Virtual Insteon Devices?

Posted on
Sun May 22, 2016 10:23 am
nanobots offline
Posts: 43
Joined: Apr 28, 2015

Virtual Insteon Devices?

Is there anyway (either in reality or theoretically) to create a virtual insteon device? To explain a little...

Right now there are two ways in Indigo (that I'm aware of) to make groups of insteon devices respond to a command:

1. Use device links to directly link a controller to one or more responders. The responders will then listen to commands from whatever the controller device is.

2. Use actions/action groups to send commands to devices from the PLM attached to Indigo.

(Again my understanding/experience) The first has the advantage that when you directly link devices it's basically one command that needs to get sent out to control a potentially large group of other devices, meaning the devices respond very quickly. However you're essentially limited to the controller turning on causing the other responders to turn on, the controller turning off causing the responders to turn off, etc. There is no where near the amount of flexibility available that Indigo provides through conditionals, action groups, python scripts etc

The second option has the flexibility to do exactly what you want, but if you start controlling more than a couple devices there can be some pretty lengthy delays before your actions complete.

I'm wondering if there is some way--through Indigo or scripting that one could create virtual insteon devices that could be linked with groups of real insteon devices to get the best of both worlds.

So as a concrete example, I have a home/away button near the front door that, when I leave turns off every Insteon device in the house. When I come home it turns on a couple of lights and some music. I can't use insteon links here (AFAIK) because I don't want every device to turn on when I come home, just a few of them. So instead I have an action group that goes through and turns off every insteon device in the house, and this takes 10+ seconds. Eventually I'd like to add some more devices, and I'm presuming it will take even longer.

If I could create a virtual insteon device, I could pair every device in the house with it, and Indigo could trigger an "off" on this device, which would send the appropriate command that could tell all of the connected devices to turn off at the same time. When I come home maybe there is a second virtual device that is connected to a certain group of lights that I want turned on and Indigo send the on for that virtual insteon device.

Is this making sense? Is this possible? I'm guessing it's not because the insteon address of the PLM is hardcoded and it's not possible to pretend to have a different address. I guess I could buy a bunch of switches and hook them up in a closet somewhere and use them as virtual devices. :-)

Alternatively, since X10 is an older protocol and I think insteon devices support x10, would something like this be possible through x10?

Thanks!

Posted on
Sun May 22, 2016 10:28 am
Colorado4Wheeler offline
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Posts: 2715
Joined: Jul 20, 2009
Location: Colorado

Re: Virtual Insteon Devices?

Nano,

I wrote a plugin that I recently published here that may be of use to you. It sort of gives you the best of all worlds and has quite a bit of flexibility. You might check it out to see if it fits the bill for you and if it's close but not exactly there then I'm happy to see if I can expand it to do more.

It's called "Scene Toggle" and you can check it out here

My Modest Contributions to Indigo:

HomeKit Bridge | Device Extensions | Security Manager | LCD Creator | Room-O-Matic | Smart Dimmer | Scene Toggle | Powermiser | Homebridge Buddy

Check Them Out Here

Posted on
Sun May 22, 2016 10:47 am
nanobots offline
Posts: 43
Joined: Apr 28, 2015

Re: Virtual Insteon Devices?

Thanks would like to take a look however it says I'm not authorized for that forum...

Posted on
Mon May 23, 2016 10:45 am
jay (support) offline
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Location: Austin, Texas

Re: Virtual Insteon Devices?

nanobots wrote:
Is this making sense? Is this possible? I'm guessing it's not because the insteon address of the PLM is hardcoded and it's not possible to pretend to have a different address. I guess I could buy a bunch of switches and hook them up in a closet somewhere and use them as virtual devices. :-)


You're referring to PowerLinc groups/scenes. You create a PowerLinc group that has links to other responders (basically the same as inter-device links), then when send on/off to the group in an Action.

Jay (Indigo Support)
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Posted on
Mon May 23, 2016 10:50 am
nanobots offline
Posts: 43
Joined: Apr 28, 2015

Re: Virtual Insteon Devices?

Thanks Jay,

Had actually just come across this this morning... Sometimes things are a lot easier than you expect them to be, haha.

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