Categorie archief: VERA Blog

Hier vindt u onze ervaringen met VERA Lite en VERA3.

Associate the thermostat SRT321 to the actuator SSR303

  1. Switch DIP switcher # 1 SRT321 thermostat to position ON.
  2. Turn the thermostat to the letter “A”, press and the “A” starts flashing.
  3. The actuator must be red LED off. Press the lower button >||< and the thermostat will display “AP”, this is a sign that the actuator and thermostat are associated. In this way we are able to activate manualy the actuator from the thermostat even with the Vera litle gateway not working
  4. Replace the DIP switch # 1 of SRT321 thermostat in normal mode (OFF).

Connect the actuator SSR303

Secure Actuator SSR303
Secure Actuator SSR303
  1.  In VERA go in the “Devices”, then “Add Devices” and click “Add” to start the search for a new device (the orange LED flashes slowly in the Z-Wave Gatewa controller VERA).
  2. The actuator when is it not inserted in any Z-Wave network has two red lights are flashing. Press and hold the bottom button > | | <until you see a green light indicates a proper connection to the VERA.
  3. On the Vera Web Devices tab  you will see the thermostat and actuator.


Set the type of boiler

Thermostats with TPI (Time Proportional Integral) have control algorithms in order to reduce thermal shock that occurs normally when using traditional thermostats with two histeresys points.

As a result, a regulatory TPI thermostat maintains comfort level in a much more efficient way than traditional thermostats.

When used with a boiler, the TPI thermostat will help save energy and the control algorithm to manage the boiler to operate in a more consistent way whte compared to older types of thermostats.

The DIP switchers with numbers 7 and 8 must conform  as shown in the diagram:

  • For gas boilers TPI adjustment to 6 cycles per hour (default). TPI 6
  • For oil boilers TPI set to 3 cycles per hour. TPI 3
  • Electric heating TPI adjusted to 12 cycles per hour. TPI 12
TPI Thermostat Settings
TPI Thermostat Settings


Credits to domotica4all for most of the info!

Connect the Secure Wall thermostat SRT321

Secure SEC-SRT321
Secure SEC-SRT321
  1. Go to “insert mode” by pressing “+” button  in VERA for 2 seconds, or by using the function in the web interface in “Devices” and there select “Add Device” (the orange LED flashes slowly in the Z-Wave Gateway Vera controller).
  2. Enable DIP switch 1 of SRT321 thermostat (ON).
  3. Spin the wheel of SRT321 up till displaying “L” on the screen.
  4. Press the wheel to include the device. The “L” flashes and changes to “LP” and you will see the VERA thermostat on web console interface.
  5. Stop “insert mode” in  VERA by clicking on the blue “Refresh” button on the top right. Now you will see the message “Unit busy” in the web console interface for a little while.
  6. After Vera has completed the initial configuration, the thermostat device appear on the console . It will be marked with the message: “Wakeup to configure”, in red.
  7. Spin the wheel to the letter “n” and press the wheel. This adjusts the room temperature and the warning message disappears.
  8. Replace the DIP switch # 1 in the normal mode (OFF), remove the battery for 5 seconds and re-insert.
Thermostat within Vera GUI
Thermostat within Vera GUI

Now you can adjust the temperature of the device in VERA web interface and it will be displayed on the LCD screen of the thermostat. The temperatur update can take up to  30 minutes (1,800 seconds), it might be seem as a mistake, but this is a delayed response that preserves battery life. This period can be set in the configuration window in the “clock interval (seconds):” between 256 (minimun) and 1,800 seconds. A good balance would be 600 secs (10 minutes).

Wakeup interval time
Wakeup interval time


It is possible now also to locally change the temperature by turning the thermostat dial. The configuration and the change will be displayed in the VERA web interface.

After you include the thermostat in Vera, you will have to change some configuration settings in order to make it work properly in the network and report the temperature to Vera. By default Secure Thermostat is set to not do this automatically (see configuration parameter 1 below) so you have to add this parameter yourself and insert a value between 128 – 255. To add a new configuration parameter, you have to click on the little wrench on the Dashboard, go to Device Options and click on ‘Add configuration settings’, then fill in the values for Parameter 1 as below in the pictures.

The unit supports 3 single byte configurations for the temperature sensor functionality of the unit in the range 1 – 3 respectively.

  • Configuration Parameter Number 1:0–127 disables temperature sensor, 128-255 enables temperature sensor. Default = 0.
  • Configuration Parameter Number 2:0-127 = Celsius, 128-255 = Fahrenheit. Default = 0.
  • Configuration Parameter Number 3: 1 – 100 = Delta T in steps of 0.1 degree. Default = 10 (1.0).
Device parameter settings
Device parameter settings

Note: sometimes in Windows 7, when you run the command from the computer to the thermostat, the temperature is set to 0. we think it’s a problem with the operating system because Windows XP and MAC works correctly.


Credits to domotica4all for most of the info!

Further plugin installation

After succesfull installation of different (most necessary) plugins my application screen lookes like this:

Installed Plugins
Installed Plugins

As you can see I installed the following applications (with a short description why I did it, eventually with some specific installation instructions):

  1. dataMine graphing and logging
    I tried the Ergy plugin which comes with the Vera package and I even bought the plus version, but it doesn´t work for me (yet). My first Vera was capable of measuring some energy meters but not all. At my new Vera 3 configuration the old variables are back again and are not replaced by the nodes I´m using right now. The log states that there is an error during the retrieval of the Ergy key (?). 
    The dataMine logging plugin is a great addition to the Vera setup. It is very easy to install and to configure. You must read the manual (dataMine Overview) to understand all possible variables for logging (you must understand the values otherwise the dashboard page does show you incorrect information!
  2. Wunderground Weather plugin
    Within my home I have one “heating” cable which is used to prevent my warm water system to freeze up in the winter. This is a very consumable device which I would love to control depending on the weather. This plugin is very usefull for this and gives you beautifull statistics also (with the help of dataMine).
    Configuration of the plugin is quite painfull however. First you need to register and get the key. As I can remember this was quite a job. But afterall I got a key and after that it went off. The plugin works like a charm and is – in combination with the dataMine plugin – a very usefull adition to Vera.
  3. Foscam IP Camera
    My home camera system is equiped with 4 camera devices. These devices are spread through the house and when I enabled UPnP within the network (als the swithes) all camera´s where automatically detected by Vera. The only thing I needed to do is for all camera´s to perform a network reset (i.e. configuring the network interface and force a reboot of the camera).
    For the motion part to work I put a zero at the status line within the advanced tab of the camera. But first be patient. Wait till Vera has configured the devices properly and – if you used the default username/password combination: dceadmin/dcepass – you will directly have streaming. Thats all folks!
  4. VeraAlerts
  5. System Monitor
  6. Smart Switch Plugin
  7. Day or Night
  8. Virtual ON/OFF Switches

dataMine plugin configuration (part 2)

My next step will be to configure the dataMine plugin correctly. Cleaning out all my first entries is neccessary. But that´s not too bad as the configuration of the plugin is very easy.

After 15 minutes of filling out the configuration fields within the plugin it started to looke like this:

Datamine Configuration Overview

And the energy overview like this 🙂

Datamine Energy Overview

For my second attempt not a bad result. Will be continued as this is a very powerfull program!

Of course I wanted to backup the whole configuration, i.e. also the files on the stick. The manual (dataMine Overview) explains exactly how it can be done.

For a shortcut here it is:

Basically three steps:

1. Create public ssh keys for unattended login to your Vera from your linux server

(I use my own NAS server for this, and performed the following commands:

  • [NAS]:
  • scp ~/.ssh/ root@vera:/tmp
  • [VERA]:
  • cd /etc/dropbear
    cat /tmp/id_*.pub >> authorized_keys
    chmod 0600 authorized_keys

2. Modify the script for your path’s and vera ip (if you don’t have ‘vera’ in your dns/hosts file).

Along with your veras IP, you will want to change both destdir and the source path on your vera!

date="`date +%Y-%m-%d`"
olddate="`date --date '2 months ago' +%Y-%m`"
# get the files. Vera does not have rsync, so we use regular scp
scp -qpr root@vera:/dataMine $destdir/
# create the backup tar ball
tar -cpzf $destdir/datamine_$date.tar.gz $destdir/dataMine
# fix rights..
chmod 660 $destdir/datamine_$date.tar.gz
# remove tempfiles
rm -rf $destdir/dataMine
# Remove all backups created 2 months ago
rm -f $destdir/datamine_$olddate-*.tar.gz

3. Once you have tested the above configuration, and you are sure it works just add line to your own crontab (crontab -e in my case) and add a line like this (running 5 o’clock in the morning).

0 5 * * * ~/bin/backup_vera_datamine

It would have been nice to use rsync instead of scp, but it seams that it is not included in the vera dist, so scp will have to do. Not sure how much data we will see in the end, but time will tell.


The rest of my Z-Wave network

After succesfully adding TOON, Vera 3, the powermeter I thought it was time to start including all my other devices. To achieve some structure I used TOON to exclude the devices first (so all my devices where reset). After that Vera 3 included all the devices with the correct use of adding new devices (i.e. Devices > Add Devices > Add ZWave devices, like light switches, door locks, thermostats, etc. > Option 1).

This results into (I already had some cleanup done):

Devices Overview

As you can see I already installed the dataMine plugin. I spent some time investigating the ergy plugin but that didn´t work for me (I even bought the plus version for 1 year). For completion I added the manual I found on the Internet: Ergy-Directions

My first configuration of dataMine looks like this:

Datamine Configuration Overview

After adding TOON easily, its now time for the adapter

As said in the title of this post, I succeeded (easily) in adding Vera to TOON (product from ENECO). After the clean reset, this is the first thing to do. It sounded more easy for me to know that the controllers are subsequent one of each other. This means that TOON (the primary controller) will have nodeId 1.

In a list I have (for now):

  1. TOON
  2. Vera3
  3. MiniMote
  4. Adapter

But as already stated above, this was easy and very clearly documented.

Now its time for the Adapter itself. Adding it was easy also. I did it with the help of TOON (but I think it could have had been done with Vera also as Vera has been granted permission to do so – Z-WAVE Settings > Role: Master SIS:YES PRI:NO). But this I don´t know for sure.

After the different meters showed up within about 2 a 3 minutes, I was happy. But after that I saw that every device was labeled Generic_IO device. As this is what I didn´t want it to be is Generic… mmmz. Let me look any further within the device.xml files. And yes, there is a D_PowerMeter1.xml file :).

After I corrected all seven (!) meters, my dashboard looked liked this (a bit empty):

My Dashboard

This is how my settings page lookes like:

Z-Wave Settings Page

Adding my new minimote… a bit tricky

Installing my newly received minimote today was kind of a stumble all the way.

At the end I even had to reset my whole Z-Wave Network !

The links I used helped me totally through this installation:

  1. Topic: HowTo: Aeon Labs MiniMote fully functional Scene Controller in UI5!
  2. Topic: How do I add Minimote?

As I said, after I cleared all my devices (which wasn´t too bad as I already wanted to build my network from scratch – again), it worked perfectly as stated in the first link.

Datamine, get it to work

And now its time for dataMine to get it to work. Most of my devices, especially the ones which can be used to monitor my energy-usage, are included within the network.

  • First of all, I configured an USB device under Windows. Completely unnecessary as Vera itself will format and partition it for you. This is direct where the first drawback kicks in: the USB device was a 16GB stick, but only 512MB is assigned for Vera. So I wanted to use the other have (>15GB), eg for historical data, etc. But, lets the stick plugin first and reboot Vera.
  • I then installed the plugin and enabled logging for Vera. This can be done directly within UI5, under SETUP > Logs > Enable USB logging. This process may take up to 20 mins. In my case just 2 minutes 🙂
  • Putty helped me to login to Vera and there I formatted the second partition, as explained in the dataMine tutorial (dataMine Overview)

My Foscam camera´s are found, and now?

After I configured my complete network well, that means that broadcasting needs to be possible between switches (which is also needed for the UPnP messages to be send around).

desktop (1)
My Cameras

The next thing I wanted to create is that all camera´s can interact with vera. This comes in handy for an extra set of motion controllers which are capable of capturing the motion. This even holds, within my own setup, that it is possible to save 30 seconds and 30 seconds after the event!

But the question is: how to do this?


It seems pretty straightforward to fix this problem. It actually doesn´t seem to be a problem. See also:

  1. Topic: Foscam IP Camera Plugin
  2. Mios: Foscam IP Camera Plugin

It says to set the configuredMD variable to ´0´, but this variable doesn´t seem to exist in my configuration. The variable ´state´ does exist, and setting this to ´0´ seems to fix the problem.

I found the solution after a lot of digging. As my camera´s are no really Foscam camera´s but Wanscam camera´s, I looked a bit further. These camera´s work very well and confirm to the IpCam standards. It´s included within this post.

The following document, IPCAM CGI SDK V1.7, explained a lot to me. In combination with the following links it is possible to see (and configure!) the configuration settings of the camera:

  1. Topic: Foscam IP Camera Plugin
  2. Topic: Foscam FI8910W – Filmstrip

The following command may be executed, or let VERA do the work for you (you need to give dceadmin/dcepass Administrator access to the camera). By giving this permission VERA is capable of setting the correct alarm_http_url settings for these camera´s.

Possibly the following command also works:


(#.#.#.#:## moet je wijzigen in het ip adres van je Foscam en na de dubbele punt het poortnummer. YOURADMINUSER moet je wijzigen in een IP Camera user met admin rechten. YOURPASS moet je wijzigen in het daarbij behorende wachtwoord. Met de parameter motion_armed zet je het alarm aan of uit. 0 is uit, 1 is aan.)