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  1. hxn

    Vera Notes and Observations...

    I had an old Vera Plus that I had purchased in 2016, so I thought I'd try that out before ordering the VeraSecure for location #2. Even though Vera seemed a bit edgy in certain regards, there were three major reasons I decided upon it: Current availability, full backup and restore capability, and extreme programmability (not only for scenes but for devices). Following are some notes: First test of the backup and restore function: I received my VeraSecure and decided to back up the Plus and restore it to the Secure. Still being out of my element with Vera, I called support (no waiting, immediately connected with someone very knowledgeable, and requested help. It took three attempts, but the restore was successful with all devices apparently restored. On the VeraPlus, I had initially had good luck with the add-in for recognition of Iris devices, which all worked properly for a few days. Then the V2 contact sensors all stopped working within about three days (no errors, no loss of contact, just stopped detecting opens or closures). All of the V2 (and one V3) Iris SmartPlugs lost contact in about the same amount of time. No better luck on the Secure for now. Since time is of the essence, I'll probably abandon the Iris contact sensors and smart plugs for now. The biggest downer (for me) with Vera is that they didn't have a function that required at least two motion detectors to trigger an alarm. After becoming more familiar with Vera scenes, I found that I could write a scene for each motion detector that solved the problem. First, it requires setting the modes to disarm ALL motion sensors in Away, Night, and Vacation modes, and then set to run the scene in all modes but Home. Then the scene for each detector does the following: Immediate mode: Arms all other motion sensors. 1st timed mode, after 1 minute: The detecting sensor is armed, giving whatever triggered it time to stop triggering. 2nd timed mode, after 4 minutes: Disarms all of the motion sensors again. I have tested this and it reliably works - good thing, since I'd be having alarms several times/week without this. So far, the Vera support has been exceptional. If everyone is busy, you are asked to leave a message, but that has only happened about one time out of six calls. The only problem has been the Iris contact sensors and smart plugs - the water sensor paired just fine, even though support claimed it shouldn't (it paired as an Iris water sensor). I've found that the Neo Zwave plugs sold on Amazon are really nice - they are very small and work well. The Aeotec 6 smart plugs also work well, but are about the same size as an Iris smart plug and more expensive that the Neo. I'll keep posting notes as I progress.