[WIP] My openHAB setup with a touch screen interface

having a fully functional smart home has been my greatest ambition ever since i got a raspberry pi. controlling lights, thermostats, door locks, coffee machines… all from your phone or a single computer, is awe inspiring. especially with this amazing service that the openHAB community has put together. openHAB allows devices from different manufactures to work together.

i recently bought the official raspberry pi touch display so i could mount my setup to the wall where the thermostat used to be. this will the the central hub to connect all the IOT devices together. i have a few relays, a DHT22, and an ESP8266 to play around with at the moment.

in the mean time, i have been working in openHABian to optimize the UI for touch control. i found a very informative post about installing a desktop environment in raspbian lite (openHABian is built from raspbian lite).

[GUIDE] Raspbian Lite with RPD/LXDE/XFCE/MATE/i3/Openbox/X11 GUI

i made a custom setup to be as light and minimalistic as possible while also being touch friendly.
this is what ive installed so far:

openbox - window manager with auto login
tint2 - panel for launching applications
chromium - stable browser since it will be running 24/7
skippy xd - expose like window spreader

and some pictures:

the desktop. i might change the icon theme in the future and add some appropriate apps to the launcher but for now it’s functional

clicking on the openHAB icon goes straight to this page, full screen and all. not much here at the moment but im working on it

heres memory usage with the HABpanel running in chromium. openbox + tint2 are so lightweight i cant even notice they’re there. chromium is mostly whats hogging the memory

and heres my pride and joy… or should i say the most frustrating, time consuming, piece of beauty of this GUI. Skippy XD. i need a touch friendly way of seeing what windows are open and an easy way of closing them, but without cluttering up the application launcher. pressing the top left icon brings this view up and long pressing on a window will close it. this took me forever to find and install as its not in the repositories.

this desktop is for one purpose, to display the HABpanel. there is no start/app menu, just the apps that i added myself to the launcher. i wont be using it for editing, just basic smart home operation. everything else is done through SSH.

ill keep posting in this topic for any updates i make to the setup. ill take some photos once i have it mounted to the wall.


can you post command/step by step to setup it… will be very nice of you if you do so