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Homeseer on Linux Pros and Cons


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#1 upstatemike

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Posted 26 March 2019 - 05:40 PM

I'm considering the pros and cons of running Homeseer on Linux instead of Windows and could use some more input. What I have so far is:

 

Pros:

  • I get away from Windows updates and security issues. It is hard to get to "no maintenance appliance grade" with Windows 10. I don't really want to learn all the hoops to jump through to lock Windows 10 down to where there are no more updates.
  • My music server has bean running Linux for 10 plus years. I don't know what version or anything about it because I never have to touch it. It just works.

 

Cons:

  • Homeseer is written for Windows and then ported to Linux. Maybe better to stick with the native OS?
  • Some of my plugins (Way-to Call for caller ID and UltraECM for triggering events from energy use on individual circuits) are Windows only and I would have to come up with alternative ways to address those functions.
  • I rely heavily on TTS and custom voices. I'm like the radio station manager who tells his employees "if the VU meters ever fall to zero somebody is getting fired." I'm just not clear how custom voices work in the Linux world and what ones are available.

What else should I be adding to this list?


Edited by upstatemike, 26 March 2019 - 05:41 PM.


#2 BraveSirRobbin

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Posted 27 March 2019 - 07:08 AM

My home automation needs as of late are not as complicated/complex as your are but here are some comments:

 

I ran HomeSeer for years off of Windows computers at my previous home and it would lock up about once every month or two.  I've read posts on their forums where users running Windows would create an event to reboot their computer every night!

 

Recently (a year or so ago) in my new home, I purchased a HomeSeer Hometroller Zee S2 (on sale for $160 I believe) which was a Raspberry PI running HomeSeer with the ZWave interface included.  The only problem so far has been that it has limited plugin capability and the voice announcements are horrid (I tried a female alternative with same result).  The Linux interface proved challenging for me, but thankfully we have Pete here who helped me a lot!

 

One thing I will tell you that I noticed is this device NEVER LOCKS UP!  There was one time I was having some trouble with the web interface and I had to reboot it but the device was still running HomeSeer (events and such were still running).

 

I have a USB to serial interface (again Pete helped me with this) that I use my W800 with and I have a Bluetooth speaker interface and run two remote speakers in the house for voice announcements (I found a pair of speakers that will work with a single Bluetooth interface).

 

Again, my needs are limited (no phone, about 20 Z-Wave switches, some door/window sensors, limited plugins).

 

I also have another Raspberry PI (plain unit not from HomeSeer) that I picked up and use Spuds remote PI plugiin and use that as an input/output extension in my garage.  I also played around with the Arduino plugin (as that has analog input capability).  You can have multiple remote PI's and this is great as a lot of times one doesn't want to run wiring to a 'central' demarcation point, but they do have capability of 'grouping' their runs in multiple locations.

 

The ZWave interface has been rock solid on this.  I'm using a few LED notifications on the new 200+ HomeSeer light switches (this is pretty cool for security, garage door status/notifications around the home).

 

Again, your needs are a lot larger, but just offering my experiences with this unit.



#3 pete_c

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Posted 27 March 2019 - 07:40 AM

Here have run HS3 Pro and HS3 Lite on Ubuntu Linux since the beginning of HS3 in Linux.

 

Originally purchased the first Zee RPi then updated it to a Zee2 (software only update) the installed it on a micro computer running Ubuntu.

 

Today HS3 Pro runs on an iSeries Intel CPU computer in Ubuntu 18.04.  For Windows SAPI voices utilize an Oracle Virtual box running Windows 7 64 bit lite.

 

Homeseer 3 added the feature of running plugins remotely such that I can run some Windows only plugins on the virtual box.

 

I have had no issues running HS3 Pro on Ubuntu 18.04 linux.

 

For HS3 Zee 2 OS initially moved the build over to a mini cube PC called the Xi5A which is a dual core AMD with 2Gb of RAM.

 

Then moved it over to the Pine64 2 Gb computer which has been running fine now for a couple of  years.

 

Newest hardware update these days is to go smaller with an Octocore ARM CPU in an RPi sized board with 4Gb of RAM, SD or eMMC or .M2 drive.

 

This box will fit inside of the OmniPro 2 media panel and will be running:

 

1 - HS3 Lite

2 - Home Assistant

3 - firewall

 

It will still utilize Microsoft SAPI for TTS speech running on a Windows computer.  Adds though are using Alexa devices  and Squeezeplayer as audio TTS and other functions. 

 

Homeseer is written for Windows and then ported to Linux. Maybe better to stick with the native OS?

 

Homeseer in Linux runs in Linux Mono.  Microsoft owns Mono these days. 

 

ASPX pages work fine now in the Intel i3 computer running Linux.  Not running yet in the Arm64 Mono.

 

Some of my plugins (Way-to Call for caller ID and UltraECM for triggering events from energy use on individual circuits) are Windows only and I would have to come up with alternative ways to address those functions.

 

Here have two W2C boxes running fine in the Oracle Windows VB on the HS3 Ubuntu 18.04 computer.

 

There are efforts these days to separate the old HSPhone functions as an autonomous plugin which runs on Windows or Linux.

 

I rely heavily on TTS and custom voices. I'm like the radio station manager who tells his employees "if the VU meters ever fall to zero somebody is getting fired." I'm just not clear how custom voices work in the Linux world and what ones are available.

 

Here have been collecting MS voice fonts since the beginning.  Running 5 instances of speaker dot exe on one Oracle VB these days.

 

Here is an RDP to the W732 bit VB running sapi speaker stuff.  Additionally today have one Alexa Dot connect to the same audio port as HS3 on the Russound audio system. 

 

I am also running a bare metal Windows 2016 standard server today for RDP use with Homeseer Designer, HAI stuff, et al.  It will run fine in an Oracle VB on Ubuntu.

 

Attached File  ssapi.jpg   54.09K   5 downloads

 

 

 

 

 



#4 upstatemike

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Posted 27 March 2019 - 09:01 AM

Thanks both for the feedback. Looks like you both use a more distributed approach with remote RPis and/or Windows instances. I have to think about this as a more modular approach might work better for me. I also need to get caught up on what is possible for using Alexa for voice as I was not aware this was fully an option yet. I have a lot of Echos (enough to be causing an IP address space problem) so it would make sense for me to look into leveraging these.






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