My perception of where this project is and my problems with it

This is my second attempt at using OpenHab (I admit to still using Home Assistant for some things).

Things have improved greatly with the advent of ‘Eclipse SmartHome Designer’ but lots of things haven’t and some issues are worse than they were before.

Documentation remains the single biggest issue. It is now much worse with the advent of OpenHab2 because now it is generally impossible to discern the status of advice in the Forums. In addition, no one has taken on board the problem of examples (with a few exceptions).

To illustrate the issue I’m going to highlight problems I have. Please don’t offer fixes in this thread as I want this thread to discuss how to resolve the documentation problem and to discover how many other Users are facing my perceived problems. Please don’t take offence if I choose to highlight an issue that isn’t a problem or for which there is a simple answer, ‘cos for me I didn’t find the answer and it wasn’t simple.

So here we go.

I want to use MQTT as a way of communicating information between OpenHAB and external systems for which there isn’t a binding or because MQTT allows for data sharing. MQTT seems to be in a funny limbo. It is described as a ‘Legacy’ binding (and I read that can mean it doesn’t show up in ‘Paper UI’. BUT IT DOES. I can select an Addon and select install. Paper UI then never updates but if I restart, lo and behold MQTT is there. Here is where it gets difficult. I can get some MQTT data set up as Items and I eventually got it to display (Openenergy stuff). But try as I might I can’t get a simple switch to show anything much less operate. (I know MQTT is ok ‘cos Home Assistant worked right away (after I’d struggled with that damn YAML nonsense) There isn’t a single example that shows an item definition together with a sitemap entry and resulting screenshots. And that is typical of almost every binding definition. Yes they describe some of the parameters (most have an example but only one) and most don’t explain all the options.

Sometime the Community has stepped up BUT now we face the big issue. What is relevant. Do all community examples work everywhere (I think not). Which work in OpenHab2? Where is THE definitive BEST way to accomplish simple tasks. There seems to be a myriad of alternatives. That must be a support nightmare.

Home Assistant seems to bring out updates once a week. It is two/three months since OpenHab2 arrived and no update, no bug list, no fixes, no documentation. While I don’t want weekly releases I would like a bug list, next release date and documentation to match the release. Oh and that’s a gripe too. Wiki is mentioned in respect of the documentation. It’s not a wiki I recognise. No History of changes, no authors, no obvious means of updating, no discussion page.

I could go on but won’t. I hope others have their gripes to be aired and I’d like discussion on solutions. For example why can’t the Community threads be split into OpenHab Legacy and OpenHab2. It would save a lot of dead end searching and time wasting!

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I second this part!
The first thing I would have done, create a parent level with OH1 and OH2 … and once there is OH3, create another one…
This current mix is utterly difficult to discern, in addition to add-on revision levels and where they work; e.g. 1.8, 1.9, (even 1.10) and 2.0

One of my biggest gripes is two of the bindings I use (astro, netatmo) are implemented in OH2, but are only partial implementations of whats now considered a “legacy” binding. I don’t see any sort of roadmap to get these bindings up to par with the “legacy” bindings, which is unfortunate. I’ve bascially been told if I want the missing functionality I’ll need to implement it myself :frowning:

Asking for a missing feature does not mean implementing it yourself.

BTW, there are workarounds if you need the DateTime for the offset which are also mentioned in that thread.

Please don’t do this!


Could you explain why and suggest how you would resolve this problem?

LOTS of things from openHAB work work just fine in openHAB2. Yes there are differences, but fragmenting a small user base is not normally the way to improve things.

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That description is incorrect. Please see this page for another description that I believe is correct.

In openHAB 1, the primary record of documentation was the wiki in GitHub. With openHAB 2, the new site is meant to document openHAB 2 onwards. I think the work on the new site has been very much appreciated, but more volunteers could certainly contribute to speedy (and more importantly, accurate and dependable) improvements.

All add-on documents for openHAB 2 users can be found here. There are probably many cases where add-on documentation could be made more helpful with more and better examples of usage. Any GitHub user can submit pull requests to improve the specific add-on’s file, each of which gets translated into<type>/<feature_id>/readme.html. something like this, for example.

There are also probably cases where more and better examples, irrespective of any specific add-ons, would be helpful.

I hope this helps a little.