Set Up and Manage Homebridge Right from Your iPhone or iPad with the Homemanager App and HOOBS

YouTube
YouTube
Twitter
Visit Us
Follow Me
Instagram
LINKEDIN
Share
Follow by Email

@BudgetAutomationGirl – Do you have devices that are not HomeKit compatible? No problem. Homebridge is a solution to make almost everything HomeKit compatible. If you haven’t heard of Homebridge, here’s a summary from GitHub

Homebridge is a lightweight NodeJS server you can run on your home network that emulates the iOS HomeKit API.” Homebridge, as it sounds, creates a bridge between HomeKit and unsupported devices.

Now you can set up and maintain Homebridge from your iPhone or iPad using the Homemanager 2 App created by Ron Polenthon. Homemanager is a community-driven app down to community determined enhancements and pricing. There is even a fourteen-day free trial period.

Get HOOBS now: https://hoobs.org

Homemanager App for Homebridge

After a positive experience with HOOBS, I decided to try the Homemanager app and see how much could be set up straight from an iPhone. Homemanager supports multiple platforms, but I’m using a Raspberry Pi again with the HOOBS software downloaded and flashed to a microSD card. You could bypass using a computer by purchasing HOOBS in a box starter kit or the HOOBS on microSD available on hoobs.org.

After downloading the Homemanager app from the app store, open the app and enter user credentials. From here you can choose an existing Homebridge setup or new. Selecting a new setup takes you through a guided, interactive setup of Homebridge using HOOBS. You start by purchasing your selected HOOBS product. You can choose to connect HOOBS to your home network via Ethernet or WiFi. Power the device and wait for a few minutes while HOOBS installs. The app will direct you to connect to the HOOBS server. Click search. Once successfully connected, you add your admin account.

Get HOOBS now: https://hoobs.org

Add HOOBS bridge to HomeKit

Now it’s time to add the HOOBS bridge to HomeKit. You can use a second Apple device, like an iPad, to scan the QR code or use the same device and type in the setup code in the next step. Get HOOBS now: https://hoobs.org

  • Open Apple’s Home app, tap the plus sign to add an accessory. Either scan the QR code with a second device or select “I Don’t Have a Code or Cannot Scan” and enter the pairing code from the Homemanager app.
  • Tap the home icon in the upper left corner of Apple’s Home app, scroll down the hubs & bridges to verify the HOOBS bridge was successfully paired.

From this point, you can either manage your HOOBS server from your computer at “hoobs.local” using the web interface or continue in the app. If continuing with the app, choose from basic and pro licensing or select the free fourteen-day trial. You will then be directed to the Dashboard in the app. From the Dashboard, you can view your server information, such as the CPU temperature along with CPU, memory and microSD card usage information.

The next section displays the status and uptime of, in this case, the HOOBS service. You can view and manage updates for your plugins and system in the Updates section. The configuration provides a total of your installed plugins and accessories which you select each individually to view and manage. Finally, you will see your HomeKit pairing information at the bottom of the Dashboard. The bottom menu of the app provides access to more features.

Get HOOBS now: https://hoobs.org

Adding a Plugin on HomeKit

Let’s try adding a plugin. We are going to add homebridge-tplink-smarthome version 4.0.1. No need to head over to npmjs, we will add this plugin right from the app.

  • You can tap on Installed Plugins from the Configuration section of the Dashboard or select Configuration from the bottom menu and Plugins from there. Type “tplink” in the search bar and be sure to select the correct one listed as “Tplink Smarthome V4.0.1”.
  • Tap on the plugin, verify the author as Patrick Seal and press Install. Tap install again and the plugin installs. The “installation successful” message displays with a green circle and checkmark.
  • Select Configure Plugin. In this case, we will be redirected back to the Dashboard as this plugin requires no extra information needed from us added to the configuration file (config.json) which can be viewed from Advanced under the Configuration menu. Homemanager and HOOBS add everything we need to the config file for this plugin! When you add a plugin that does require config file changes, Homemanager provides you a visual interface accessed via Manage Devices to easily manage and make config changes.

We will need to restart the HOOBS service from the Dashboard by tapping the three dots to the right of HOOBS Service and selecting Start. We can then scroll down the Dashboard and see the Connected Accessories updated in the Configuration section. This total should reflect the amount of connected TP-Link devices.

Jumping over to Apple’s Home app, we can now view and control our added TP-Link devices! If you run into errors updating device status, ensure you are on the latest versions of iOS on all devices used for HomeKit, including your HomeKit hub if applicable.

Get HOOBS now: https://hoobs.org

Want to find out more about Homemanager? The Homemanager website is homemanager-app.de. There is even a Roadmap for future development. Improved SSH shell, terminal commands and access to the Homebridge log from the app will soon be added.

You can view and join their communities on Facebook, Reddit at r/homemanagerApp, Twitter and GitHub at rpolenthon/homemanagerapp to get more information.

YouTube
YouTube
Twitter
Visit Us
Follow Me
Instagram
LINKEDIN
Share
Follow by Email

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *