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  #1  
Old April 16th, 2018, 08:45 AM
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ewkearns ewkearns is offline
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Alexa not working.

Alexa has stopped working after update to newest skill.

When I try to use Alexa (tell homeseer) she says that I need to link my account. My phone says the account *IS* linked.

When I tell Alexa "turn on [whatever]" I get a double beep, but nothing in the Homeseer logs.

Which skill or skills should I be using? And how do I go about troubleshooting and/or fixing this? TIA...
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  #2  
Old April 16th, 2018, 09:50 AM
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ewkearns ewkearns is offline
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OK, a quick call to HS fixed this, immediately.

Bottom line? Homeseer Smarthome Skill is just not ready for prime time. If it works for you, awesome, but it broke my system. Reverting to the two older skills restored function to my system, immediately.

Kudos, again, to HS support.....
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  #3  
Old April 17th, 2018, 10:47 PM
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jeubanks jeubanks is offline
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I'm also having issues with Alexa. Sometimes it works and sometimes nothing... says "ok" and nothing.

In the mobile app (Android) when I look at a device at the top of the screen is a message "There was a problem". The light shows as "off" but I can see that it's really on.

HS shows the correct status. It's just Amazon not getting updated.
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  #4  
Old April 18th, 2018, 09:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeubanks View Post
I'm also having issues with Alexa. Sometimes it works and sometimes nothing... says "ok" and nothing.

In the mobile app (Android) when I look at a device at the top of the screen is a message "There was a problem". The light shows as "off" but I can see that it's really on.

HS shows the correct status. It's just Amazon not getting updated.
I can't speak directly to your issue, as you are getting a different "error," but I'd check the HS log to see what HS "heard." Periodically, Amazon does have brief issues, but they always seem to resolve themselves. Rebooting *everything* may be in order.

My particular issue was reading this forum, the HS website, and the Amazon website with the takeaway that the "HomeSeer Smarthome" skill was the latest and, therefore, best and current skill to use. Homeseer tech support described that understanding as being "misinformed." Anyhow, upon their advice, I deleting that skill and restored the two original skills, which fixed the problem with Alexa.
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  #5  
Old April 18th, 2018, 09:25 AM
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Sgt. Shultz Sgt. Shultz is offline
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You should be cautious about using the old Smart Home skill.

The only reason we still have it is at the whim of Amazon, as it's a legacy skill, which they could shut down at any time. (they wanted us to write over the old skill with the new, but we opted for an entirely different skill)

If you're having issues with the new skill, I'd be interested in finding out exactly why, so that it can be resolved for you.

If you're interested, let me know and I'll grab your database from you (so I have your list of devices), and then I can see which device is causing the issue and why.
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  #6  
Old April 18th, 2018, 09:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sgt. Shultz View Post
You should be cautious about using the old Smart Home skill.

The only reason we still have it is at the whim of Amazon, as it's a legacy skill, which they could shut down at any time. (they wanted us to write over the old skill with the new, but we opted for an entirely different skill)

If you're having issues with the new skill, I'd be interested in finding out exactly why, so that it can be resolved for you.

If you're interested, let me know and I'll grab your database from you (so I have your list of devices), and then I can see which device is causing the issue and why.
I'd be happy to work with you on debugging this. I'm new to HS so ignore my ignorance on finding/getting what you need. You said the database? What's the location/filename? I'll zip and PM to you or how do you want it?

More details of the issue:
1. Voice commands generally work but there's the intermittent "ok" response with no action taken.

2. "multiple devices share that name" showing that the "smart groups" is not working.

3. From the mobile app when I select a device I get the error at the top of the screen in small letters "there was a problem" and the device status is not updated and not correct. If I tap the icon, say light then it switches to "on" even though the light is already on. Then if I tap it again it does turn the device off and tap again it turns on. Something in the status not getting through to Amazon.
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  #7  
Old April 18th, 2018, 10:28 AM
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Sgt. Shultz Sgt. Shultz is offline
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I won't need your data for this, as it appears your devices are being discovered.

I will go through your concerns here.

"Voice commands generally work but there's the intermittent "ok" response with no action taken"

The commands from Alexa are what are know as a 'fire and forget' process, meaning they generally have no knowledge of the results of a command that is issued.

The 'ok' isn't a response to whether the action occurred, but more that the request was successfully sent.

If you do get an 'ok' without the expected action occurring, you should look at the logs in the Echo app and HomeSeer to see what might have happened.


"multiple devices share that name" showing that the "smart groups" is not working"

This means the names you've picked aren't unique enough for the process to figure out which device you want to control.
You'll need to add something to them to distinguish them from each other.

" From the mobile app when I select a device I get the error at the top of the screen in small letters "there was a problem" and the device status is not updated and not correct. If I tap the icon, say light then it switches to "on" even though the light is already on. Then if I tap it again it does turn the device off and tap again it turns on. Something in the status not getting through to Amazon."

As I said earlier, the information From Amazon to HomeSeer is one way(apart from the confirmation response).

If the status of a device in HomeSeer has changed, Amazon does not know about it. (If you turn on the light with the echo, then turn it off with HomeSeer, the echo app will still show it as on.)

A better approach might be to use the HSTouch app for your phone, which will update the status of devices as they change in HomeSeer.

If the Echo app has an issue, it will iterate an error message which is what you saw.
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  #8  
Old April 18th, 2018, 10:36 AM
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ewkearns ewkearns is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sgt. Shultz View Post
You should be cautious about using the old Smart Home skill.

The only reason we still have it is at the whim of Amazon, as it's a legacy skill, which they could shut down at any time. (they wanted us to write over the old skill with the new, but we opted for an entirely different skill)
I was told, by HomeSeer, to revert to the original skills, because they knew the "HomeSeer Smarthome" skill didn't work for everybody. My follow-up email, to tech support, was referred to an engineer.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sgt. Shultz View Post
If you're having issues with the new skill, I'd be interested in finding out exactly why, so that it can be resolved for you.

If you're interested, let me know and I'll grab your database from you (so I have your list of devices), and then I can see which device is causing the issue and why.
I'll be happy to provide anything you need to get to the bottom of the problem, but I don't *think* the issue is on my end. Let me tell you what I did....

1) I deleted the two original skills.

2) I installed the "HomeSeer Smarthome" skill, apparently without issue.

3) I linked the account, apparently, without issue,

4) I searched for devices and it found devices, but no new devices.

At this point, Alexa was broken, because any attempt to use her gave the response that I needed to link the account. My android phone, however, clearly indicated that the account WAS linked. So, it wasn't like a particular device didn't work.... it was like Alexa wasn't getting permission to even talk to me.....

Last edited by ewkearns; April 18th, 2018 at 10:58 AM.
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  #9  
Old April 18th, 2018, 11:12 AM
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Sgt. Shultz Sgt. Shultz is offline
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I'm not saying you can't use the old skill, but I can't guarantee that it won't go away at some point in the future.

As far as speaking to the engineer, I'm not recalling that conversation, as I am the engineer. (which means I actually can/will look at your problem in depth).

The echo app doesn't delete previous devices during a discovery, it just adds new ones (you need to use the echo app in your browser to forget them), so the discovery process might well have failed as you had no new devices and you might not realize it.

I'm suspecting one of the devices in your discovery list has something about it that is causing the discovery failure, so I want to grab your database so I can run the devices myself to see which it might be.

Then I can correct the issue, so you can use the new skill if you so choose.

(the new one has locks and events in it, so it's a little more robust)
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  #10  
Old April 18th, 2018, 11:20 AM
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langenet langenet is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sgt. Shultz View Post
You should be cautious about using the old Smart Home skill.

The only reason we still have it is at the whim of Amazon, as it's a legacy skill, which they could shut down at any time. (they wanted us to write over the old skill with the new, but we opted for an entirely different skill)

If you're having issues with the new skill, I'd be interested in finding out exactly why, so that it can be resolved for you.

If you're interested, let me know and I'll grab your database from you (so I have your list of devices), and then I can see which device is causing the issue and why.
I'm interested in how this corresponds with the Homeseer skill "tell/ask" skill. Is this a legacy skill as well and will it potentially go away as well?

So for further clarification, if I use the new Smarthome skill and the Homeseer skill moving forward, can I conclude that this should not be a problem?

Robert
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  #11  
Old April 18th, 2018, 11:22 AM
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jeubanks jeubanks is offline
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Quote:
"multiple devices share that name" showing that the "smart groups" is not working"

This means the names you've picked aren't unique enough for the process to figure out which device you want to control.
You'll need to add something to them to distinguish them from each other.
How much more unique does it have to be compared to other systems? The same names I've used with SmartThings, Vera, Home Assistant and they work.

Room: Family Room
Echo: In Family Room
Smart Group: Family Room with echo associated
Devices:
Family Room Main Lights
Family Room Ceiling Fan
Family Room Floor Lamp
Family Room Desk Lamp

Same for Living room with change Family Room to Living room and have the following devices

Living Room Small Lamp
Living Room Tower Lamp
Living Room Floor Lamp

Each "room" has an echo and it is in a smart group. If I am in the family room and say turn on/off the floor lamp I get the "multiple devices have that name". Even though the echo that is responding is in the smart group.

Same with living room or with any other room, I have to use the Full Name of "Living Room Tower Lamp" otherwise I get the same error about multiple devices share that name.
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  #12  
Old April 18th, 2018, 11:27 AM
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Sgt. Shultz Sgt. Shultz is offline
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The skill that uses 'Tell HomeSeer' is known as a 'custom' skill, which is different than the 'Smart Home' skill.

While it is considered a legacy product, Amazon has indicated that unless we want to make a change to it, it will remain as it is.

This is the reason we have not added any other English speaking countries to it..., as that will require a rework of the existing process if we do.


Having both the Smart Home skill and the custom skill on your echo app at the same time is fine, as they are different skill types.
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  #13  
Old April 18th, 2018, 11:34 AM
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Sgt. Shultz Sgt. Shultz is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeubanks View Post
How much more unique does it have to be compared to other systems? The same names I've used with SmartThings, Vera, Home Assistant and they work.

Room: Family Room
Echo: In Family Room
Smart Group: Family Room with echo associated
Devices:
Family Room Main Lights
Family Room Ceiling Fan
Family Room Floor Lamp
Family Room Desk Lamp

Same for Living room with change Family Room to Living room and have the following devices

Living Room Small Lamp
Living Room Tower Lamp
Living Room Floor Lamp

Each "room" has an echo and it is in a smart group. If I am in the family room and say turn on/off the floor lamp I get the "multiple devices have that name". Even though the echo that is responding is in the smart group.

Same with living room or with any other room, I have to use the Full Name of "Living Room Tower Lamp" otherwise I get the same error about multiple devices share that name.

You should check your echo app to see what it thinks it's hearing, as the 'floor lamp' should be enough for the echo to distinguish it. If it's having trouble with the word 'floor' then it would only use the word 'lamp' to find it.

Do you have other smart home skills running that have these devices in them?
The same device name across multiple skills might cause a problem with the echo, as it doesn't qualify which skill you want to use to execute the command.

I might be grabbing your database (HomeSeer.hsd) as well...
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  #14  
Old April 18th, 2018, 11:36 AM
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jeubanks jeubanks is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sgt. Shultz View Post
You should check your echo app to see what it thinks it's hearing, as the 'floor lamp' should be enough for the echo to distinguish it. If it's having trouble with the word 'floor' then it would only use the word 'lamp' to find it.

Do you have other smart home skills running that have these devices in them?
The same device name across multiple skills might cause a problem with the echo, as it doesn't qualify which skill you want to use to execute the command.

I might be grabbing your database (HomeSeer.hsd) as well...
I thought of the multiple skills and I removed everything else.

I will check and see what the echo thinks it is hearing.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G890A using Tapatalk
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Old April 18th, 2018, 12:01 PM
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jeubanks jeubanks is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sgt. Shultz View Post
You should check your echo app to see what it thinks it's hearing, as the 'floor lamp' should be enough for the echo to distinguish it. If it's having trouble with the word 'floor' then it would only use the word 'lamp' to find it.

Do you have other smart home skills running that have these devices in them?
The same device name across multiple skills might cause a problem with the echo, as it doesn't qualify which skill you want to use to execute the command.

I might be grabbing your database (HomeSeer.hsd) as well...
I checked the history and the echo is hearing "alexa turn on the floor lamp" and the response is "a few things share that name. Which one did you want?"

The history shows that it is the Family Room Echo that is hearing and responding. This echo is in a smart group with the devices all in the same group. This is the case with ALL of my echo's in all rooms.
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Old April 18th, 2018, 12:06 PM
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Have you tied the separate devices to each group?

The echo device in the family room needs to be tied to the family room group only, and the echo device in the living room needs to be tied to the living room group only.
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  #17  
Old April 18th, 2018, 12:12 PM
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jeubanks jeubanks is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sgt. Shultz View Post
Have you tied the separate devices to each group?

The echo device in the family room needs to be tied to the family room group only, and the echo device in the living room needs to be tied to the living room group only.
An echo can only be part of a single group. So, yes my echo devices are each in their own respective group.

I saw previously there was a posting about Smart Groups not working correctly and I'm thinking there is still a bug/problem with smart groups. I updated the skill to the "Homeseer SmartHome" skill I also have "Homeseer Home Automation Skill" enabled as well. The older skill was removed (had to setup all my groups again). I updated Homeseer to 3.0.0.425 to work with the SmartHome skill. I'm just thinking that there's something not quite right with the skill. It doesn't seem to be parsing the intents correctly.
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  #18  
Old April 18th, 2018, 12:14 PM
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Just as a reference. I also attempted to use the Smarthome skill and had the same problems. I had several events with voice commands which were discovered by the Alexa app as being Scenes. Every time I tried to use the commands I got the response "a few things share that name. Which one did you want?". I finally gave up and went back to the old skill.

Bob
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Old April 18th, 2018, 12:38 PM
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The smart home skill doesn't use intents like the custom skill does.

To be honest, I have no idea what's under the hood of their app..., it just sends me the device id and command for the device, so when it doesn't work as expected, I don't have many options to help with.
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  #20  
Old April 18th, 2018, 12:41 PM
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ewkearns ewkearns is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sgt. Shultz View Post
As far as speaking to the engineer, I'm not recalling that conversation, as I am the engineer. (which means I actually can/will look at your problem in depth).
I spoke only to Tech Support and then emailed them my thanks for getting me going, again. They responded that my email had been forwarded to an engineer. So, if Tech Support didn't follow up with a conversation, there would be none to remember.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sgt. Shultz View Post
I'm suspecting one of the devices in your discovery list has something about it that is causing the discovery failure, so I want to grab your database so I can run the devices myself to see which it might be.

Then I can correct the issue, so you can use the new skill if you so choose.
Shall I send you a file? Which one(s)?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sgt. Shultz View Post
(the new one has locks and events in it, so it's a little more robust)
Yeah, I was kinda hoping to add the locks and drop the "Alexa tell..." stuff.
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