How to set up Home Assistatant

First of all I want to say that this is how I set up my instance of home assistant, there are actually a lot of ways to do it and you can find more information about it on the Home Assistant Getting Started page.


Step 1. Gather what you need


Step 2.Selecting the operating System

Instead of flashing a regular Linux distro like Raspbian on the pi we are going to flash an OS called HassIO. The advantage of HassIO over something like Rasbian with Home Assistant installed is how easy it is not only to install it but keep it up to date and install addons. The downide is that you loose some flexibility. Convinced? If not I once again refer you to the Home Assistant Getting Started page otherwise lets move on.


Step 3. Download the software

Before we do the actual flashing you need to download two things. A piece of software called Etcher that will be used to write the OS to the card and of course the actual OS. The latest version of HassIO can always be found here, click the Raspberry Pi 3 link.


Step 4. Installing Etcher

This is probably the simplest part of this whole thing, simply open the setupfile you downloaded and click on I Agree. Etcher will begin to install and once done will even start by itself, easy huh.


Step 5. Flashing HassIO to the card

Now that you have Etcher open in front of you, click the button that sais Select image , the file you want to select is the HassIO file you just downloaded, it will probably be named something like “resinos-hassio-1.1-raspberrypi3.img.bz2”

Etcher will try to find your SD card automatically but it is very important that you make sure it choose the right one as anything on the card/drive it has selected will be removed. we good? Good. Now hit Flash and let Etcher do it´s job.


Step 6. Plug it all in

Time to plug it all in. Put your SD card in your Pi and make sure you plug in your ethernet cabe on both ends before you plug in the power to your Pi. Once the Pi boots up it will automatically download the latest version of Home Assistant and set it up, this will take about 20 to 30 minutes so this might be a good time to go get a cup of coffee. You will know that it’s done when you can access the web interface of Home Assistant at http://hassio.local:8123.


Step 7. Installing addons

There are a couple of addons that you will need if you plan to use any of my other tutorials regarding home assistant.
Since the configuration of addons may change I will just link to the setup instructions of each addon instead of going throu it all here. You will find them in the store under the HassIO tab in the sidebar of Home Assistant.


That´s it, now you have the basics up and running and it´s time to move on to actually doing something fun with it.

Before we leave I want to point out that I will not be writing a post about how to navigate the Home Assistant UI or how to edit config files. If you need help with this there are a lot of information availiable at the Home Assistant Websiteforum and Discord server. The BRUH automation youtube channel is also a really good source of information for beginners.

This video in particular I think would be a good next step.


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Getting started with home automation

While most of you reading this probably know me as that guy who is taking forever to get that Booksonic Bridge out (it’s getting closer, I promise) I do actually have another hobby that I haven’t really written or published anything on GitHub about, and that is Home Automation. In this post I’m going to talk a little about how I got started with home automation but I won’t cover any actual instructions. Then I will start writing up other posts about the hardware and automatons I currently have and how to set them up. As I add new things to my home, they will be added here as well.

For the longest time I identified myself as a software guy and hardware was not for me because it was to hard (pun intended). While I still really wouldn’t call myself a hardware guy I no longer limit myself to just software either. This started with a friend (and colleague) sending me a link to this arduino kit that was on sale at a store not to far from where we work. This of course led to us deciding to swing by after work and get ourselves a kit each. I don’t think I ever actually finished any of the projects in the kit but it is still one the best purchases I did last year because when I started reading the book that came with the kit and looking at the projects in it I quickly realized something, working with Arduinos really doesn’t have to be hard at all.

Now before I move on to the next part of the story I think I should probably mention that while a lot of the hardware I use in my home automation is built using the Arduino IDE none of them actually use the Arduino hardware, instead I use another development board called NodeMCU  which is based on the ESP8266 microprocessor. I know this may sound advanced to newcommers but trust me, it really isn’t that hard.

Ok, enough about that, lets move on. After I found out that I could actually make hardware stuff I spent some time thinking about the projects I wanted to do and the possibility of maybe even having these projects talk to each other. This is where one afternoon I stumbled on to the holy grail, an open-source project called Home Assistant.

Put simply Home Assistant, or HASS for short is the glue that binds together everything in your smart home, be it your homebuilt wifi enabled tv remote, the IKEA Trådfri lightbulbs in your ceiling or your Kodi powered speakers in the bedroom.  All of these are of course real examples of things I have in my apartment and that you will eventually find detailed instructions about how to setup and use in the Home Automation category of this blog.

Now there is a lot to be said about what you can use Home Assistant for but that’s not what this post is about, instead I think I will leave it here and just end it with a recommendation that you check out the Share your projects! category on the Home Assistant forum for some inspiration about what your first project might be.

The top photo in this post was taken by Vowstar and is released under the CC-BY-SA Licence. It has been cropped a bit and the original is available on this WikiMedia page.


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