Device Tracking, Online Options

So what is the best way to track devices now and to determine if they are online or home?

At some point my device tracker file became a nightmare and combined with the HA UI I think at one point I had 3 or 4 ‘known devices’ for my mobile phone.

I want to get this mess cleaned up, and do thins the ‘right way’ whatever that way is.

I have some VM servers that are running on a ESXi server that I want to have an entry to tell me if they are online or not.
I’d like to know if my router, WAP, VOIP, devices are also online.
I have 4 mobile devices I’d like to track, 2 were done by router connection and 2 were by Owntracks.
I’m now running Pi-Hole as my dhcp server so the router connection piece is done.
Owntracks seems to be very buggy as of late and I’m sure there is better options now.

There’s three general ways to tell whether something is there or not, and they all serve different purposes:

  1. GPS - fantastic for where in the world, and not so fantastic for home/away. Updates can be slow, (in)accuracy can put you home when you’re not, or not home when you are. Don’t use it for home/away :wink: I use GPSLogger for this, as I’m on Android, but there’s a long list of options on the HA site (Life360 is often suggested, but I’ve never used it).
  2. WiFi/local network - I use the nmap_tracker for this. It’s great for devices, and so-so for mobile phones. Mobiles often turn off WiFi when in deep sleep, so suddenly you’re no longer home.
  3. Bluetooth - I use monitor, but you can use the built in bluetooth_tracker. Phones don’t turn this off automatically, and battery drain from leaving BT on is irrelevant these days.

For mobiles you want multiple trackers. What if your phone turns the WiFi off? What if you move to a location in the house where it’s no longer in Bluetooth range? A group of trackers (or even something more advanced) means you’re not flapping between home and away.