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[ST Edge] vEdge Creator: a virtual device generator for end users
I should know by now with SmartThings patience is required.
Thanks! State switches automatically according to the virtual temperature and set points now! This is what I wanted, thanks again! I wonder if it is possible in the SmartThings platform to assign the temperature value of a real sensor to the virtual temperature of your virtual thermostat. Other new feature suggestion: display the actual temperature on the tile of the virtual thermostat instead of its state. The icon shows the active (heating or cooling) state by its shade anyway, so I can see that heating or cooling is active. Maybe showing the temperature would be more useful.
Unfortunately, the active/inactive state of the icon is linked to the status shown on the tile. I don’t know why ST did it like that, but that is how it is at present.
“in the Smartthings platform” is the key phrase. I think there would be two options:
- Get someone to add the virtual thermostat stuff to an existing driver for the temperature sensor (maybe @Mariano_Colmenarejo has already done this?)
- Do it through a SmartApp
Otherwise you’d have to wait until routines or Rules have some kind of support for variables.
Outside the platform, if you had access to the temp value from your sensor, you could use the SmartThings RESTful API to set the value in the virtual device with a simple https request, or you could also use the SmartThings SDK for Direct Connected Devices if you were doing it from an MCU or Raspberry Pi. All that takes some technical skills, though.
I have a driver that turns a temperature sensor into a full featured thermostat.
I was using it all last winter as the main heating thermostat with the sonoff TH01 sensor (€20) and a zigbee switch (€18)
It has a greater precision in temperature changes (0.1ºc) than the thermostat I had (0.5ºc). I left the old Wifi thermostat as a backUp, 2ºc below this one and it worked perfectly all winter and I calculated it saved 10% on fuel over similar years in temps.
This is a great piece of work, thank you! I have been using a bunch of virtual switches to kick off “Scenes” using the home automation buttons on the bottom of my Logitech/Harmony Elite remote. I was able to replace all those virtual switches with yours really easily and it works perfectly.
One thing I am having an issue with is adding one of your virtual switches to the start/end sequence of my Harmony Activities. When trying to add the virtual switch it needs to determine the current state of the switch and that is where it fails. It says it can’t communicate with the switch. It works fine with the old virtual switches that I created in the Groovy IDE. Not sure if that is fixable.
- NO CERTIFICATION REQUIRED!ddd
I followed the instructions and the VEDGE Switch 1 shows up in Alexa devices but when I try to edit existing routine (which triggers alexa guard home and away), I can’t change the trigger from the existing virtual Echo Guard Switch to Vedge Switch 1 as the VEdge Switch 1 doesn’t show up in list of Smart Home devices. Do I somehow need to add the Vedge Switch 1 to Alexa Smart Home and if so how do I do that? Thanks Mike in Ocala
Alexa doesn’t support switches in the “When this happens” part of a routine. You need to use a virtual contact device, which also has a synched switch, making it useful for both “When this happens” and and Action part of an Alexa routine.
Use a “Momentary Button”. It can then be used in Alexa to trigger a routine.
@TAustin Any advice regarding the issue I posted above? I am able to successfully turn the virtual switches on/off using my Harmony Elite remote but can’t seem to add one to any of my Activity sequences. I get an error that it can’t determine the current state of the virtual switch. Works fine with the old virtual switches I created in the Groovy IDE.
I deleted it as a switch and used the edge creator to add a device as a contact sensor. It is identified as vedge contact 1. I modified my ST automations and my Alexa routines to use the Vedge Contact 1 instead of the Echo Guard Switch contact sensor but the routines and automations don’t work. I guess Im doing something wrong but can’t figure out what it is. With the Vedge Contact 1 as a contact sensor it did show up as a trigger option but routines still don’t work.
You probably need to share some more specifics about your automations so we can see what might be the problem.
I assume you have an automation on the SmartThings side that is changing the state of the contact via the switch, yes? Is that part working?
And then you have an Alexa routine that is doing something when it sees the contact change to open or close?
I have 2 automations in ST that used a virtual Echo Guard Switch (EGS - which looks like a sensor not a switch). When i run auto 1, the EGS turns off. In Alexa, when ST auto 1 runs and the switch turns off, the EGS closes and turns on Alexa Guard Away.
When i run auto 2, the EGS turns on. In Alexa, when ST auto 2 runs, the EGS opens and sets Alexa Guard to Home.
FWIW, in ST my old EGS icon shows a sensor and below the Text Echo Guard Switch shows either on or off.
When I used your developer and created a device (device type contact sensor), it shows up in ST as a sensor but below the text Echo Guard Switch it shows either open or closed NOT on or off.
The existing virtual switch came from BJPierrot and has worked fine. I am not a coder so I followed Bud’s video instructions and it has worked fine. I’m just not sure if it will work after 12/31/2022 so I was exploring your virtual as a possible replacement if it doesn’t work.
I guess I can leave it alone and see if it works after end of year.
He’s already using a switch and contact sensor combination device from my driver. I’d really like to understand the issue rather than send him to another driver from my topic, please.
@TAustin and @ocalamike
I am using the virtual contact sensor from this driver to turn on/off Alexa guard and other devices as well. I’m not sure if it helps at all but here’s what I have noticed.
The Alexa routine is almost always triggered when vcontact opens and often missed when the vcontact closes. The contact shows the appropriate state in the ST app. I have noticed that when the ST app is slow to load is usually when the Alexa routine fails, almost like the delayed app loading is causing the event to be lost before reaching Alexa. If I open and close the vcontact in the ST app after missed events, the Alexa routines run as expected.
As I am not knowledgeable in how all this works and simply copied the old Groovy Virtual switch (which continues to work), I don’t know if what I post below is significant or not to why I haven’t been able to get TAustins to work.
FWIW, I installed the V edge creator just fine to ST app and then created a contact sensor. It shows up in no room assigned in ST as vEdge Contact 1. The device shows a contact sensor icon in upper left and power button in upper right. Below “vEdge Contact 1” text is the word “Closed”.
On my old Groovy Echo Guard Switch, the device icon shows a contact sensor icon in upper left and power button in upper right. Below “Echo Guard Switch” text is the word “On”.
Does one device icon saying on and the TAustin device icon showing Closed indicate I did something incorrectly? When I first did it using vEdge Creator I added a switch device instead of a contact sensor but learned a switch can’t be used as a trigger in Alexa routine so I deleted the switch and created one using contact sensor but am confused by the on vs. closed wording difference.
FWIW, in my Alexa routines the trigger is when Echo Guard Switch OPENS or CLOSES. So it is on or off in ST automations and open or closed in Alexa routines.
Thanks for your help. I struggle to understand the virtual switch idea but it has worked well turning Alexa gaurd on and off when we leave home.
Use a virtual “Momentary Button”, for communicating actions to Alexa. It automatically turns On and then Off. Alexa gets an On and Off signal. You can catch either, as they are both occurring at virtually the same moment. In my routine, “If the virtualMomentaryButton opens”, perform the action. It works quite well.
No, you did it correctly. I have mine set up the exact same way. The issue I see is that Alexa doesn’t always run the rule based on the trigger.
I’m not sure if @danhvos has these issues with the momentary button.
I like to see the status on the app and dashboard so chose to use the contact sensor.
Does the Alexa routine ever work or not at all?
Can you post a screen shot of the Alexa routines?