ISY 5.0 is *still* in Alpha after 2 years?

IVB said:
It's increasingly apparent that the market is moving too quickly for hardware/firmware controllers to keep up. Given the plummet in price of Windows embedded ultra low power systems powerful enough to run CQC, HomeSeer, OpenHAB, a PC-based system might be the most viable future facing path. I think my fanless Win10 embedded PC runs at 7 watts.
It may not be such a bad idea: after all, an embedded system is not much different from a windows/linux based low power box -- the majority of home automation boxes usually run ARM or MIPS Linux anyway.  The presumed  advantage is better reliability due to tighter hardware integration.
 
IVB said:
I think my fanless Win10 embedded PC runs at 7 watts.
 
Can you share the model and/or specs of the embedded PC? 
 
I'm running CQC (and Upstart when needed) on a 3 or 4 year old MitxPC (with fan), and it (or the hard drive) seems to be in the throes of death gasps....
 
Thanks.
 
Does the BIOS in that MinixPC allow you to have it auto-restart after a power failure?
 
That's what my current PC does (~10 years old ... and ought to be retired). After the UPS runs out and the PC shuts down, it can automatically start when power is restored. This is an important feature for me.
 
I've looked at several inexpensive Windows mini-PCs and finding "auto power-on" has been a challenge. For example, I've had my sights on the Vorke V1 Plus but can't find any info about auto power-on. It can do Wake On Lan which *could* be an indication of the potential for auto power-on as well.
 
 
 
 
FWIW, the Vorke V1 Plus includes 64 Gb of SSD mSATA storage, not the usual, non-removable 32 Gb of eMMC storage. Not only is the extra headroom needed when upgrading Window 10, you can replace it at a later date. Plus its CPU is the more modern Apollo Lake architecture as opposed to Cherry Trail.
https://www.amazon.com/VORKE-Windows-802-11AC-Gigabit-Bluetooth4-2/dp/B0752119Y5
 
Heh, I almost bought the Vorke last night but didn't for the *exact* reason you just posted :)
 
i'm traveling right now for work, home tomorrow evening, will look then.   It's amazing how few options there are with >32GB. I know i'm constantly bumping up against that on my Minix.
 
123 said:
Does the BIOS in that MinixPC allow you to have it auto-restart after a power failure?
 
Yes.   The motherboard is a Jetway NF96U-525-LF with Atom (I think) processor.  There is a PWR status after PWR failure setting (Always On, Always Off, or Former Status) in the BIOS settings.
 
A few years back here purchased the PipoX7 micro PC with Windows 10 on it. 
 
It has 2 Gb of RAM and a 32 Gb eMMC inside Baytrail Atom.
 
It worked fine with Homeseer.  That said and personally to me the BIOS was written for a Windows 10 tablet versus a computer.
 
The BIOS didn't have a power on with power feature but a close look at the bios the feature was there and disabled. 
 
The PipoX7 included WiFi and Bluetooth.  I could put the computer to sleep but not wake it up via the USB internally connected LAN port.
 
I could wake it via the touchscreen that I was testing with it.  The newer micro pc's are now better with 4Gb of RAM and 64Gb eMMC and optional SSD drives.
 
The above noted the PipoX7 was originally destined to be a touchscreen PC, then later a KODI PC and an Ubuntu server (dual booting it  32Gb + 32 Gb)......for play PC's....only hardware mods were relating to the BIOS and cooling the board.
 
Relating the automation servers (for dedicated never fail automation computers) here went to using BCM motherboards and DIYing my builds. 
 
I have a few today and some are older than 10 years old doing very well.
 
Just recently this past month picked up a couple of Lenova Tiny PCs M73's.  I am impressed with what Lenova has done with these little computers running Windows 10.  Newer ones are faster and very power lite.
 
Just had an interesting idea i'll see if I can test this weekend. Only home for 36 hours before turning back around and next biz trip though.
 
I'm using the Minix mainly as an RDP machine into my VMWare host. I tried the rPi but it didn't have enough ooompf to render any kind of video.  I'm going to see if I can install CQC on the Minix (in addition to my NEBL proof-of-stake/crypto wallet), but to make sure I don't use the Minix for anything else have it auto-boot into an RDP session so the Minix is still usable as a PC without touching much/any of the local resources.
 
I don't see any reason why that wouldn't work, plus then i'd be able to just unplug the ISY, connect the VRCOP, and have one less device in my infrastructure.
 
Assuming, of course, that TurboSam is correct and I can get it to auto-power on upon power loss.
 
I have 2 ISYs, if anyone wants to buy one :)
 
IVB said:
Heh, I almost bought the Vorke last night but didn't for the *exact* reason you just posted :)
So you're saying it cannot auto-restart? Darn!
 
 
TurboSam said:
Yes.   The motherboard is a Jetway NF96U-525-LF with Atom (I think) processor.  There is a PWR status after PWR failure setting (Always On, Always Off, or Former Status) in the BIOS settings.
Thank you!
 
pete_c said:
Just recently this past month picked up a couple of Lenova Tiny PCs M73's.  I am impressed with what Lenova has done with these little computers running Windows 10.  Newer ones are faster and very power lite.
Are any of the M73's you have equipped with the Intel Pentium G3220T 2.6GHz CPU? If so, how much power does the PC consume while idle? Also, can it auto-restart after power is restored?

I've had my eye on the M73. Someone locally is selling a used one for CDN$170 (~US$132) with G3220T CPU, 8 GB RAM, 120 GB SSD, and Win 10 Pro. It sounds ideal for my modest HA needs. My only concern is its G3220T isn't sufficiently power-efficient for running my ultra-simple HA tasks (my current rig, with its pokey VIA Epia, consumes about 10W while idle).
 
Are any of the M73's you have equipped with the Intel Pentium G3220T 2.6GHz CPU?
 
Purchased two of them listed as:
 
Lenovo ThinkCentre M73 Tiny Desktop Core i5-4590T 2.0GHz Quad 8GB 500GB HDD WiFi
 
Way cheap for Haswell chip set (less than $200) and appear to be brand new to me.
 
There are many on Ebay off lease except that most of  them are Intel iSeries generation 2-3.
 
The i5-4590T is same power of 35Watts as the i5-G3220T.  The i5-4590T was a higher priced Haswell chip.
 
Someone locally is selling a used one for CDN$170 (~US$132) with G3220T CPU, 8 GB RAM, 120 GB SSD, and Win 10 Pro.
 
That is a very good price for the Lenova M73 with a Haswell chipset with 8Gb of RAM and an SSD drive.
 
My current main automation server running HS3 today is old now and using a Haswell chip set mini ITX board iSeries and 16Gb of RAM.  It is doing HA in Ubuntu 16.04 Linux and running one Oracle Wintel VB doing some more automation that only runs in Windows.
 
The other automation server running HS3 is running on a Pine64 2Gb computer (ARM - $35) running Ubuntu 16.04 64 bit server.  It is very low powered.  It is larger than an RPi.  That said updating it to a Rock64 with 4Gb and a 32Gb eMMC drive.  It is around $50.  Waiting for a design change that includes a battery RTC.  Note that this computer will not run a Windows OS at this time.
 
Been doing a sort of hub and spoke slave and master computer automation thing using the extra RPi's that I have.
 
IE: one RPi2 is POE powered in the attic and using a ZWave GPIO card, SDRadio, 1-wire USB device and currently providing ZWave, NOAA satellite pictures and a 1-Wire hub for temperature and humidity sensors on the second floor rooms and hallway.
 
These two Lenova computers replaced two desktop Shuttle Net tops running with Atom 525's (way old) and have a much smaller footprint.
 
If so, how much power does the PC consume while idle?
 
I have not checked.
 
Also, can it auto-restart after power is restored?
 
yes.
 
FYI, the Minix *can* auto-restart on power loss, I set mine up this weekend. 
 
I installed CQC on it just fine, but the primary device I wanted to control was zWaves and I struggled. I have a VRCOP and a USB->Serial adapter, it picked up the adapter just fine and assigned a com port but CQC kept hanging on "wait for connect".  This serial adapter is a royal PITA, had issues with it on my prior server, so as of right now I can't say that it's the minix and not the serial adapter preventing me from assuring all y'all that it works fine as an ISY replacement.
 
I'm going to buy an Aeotec zStick as the next version of CQC will work with that. On travel at client site Sun evenings->Thu evenings, will try again this upcoming weekend with VRCOP, otherwise i'll have to wait for the CQC Beta. 
 
@IVB
 
FWIW, for USB to RS232, I've had good luck with the Digi Edgeport. Many years ago, I bought 4-port and 8-port versions from eBay. Here's a 4-port available at a modest price (and reasonable shipping):
https://www.ebay.com/itm/NEW-Digi-Inside-Out-Edgeport-4-USB-to-4-RS-232-Ports-Converter-301-1000-04/322977406588
 
There are others available (pre-owned) that sell for less.
 
Windows 10 detects it and automatically installs the correct driver. Works well with every serial device I've tried except an RS232 to RS422 converter.
 
PS
Should anyone wish to use an Edgeport with a Raspberry Pi (RPi) running Raspbian (popular distro for RPi), I can explain how to make it work. Here's a brief overview:
Raspbian doesn't include the driver. You have to install Ubuntu Server for RPi. Like Raspbian, it's based on Debian but the Ubuntu folks chose to include the Edgeport driver. Make copies of the relevant files from Ubuntu and paste them into the appropriate directory in Raspbian. I've been meaning to share the details on the Raspberry Pi forum but never got around it to it.
 
Thanks. I actually have a spare GC100 (RS232 over IP) in my basement so I could set that up, but i'm looking for something simpler. And nothing would please me more than to use as few Leviton products as possible...
 
FYI, UDI management affirmed that they have no prediction for when ISY 5.x will leave Alpha (and remove the line "It is not considered to be a stable build, and thus should not be used for anything other than testing").
 
Shame too, ISY had so much promise. But at this point the speed of the marketplace is clearly overwhelming them. Even if 5.x leaves Alpha and goes Beta, the next product type coming down the line could take another 3 years to support. Thankfully there are options.
 
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