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    Surprising Z-wave optimization

    I thought I'd share something that was something of a surprise to me.

    I have about 35 z-wave devices in two different buildings with two z-wave controllers (ethernet). I've been using HS for about 5 years. I had added about 6 z-wave devices in the last few weeks, and I was experiencing a lot of problems with the network. I was getting very, very slow responses (>30 seconds to turn on a light). I was also not getting updates on some of the devices, like power/watts and sensor data, to the point I had to initiate polling on the parent, and in some cases, the child devices - otherwise it would never update automatically, and I mean never, and no error notification. I had to write a script that would periodically read the update time on the devices, and send a notification if the last update was more than a minute ago, because updates would stop with nothing observable. I was also experiencing repeated errors like "can't reach node XX".

    I did what I thought was the recommended action: optimization! I optimized the full network several times, and did a full (return route) optimization several times. Repeated this many, many times. Tried a z-seer optimization as well. For those devices that still had problems I optimized the device from it's z-wave page. I must have optimized dozens of times.

    Then I finally dug this out - a post from TWO YEARS ago by rjh, which in part says:
    1. Clear all routes. To do this, from the Z-Wave plugin back up your Z-Wave interface, then restore it. (NOTE: UZB sticks or Z-Nets with UZB sticks DO NOT support restoring Z-Wave backups) This erases the interface which removes all the nodes and routes. Then do a restore which restores all the nodes. Restart the plugin and ensure that you can still control nodes that are close to the controller.
    2. At this point the controller has NO routes and will only use direct communication. Run a node connectivity test and see if it can reach all your nodes. If so, you are done, you do not need to optimize anything.
    I should point out that the article says this works because of the improvements in Z-wave+, and it just happens all my devices are the the " +" version.

    https://forums.homeseer.com/forum/li...works-11-12-18

    The post is deeply, deeply buried in a forum on plugins (HS3 only), under "lighting", although my problem had nothing to do with lighting.

    I first got rid of all the polling I had set up, and did the above suggestion. I worked like a miracle. I have near instantaneous response, and all the automatic device updates are working like a charm. So the answer was to NOT use the HS options that appears in many places. Hmmmm.......

    I would have never figured this out myself. To make matters worse, I found a least 20 posts on "slow z-wave" or "optimization", most of which recommended what I've been doing for YEARS - optimize! Partial 3 times, full optimize after that. Some of them said re-install the z-wave plugin, or erase the z-wave DB and restart, or delete the devices and restore them from the network controllers. Tried these all, for days and days.

    The real issue I would point out is that this is not part of any documentation for Homeseer, that I could find. This forum is GREAT, but in this case it wasted days and days of my time because there were too many posts and suggestions. These types of "best practices" need to be captured, reviewed, locked, and made sticky. Is there any place to do so? Is there any community action (like WiKi's do, and Wikipedia, although I think these don't always work) to provide user-generated documentation?. The critical part is moderation, review, and posting by forum administrators. Does anybody do this, even on a part time basis? And don't say you're too busy, because I'm busy too.

    #2
    Originally posted by CW! View Post
    https://forums.homeseer.com/forum/li...works-11-12-18

    The post is deeply, deeply buried in a forum on plugins (HS3 only), under "lighting", although my problem had nothing to do with lighting.
    The post appears to be the first post in the first thread (which is a sticky) in the forum for the Z-wave plug-in. Can you elaborate on where you believe it would be easier to find?

    Mike____________________________________________________________ __________________
    HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.548, NUC i3

    HW: Stargate | NX8e | CAV6.6 | Squeezebox | PCS | WGL 800RF | RFXCOM | Vantage Pro | Green-Eye | Edgeport/8 | Way2Call | Ecobee3 | EtherRain | Ubiquiti

    Comment


      #3
      Personally, I would go to the HSx User's Manual, flip to the index and thumb down to the:

      Z-Wave...........
      -Routing..........
      --Reset............

      entry and the ensuing page number. Oh.... yeah.... right¡

      I just wouldn't think to drill down to: Forum>HS3 Products>HS3 Plugins>Lighting & Primary Technology Plug-ins>Z-Wave (HomeSeer), especially if I was using HS4. Additionally, I have no clue why "Lighting" and "Primary Technology" are even in the same subforum.

      Would it be time to do a "Troubleshooting" forum with subforums?
      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+

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by ewkearns View Post
        Would it be time to do a "Troubleshooting" forum with subforums?
        Moving the Z-wave forum so that it is independent of HS version might be a place to start. (Don't get me started on the lack of HS documentation.)
        I'm still curious to know what the OP had in mind.
        Mike____________________________________________________________ __________________
        HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.548, NUC i3

        HW: Stargate | NX8e | CAV6.6 | Squeezebox | PCS | WGL 800RF | RFXCOM | Vantage Pro | Green-Eye | Edgeport/8 | Way2Call | Ecobee3 | EtherRain | Ubiquiti

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by Uncle Michael View Post
          The post appears to be the first post in the first thread (which is a sticky) in the forum for the Z-wave plug-in. Can you elaborate on where you believe it would be easier to find?
          I too have 'looked' for "Best Practice" information on using/optimizing Z-Wave networks (and also on using the Cooper 5 Scene controllers under HS4).
          I would never have thought to look in the path: Forum -> HS3 Products -> HS3 Plugins -> Lighting & Primary Technology Plug-ins -> Z-Wave (HomeSeer)

          So thank you for bringing that post to our attention! 😁

          It would be nice perhaps to have a 'curated' post somewhere that was an organized list of information, and where you will find it on the forum. Sort of an index (If such already exists, I've not found it). I did recently find the "How To" section, and it would have been nice if someone has created a "Beginner's" Post, that told us newbies where to find information (like the "how to" section). Some argue it is obvious, you just have to look around. And while partially true, when you are new, and don't know your way around yet, knowing where to look for specific information is not easy.

          There is an appalling lack of information for how to do things in HS4. And one can not assume that something that works in HS3, just works the same way in HS4.

          What I would love to see to help build the community, are not just 'best practices' or 'how to' posts, but examples that show the preferred way of implementing something. Granted, there are often many ways to accomplish a task, but still it would be nice if we could have an example, and then perhaps explain why this way is preferred, and what some of the pro's and con's of doing the task another way would be.

          To give an example, I'd love to see an example (with code) showing how to implement and use the Cooper 5 Scene controller. Perhaps assigning 'scenes' to each of the 5 buttons are the preferred way of using this device. But, I've see you can use each button as a separate switch queried from HomeSeer. Unfortunately I can not get either way to work for me.

          Instead of just 'telling' me what I need to do, I'd love to see specific code, showing me exactly how to set up and use the Cooper 5 scene controller with HS4.
          And I would like to be able to come to this forum and quickly be able to find where something like that would be posted. (If I'm using HS4, I would not look in the HS3 path, nor under Lighting & Primary Technology Plug-ins for a Z-wave 'best practices' post...

          So, again, thank you for helping us, and pointing us to the information we need.

          Sadly, I still can not use my Cooper 5 Scene controller with HS4 😔

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by Bilbrey View Post
            What I would love to see to help build the community, are not just 'best practices' or 'how to' posts, but examples that show the preferred way of implementing something. Granted, there are often many ways to accomplish a task, but still it would be nice if we could have an example, and then perhaps explain why this way is preferred, and what some of the pro's and con's of doing the task another way would be.
            You are not alone in your desire for better instructions.

            A few years ago Randy Prade set about to illuminate how to make the most of HS events and created the "Event Clinic". It's the closest example I can think of to what you are asking for. It was a huge undertaking and extremely well received. And it was all done voluntarily!

            Unfortunately, HST did not see it as a model on which to build, so not only are there no other examples, but in Randy's absence even the Event Clinic is languishing.

            Mike____________________________________________________________ __________________
            HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.548, NUC i3

            HW: Stargate | NX8e | CAV6.6 | Squeezebox | PCS | WGL 800RF | RFXCOM | Vantage Pro | Green-Eye | Edgeport/8 | Way2Call | Ecobee3 | EtherRain | Ubiquiti

            Comment


              #7
              EDIT: went a little over the top here, no offense meant to anybody. esp. Uncle M. Just frustration at having wasted DAYS and DAYs and DAYs....


              Uncle Michael:


              "The post appears to be the first post in the first thread (which is a sticky) in the forum for the Z-wave plug-in. Can you elaborate on where you believe it would be easier to find?"

              That's the point! I DON'T KNOW!!!! We have an amazing number of sub-forums here, all active. If I DON'T know to look under the z-wave plug-in (duh) then I'm just totally screwed. If you do a general search it doesn't even come up with that topic in that forum. ?????

              Anyway, you're suggesting that the average user can devine, from a SYMPTOM, which forum of the - scores? Hundreds? - of forums to look in? I'm NOT a newbie at this. Why is it so hard for the user? Are you saying, if it works for a "MasterSeer", then it should work for everyone? I suppose if we all had your knowledge, it would be a lot easier.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by CW! View Post
                Anyway, you're suggesting that the average user can devine, from a SYMPTOM, which forum of the - scores? Hundreds? - of forums to look in? I'm NOT a newbie at this. Why is it so hard for the user? Are you saying, if it works for a "MasterSeer", then it should work for everyone? I suppose if we all had your knowledge, it would be a lot easier.
                I think you are misinterpreting my question.
                I listed some facts. As you note, to someone familiar with the HS Board, it might not be obvious, or the first place to look, but it would probably occur to look there.
                What I want to know is where you, as a relatively new user of the board, would consider a good place for that type of information. (See my other posts on this thread for more of my thoughts.)
                I am not optimistic about the likelihood of comprehensive instructions for HS appearing any time soon, but I am pretty sure Rich would like to attract (and keep) new users. If some straightforward reorganization of the contents of this Board could be helpful, that might be a more likely outcome.

                Mike____________________________________________________________ __________________
                HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.548, NUC i3

                HW: Stargate | NX8e | CAV6.6 | Squeezebox | PCS | WGL 800RF | RFXCOM | Vantage Pro | Green-Eye | Edgeport/8 | Way2Call | Ecobee3 | EtherRain | Ubiquiti

                Comment


                  #9
                  Before I retired, I was a systems engineer, working large, complex projects for the government. Allowing the customer easy access to (what they think is) critical information was always a challenge, and could never be done without some effort invested. This forum is the face of Homeseer to the public, and making it better would seem to be good business. And it's important to me that HS is successful.

                  I don't really understand to what degree the forum is crowd-run vs. the developers using it for communication. I don't even know how to tell if someone IS a developer. Also, there are many, many search hit's on a given subject, but watch close! I have looked over a promising lead only to realize the post was from 3, 5 even 8 years ago. Which one is right? Is it the latest one? How do I know if I even have latest post?

                  I would be willing to put some effort into this, but I don't want to waste my time either. Can a user even create a new forum? Would a wiki be better? Who has to review? Who controls and maintains (e.g. make stickies), can I do that?

                  Uncle M., you say " HST did not see it as a model on which to build". Who the heck is HST? Can they be contacted? Do they have all the keys but do nothing for maintenance?

                  EDIT: "as a relatively new user of the board". Been using it for five years, it's sort of discouraging that I'm still "new"

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Uncle M: " but I am pretty sure Rich would like to attract (and keep) new users. If some straightforward reorganization of the contents of this Board could be helpful, that might be a more likely outcome." Who is Rich? Does he hold audiences? How would one even convince him?

                    Comment


                      #11
                      I have completed the design of a real-time, reactive web-based control system, mainly because HS touch didn't do what I needed. I run this in Chrome. See following screen grabs. I'd like to share this design, but I'm stumped on how to do this in the existing forums.

                      I've merged VB script, HS, RGraph (for the dials), and the HS JSON interface. Need knowledge of JavaScript and DOM. Not up to speed on the HS4 touch, but does it do things like this?

                      Dashboard:

                      Click image for larger version

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                      Weather, using a Davis weather station:

                      Click image for larger version

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                      Controls for my greenhouse:

                      Click image for larger version

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                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by CW! View Post
                        you say " HST did not see it as a model on which to build". Who the heck is HST? Can they be contacted? Do they have all the keys but do nothing for maintenance?
                        HST (HomeSeer Technologies) is the company that sell HomeSeer. They can be contacted, and yes, they have all the keys. I'm sure they would disagree with the characterization that they do nothing, but I understand what you mean.

                        Mike____________________________________________________________ __________________
                        HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.548, NUC i3

                        HW: Stargate | NX8e | CAV6.6 | Squeezebox | PCS | WGL 800RF | RFXCOM | Vantage Pro | Green-Eye | Edgeport/8 | Way2Call | Ecobee3 | EtherRain | Ubiquiti

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by CW! View Post
                          Who is Rich? Does he hold audiences? How would one even convince him?
                          Rich, aka rjh, is the owner of HST. I don't know what it takes to convince him. Randy had some influence, but clearly not enough to make any fundamental changes. I'd suggest sending rprade a private message to see if he has any recommendations for you.
                          Mike____________________________________________________________ __________________
                          HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.548, NUC i3

                          HW: Stargate | NX8e | CAV6.6 | Squeezebox | PCS | WGL 800RF | RFXCOM | Vantage Pro | Green-Eye | Edgeport/8 | Way2Call | Ecobee3 | EtherRain | Ubiquiti

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Originally posted by CW! View Post
                            I have completed the design of a real-time, reactive web-based control system, mainly because HS touch didn't do what I needed. I run this in Chrome. See following screen grabs. I'd like to share this design, but I'm stumped on how to do this in the existing forums.
                            I'm guessing you'd be looking at creating a plug-in, but something like this is WAY beyond my skill level.

                            Check out the User Interface Plug-ins forum. There are several that have been created by users with advanced skills.
                            avargaskun recently added a mobile application called HSBuddy, for example.
                            Michael McSharry and Blade are actively creating plug-ins.
                            mrhappy is also someone who may have some insights.
                            I'm sure there are others.

                            I've merged VB script, HS, RGraph (for the dials), and the HS JSON interface. Need knowledge of JavaScript and DOM. Not up to speed on the HS4 touch, but does it do things like this?
                            Simple answer: No.
                            Mike____________________________________________________________ __________________
                            HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.548, NUC i3

                            HW: Stargate | NX8e | CAV6.6 | Squeezebox | PCS | WGL 800RF | RFXCOM | Vantage Pro | Green-Eye | Edgeport/8 | Way2Call | Ecobee3 | EtherRain | Ubiquiti

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by Uncle Michael View Post
                              You are not alone in your desire for better instructions.

                              A few years ago Randy Prade set about to illuminate how to make the most of HS events and created the "Event Clinic". It's the closest example I can think of to what you are asking for. It was a huge undertaking and extremely well received. And it was all done voluntarily!

                              Unfortunately, HST did not see it as a model on which to build, so not only are there no other examples, but in Randy's absence even the Event Clinic is languishing.
                              "Event Clinic" sounds very interesting.
                              As it was created a few years ago, I would imagine it is not too applicable to HS4?

                              Comment

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