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    HSTouch FAQ

    This FAQ answers questions about installing, and using our new HSTouch software.

    Q: How do I install HSTouch?

    A: You need the following to run HSTouch:
    1) A PC running the latest version of our HomeSeer software (or a HomeTroller or PRO-100 unit)
    2) Install the HSTouch designer on this same PC or some other PC that has a network connection to the HomeSeer PC.
    3) Install the HSTouch client on this same PC or some other PC that has a network connection to the HomeSeer PC. The single HSTouch installer has options to install the designer, the client, or both.
    4) Run the designer, go into the menu Tools->Options->Connection Defaults and enter the IP address or computer name of your HomeSeer system. Enter the username and password for an admin user on the HomeSeer sytstem (this is a user as set up on the Web Users tab in the HomeSeer Setup, the default is user: default pass: default)
    5) You should now be connected to HomeSeer and you can design your screens.
    6) Run the HSTouch client on your client system, click in the upper right hand corner of the screen (hold the mouse down for about 2 seconds) to display the context menu. Set your connection settings if needed and make sure the client is connected to HomeSeer.
    7) Back in the Designer click on Tools->Deploy and you should now have an entry for this new client. Select it to deploy your new screens to the client. The client will then display the new screens.

    Q: What is HSTouch?

    A: HSTouch is software that allows users to create their own custom user interfaces. The software is targeted for touch screens, but can also be used to create user interfaces for systems without touch screens. User interfaces may be designed and deployed without any programming knowledge.

    Q: What makes HSTouch different from other similar software packages?

    A: HSTouch is comprised of a designer program which is used to design screens, and a client program which is used to display the screens. Once the screens are designed, the configuration of the screen is stored in a single XML file. This file is then copied to the client computer where the client application is running. The client application is light weight and native to the OS its running on. It accesses the screen and network directly so it renders screens very quickly. Much faster than web based solutions.

    Q: Are there clients for other applications other than Windows?

    A: Right now there are clients for Windows, and Windows CE5/6. We expect to have a Linux client soon. Clients for the Mac and the iPhone should also be availble.

    Q: How does the client communicate with HomeSeer?

    A: The client and designer both communicate directly with HomeSeer using a simple TCP connection. Username/password authentication are required for the connection. You can design a screen on any PC and deploy the configuration to any client either on a local network, or over the Internet.

    Q: When I start the client, all I see is a blue screen with a single button. How do I display my new screens?

    A: 2 ways. Click the upper right corner of the screen (hold the mouse for a couple of seconds) to display the context menu. You can then open your screen config from there. New configurations are saved in your My Documents folder in the My HSTouch Projects folder. The second way is to select the Deploy option on the Tools menu in the Designer. From here you can deploy your screens to the client directly.

    Q: Can I use my own graphics?

    A: Absolutely. Note that all graphics need to be in the skins folder where the designer is installed. In this folder there is a default skin named "default". In that folder there is a folder named "Graphics". Copy any new graphics you want to use to this folder. You can also browse for the graphic from within HSTouch and the designer will automatically copy the file to this folder. The designer can deploy graphics to the clients for you, but they must be in one of the folders under the skins folder.

    Q: Does the Designer support Vista?

    A: yes.

    Q: Can HomeSeer control HSTouch, like modifying controls or switching screens?

    A: Not at this time, although we plan to add this through script commands and plugin actions.

    Q: Does the client update device status in realtime? Or do I have to refresh the screen?

    A: Its realtime. Since the clients are all native applications, they can update the screen very quickly, without any flashing. Whenever a device changes in HomeSeer, it notifies all the clients, and they will then update their status. This is the same for RSS data.

    Q: How is HSTouch licensed? Do I need a license for each PC I run this on?

    A: The licensing is done in the HSTouch server plugin. The default package includes 5 client licenses. This means that up to 5 HSTouch clients can connect at the same time. You can install as many as you like, but only 5 at time will be able to connect to HomeSeer. There is no license for the client or designer application. You can install and run the designer on as many systems as you like.

    Q: What is this blue square I see on the screen at times in the client?

    A: This is a "back form" that sits under your screens. It is intended to give a common background under your screens so the user never sees the desktop. Typically this will cover the enter screen if you are creating a full screen configuration for a touchscreen.

    Q: I am having problems with my designer and client not connecting to HomeSeer.

    A: You are probably using either our iTunes or Media Player plugins, make sure you have iTunes plugin version 2.4.0.15 installed or the Media Player plugin 2.4.0.14 installed. You can get these latest versions from the HomeSeer updater. Also, check your firewall, HSTouch uses port 10200 and your firewall may be blocking that port.
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