As you might remember a while ago I started a fun journey to creating a Smart Home. So I started with Tuya and in the meantime I have taken things to a new level!
Ever since I started with my journey I heard a lot of people talking about Home Assistant and how they actually integrated this in their life / house and the benefits it gave them. Needless to say that I also wanted to give it a try.
What Is Home Assistant?
Home Automation is an Open Source home automations that allows you to control all your smart home devices from a single unified interface while putting local control and privacy first. It supports over 1600 devices from hundreds of different brands and can integrate with a wide range of popular smart home protocols such as Zigbee, Z-Wave and many more. Should you ever come to a point that you would need to integrate something which is not offered yet, you can either use Python scripts, as the community of tinkerers and DIY enthusiasts or by searching for a solution on GitHub. The possibilities are ENDLESS!
Awaken Your Home!
One of the benefits of Home Assistant is that it can be installed on a variety of platforms including Raspberry Pi, Windows, Mac, and Linux. There are a lot of people who I know that are running Home Assistant on a thin client and there are people like me who are running it from a Docker container.
Since there are a lot of ways to install Home Assistant, and since it’s open source, Home Assistant have come up with a comparison list which indicates the differences between each methods. You can find the list at right, simply click to enlarge it.
For the most people the Home Assistant OS might be the best choice since it offers everything which Home Assistant can offer. However if you like to experiment, don’t mind to dig deeper into things, you’re a tech-savy enthusiast, like me then the Docker version will be as complete as the OS version.
How To Setup Home Assistant:
As mentioned I’m using the Container version which gives me a lot of flexibility. Yes, I do miss the “Add-ons” part but there are always some work-arounds to achieve the same result.
version: '3' services: homeassistant: container_name: HomeAsssitant image: "ghcr.io/home-assistant/home-assistant:stable" volumes: - /home/pi/Configs/Home-Assistant:/config - /etc/localtime:/etc/localtime:ro ports: - 8123:8123 restart: unless-stopped privileged: true network_mode: host
With the above Docker Compose, a Docker container called Home-Assistant will be created. Once the container is created, you can access the Home Assistant web interface by navigating to http://localhost:8123 in your web browser.
Configuring Home Assistant
Now this is the most beautiful part of Home Assistant. There is a lot possible and yes at first it can be very overwhelming to start with it. Luckily everything is extremely well documented, so you can’t go wrong on this. Just keep in mind that there are a lot of integrations and automations which you can create and you can easily expand your smart home system in the future and make your home as smart as possible without spending a lot of money.
Personally I’m now experimenting usage of NFC tags all-around the house which are programmed to perform certain tasks when I scan them with my phone. For example: Scan a NFC tag before I leave and all lights will go off, heating will be turned of and my Robot Vaccum cleaner will start cleaning the house! How awesome is that! 😉
Not only you can use it to make your house smarter, but you can automate it to do certain tasks for you as well as help you remember some re-accuring tasks. This is also very helpful for me since I’m still not feeling very well so I use Home Assistant.. well.. yeah… to assist me with a lot of reminders! 😉