off a bad impression. Worse yet if they don't work and the "solution" is to edit some field manually.
so there you go.. i think if these were resolved (at least 1-4) I wouldn't be here typing any of this.

Online PrincessCleavage

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Goodbye Vera
« Reply #38 on: March 03, 2017, 08:22:38 pm »
It's a bit of a concern reading this when I just bought an edge and considering more. After reading this I will def look at homeseer. Thanks for the feedback
« Last Edit: March 03, 2017, 08:26:08 pm by PrincessCleavage »

Offline zedrally

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Re: Goodbye Vera
« Reply #39 on: March 03, 2017, 08:32:26 pm »
Princess, if you want a bet both ways, consider using a UZB stick rather than the built in radio. Then you can take your Z-Wave network with you if you decide to go.
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Offline rafale77

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Re: Goodbye Vera
« Reply #40 on: March 03, 2017, 09:40:13 pm »
Well it all sound very negative but the Vera has its positives too.
The community and the app developers are outstanding (amg0, akbooer, reneboer just to name a few). Even some of the mcv apps are quite good once they get to a certain level of maturity (nest and hue come to mind). One would be hard pressed to find such a broad range of support elsewhere. The core UI firmware is the weakest link and can bring a lot of frustration even if you look at it as a hobby.
127 zwave nodes, 8 zigbee nodes, 256 devices, 17 apps, 122 scenes on a Vera Plus linked with Echo and HomeKit through bridges

Offline aptalca

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Re: Goodbye Vera
« Reply #41 on: March 04, 2017, 12:47:09 am »
Well it all sound very negative but the Vera has its positives too.
The community and the app developers are outstanding (amg0, akbooer, reneboer just to name a few). Even some of the mcv apps are quite good once they get to a certain level of maturity (nest and hue come to mind). One would be hard pressed to find such a broad range of support elsewhere. The core UI firmware is the weakest link and can bring a lot of frustration even if you look at it as a hobby.

You're right, the developers are great, but there used to be more and some have jumped ship in recent past.

My biggest issues with vera were:
1) severely underwhelming hardware compared to competitors. $35 raspberry pi runs circles around most of vera hw.
2) ui7 still feeling like beta (I ended up staying on ui5 for a long time even though it didn't support the latest gen devices, just for stability)
3) lack of stability, random background reboots (probably due to a combo of lackluster hw and unstable core fw)

The last straw came when I realized vera became the last company anybody else integrated with. All these new platforms like SmartThings, wink, etc. as well as homeseer get integrated with the latest technologies and services like ifttt, alexa, Google home, etc. almost right away. But not Vera. Not sure if it's because Vera is unable to get their ducks in a row or they simply don't care about these collaborations, or if these companies simply don't take Vera seriously enough. Either way, I'm a gadget head and that's why I was drawn to Vera in the first place, but if Vera is not working with the latest and the greatest, I gotta move on (ironically, when I bought my veralite, it was the featured zwave controller on Amazon, unfortunately vera was unable capitalize on their first move advantage and fell way behind)

I still lurk here because I am supporting an app (docker container for the home automation bridge for alexa integration)
« Last Edit: March 04, 2017, 12:51:03 am by aptalca »

Offline rafale77

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Re: Goodbye Vera
« Reply #42 on: March 04, 2017, 03:16:14 am »
Sadly I cannot agree more. I am on the verge of jumping ship myself. It may not happen all at once because of the size of my setup but I am more and more convinced that there are more reliable and stable platforms out there...
127 zwave nodes, 8 zigbee nodes, 256 devices, 17 apps, 122 scenes on a Vera Plus linked with Echo and HomeKit through bridges

Offline gwichman

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Re: Goodbye Vera
« Reply #43 on: March 04, 2017, 11:08:21 am »
It's a bit of a concern reading this when I just bought an edge and considering more. After reading this I will def look at homeseer. Thanks for the feedback
To be fair, It does often work fine for long stretches and certainly when my setup was simpler with fewer devices and plugins it was solid for me. For the first year i really didn't have any problems at all other then things that i would cause by writing poor PLEG logic :).

Offline MrBoo

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Re: Goodbye Vera
« Reply #44 on: March 04, 2017, 01:18:59 pm »
To add some fairness to the conversation, this is the Vera owned forum and and they allow any and all comments.  People can come here and see the good, the bad and the ugly.  There is a ton of good along with a ton of bad and a good bit of ugly.  May product run forums limit the content to mostly the good.  So I feel users should factor that in when they are evaluating products. 

Having said that, there is no excuse for shoddy firmware releases.  I am sure everyone would rather have one or two solid releases a year, then offer patches for specific issues if those issues are show stoppers.  My Ui6 Vera3 isn't perfect but the environment is stable.  Things work like I expect them to.  But there is always the, "what do I do if something happens to this Vera3"?  So I am researching Homeseer.  There are things I do not like about it.  Keeping my zwave devices on a USB stick scares me worse than the Vera.  But, at this point, it doesn't hurt to keep the options open.