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2019's Which Z-Wave Stick Is Best For HomeSeer?

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    2019's Which Z-Wave Stick Is Best For HomeSeer?

    There are more threads on this forum regarding which Z-Wave stick is best than I can possibly count. Every one of them conclude the Z-Wave.ME UZB is best.

    For international shipments, the ZME UZB is also the one HomeSeer supply within their own products.

    However, HomeSeer's restore function IS provided for it but does NOT work and their official stance is "sorry, go rebuild everything manually".

    ZME UZB is therefore not a fully supported product and is actually dangerous to have given the above.

    Aeotec's Z-Wave stick is outright unsupported for restores with HomeSeer, there is no option for that. Plus lots of complaints it freezes with intermittently with HomeSeer (I experienced this in my early testing too).

    There are a few other Z-Wave sticks but they are US frequency only.

    The Philio (and Black Cat I believe rebranded same stick) I am told HomeSeer supports restores, but then that's the case with ZME too yet it is not. Plus the Philio has no firmware updates so you are stuck with an older Z-Wave SDK. To that end I have no idea if it is properly and fully supported?

    Zooz looks exciting but at the moment US frequency only, and oh yeah HomeSeer fails with restores for that too anyway.

    Serious question - is there anything other than HomeSeer's own Z-Stick that is actually 100% supported?

    Bonus question - given the HomeSeer Z-Stick is US frequency only, is there actually any 100% supported stick at all for HomeSeer with international frequencies?

    Surely there is something otherwise the lack of ability to restore renders HomeSeer an unviable product for non-US markets?!?

    Okay after 3 weeks of my home (and therefore wife and kids in addition to myself) being completely stuffed I can finally give some closure and advice here.

    HomeSeer are huge advocates of backups - they recommend them before even sneezing and they automatically make them if you so much as look at a device. Fantastic.

    HomeSeer couldn't give a rats about restoring - their product is broken and their stance is the same as Vera, go rebuild.

    Unless you are using HomeSeer's own SmartStick+ in the US, or the product I am about to recommend for Australian folk (and possibly international), you are right now sitting on a time bomb - if you so much as think about doing a restore, if you follow HomeSeer's own articles on rebuilding routes, etc you will be left with a blank and broken setup that they can and will do nothing about. Actually they will be - the restore option is being REMOVED for most UZBs, seriously. You have been warned.

    Aeotec is completely unsupported, ZME support is broken, ZOOZ is broken, blah blah blah... you CAN backup, but you CANNOT restore. If you have one of HomeSeer's own hardware products - ZedNet, their actual HomeSeer controllers, etc and are an international customer then also be banned - you have a ZME stick inside your device and likewise have a timebomb. Shouldn't be surprised I guess - that comes from a company that gets 100% of its sales over the web, yet insists the web is dead and it's all "apps" now. Something seriously wrong here...

    On to the solution. There IS a product that works. BlackCat's UZB. This beat has the absolute latest Z-Wave SDK installed on it to the absolute smallest of revisions, seems to pack a far more receptive antenna (ZME seems intent on being so small it appears its reception/range is compromised compared to this baby), and most importantly it is built 100% stock standard against Silicon Lab's specifications - so not only do you add it to HomeSeer as an actual Sigma Designs UZB, but RESTORES WORK.

    Let me say that again - restores work with the BlackCat UZB.

    I cannot thank BlackCat enough for their help with this. They spent an entire day testing and retesting doing backups, restores, re-restores, adding and removing nodes, more backups, more restores, and proved it worked. They then spent another few hours the next day using an actual copy of my backups to do test restores to prove without doubt it would work. I've then been expressed the stick, I've immediately had it up and running, and I've then fixed issues I was stuck with - a stuck node that was only removable by hacking it out of the backup and re-restoring, re-including a couple of nodes, and of course what I originally wanted to do that HomeSeer screwed me over with... clearing out my routes (by backup and restore, which of course is not actually functional and destroys your setup), re-including a couple of dicky devices, etc.

    If you are an Australian HomeSeer user, this is what you want - https://www.blackcatcontrolsystems.c...ave-Controller

    If you are an International, but non-US, HomeSeer user - I believe the Philio UZB is what BlackCat is based upon and I presume you will have similar success.

    I truly hope this is of significant help to everyone and can hopefully avoid the 3 weeks of utter hell my house has been in.


      Have just posted this review on BlackCat's website - I cannot understate how happy I am my house is working again. I really look forward to not being utterly blasted by my wife tonight for our house being in absolute shambles.

      The BlackCat UZB is the only UZB HomeSeer can do restoration of backups. Think about that - HomeSeer's own controllers & sticks like Aeotec, ZME, ZOOZ are all backed up by HomeSeer but not restored.

      The BlackCat has the latest Z-Wave SDK. This means improved performance, routing, bug fixes, & new functionality such as includes via QR code - products like HomeSeer are implementing this & the BlackCat already has the firmware to support it.

      I also found BlackCat to have better range than ZME & better stability than Aeotec.

      I have a controller behind every light, smartswitches on most devices, multisensors in many rooms, rechargeable sensors on many doors, I used a ZUNO to program & wire in my security system & blinds, & even a Z-Wave mouse "zapper". My home & family live by Z-Wave - but were left crippled with HomeSeer’s “backup but not restore” mentality.

      Could not recommend the BlackCat UZB or Mike’s level of service more highly!


        If you are so unhappy with HomeSeer why not just move to another platform?


          Originally posted by drhtmal View Post
          If you are so unhappy with HomeSeer why not just move to another platform?
          I totally respect you may have a much simpler setup and therefore swapping platforms is trivial, but it's a mammoth consideration for me.

          That said, if you look at my post history you will see that:
          1. I have moved platforms once already - my home was Vera and is now HomeSeer
          2. I am looking at other products

          However that's no small feat. I have a large number of Z-Wave devices and a mind boggling amount of automation/events, when I moved from Vera it took countless weeks of evaluation and then SOLID days of hours to re-set everything up again... and a few months of tweaking to get it right again thereafter.

          And that doesn't even factor my holiday home - that's still Vera because that's an even bigger consideration with everything from the door handle/lock to security to controlling overall power being factored because we are often not there plus rent it out so there's a lot at stake to getting that one right and I've not yet been happy enough to move that yet. Strangely that's been incredibly stable with Vera so there simply hasn't been a particular need other than my OCD wanting to use the same platform.

          That said... for now my home is not only 100% instantly back up and running again with this restore fix, but it is actually running better than ever - if I trigger a device there used to be a split second lag, barely noticeable compared to Vera which is about 1 second but still there, but with this new UZB I can't even get my finger off the trackpad or kitchen iPad quick enough before the device is already trigger. Likewise I can "feel" the extra snappiness in all my events now, opening or sliding a door triggers something the very instant I have almost touched it and walking down our main corridor for example lights are turning on the absolute microsecond I have even started to enter the area.

          However all that said too, this would all be irrelevant if HomeSeer was still unrestorable... perhaps you use a SmartStick+ so there is no issue, or perhaps a smaller setup so starting from scratch might be trivial, but for me and based on countless threads in these forums plenty of others were in the boat of being crippled through the faulty restore of this product. For me that is now resolved and as a good citizen I have shared that experienced, again respect it obviously doesn't apply to you but it very much could to others.


            I'm sorry but when a company says, "Just rebuild" then the there is a serious issue with the companies policy. You can't just leave users hanging like that.

            I ran into this when the card in my EZZee card died. I was using the ZeeS2 as a ZNet and it was working great. Problem was you can't buy a replacement card so you have to come up with something else.

            So I bought a RazBerry card only to find out about this whole restore issue. Not good!

            I then borrowed a UZB, hoping that HS would support the RaxBerry, and everything cam up.

            Got tired of waiting for RazBerry support so I bought a HS SmartStick assuming that EVERYTHING would just come up since that was HS own device. WOW!, was I wrong, now I can't get the HS SS+ to restore and it doesn't even give any errors when it fails. I have a thread on this issue as well.

            Nothing is so fundamental to any system as a good backup and restore. I've been recommending HS but until they can get their act together I won't recommend it any more. HA system has to be easy to setup, use and support and right now the support part is lacking.

            I can tell you right now that if Ring brings out a good stable HA system and it has good developer support it's going to kill HS software and if someone brings out dimmers and switches it will kill their hardware market as well.
            HomeSeer Version: HS3 Standard Edition
            Linux version: Linux auto 4.15.0-72-generic #81-Ubuntu SMP Tue Nov 26 12:20:02 UTC 2019 x86_64 x86_64 x86_64 GNU/Linux
            Number of Devices: 484 | Number of Events: 776

            Enabled Plug-Ins: AirplaySpeak | BLBackup
   EasyTrigger | 1.3.7006.42100: LiftMaster MyQ
   mcsMQTT | PHLocation2 | Pushover 3P
   RaspberryIO | Z-Wave

            Z-Net version: 1.0.23 for Inclusion Nodes
            SmartStick+: 6.04 (ZDK 6.81.3) on Server


              So I stumbled across this looking for a way to improve zwave performance. Could you please confirm no other product than Blackcat can do a restore? Will this product work in the US?...looks like AU only?


                Can a network be backed up from say an Aeotec stick and restored to a Blackcat? Wondering if it’s worth the time to move everything up front.


                  I've seen other posts that say Blackcat is not the only one that can be backed a little confused.


                    Originally posted by ts1234 View Post
                    So I stumbled across this looking for a way to improve zwave performance. Could you please confirm no other product than Blackcat can do a restore? Will this product work in the US?...looks like AU only?
                    It is AU/NZS frequency only at this stage. We do offer EU & US frequency and are looking for resellers, Homeseer is to busy with HS4 to consider adding it to their range.
                    The link has also changed to reflect the latest SDK version. Older SDK available on request.
                    You can find it here.

                    Black Cat UZB Z-Wave Smart 6 Static controller. UZB Static Controller for Home Automation Systems such as Home Seer, Indigo, Raspberry Pi, Home Assistant etc. Proven BackUp & Restore with Home Seer.


                      Originally posted by NET1 View Post
                      Can a network be backed up from say an Aeotec stick and restored to a Blackcat? Wondering if it’s worth the time to move everything up front.
                      Absolutely yes - HomeSeer can backup any Z-Wave stick, it is the restore that HomeSeer can barely do. So backup from Aeotec or Z-Wave.ME, and then restore to BlackCat.


                        Originally posted by Black Cat View Post
                        It is AU/NZS frequency only at this stage. We do offer EU & US frequency and are looking for resellers,
                        You can find it here.
                        Is this still available in a US frequency?


                          No one put up their hand to be a reseller so project Black Cat UZB - US & EU was abandoned.