Zigbee stick?

Hi,

I am considering to connect an USB Zigbee stick to my Raspberry Pi with OpenHAB. Based on the documentation of the Zigbee binding, I think I should go for a stick with an Ember coordinator, since that seems to be the only one with Zigbee v3 support.

So I found this one on amazon.de, which seems to be the same device as this one.

However, the description explicitly mentions that it is “zigbee v2”. Does anyone have experience with this device? Is it v2 or v3 compatible? Is it possible to upgrade the firmware to get v3 compatibility? Any information from someone with hands on experience with this “funkstick” would be highly appreciated!

Best regards,
Bart Kummel

I’m pretty sure that this device has a bootloader, so in theory it is possible to update the firmware. The binding can do this, but as OH doesn’t have any firmware providers, it’s not so simple to do.

There is another issue with these sticks - they won’t be detected as a serial port on most OS’s and therefore are difficult to use. Now, on the Pi/Linux, you should be ok, and it is possible to change the OS to detect this. There is a description of how to do this in the binding docs.

As I understand you right, you are saying that in theory, the stick should be able to be flashed with a new firmware. You’re saying it should even be possible from within OH. But OH doesn’t know where to get the firmware. That being said: if someone does know some firmware, is there a way to let OH know where to find it (e.g. from a local network share) so the device will be updated?

And the other question: is there someone out there who knows this about this particular stick?

I have the software - the issue is that OH requires what is called a firmware provider - and this doesnt exist. I have written one to allow me to test the OTA and FW reloads, but it’s not really in a customer friendly state. So, with some effort from me, it could be made to work.

What exactly do you want to know? I use Ember sticks a lot - I don’t use this one, but they are all pretty much the same. I have one of these, but as I use a Mac, it’s not usable - as you use Linux, it is, and the instructions are in the documentation for how to make it work on a Mac.

Others are using this stick - maybe someone else will pipe in.

Hi Chris,

I’m a developer myself, so I’m not afraid of “not customer friendly”… :wink: Would you like to share your solution? Depending on the used technologies, I might be able to put some effort in as well.

Regarding your question: I was trying to get a feeling about the chance of success when I’m going to buy that stick. Since you’re saying that most ember based sticks are roughly the same, I think I’m going to buy one.

Thanks for you helpful comments so far!

Hi Chris,

I bought this stick at amazon.de. It’s working fine so far, that is: it shows up online in the Paper UI. I’m still having troubles getting my bulbs discovered, but that’s another story.

What I’d like to ask you: what about the firmware? The OpenHab Paper UI reports:

Current firmware version: 5.8.0.0 — Unknown

Can you say anything about this version? Should I try to upgrade it? Or should I be fine with this version?

Best regards,
Bart Kummel

This firmware version should be fine in general - it is (I believe) the same as used in the HUSBZB1 that many people are using.

Hi @bartkummel ,

did you stick with the stick :slight_smile:
Is it finally working with all?
Does it support > 20 devices and Zigbee 3.0?

Thanks a lot
/Franz

Hi,

I’ve got everything working with this stick. I’ve not yet reached 20 devices, but I don’t see a reason why that shouldn’t work. I don’t have any Zigbee 3.0 devices yet, so I can’t confirm if that works.

Best,
Bart

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While zigbee networks can support a lot of devices (in theory there’s no limitation) devices hold a bunch of tables and the size of these tables depends on memory. You can nearly always get more than 20 devices to join a network, but performance may not be good if the devices have limited memory.

These older devices do have limited memory - that said, newer devices have more, but likely don’t use it unless the code is modified to support larger tables which I suspect most aren’t. I worked with a company in Germany last year to look at this issue to support large networks so there are a few tricks to work through to get the system to perform.

No, sorry, the firmware is too old.
I have not seen newer firmware for this stick.
Someone please correct me if newer firmware is availible.

Yes, newer firmware is available. It’s linked from the binding docs (maybe only the “latest” branch though).

Hi @chris ,
Sorry for the annoying question, but binding docs of latest branch means here?

@NilsOF, the stick you are owning is ember (Bitron) based right, Telkom is just the rebranded name?

BR
/Franz

Yes, both of my Bitronvideo 2010/10 are marked as “Bitronvideo 2010/10”.
I do not remember if they where bought as “Bitronvideo 2010/10”. Purchased some months apart.
It do look like “Telkom” is the same stick, as pictures on Amazon show “Bitronvideo” stamped on them.

After just a quick look at the binding docs, I could not find any link to newer firmware.
But it can be my eyes :slight_smile:

Some additional information:

Summary:

hm, there is firmware for EM3587 here (updated yesterday):

What things do I need check before atempting to flash?
EM3587 rx an tx pins against USB chip?

Edit: Related ticket: [REQUEST] em3587 ncp uart fw · Issue #14 · grobasoz/zigbee-firmware · GitHub

Yes, or you can use the documentation viewer -:

You just need to select the latest branch in the top left corner - otherwise by default you will see the documentation state at the last release.


s

As written by @Ap15e, Silabs stopped supporting certain devices quite recently. Any device with less than 512k of memory is not supported by newer stacks. The EM35x series are now quite old and are no longer supported by Silabs.

Yes, I know it is not longer supported by silabs.
the version published looks like 6.7.8.
One will be better off with a newer chip and newer firmware,
no doubt if looking at it in a longer perspective.

Sorry - it looked like you were disputing what was said earlier when you said there was a newer firmware “updated yesterday” - my bad. I think 6.8 is the last version that will be supported on these older Ember chips before Silabs added more code to the codebase that meant it doesn’t compile on the smaller chips.

I also missed to answer your question -:

You need to select the “Latest” documentation as I posted above - or to be sure you really have the latest (since I don’t know how often the OH docs is updated from GitHub), then it’s always safest to just look on GitHub.

Scrolling down to the Ember NCP Coordinator section has the relevant links -:

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