General System Setup Recommendation (Alarmsystem in openhab)

Dear all,

I am about to move to a new house and think about the future setup.

Currently I am really happy with OH3 and have integrated a lot of stuff into it (including my ABUS Alarm-System using the http binding. My main “protocol” though is z-wave for switches, lights, rollershutters…

Platform information:
Hardware: NUC7CJYH with 8 GB RAM and 32 GB SSD + zwave: UZB1 Stick
Ubuntu Server 20.04
OH 3.2 stable

Because the “old” ABUS will stay in my current apartment, I currently look for a new one for the house.

  1. The first option is the Ring Alarm system, which is z-wave based.

So for me the key question is, if I should use the Alarm system as a general z-wave hub and request all the states and control them through mqtt (see here: Ring Alarm Binding? - Add-ons / Bindings - openHAB Community)

Or if I just use the Alarm Ring separately and use the UZB stick with the remaining z-wave devices.
The disadvatage of course is, that the range is limited, because the two z-wave networks are not connected.

Any comments on this are greatly appreciated.

(I also think about creating my own “Alarm system” with logic in openhhab, which is fine in general.
But the Ring alarm could then stay in the house if I move on :slight_smile:

EDIT:
The second option is the Abus Smartvest Alarm system which can also be expanded with z-wave)
For this specific system the quesiton is how to integrate this into OH?
I have been able to do this for my old Abus:
Read Alarm System status with JSON - Setup, Configuration and Use / Items & Sitemaps - openHAB Community

However I don’t know if the new Smartvest provides a webinterface (Abus says it’s just wokring with the apps).

So is anyone out there with experience with the Abus Smartvest?

I agree with getting Ring. There’s lot of past discussion about using OH as an alarm system, often with people recommending against it. openHAB is great for home automation, but isn’t robust enough to serve as a proper alarm system. If you’re really concerned about home security, then it’s worth paying for 24/7 monitoring and something built by experts. It might also get you a discount on your home insurance, which a DIY alarm won’t.

Assuming your Z-Wave devices are already attached to your UZB and moving with you, then the path of least resistance is to set them up in the new house, heal the network, and find out if you have range issues. If it all works, there’s no need to move them to a different controller just for the sake of it. Running them through the Ring hub just adds complexity to your system.

If you do have range issues, then you can selectively move devices over to the Ring hub. I just don’t see the value of having MQTT in between OH and devices if you don’t absolutely need it.

Alternatively, you could just use a Z-Wave extender to give you more range. Easiest way to do that is to buy a Z-Wave smart switch and plug it into the wall (even if you don’t plug anything into it).

Keep in mind that Z-Wave has an open-air range of 300ft/100m. That’ll be reduced by walls and appliances, but even if the range is cut down to a third, that’s still a radius of 100ft/33m. So you might be more concerned about that then you need to be.

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Hi Russ,

thank you for your profound feeback! Much appreciated.

Of yourse a 24/7 monitoring is better, but I think an overkill for a living area like ours.
So, price performance is an important factor.
But the effect on the insurance is a valid point and I will look into this.

Regarding the robustness I do not necessarily agree (but taking my programming skills into account it’s possibly true ;-))

The new house has concrete floors, so I assume the z-wave signal will be damped significantly.

I think starting with a separate Alarm system like ring will be a good choice, but I will wait for some other feedback. :slight_smile:
Again, thanks for your input, Russ.

Really, “robustness” in a security system context also includes stuff you simply haven’t thought of as a DIY-er. Professional intruders with magnets on sticks and WiFi jammers, what to do if you want to leave the house while mains power is off, etc. Commercial systems have this kind of thing designed in.

Something is better than nothing, the thing to be careful about is how much faith you put in it.

Thanks - that’s absolutely true

But because we don’t live in the Louvre, I assume that the “regular” burglar does not have many skills beyond using a crowbar and lock picking capabilities :wink:

The mains power is taken care of with a UPS (and the ring alarm has a battery as well).

Basically a DIY security system is always a trade off between costs and performance / security - which is true for a lot of things in life.
If houses in the neighborhood are not protected at all or on a lower level than a DIY system (including presence simulation), the “off-the-shelf” burglar will prefer the other objects, I assume.

@chris
I don’t see the Ring Alarm Keypad in the database.
Is there a chance that this will be added soon or is there a risk, that it’s not usable with the z-wave binding at all?
Thanks in advance

I’m not familiar with the device so I can’t really comment. If you have it, then you can add it to the database as it needs someone with the device to create the entry and I personally do not have this device.

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Thank you - will do as soon as I have one in my hand! :smiley:

regarding the Smartvest (abus):

From Abus:
It’s not possible to control the SmartVest via http / browser, just through the apps.
Because I reverse engineered the previous SecvestIP from Abus I wonder if it’s still possible, because I assume that the apps work with http as well

Any thoughts on this?

Unfortunately the Abus HomeTec Bluetooth smart lock is not smart and cannot be connected to Smartvest Alarm System which is pathetic from my perspective.