Used both openhab and domoticz for some couple of years.
(was) using its own zwave implementation which had several serious problems. IOS app was superb, all configurable. Upgrading to openhab2 from openhab1 brought some problems with it. In openhab1 everything was text file configurable; whereas, in openhab2 half was text configurable, the other half was UI configurable. I don’t know, maybe it s corrected now, it’s been a while. So, that means openhab2 was not backward compliant. One good thing was it was soooo customizable and i liked that very much.
It was so easy to use and configure. There was more config error tolerance. Writing a new python plugin was so easy. When you were configuring a new device, it generally takes about 30 secs max. Used it for over 2 years. The only problem i had was the stability of the overall system. It was hanging or closing itself for whatever reason, so often.
What i like most is the stability. But getting used to the terminology and usage is hard. I never was able to just put a new device in config.yaml and make it work instantly. Requires hard work for configuring, automations, customizing etc. Also error handling logs do not help a bit. But once you set it up; it works flawlessly. Ah, also lack of documentation is a real headache. I wrote many python plugins for domoticz, generally each plugin took 2-3 hrs. But here, writing a custom component took me several weeks sincethere is so little documentation.
Just my humble opinions…
EDIT: As a result, if you look for more customizable, configurable option, go for openhab; if you want it easier to handle, go for domoticz; if you are looking for stability, go for ha. I selected HA for this reason…
What advantage does this offer you? (tbh: sounds like the exact path I don’t want to head down)
I’m honestly not sure how serious of a comment this is… is MisterHouse still a legit thing? Way back in the day I briefly played with some Insteon hardware… but back-burnered it because… hardware was still much too closed and proprietary for my taste. I might still have an email address somewhere with an inbox chock-full of MisterHouse mailing list emails.
Kinda why I’m asking this now… if I’m going to put time and effort…serious time and effort into learning a platform…
most times it feels like HAB and HA are very much in parallel, but in a ‘different approaches to the same problem at the same time’ kinda way? I do feel HAB to be slightly more advanced, but not enough to account for the ‘headstart’.
The thing is… stability is KEY for me and don’t feel that to be one of HAs strong points… at least not speaking from the perspective of running on a RaspPi. It’s actually one of the two? major reasons my curiosity for alternatives has been piqued.
I agree, but it was intentional… I’m more interested in general, overall opinions un-biased by direct response… I’m not at the point of giving up on HA (yet)… and my ‘why’ will come soon enough it’s just a lot to write.
Maybe I should start a follow-up post after dinner…
They are both open-source home automation solutions but implemented using different technologies and architectures. It’s the differences that … can make a difference. What works well for one person may not for another.
If stability is “KEY” I would advise you to use a version of Home Assistant that works well for you and then don’t upgrade until the reasons become very compelling. It’s the breaking changes between versions that can cause unexpected/undesired extra work. However, that’s part of the (current) landscape because Home Assistant is evolving rapidly. For some, it’s the rapid evolution that attracts them to Home Assistant. For others, it’s what keeps them away from Home Assistant.
In contrast openHAB gets two releases a year. If you want to use a new feature but don’t want to wait for the next major release, you’ll need to change to a development version (and all that that implies).
As I think I said, I prefer how good home assistant is at homekit…and having it separate from openhab means if I take down openhab, the homekit integration is not affected…but in saying that openhab does not need to be restarted…pretty much ever.
Which I find the biggest annoyance with home assistant. Every time you add or remove something it needs a restart (and I find the logging of home assistant equally frustrating, having to explicitly add classes into it to see the logs).
For those points, I prefer openhab…it’s logging is extensive (can be scaled back), it’s easy to log an “automation” (a rule in openhab), I prefer the java base of the language, than having to dive into services and templates and conditions that home assistant uses.
And given with one openhab command I can export the operation and state of every item/thing (= entity in home assistant), then pick them up with MQTT Sensors in home assistant, I find it works well for me. My home assistant is “dumb”, display only…it doesn’t contain any automations.
openHAB monitors its configuration files for changes. So when you add an Item and save the file, openHAB will, in fact, reload all Items (and then some).
FWIW, neither openHAB or Home Assistant meet the level of non-stop operation of the home automation software I began using in 2008 (and continue to use). I can add/modify/remove devices and automations without restarting the system. I can tweak one parameter (like an entity’s friendly_name) and the change is instantaneous. I can alter one line of an automation and the moment I save it, it takes effect (if I made a syntax error, the built-in editor flags the offending line). The architecture for this product was developed almost two decades ago and continues to be second to none. Only problem is that it was discontinued in 2006.
Will openHAB or Home Assistant ever adopt this level of non-stop functionality? I don’t know but it’s certainly something to aspire to (given that it was used in home automation software created before almost every so-called ‘smart’ device currently in existence).
Discovered HA after a couple of years of Vera and the difference was night and day in terms of stuff it could do…HA is in my opinion not just a smart home platform, but a “life” platform and should either be treated as a hobby, with frequent tinkering (because “if it ain’t broke, it doesn’t have enough features” ) or gotten to a satisfactory minimum level and left as-is, case in which it will be rock-solid.
Finding documentation or reverse engineering proprietary protocols and devices which HA and OH already have.
HA, OH, et. al. communities can get hostile towards you and see you as a threat.
You get to deal with your own bugs.
UIs are a pain in the neck and swallow hours of time very quickly.
You get to do it your own way.
Features are easier to add.
Less complex configurations as your scope will be far, far smaller than any of the generic engines.
Less complexity when it comes to making changes or extending features.
You need to be at least beginner level capable in coding in something like Python
You can always integrate with HA, OH and get the best of both worlds.
In fairness, if you are going DIY, most home automation is pretty simple. The complexities within engines like HA and OH is in their ability to support a wide range of users, a wide range of devices and support a wide range of features and provide configuration, UIs and documentation for all of it. Which is an admirable task, don’t get me wrong.
I run HA and fhem in parallel. Coming from fhem I wanted to replace it by HA, but actually IMHO fhem is much much better when it comes to automation, long term data logging and RF support. HA on the other hand has the better user interface and more integrations.
Installed a couple Veras for customers of my previous employer… so, experience, but limited… and I’m not trying to go the commercial controller route- related in a way to why I shelved Insteon back in the day. I don’t like… it’s why I’m PC over Mac and Android over iOS. And I don’t like things being at all dependent on ‘the cloud’.
…as far a NUC vs Pi… I imagine a NUCs power consumption to be nowhere near as low as a PIs… and considering the load expected of a (my) controller, processing power isn’t a huge concern? As well as ‘anything I can do with a Pi, I will’… I think Pi’s (SBCs in general really) are amazing. Like… in a ‘if I’d been born 15 years later’ sense.
Agreed and understood on… pretty much all you said? And actually touches upon one of the primary reasons that prompted me to start wondering… I hope to get into that topic this weekend since last night after dinner didn’t happen.
You probably did… I just wanted more of your opinion from your perspective…
Like that… I hadn’t explicitly considered it being an… ‘uptime buffer’
pfft… at this point I’m restarting HA before bed and before work just so I can make sure it stays up until the next time I can put hands on it. …didn’t work today though… came home to a console flooded with errors… pretty sure past tense is proper, think it had since locked up completely…
Was going to comment that you’re barely using HA then… but then responding to buffer for homekit reminded me HA is still a little more than just a preferred frontend…
I’m completely okay with the necessity of restarts when I’m actively making changes… maybe not for every single little change, but I actually like doing full-proper reboots just to completely confirm everything comes up fresh and properly loads while being observed. Hell, I’m even okay with operational reboots to purge leaked memory… clear caches… what have you… so long as there is an ability to schedule those reboots… that said- Is cron available to hass via docker? …it’s on my list of things to investigate once I get my ‘hardened Pi’ hardware finished (Pi4, m.2->USB, 4x18650 UPS) (need to finish the simple 3d printed mounting plate for the m.2)
Not at all likely. Do not get me wrong… my hat is off to every developer, contributor and maintainer of any OSS\OSH project… okay… maybe not every… but, man… there are some really, really good ones out there… TrinityCore, ArcEMU and minecraft-overviewer being some personal faves.
Just… programming and playing guitar are two things that I’d love to be able to do but lack the discipline to properly acquire the abilities.
…and to be honest… wouldn’t want to do it all myself… other people have far too many good ideas for that shit.
Man… Fhem almost had me when I saw the LCars example screenshot… but I don’t speak German and language selection\google translator were fighting me… didn’t feel wise to keep pushing down that avenue…
…but that LCars was a really, really good rendition though…
The software that I described is called Premise and I’ve been using it since 2008. Except for the rare power outage that lasts longer than the UPS battery, I never reboot the Premise server. It runs reliably for many, many months without the need to restart, reload, reboot, etc.
Coming from a system that never requires restarting, and is always available no matter what changes you make, it feels rather crude to have to restart due to simply adding/modifying an entity.
My only reason for mentioning Premise is to enlighten developers and inspire them to evolve Home Assistant to a higher level of functionality (a level of functionality achieved almost 20 years ago).
I do… but I think it comes from having an understanding of the efforts it takes to do things… I mean… I mentioned Trinity, Arc and overviewer… that’s two reverse-engineered World of Warcraft server projects and a project that can render a Minecraft map from multiple angles, day or night calculating for light from torches and using the original textures within the GoogleMaps UI… pretty amazing that such things are even possible and work, much less really, really well. I didn’t mind building a schedule for backups and reboots to keep my WoW server running smooth. Didn’t mind figuring out basic scripts to tell my Minecraft players ‘hey, server down in 30 minutes’, ‘15 minutes’, ‘5’, ‘1… back in 10…’ …then taking the server offline, making a copy for overviewer, rebooting, bringing the game server back then staggering overviewer renders…
…point being… if there is a point… it’d be… I may be critical, but it’s not without appreciation. Maybe a sub-point that I don’t want things to ‘just work’, I want to tinker… I want to dig in to how it works, ya know? My family used to tease me with ‘no you can’t take it apart’ when they bought new things. Which… HA certainly seems qualified to satiate that want.
As far as Premise- I think I’ve actually heard that name before… The place I work has a guy that knows quite a bit about such things… work-wise, I’m more familiar with names like Elan, Control4 and Savant…
I think someone’s opinion of mediocre software is different. I ran commercial home automation software for a good number of years and I would call it mediocre compared to HASS. It’s really whatever people like.
In my opinion the only advantage commercial software has over HASS, is access to closed APIs. But like I said, that’s just my opinion.