What to use Next?

i use latest OH mostly with Homatic CCU2 Devices, like Window, Thermostat, Light and Movement Sensors. I also use Powermeter from TPlink / Kasa. Because Hometic is expensive iam looking for some other Stuff for Window Sensors, Lights, Camerasystems and so on. I searched the forum but i am not sure what to use next. I have OH installed an KVM virtual machine and the new things should work;

  • without cloud access
  • cheep
  • long battery life time
  • latest technic and
  • work in the near feature, since OH didnt support Matter yet

I hope i didnt forget something, else ask please.
Thanks a lot for your time and information.


Add zigbee. Check random available sensors (aliexpress “choice” has frequent sales on things like water sensors, door sensors etc.) depending on the sensor, they can be modded for interesting uses such as the door/window window can be modded to become a rain sensor.
Local weather station to tell you the real temperature humidity UV and wind speed in your real location.
Light sensors in living spaces to create lighting automations (if TV on, and lights off, turn on tv backlight.).

So many ideas :slight_smile:

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I’d recommend Xiaomi ZigBee devices: motion sensors, door/window magnetic contact sensor, thermometer. You can buy them from AliExpress. Plus zigbee2mqtt and a ZigBee dongle-p from sonoff.

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Yes I agree. That is what I am using as well.
I do like the zigbee2mqtt web interface. You can control devices from that as well as set them up from there.

and think about “generic” stuff like using MQTT.
I’ve also a lot of homematic-stuff here and replacing from time to time mainly because to the annoying “duty-cycle”-never-ending-story…

I use a lot of various devices, which simply can talk to a mosquito-MQTT-Server like shelly, tasmota a.s.o.
I.e. instead of really expensive Homematic Power-plugs I use devices from NOUS like this ones: https://www.amazon.de/Tasmota-Steckdose-NOUS-A1T-stromverbrauch/dp/B0054PSIPA/ref=sr_1_1_sspa?__mk_de_DE=ÅMÅŽÕÑ&crid=3IQ1NHQ7Q8HZQ&keywords=nous+tasmota&qid=1692609530&sprefix=nous+tasmota%2Caps%2C155&sr=8-1-spons&sp_csd=d2lkZ2V0TmFtZT1zcF9hdGY&psc=1
Cheap, small, already flashed Tasmota on it, no “China-Cloud” and (as far as I can oversee) reliable.

I might suggest you are going at this from the wrong direction. Don’t ask yourself “what devices should I add next?” Ask yourself “what problem can I solve with home automation?” Come up with a problem to solve and that will drive what devices to add to you r system.

Example problems:

  • get a notification when the mail has been dropped off
  • flash the lights and turn on the sprinkler when the smoke alarm goes off
  • give a nice audible welcome message when someone returns home
  • control the lights based on how bright it is outside

Once you have a problem to solve, what devices you need to add will become obvious.


Great suggestion!
In my case I don’t have any problems, but I do have a wife who makes sure I’m aware of hers……
Which is another valid point. Surely OP does not live by himself at home, so asking other people at home for ideas is a great way to come up with interesting solutions :slight_smile:

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Hi all,
and thanks for your fast and constructive replies. To add zigbee to my running OH seems to be a good way to go. Why i need both zigbee2mqtt and ZigBee dongle sonos? One for sonos zigbee devices and the other for what? How can i integrate it? I have OH installed as virtual machine. Can i pass through the usb dongle to my VM? I never tested it.

@ rlkoshak - Yes you are right and thats what i think about, but not wrote it. As i wrote i have several devices which solved “problems” and yes i am interessted in what other use and build a nice smart home :), but i try to keep it simple and reliable.

@ scha - Tasmota looks good, could replace my tapo devices. I can confirm it, i have the same Problem with Homematic Devices and high duty cycle.

I am open for further ideas and advices. Thanks all

Th dongle has the actual antennae, transceiver, and Zigbee controller logic. zigbee2mqtt (and the openHAB Zigbee binding for that matter) communicate with the dongle to send/receive messages with Zigbee devices.

No dongle, no Zigbee.

Not all “Zigbee” devices actually follow the protocol (Xiaomi, Ikea, even Hue to some extent). zigbee2mqtt supports more of these non-standard devices than the openHAB add-on does.

Usually but whether your hypervisor and VM supports that and how to do it largely outside the scope of this forum. If you want to use almost any technology that isn’t WiFi, you’re going to need a USB dongle.

Thanks rlkoshak,
now its clear. So if i switch from virtualisation, which hardware you are using?

Not that it’s all the relevant to your situation but I have one instance of OH running on an RPi 4 at a remote location and a now aging Lenovo Desktop form factor server class machine running Proxmox. I’ve two VMs, one for my media services and one for my home automation services. Everything runs in Docker containers.

i think to get the dongle pass through into kvm vm would be hard. So i think about exchange the virtual machine against a raspi 4 on which i can connect the zigbee. I think about exchange homematic against zigbee. Do you think its a good idea and possible? Is a raspi 4 a good choice ?

I don’t know KVM but usually either passing through a USB is just a matter of knowing how to and it’s easy once you know, or it cannot be done.

On ESXi, Proxmox, OpenStack, and VirtualBox it’s super easy.

I have no idea how easy it is to swap out homematic for zigbee. Often it’s a matter of and, not or (meaning users tend to add new add-ons, not completely replace them).

RPi is one of the recommended platforms: Installation Overview | openHAB

Thanks rlkoshak,
i will go into details in the next time and plan how to add or change my smarthome :).
Thanks all