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    A Few Things Share the Name...

    I have many devices that I can't control via Alexa anymore. I think it started when I enabled the "HomeSeer SmartHome" skill. Alexa keeps on telling me that "A few things share the name [Name of device]. Which one do you want?". As an example consider Room = Office, Name = Office Light and Room = Office, Name = Ceiling Fan Light. So I figured that is where the conflict is. Hence, I removed the word light from "Ceiling Fan Light". In the Alexa app I disabled the "HomeSeer SmartHome" skill and then renabled it so it scan all the devices again. I confirmed that now it just says "Ceiling Fan" and not "Ceiling Fan Light". Hence, there is nothing else that has office and light in it. Yet, Alex still gives me the same message. So what could cause this? And is there a way to find out what the different devices are that supposedly have the same name?

    Edit: Note that if I include the Floor, Room and Name then Alexa gets it. I have other devices where I don't need to say the Floor and Room, though. Hence, it seems including the Floor and Room just helps clarifying which device I want to control. But again, I don't have another device that has "office" and "light" anywhere so the initial questions remains as is.

    #2
    For me, a similar thing happened and I attributed it to a change, most likely made by Amazon, which probably affected many skills. At the time, I had one Dot and a command like "Overhead lights on" worked like a champ. When the ability to have multiple Dots was added, it appeared to become necessary to say, "Mancave Overhead Light On," or I got the same "A few things share that name." My assumption was that it was necessary to specify which Dot so that one could have something like "Kitchen Overhead Lights" controlled by a Dot in a different physical location.

    As always, sans documentation, I stand to be corrected....
    HomeSeer Version: HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.500
    Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10 Pro - Work Station

    Enabled Plug-Ins:
    2.1.0.119: AmbientWeather | 3.0.21.0: BLLock | 2.0.24.0: BLUPS | 1.3.6.0: Device History | 3.0.0.56: EasyTrigger | 3.1.0.7: MeiHarmonyHub | 3.0.6681.34300: UltraCID3 | 3.0.6644.26753: UltraLog3 | 3.0.6554.33094: UltraMon3 | 3.0.0.91: weatherXML | 3.0.1.245: Z-Wave | 3.0.51: HS Touch Designer | 3.0.0.40 Z-Seer+

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      #3
      Someone else posted this exact issue earlier this week.

      Did you know that you can go in to the Alexa app and re-name the device to exactly how you want to recall it?
      I had a similar issue a year or so ago before Amazon updated the app and I was unaware of the new 'settings'
      Dan-O
      HomeSeer contributor since summer 1999, yes 1999!

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        #4
        I knew it is possible to rename devices in Alexa but I didn't try that approach because sooner or later this stuff gets reset, it reads the name from HomeSeer and then I have to repeat renaming dozens of devices. Having said that, I did give it a try now and indeed after renaming the device Alexa accepts it. For the aforementioned reason, I am somewhat reluctant to take that route but will do so if there is no other solution. Is it somehow possible to handle this from the HS side rather than the Alexa side?

        Ok, so as I wrote that I did try a few more things and yes, it is possible. When you go to the device configuration page there is a voice command field. I didn't think this would work because it's my understanding that command will be used if you send a voice command to HomeSeer through your computer. However, it turns out that if you set this field. then in Alexa the device will not show up as [Floor][Room][Name] but with whatever you set in Voice Command. Brilliant!! Somebody at HS made a good decision!

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          #5
          I'm confused.
          So you did rename the devices in the Alexa app. as I recommended and it worked but you didn't?
          Dan-O
          HomeSeer contributor since summer 1999, yes 1999!

          Comment


            #6
            Sorry for the confusion. I tried different things on different devices and there are at least two solutions to the problem:

            1) No changes in HS. Simply rename the device in the Alexa app as you suggested. So for instance I renamed "Upstairs Office Light" to just "Office Light". Now when I say "Alexa, turn off office light" it doesn't complain anymore.

            2) In HS set the Voice Command. In the above example you would set the voice command to "Office Light". Now you need to rescan the devices in the Alexa app. I usually do that by disabling the HS skill, re-enable it which then will trigger a complete new scan of all devices. After that, using the example above, the device will not show up as "Upstairs Office Light" anymore but just as "Office Light". Now Alexa also will understand "Alexa, turn off office light".

            I will go with the second approach because then I can save my settings by simply making a backup of HS. With approach 1 there is a risk to lose the custom names when something gets reset or Alexa uses some new approach on when to update device names, etc.

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