Phantom Switches in the last two days

I’m getting accustomed to the vagaries of SmartThings, but figured I should post this anyhow… in the last two days we’ve had two incidents of lights changing for no apparent reason. Pulling up the ST App and checking activity, we can see that it claims a switch was toggled. Nobody was near that switch. It’s on the wall. And it hadn’t done that previously. And it’s not doing it now.

At the same time, location services seems basically dead. Which throws off SHM.

Play SmartHome Roulette! Savor the uncertainty!


You’re doing good. I had a smart app installed itself today.

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Not related, except to ST’s terrible reliabilty…

But awhile back when the DBs were crashing and RM and all kinds of other apps were effected… it really messed up my system and I had no idea the extent until the last few days. See I have been rebuilding from the ground up and moving things from RM to CoRE.

In the course of doing so I am looking at all my SmartLighting rules, I opened a plethora of tickets on. Not a single one resolved by ST. They kept asking me… is it this? Is it that? I told them I should be asking them, but they were never helpful. Basically told me to rebuild. Gee thanks. So I just let the whole thing rot.

Turns out, none of the SL rules were running. They don’t show up in the localapps list, half of them are missing conditions or devices that were previously defined.

Same thing in RuleMachine - conditions and devices missing all over the place.

I guess ST can let the DB sh*t the bed and every consumer of theirs needs to check every single nook and cranny on their own, etc or else they can jump off a cliff and have none of the automation they spent countless hours building.

I still have no confidence my SL rules will actually work without testing each one for functionality in the real world. Which is what I am doing with CoRE, each action I am testing to make sure it works and then killing the RM instance of it. I guess I will need to check each and every SL rule after that as well.

This will literally take weeks using proper methods.

We need a way to backup / restore at minimum. Snapshots, etc So we can capture valid working configs and restore them when ST screws it up and takes no responsibility for doing so.

On a side note, this is why I theorize the tireless tinkerers believe they have 99% reliability… they fix these issues as they come across them. However, I don’t believe for a second anyone would actually have that if they setup their system in January and hadn’t touched it since. It would be a steaming pile of…

I love tinkering. Engineering is a hobby. But I want to build and reap benefits. Tinkering is enjoyed when it’s focused on making improvements and updates. Not trying to keep it afloat as it self destructs. That is just frustrating.

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ST does sometimes respond telling me to open a ticket. But here’s the thing… you can’t; there’s no ticket system. Just an email address (support@), which is the same black hole they’ve ignored in the past. They apparently test their user experience with the same dedication to antagonism that they test their code. Try this:

  • Click “Support” (upper right of this screen.) If you’re in the U.S. it will take you to their support page here.
  • Note the lack of any word “ticket” or anything suggesting reporting a problem
  • Open the FAQ here, by clicking on the word “FAQ”.
  • Note the continued absence of any word “ticket” or anything suggesting reporting a problem
  • Enter the word “ticket” (since that’s the word they use) in the search box.
  • Note the response of "No results for “ticket”. " Which, on the bright side, is the first use of the word “ticket”… but it was just quoted back.
  • In desperation, try “report”, as in “report a problem.” Or click here for the same impact. You’ll see 13 hits, none of which are for reporting a problem. Instead, the responses are about devices reporting their status, generally in vain and misplaced optimism, to SmartThings.

They really should improve their problem reporting system. Create a web form (really, how hard would that be?) or install a trouble-ticket system. And improve their follow-through. Track how long it takes for users to say the problem is solved.

Although there is irony in pairing phantom switches with phantom support.

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Please DM me your email address and I will see if I can figure out whats going on

Edit: if you are not getting an automatic confirmation email with a ticket number after sending a note to or filling out the ticket form, let me know that as well

Suddenly I feel very un-hip. What is DM?

Direct Message.