In the interests of helping the development team gain a better understanding of its user-base, I’d like to share my story (as briefly as possible).
Life with Venv
I started with Home Assistant installed in a python virtual environment on an old laptop running Lubuntu. The concepts and terminology, of both python and linux, were all new to me but I had the time and desire to learn it. This device became my production system. Upgrading is a multi-step procedure so I chose to upgrade infrequently.
For my test system, I learned about docker and used docker-compose to run Home Assistant on another old laptop (with Ubuntu). Upgrading/downgrading is easy and I keep it up-to-date. I had planned to convert my venv-based production system to docker-compose.
Along the way, Home Assistant was rebranded. My Home Assistant effectively became “Coke Classic” and Hass.io became the new “Coke”. What was once recommended for novices was promoted to flagship status. However, I didn’t switch. Home Assistant Core served my needs and I was already managing separate instances of mosquitto and Node-Red on an RPI3.
Toe in the water
Nevertheless, I was now curious to learn about the flagship’s amenities. I installed Home Assistant Supervised on yet another old laptop running Ubuntu. Why? Mostly because I was unwilling to spend money on new hardware that’s compatible with the available images. Plus I prefer an operating system with more flexibility than the purpose-built HassOS. I have SSH and samba services installed in Ubuntu, as opposed to using docker-based Add-Ons. In the event of a docker screwup, I have a robust means of accessing the system to fix the problem.
Acceptance and Adoption
After using it, I liked what I saw and gained a greater appreciation for why the development team chose it to be the flagship. In a nutshell, management is greatly simplified. Despite being at ease with performing upgrades in venv (and docker-compose), I preferred the simplicity of one-click upgrades, easy backups, and simplified management of related services via the Add-On system.
Ultimately, I decommissioned my old production system and the RPI3 hosting mosquitto and Node-Red. Everything was consolidated on an old laptop running Home Assistant Supervised on Ubuntu. This is a valuable means of running Home Assistant and it would be a shame to have it demoted to unofficial, non-supported status.