ST Hub v3 - network wifi / hub wifi

Hello - noob here, just beginning with ST. I have a v3 hub and connected it via Ethernet to my managed switch in my network rack. This is all located in laundry room in basement (corner of home). Not sure how far I’ll delve into all things smart etc…but I have the basics > cameras, multi purpose sensors, water sensors, lights, smart wifi plugs and just beginning to set everything up.

Question: In my scenario do all the devices communicate via my home wifi mesh network (then to the hub) or are they hunting for the hub’s wifi directly? My home network for both Ethernet and wifi is strong. I kinda like the major items hardwired but that’s just me.

If all ST devices are trying to communicate to the hub directly, I may think about moving the hub to a more central location before I get to far into all this. Although I have only set up a sensor and light thus far, they are all communicating / working so far.

Thanks!

Welcome!

Well the first thing id offer is read up on ZWave and Zigbee protocols for Home Automation. You will quickly find that if you want local automation to work you’ll probably be using thise protocols and the products that support them (like your SmartThings Hub)

ZWave and Zigbee are wireless low power mesh networks different from your WiFi so you hit it right on… Centrally located hub.

Both Zigbee and ZWave mesh networks are strenghhened by powered repeating devices (usually just a ZWave or Zigbee device that is not battery powered) so building out your mesh includes strategies for placing powered repeaters.

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Your hub isn’t using Wi-Fi at all in that configuration. Even if you had it connected via Wi-Fi instead of ethernet, it would just be another end device as far as all your other Wi-Fi devices are concerned, no different from a tablet or a game console or anything.

As far as your other devices, it depends what protocol they are using, so we would need to know the specific brand and model before we could comment any further. It’s possible that they are all Wi-Fi, but given what you listed, my guess would be that some of them are either Zigbee or Z wave. :sunglasses:

You might want to start by reading the wireless range and repeaters FAQ. Begin with post 11 in that thread, read that, then go up to the top and read the whole thing. It will explain a lot about the different protocols and what’s going on. (The topic title is a clickable link)

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Got it thank you! I was familiar with the protocol names but not much more than that - this helps.

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Thank you (again)! That article puts this in perspective and things are making sense now.

The Meross smart plugs (4pack) are wifi (which explains the need for sep app/acct). The price was attractive and said compatible with ST. Although they work with ST / hub thus far and I have them set to turn on/off at a scheduled times.

The other items are samsung ST brand and their boxes state Zigbee.

It prob makes sense to return the meross and get a ST brand / compatible mains smart plug to also act as repeaters now rather then down the road when (if) I get many additional devices.

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It’s up to you. You definitely should have some zigbee repeaters, but the meross are good devices (I use them in my own home) And it’s not a bad idea to have a couple of things that will work without smartthings.

If your budget is tight then, sure, swap them out for some Zigbee. Otherwise, the whole point of smartthings is that it’s a multi protocol platform and you can choose each device based on what’s best for that specific use case. So just make sure to get some Zigbee repeating devices moving forward if you plan to also add more Zigbee battery powered devices. :sunglasses:

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They don’t work with the hub, they don’t care about that. They work with your smartthings account via Wi-Fi. If you unplug the hub, the Meross will still work just fine with smartthings. :sunglasses: That’s not true of a Zigbee device.

A zigbee or zwave device communicates to the hub, which then uses the Internet to talk to the smartthings cloud.

WiFi Devices of any brand can talk to the smartthings cloud directly if they have a SmartThings integration.

Excellent thank you, I wasn’t aware of that

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