Bluetooth solution required

So, I have a bluetooth challenge where i made some kind of workaround for, but wanted to see if some have better ideas.
I move my homeassistant to a virtual machine with HassOs to have it perform better and be more stable. Ran it for years on raspi3b.
But on the machine I have the virtual machine running, I do not have bluetooth hardware. This was fine for the last 6 months as i didnt think of my pool temperature meter (inkbird sensor). now the pool is being used again, I do not have the direct method of pollilng the sensor from within Homeassistant becuase of the missing bt hardware.
I created workaround, which I do not like that much:

  1. created samba share on HassOs
  2. mounted share on my raspi
  3. crontabbed a python script that fetches sensor reading and writes the value to a txt file on the mounted dir
  4. created file sensor in homeasisstant.

This above is adding little too many complex things to my liking. on top of that, the bluetooth on raspi isnt that stable. Often it requires a hci reset.
Who has ideas to make this more simplified?

Add a bluetooth USB dongle to your VM Host and pass it through to Home Assistant. Or if the Host machine is too far away and you want to keep using the pi, there are plenty of Bluetooth to MQTT bridges. e.g. this is the first search result I found:

Or use a cheap ESP32 board and ESPhome.

liking the ble client sensor already, config for service uuid should do a lot for possible other ble deviceslater. I’ll be willing to try it :slight_smile:

I run another Home assistant on RPI zero w which connects to my bluetooth sensors and it connects by LAN to my Main Home assistant which has remote home assistant from HACS. I expect you could run it on WIFI. Easy enough to configure on the main Home assistant. Much better range on RPI ble than on ESP32 ble.
Alternatively @YJB is involved with using ESP32 also for just this job as ble bridge(but with a more limited ble range).

You dont have issues on rpi with ble getting stuck? meaning, the hci reset not required very often?
If thats the case, it might be the distance i have the sensor at is too far away for being stable. RPI is also used for pihole on ETH, rather not have that on wifi, but there is enough eth ports around the house to play with location.

That’s exactly what I need to do, but I haven’t been able to find any straightforward instructions for passing my Mac bluetooth through into my VM. Do you know of any?

In most vm management software, there is USB section to configure. I have virtual box and my zwave stick set and works like a charm. Don’t know apple stuff, but should have similar feature

Occasionally I have to run the Bluetoothctl Power off and then Bluetoothctl commands on the rpi zero when I restart the HA but generally ble sensors will run months on the rpi zero without interference. Usually after few months I have to restart HA due to updates. I also run PIHOLE on a seperate RPI zero with LAN which can be up for 4months at a time without needing anything.

VMWare does have a USB section, but it’s by no means obvious (to me) how to configure it for a Big Sur host. Does anyone know?

Device should show up at
Virtual Machine > Settings > USB & Bluetooth

If it doesn’t, there are seemingly some steps to make with usb arbitration services.
https://kb.vmware.com/s/article/57195

Many thanks, I’ll try that.