Multiple Hubs in one Location


(Stephen) #1

I am not sure if this has been mentioned as a suggestion - but I could not find reference to it anywhere (other than stating that you cannot currently do this). It would be so beneficial to have multiple hubs assigned to one location.

For example - I have a workshop that is a good distance from the main house. Probably around 150 yards away. This is too far for Z-Wave or Zigbee to reach but I do have Ethernet run to the shop with a router set as an access point (giving me seamless WiFi from the house to the shop to all around the property).

Since this is too far for mesh to reach, I purchased another hub thinking that I would be able to add that to the existing location. However, I found out that I have to create a new location and a new hub. Even though all my devices (from the house and from the shop) are all listed together, the hubs are treated as separate entities.

Since the Ethernet connection there is the same as the house (same network), it would be great if the hub could act as an extension of the main hub rather than having to work with multiple locations. This would allow for seamless automation across the property rather than have two disjointed installs. (Like getting an alert with a light or speaker in the house if the temperature for the baby pheasants goes over 85 deg).


(ActionTiles.com co-founder Terry @ActionTiles; GitHub: @cosmicpuppy) #2

Yup… currently not possible.

SmartThings’s data structure design allows for 1:Many relationship between Location:Hubs, but, as far as I know, the ability to add multiple hubs to one Location hasn’t existed for quite a long time (it was there briefly).

Still… the data design should be updated to at least allow SmartApps to access devices across multiple Location. This is impeding a lot of stuff (like Alexa, IFTTT, SmartTiles v5, etc.). SmartTiles v6 handles multiple locations by consolidating them externally. Other external rules engines could probably be built to handle your scenario too.


(Peter Richardson) #3

But you can access both hubs through the app - just have to select the location, correct? I have hubs in two houses and it works perfectly. In one there’s an outbuilding I have connected an exterior light via zigbee - at over 150ft it connects fine with the hub, which I have located in the attic of the main house and in direct sight (apart from the roof structure) of the lamp. I thought I’d need a second hub - but so far worked just fine.


(ActionTiles.com co-founder Terry @ActionTiles; GitHub: @cosmicpuppy) #4

Yes… But only can view one “Hub/Location” at a time… All the App does is save you from having to logout and login again.

The only other thing shared between Locations under the same Account is the library of custom SmartApps and Device Type Handlers. You still have to install every SmartApp to each Location manually.

In other words… Right now, it’s not much better than using 2 completely separate Accounts (in fact, there are a few advantages to using multiple Accounts…).


(Peter Richardson) #5

Thanks - i have it set up with an account for each hub too with differing email addresses - but then invited myself to join the other one - the best of both worlds (or worst: :smirk:) This can confuse the presence detection -but I think I’ve got that sotedr in each by making sure both hubs recognize my iphone.


(Ray) #6

It’s actually possible to have 2 hubs with one location. I did this for almost a year before moving everything over to hub 2. All you have to do is go into IDE and change the location of the device from one location to another location. Only thing you can’t move over is the smartapps instances from one location to another location but creating new smartapp will allow you to control devices on both hubs. Unless thing changed. It was working before I moved everything over 4 months ago.


(Stephen) #7

I do not think that exists in the IDE anymore.


(Ray) #8

Weird, I still could do it but I don’t have the hub 1 hookup right now to confirm I can control it. It does move location. Will let you know when I am home.


(Stephen) #9

I see what you are talking about. That is the ability to move a device from one hub to another that are under the same account. Not quite the same as what I am asking for - the ability to have multiple hubs under one location. Currently it is one hub per location and if you want another hub under your account you need to create a new location first, then assign the hub to the new location.


(Ray) #10

You have to try it. When you move the device from one hub to another. That device move to the new location of the new hub. That device is still physically paired to the old hub. By doing this. You will have all the devices of both hubs under one location or “things” in the ST app.

Edit: this can only be done if you have multiple hubs under the same account. Maybe that’s the confusing part that I didn’t make it clear earlier.


(ActionTiles.com co-founder Terry @ActionTiles; GitHub: @cosmicpuppy) #11

Wow! I didn’t think this was possible… Now I might try hooking up my second Hub and seeing if this works as you describe!


(Ray) #12

OK, I just hookup my v1 hub to test this and there is bad news. You can still move over devices but you can no longer be able to control it. So I tested with virtual switches and it’s still working and probably the best way to go. You create a virtual switch and sync it with the light you want to control. Then move this virtual switch to the new location. By doing this you will have all the physical switch at the old hub and the new location with all the virtual switch.


#13

With the new S2 spec, it seems like someone should be able to create a Z-wave over IP (Z/IP) tunneling device. Such a device in the remote shop could then communicate the Z-wave in the shop to the hub in the main house. No?


((John421)) #14

Hello,
I am new to ST but also trying to add a second hub to the first hub. Does anyone know of has anyone been able to add using the Z-wave utilities

?


(Ian Abercrombie) #15

It is possible but it is a huge pain in the neck if you already have a system. You need to rebuild the whole system from the ground up.

What you have to do is delete your existing location and create a new one. Create the new location from the WEB portal at graph.api.smarthings.com and create it with no hubs in it.
Now open up the smartthings app on two ios or andriod devices and log in to the new location on both of them. On each device click the Add a Thing option which will prompt the app to ask you for a hub welcome code. With the welcome code text box open on both devices type the welcome code for one hub in one device and the other hub in the other device. Step by step go through the rest of the setup of the hubs keeping each device in sync i.e. when you click next on one device go and click next on the other so they are at the same point in the installation. This synchronisation might not be necessary but I did it and it worked fine for my system.

When you have finished you will see two hubs in the new location. You should rename one or both of them so you can identify which is which.

Now you can use the IOS or Android app to add all your devices back and recreate all the smart apps you had. If you had any ZWave devices installed when you deleted the original location you will need to go round and exclude these from the hub they are trying to connect to because the hub ID will have changed and they will not be able to reconnect. Once they have been excluded the hub should pick them up again in the normal ‘add a thing’ mode.

I have been using two hubs in one location for several years with absolutely no problems. The mesh networks cannot see each other as they are in different buildings but all the devices appear in the same location in the app and all the routines including Alexa work fine. My original hub stopped working with Zigbee so I had to replace it. I was told, by support, that it was not possible to swap the hub or add it as another hub to my existing location but I figured out this work around right after ordering a pair of Mixtile hubs to replace my system since they can do it and as a bonus they support bluetooth and do all processing locally so you are dependant on an internet connection. I may still change over for these two reasons.
It is a real shame that Smartthings decided to remove this capability from the application because it really does work very well and there seem to be quite a lot of people who would like to make use of it. I have 69 things in my system spread over two buildings on one site but about 150 yards apart linked with a WiFi bridge. I use Alexa to control everything and without this work around that would be impossible as Alexa can only work with one location.