A busy Week

tostadaIt has been a busy week here in the cave and as well as reviewing the likes of the new Sonoff TH16 units I’ve been doing various improvements – not to mention getting to grips with the VT100 terminal commands, squeezing the best from the somewhat dwindling Spanish heatwave and getting annoyed because the tracking notice says that my highly anticipated STM32 board was delivered weeks ago – which it wasn’t!

So – to the HC2016 home control software, for example, I’ve added a new toggle function for the Sonoffs – and a general toggle function to any of the outputs. I’ve also made the button toggle for Sonoff permanent (i.e. if you toggle a light on – lose power, reconnect – the light will come back on).

On top of that I’ve been working with Aidan on the little NanoPi Neos which are a fantastically cheap little board but FriendlyArm don’t supply Debian for it – thankfully the fellows at Armbian do and we’ve been updating the script to take into account Armbian for the Neo – as of last night (as well as sorting an issue with Webmin that needed updating anyway in the script and adding in some other stuff) the updated script can produce a working NEO (from Armbian (Debian) Jessie base) complete with all the usual tools including Webmin, Node-Red with lots of nodes including my own BigTimer and others, SQLITE3, NPM, MQTT with websockets and a ton of other stuff – see the updated script on Bitbucket. (27/09/2016 both script and blog updated. I now have two working NEOs (by name – nanopineo and nanopineo2 – so I don’t have to worry about IP numbers).

I’ve also been resurrecting IOT Manager – now that the Russian author has eliminated the need for websockets – this Android app has promise and I’ll be blogging about it shortly – for now there’s a  refresh problem and I spoke to the author about it at the weekend – he’s aware and has made some fixes to the BETA but it still has a couple of minor items that need fixing before it is ready for big time. It would help if I spoke Russian. Just back from a short break to Seville. For now, hopefully there are enough links in here to keep anyone new to the blog busy for a while.

I need to get my hands on an ESP-32 dev board – the limits of .TEXT RAM on the ESP8266 are getting on my nerves.

Have a nice weekend!


23 thoughts on “A busy Week

      1. Nope. DHL delivered it yesterday evening around 9 o’clock and its busy at work, so it might be the second half of the week that I have time to try the board.

        You can see a picture of the board in my profile.

        I can’t post pictures here can I?

        1. So – in THEORY I have added “comment images” which should allow you to upload an image – want to give it a go?

            1. Oh very nice well (a) I hope others are watching – images in comments now work (b) let us know how you get on with this – what you can do – what tools work and more importantly what don’t – clearly the ESP32 is one future as we get more ambitious…. looking forward to cheap boards and lots of Windows tools!

              1. A short update:
                – My DevKitC does work!
                – I have managed to setup the esp-idf on Windows 10 AU
                – Not all the steps needed are documented by Espressif
                – Some of the examples give errors while compiling them

                Currently I’m testing the examples like blinking a LED (wow!), and other Wifi related stuff.

                In other news:
                There seems to be a firmware bug in the ESP3212 module: I got several emails that delivery of these modules is delayed for about 3-4 weeks and that shipping will start around 15-25 October.

                The screenshot shows the LED blinking example output.

        1. Indeed, looking forward to them flooding the market – but as they point out – not much in the way of development environments for them and the first thing I’d need is reliable MQTT as a base point.

          1. Yes, software is the main rpoblem for current version of our world.
            80386 was developed in 1985 but equal soft was developed about two years later. It was 30 years ago. Nothing changed at all.

            Btw, you have issues with MQTT stability, haven’t you? Can you talk a little about your experience?

  1. Hi Pete,

    i´ve found another nice android app for mqtt homecontrol – it looks promising so far, maybe you already knew it?
    Maybe it does not include everything that you need, but for me it works good so far.
    One little hint – before connecting to your broker, remove the default tab0 or at least its content 🙂 or it will spam your broker…

    Best regards,

    1. Hi Andreas

      Back from my travels. I’ve downloaded Linear MQTT Dashboard, and now un-installed. At first I could not see how it operated. I loaded it up, set it to work with my MQTT and…. what next. Could not find a manual or any instructions.

      Then I noted you are expected to pay per item. I’ve done with that – paying for add-ins only then to find the thing does not work properly…. that nearly killed Blynk at one time. I’d rather just pay for the App like Imperihome.

      I could be missing something but that’s my first impression.

      Thanks for pointing it out however.


      1. Hi Pete

        A little confused by your feedback on Linear Mqtt Dashboard. The current version on the Play store has no ads or charges with the only payment option being a donate button. It appears to be a well written app with some nice features. However at the moment it does appear to lack a current status function which would allow you to ensure that on app restart the sensor configurations are refreshed.

          1. Hi

            I saw that but currently no ads, no item payments just a voluntary donate. Obviously it may change in the future, it apparently used to have ads with a payment option, but no longer does.

            1. Ok, well, that’s good – but did you find out where the instructions were to use it? If anyone can point me to this I’ll give it a quick whirl..

              1. It had me puzzled at first but its pretty straight forward when you realise the large pause symbol on the top right of the sensor screen puts it into edit mode. Tapping on the three vertical dots on the right of each of the example sensors opens up the options available for the 10 types of interface available which are fairly self explanatory with additional help behind the yellow question marks. It has some nice touches but needs a startup “request status” option to be viable imho.

                1. IOT Manager has a similar issue in that you can have tabs – but when you switch tabs there is no request for an update. It is on the author’s list for next thing to do once a refresh issue is resolved. I’m expecting to hear from him today on that one.

                  Meanwhile, Imperihome and Blynk continue to operate near enough perfectly but it would be good to give them some competition.

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