Playing with WeMo Insight Switch

I finally couldn’t resist getting my hands on a WeMo Insight Switch anymore. It’s a kind of expensive gadget, considering how clumsy it is and that all it can do is turn one thing on or off. Also, I read in some specifications that it was consuming a considerable amount of energy itself. However, I’m the unlucky owner of a Thomson modem from the Danish ISP Stofa, and this thing consumes about 12.4 W, so I’ve been wanting to do something about that for a while, since I’m only using it for my backup internet connection (WAN 2) and for IP telephony.

Unpackaging
Just kidding. After connecting the switch you have to install the 33 MB app from Belkin to get it up running. After this I searched the net for API’s and alternate ways to control it. Half an hour later I had a working curl command to turn it on or off, as well as a working Tasker configuration using RESTask for Tasker, which I just found for the job (since Tasker doesn’t seem to support setting custom headers in HTTP POST requests).

The hardware
Before jumping to my first project/solution, a few words on the hardware:

  • Power consumption: When the relay is off, it consumes approx. 1.5 W. When on, approx. 1.7 W.
  • Socket: The socket is a Schuko socket, which is problematic for the Danish market, since you cannot plug in the traditional Danish flat and round connectors – they physically don’t fit in.

Controlling WeMo from Tomato
Since my Tomato router firmware (by Shibby) comes with curl preinstalled, controlling WeMo from the router is not a problem. What I wanted to do was having my router turn on the modem for WAN 2 when WAN 1 is down. I decided to ping the DNS server to check if I’m connected to the internet, and to do this once a minute. So in Administration/Scheduler I added this custom script to run every minute:

# Turn on WeMo when WAN is down, hoping for WAN2...
if ! ping >/dev/null -c 1 8.8.8.8; then
  curl -d '<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?><s:Envelope xmlns:s="http://schemas.xmlsoap.org/soap/envelope/" s:encodingStyle="http://schemas.xmlsoap.org/soap/encoding/"><s:Body><u:SetBinaryState xmlns:u="urn:Belkin:service:basicevent:1"><BinaryState>1</BinaryState></u:SetBinaryState></s:Body></s:Envelope>' -H 'SOAPACTION: "urn:Belkin:service:basicevent:1#SetBinaryState"' -H 'Content-Type: text/xml; charset="utf-8"' -X POST http://wemo.local:49153/upnp/control/basicevent1
fi

After switching over to WAN 2, DNS will still be unavailable for a while – and yes, this method will try to turn on the WeMo over and over again. However, this shouldn’t really cause any problems if it’s already turned on. On the other hand, it might actually save the day, if the first packet is lost (WeMo is on Wi-Fi).

Next project
Next project will be to set up openHAB on a Raspberry Pi (for starters) and try to teach it when at least one person is at home. Then I can have back my IP telephony (requiring the modem on) when arriving at home and until going to bed.

Miele XGW 3000 gateway firmware 2.1.0

None of the bugs mentioned in my previous post about 2.0.9 is fixed in this release. No new features discovered. See release notes:

Release 2.1.0 – 26.10.2017

  • Support for SMA Sunny Homemanager 1.x adapted
  • Improvement of the Miele@mobile remote access connection
  • Datasynchronisation improvements
  • Stability improvements and bugfixing

Oh, and yes, they changed the versioning and renamed previously released versions. So when I’m now referring to 2.0.9, which I called 2.09 in my previous post, it isn’t by mistake.

Miele XGW 3000 gateway firmware 2.09

Seconds after publishing my previous post, I was a bit confused after reading the firmware release notes again, while checking that I got the version number right. It seems that Miele pulled back version 2.09, which of course it not possible to do after people, including myself, have upgraded. The release notes was also edited to reflect this, so the notes about 2.09 are gone. http://GATEWAY/Rest/Update/:

{"AvailableVersion":"2.0.7","UpdateInProgress":false,"Type":"XGW3000","ReleaseNotes":{"href":"http://www1.miele.com/media/ex/int/service/downloads/xgw3000_release_notes.html"},"NewerAvailable":false,"CurrentVersion":"2.0.9","Rev":"1.4.6"}

Direct link to release notes.

Now I wonder if the bugs mentioned in my previous post was also present in version 2.07. Version 2.09 was released on September 27th. I know because I upgraded over VPN from CPH Airport while waiting for my flight – just after receiving a notification from my app that it was available.

Miele XGW 3000 firmware 2.09 and new dishwasher with Wi-Fi

I got a new dishwasher (G 6895) with Wi-Fi integrated and at the same time received a new firmware update the my XGW 3000 gateway. So I now have three ZigBee appliances (XKM 3000 Z) and one Wi-Fi applicance (EK039W). I was curious to see how this integration with the existing system would work.

Homebus 1.0
Integrated nicely – the devices shows up with id=hdm%3ALAN%3AUID%230 instead of id=hdm%3AZigBee%3AZigBee address%23210. However, when programmed, the gateway will return HTTP code 500, i.e. internal server error:

500 No message

Homebus 2.0 (Rest API)
The device is not included in http://GATEWAY/Rest/Devices/. However, when accessing http://GATEWAY/Rest/Devices/UID/ directly, JSON is returned with relevant ident/state information. Including water/power consumption in ExtendedState:

000702040F0000000000000080000000020026030001041B
                              ^^^^^^^^ 0.2 kWh/3.8 L (0x26/10)

I have not figured out how to interact directly with the dishwasher, and would also prefer not to, since this would complicate matters. However, it’s a shame that the Rest implementation is partly broken. For now I’ve hardcoded the new UID in the app I’m working on (as well as my water/power monitoring system running on my Linux server), but I’ll probably end up having to combine the two protocols in order to do what I need. I’ll probably do this anyway, since I also haven’t figured out how to perform actions using the Rest protocol.

Another thing that is broken when accessing the gateway through the Rest protocol is the ElapsedTime value, which is always:

"ElapsedTime":[0,0]

Actually, I think the value is dependent on the current value when booting the gateway. At one point it was always [1,14] until the next reboot, and this was quite possibly the first value it saw when first booting up.

So the value cannot be used at all, e.g. for creating a progress bar. Too bad, since this is one of the advantages of using the Rest protocol over the old XML protocol.

Protocol values

Values found so far:

	static final int PHASE_PRE_WASH    =  2;
	static final int PHASE_MAIN_WASH   =  3;
	static final int PHASE_RINSES      =  4;
	static final int PHASE_FINAL_RINSE =  6;
	static final int PHASE_DRYING      =  7;

	static final int PROGRAM_ECONOMIC         = 28;
	static final int PROGRAM_QUICK_POWER_WASH = 38;

Mapping to Homebus 2.0 phases:

@Override
boolean setProgramPhase(int programPhase) {
	super.setProgramPhase(programPhase);

	switch (programPhase) {
		case 1792:
			// Purpose unknown, observed when programmed (without phase) and off.
			return setPhase(PHASE_UNKNOWN);
		case 1794:
			return setPhase(PHASE_PRE_WASH);
		case 1795:
			return setPhase(PHASE_MAIN_WASH);
		case 1796:
			return setPhase(PHASE_RINSES);
		case 1798:
			return setPhase(PHASE_FINAL_RINSE);
		case 1799:
			return setPhase(PHASE_DRYING);
		default:
			setPhase(PHASE_UNKNOWN);
			return false;
	}
}

Miele XGW 3000 firmware 2.06

Another firmware upgrade released yesterday. First thing I’ve noticed is that my tumble dryer (TKR 350 WP) and oven (H 5581 BP) now also include numeric/raw values in the Homebus XML, i.e.:

<key name="State" value="Off" type="state" raw="1"/>

Excellent! So my previous theory about this feature missing in the XKM 3000 Z module firmware version 1.02 was wrong – it was missing for certain device types in the gateway firmware (2.0.3).

Danfoss Living Connect review

I got my new toy yesterday: A Danfoss Link CC and five Danfoss Living Connect RA thermostats. So here’s a few comments – compiled from a bit of research and my first impression of the system.

First of all, these are the products I bought:

  • Danfoss Link CC NSU – 014G0287, EAN 5702425112881. SW version 4.1 (after upgrading it).
  • Living Connect (RA) – 014G0001, EAN 5702420110257. SW version 4.02 (can’t be upgraded), production date November 19th 2016.

I thought about buying the Living Connect Z-Wave version instead – 014G0013. But unfortunately this version cannot communicate with Link CC. So you have to make a tough decision between a closed (but working and tested) system and an open system where you have to implement everything from scratch. This software version document states:

  • Version 2.06 – 11-03-2011: The initial software for living connect® – can be controlled by Danfoss Link™ CC or by a 3rd party Z-wave controller.
  • Version 3.02 – 25-05-2012: Standard Z-wave functionality removed, meaning that living connect® no longer can be controlled by a 3rd party controller.

That’s a shame. So if you want something that works and want to play, you’ll have to buy two entire systems and switch all your thermostats whenever you switch between feeling creative and conservative. Oh, and you can’t upgrade the firmware, no matter which of the solutions you choose.

In my case I actually don’t need to communicate with the thermostats myself. Had there just been an API for Link CC (and/or a bunch of open Danfoss Cloud web services), a lot of interesting things could have been easy to implement. Like telling the system when you are home or almost home – based on anything imaginable. Geofences, near Wi-Fi network, etc. Temperature readings from 3rd party software would also have been nice. Please make something like this, Danfoss!

Well, back to reality. The Link CC is actually pretty nice, but I’d like to control the system with my phone, and only with my phone. Or my tablet. Or from a laptop or PC (browser). Anything but another wall-mounted touchscreen in my house. It would have been nice with full functionality in the app, and a variant of the Link CC without a screen – just a small Z-Wave controller with Danfoss software. The energy consumption would have been lower. About 2.8 W as the Link CC uses is not bad, but not great either.

The thermostats uses two AA Alkaline batteries. 1.5 V required, so it’s not possible to use 1.2 V rechargeable (e.g. Eneloop) batteries. I was almost done phasing out all Alkaline batteries in the house, even those in remote controls. But now I’m stuck with 10 Alkalines batteries again. It’s not a major problem, but a bit annoying and not “green”.

All communication from the app goes through Danfoss Cloud which communicates with Link CC. Also when you’re at home and on the same Wi-Fi network as the Link CC. All ports are closed on the Link CC. So if your internet is down, so is your contact with your Danfoss system (from the app). If Danfoss’ servers are down, so is your contact… If Danfoss goes down or decides to shut down support for the Living Connect system, you’ll lose contact with your Danfoss system. I would have preferred at least an option to have an operational system without an external dependency to Danfoss.

You don’t care about power consumption, rechargeable batteries, open API’s, cross-system integration and companies (or hackers) being able to control your home temperature? Well, these things aside the system is actually pretty neat. See app screenshots and google Danfoss Living Connect to read more about the system and Link CC.

Update: After having used the system for some weeks, I’m almost ready to return the crap. I’ll run a few more tests, but the results so far are discouraging. With my old thermostats I had consistently 42-43 °C cooling. Now we’re down to 36-37 °C and the consumption in m3 has increased. This is true whether we use night-time drop or not. So the system will actually cost you money and leave a negative environmental impact, instead of the opposite.