0.101: Airly, Apprise, Sinch, Solar-Log, Microsoft Teams

55 minutes reading time
  • Release-Notes

Hacktoberfest

It is almost the end of Hacktoberfest, and boy, it was a good one. We had a total of 1318 PRs merged in the last month. And most of them are in this release!

We had: 154 authors on home-assistant 184 authors on home-assistant.io 30 authors on home-assistant-polymer

A lot of thanks to all the contributors!

API Password and trusted networks

It is no longer possible to make authenticated requests using trusted networks or by appending ?api_password=X to the URL. You will now first need to get an authentication token and use that token to make requests.

These features were deprecated in Home Assistant 0.90 and 0.91 (released around April 2019). It was initially planned to be dropped in Home Assistant 0.96 (released July 17, 2019).

The support of configuring the auth providers for API Password and Trusted Networks via the HTTP configuration is also removed. It now needs to be configured in the auth provider section (docs).

Direct authentication meant that you could make an authenticated request without a bearer token by making the request from a trusted network or appending ?api_password=X to the URL.

These features are still available as authentication providers (docs).

You can use Long-Lived Access Tokens that can be created in the fronted on your profile page. These tokens will not expire and can be added in the header of the request. See the developer documentation for more info.

Screenshot of the Long-Lived Access Tokens interface in the profile page. Screenshot of the Long-Lived Access Tokens interface in the profile page.

Or you can use a webhook-based-integration. A webhook is a unique hard to guess URL that can be used to send data to Home Assistant. Requests made to webhooks do not need authentication. Your webhook should be available from the internet, if you have a cloud subscription, the cloud will take care if this. You can find the cloud webhook URLs on your cloud configuration page.

Hassbian

As you may have already read, we’ll be sunsetting Hassbian.

Hassbian was a superset of Raspbian optimized for Home Assistant. With limited time from the developers and easier alternatives as Hass.io it is time to sunset Hassbian.

A big thank you to all those who worked on Hassbian - specifically @landrash, who was the primary driver of this for so long, and @ludeeus.

For more info, read the blogpost

Device automations

This release includes improved support for alarms, covers, locks and sensors. A “for” option was added in release 0.100 which allows you to specify triggers for when a certain device has been in a certain state for a period of time, in this release we added support for it in the automation editor.

Screenshot of a device trigger with duration. Screenshot of a device trigger with duration.

Frontend

A lot has happened on the frontend; we had a ton of Hacktoberfest PRs that added localization to the frontend and made our user experience better. A special shout out to @springstan who did a lot of localization work, we now have the biggest part of our UI translatable!

Thanks a lot to all the contributors!

We now have our own confirmation dialogs thanks to @timmo001! No more ugly browser modals.

Screenshot of a confirm dialog when restarting Home Assistant. Screenshot of a confirm dialog when restarting Home Assistant.

In the last release, we changed all the JSON inputs to YAML inputs, this release we add a code editor to all the YAML and Jinja2 inputs. This makes it a lot easier to read and write YAML.

Screenshot of the service dev tools with YAML editor. Screenshot of the service dev tools with YAML editor.

The entity registry is now also migrated to a datatable so you can easily search and sort your entities so it is easier to find the one you are looking for.

Screenshot of the entity registry data table. Screenshot of the entity registry data table.

We improved the device picker in automations, you can now search them and see in what area the device is.

Screenshot of the device picker. Screenshot of the device picker.

mdonoughe added support the activate scene action in the automation editor.

Lovelace

Check the Lovelace changelog for all changes.

In other news

New Integrations

New Platforms

Release 0.101.1 - October 31

Release 0.101.2 - November 1

Release 0.101.3 - November 5

If you need help…

…don’t hesitate to use our very active forums or join us for a little chat.

Reporting Issues

Experiencing issues introduced by this release? Please report them in our issue tracker. Make sure to fill in all fields of the issue template.

Read on →

R.I.P Hassbian

two minutes reading time
  • community

It’s time for what was once the simplest way to install Home Assistant to retire.

R.I.P Hassbian

Some of you will probably wonder why Hassbian is being retired and I’ll try to give a proper motivation. First of is the age-old factor of time. I as the lead developer of Hassbian haven’t been able to give it the time and attention it requires, and there have been few others that have pushed the project further. The one exception being @ludeeus who’s done most of the heavy lifting when the image was retooled to use a proper apt package and repository. Second is that it’s no longer the best option for most to use as an installation method. Hass.io has surpassed Hassbian in almost all ways I can imagine.

Next Step for Hassbian

Since Hassbian has been around for quite a while, there are quite a few users that don’t want Hassbian to go away. To make this as easy as possible for those users, here’s the plan.

  • The repositories pi-gen and hassbian-scripts hosting the Hassbian projects files will be moved to a new organization.
  • A last release will be done by me mid Q4 2019. This image will be hosted under the pi-gen repository.
  • The pi-gen repository will be reworked to work with a standard raspbian image with minor modifications for anyone wanting to create their own “Hassbian like” image. This has always been possible, but the current repository is a bit out of date with the current layout of the Raspbian image.
  • The hassbian-scripts package will get a final release and will continue to be hosted on Gitlab. Some minor changes will be made to reflect the changes to the project.

Next step for Hassbian users

The Hassbian image has always aimed to be the same as a manual Raspbian Lite installation with some packages added. There won’t really be any big changes for all of the users of Hassbian and for documentation, please refer to the Manual installation on a Raspberry PI method.

Alternatives

If you want to continue using something similar, have a look at the manual installation on a Raspberry Pi since it is the base Hassbian was created from. For everyone else, I would wholeheartedly recommend Hass.io since it is what I personally use now (It’s what I had hoped Hassbian could have been but better).

Last but not least

Last but not least, thank you to all of those who contributed, in any way, to the Hassbian project and image.


0.100: Better Plex, Bye JSON, HERE Travel time.

33 minutes reading time
  • Release-Notes

Welcome to the release notes of yet another wonderful release! No, we’re not going for 1.0, we’re doing 0.100! We feel like we’re not ready yet with our goals for 1.0, but we’re making progress every day. For a sneak peak of what we’re thinking about, check our blog Simple mode in Home Assistant 1.0.

Hacktoberfest

It is Hacktoberfest. This means that we’re spending the month celebrating contributing to open source. If you make 4 pull requests this month, you get a free Hacktoberfest t-shirt! More info and what to work on, check our Hacktoberfest blog post.

Average contributions per day have doubled for the month of October. There are now on average 40 contributions coming in each day. Breakdown is ~50% Home Assistant backend, ~37% documentation and ~13% the frontend. Most of these contributions you’ll see in the next release!

Graph of 420 PRs that got opened and merged in the last 14 days. Last 14 days of pull pequest throughput in the Home Assistant organization. (source)

State of the Union 2019

We’re going to have another State of the Union! It will be held at November 13, in Amsterdam. Like last year, it will be hosted by our friends at ING. I’m looking forward to talk about all the great things that are happening in Home Assistant land. We had 150 tickets available when we announced it on social media, and they were all gone in less than 24 hours!

We’re going to make sure that there will be a live stream available. We’ll announce that in time via the blog and social media. Some people are talking about hosting viewing parties across the globe. Keep an eye out on the social category on the forums for announcements. This would also be the place to announce if you are planning on hosting one.

Plex

@jjlawren has been on fire with the Plex integration. You will now be able to link your account via the official Plex account link feature.

Screenshot of the Plex user interface asking the user if they want to link with Home Assistant. Screenshot of the Plex user interface asking the user if they want to link with Home Assistant.

Lovelace

@iantrich fire has not been put out yet. This version he has also added many new functions to Lovelace! Check the Lovelace changelog for all changes. Some hightlights:

  • There are a lot more option for state filtering
  • We have a bunch of new UI editors
  • A new action url to link to external sites
  • Config panel: Disabled entities are now hidden by default.

Device automations

@emontnemery has been hard at work at further expanding device automations aided by @dmulcahey and [@Kane610]. This release includes improved support for Zigbee (ZHA) devices, sensors, binary sensor, switch and Deconz. One neat new improvement is the addition of a “for” option. This allows you to specify triggers for when a certain device has been on for a period of time.

Screenshot of a device trigger for a temperature sensor. Screenshot of a device trigger for a temperature sensor.

Automation editor

@emontnemery has added a bunch of functions to the automation editor, you can now use and and or conditions, and give your automation a description so you know why you did what you did.

Screenshot of an and-condition in the automation editor. Screenshot of an and-condition in the automation editor.

Devices

Device automations are now available on the experimental device page that we introduced in the last release. You can now see all the triggers, conditions and actions the device supports. Clicking on it will open the automation editor with the automation filled in, ready to edit.

Screenshot of a card showing device triggers to create automations from.

We also added the entity registry, so you can change all the settings of the devices entities in one place.

And, bonus, when you rename a device on the device page, it will now also rename the entities of that device if they contain the device name. When you are in advanced mode, it can also rename the entity id’s for you.

Goodbye JSON 👋

On the backend we have been using YAML for a long time, but on the frontend, we still used JSON for a lot of things. JSON is harder to write than YAML so we have aligned that. All data inputs on the frontend now accept YAML. You can still use JSON, as JSON is valid YAML.

This includes:

  • The automation editor
  • The script editor
  • Services data in dev tools
  • States in dev tools
  • Events in dev tools

Screenshot of a service action in the automation editor using YAML. Screenshot of a service action in the automation editor using YAML.

Thank You, @Amelchio

Core developer @amelchio is taking a break from working on Home Assistant. Amelchio has been a contributing member of the Home Assistant community for 2.5 years in which he made a grand total of 275 pull requests! Amelchio has worked on improving database performance and under his wing the Sonos, LIFX and Netgear LTE integrations flourished. He is an example community member, always available in the chat to help other people contribute to Home Assistant.

Thanks Anders, we’re going to miss you! ❤️

In other news

Hans Oischinger showcased how he can steer his vacuum cleaner to specific rooms in his house via his floorplan. Besides this tweet, he also wrote a great blog about it.

To improve discovery, we’re collecting discovery info of devices and services. Please help us gather zeroconf discovery info and HomeKit discovery info.

As always, this release of Home Assistant is accompanied with a new release of the Home Assistant Podcast:

New Integrations

New Platforms

Release 0.100.1 - October 10

Release 0.100.2 - October 12

Release 0.100.3 - October 21

If you need help…

…don’t hesitate to use our very active forums or join us for a little chat.

Reporting Issues

Experiencing issues introduced by this release? Please report them in our issue tracker. Make sure to fill in all fields of the issue template.

Read on →

0.99: Withings, Device Automations, launch Home Assistant Cast from Python.

26 minutes reading time
  • Release-Notes

Happy 6th birthday to us! Yep, it’s been 6 years since the first commit, 6 years since we started our quest for a local and privacy foucsed home automation hub. And I think that we’re doing a pretty ok job 😏

It’s time for Home Assistant release 99. And this release is adding a bunch of new great features all over the place.

Welcome Bram!

Nabu Casa has hired Bram Kragten. Bram has been active in the Home Assistant community for a while and is one of the driving forces behind the Lovelace UI. He will work on the Home Assistant frontend full-time. He will focus on making it easier to manage your Home Assistant installation, make sure all of the frontend is translatable and drive our efforts on making the frontend accessible for visually impaired people.

This is possible thanks to all the people who subscribe to Home Assistant Cloud ❤️

Device Automations

We took a step back, looked at Home Assistant, and thought about how we could make it easier for users to create automations. We realized that there was room for improvement. We identified the following issues:

  • To write automations, users need to learn Home Assistant concepts like events, entities and services.
  • It’s difficult to discover what can be automated. For example, if you’re automating a long press on the “turn on” button on a Zigbee remote, you need to know to listen to the event “zha_event” and match against the Zigbee device identifier of your remote and the long press type.

So we put our inventor hat on and have come up with a solution that allows users to create automations in the concepts that they already know: devices. Now when a user starts configuring an automation trigger, it can pick device automation as a new type.

Screenshot of defining a device trigger. Screenshot of defining a device trigger in the UI.

The user starts by picking one of their devices that is integrated into Home Assistant. A second dropdown will now appear that contains all the possible triggers for this device. This list is populated based on the integrations that are linked to this device (ie. Hue & Light).

Device automations are available for triggers, conditions and actions. Today’s release supports lights, switches and Deconz. More to come in future releases as integration developers adopt it.

Big thanks to @emontnemery for driving this effort. He added initial support for device automations as a YAML-only feature in Home Assistant 0.97 and has worked hard to extend it in this release with UI support and support for conditions, actions and more integrations. Also a big thanks to @kane610 who added added support for device automations to Deconz which helped squash bugs and improve the design.

Frontend

There is a lot to talk here. Buckle up.

@thomasloven has built a brand new round slider from scratch for use in Home Assistant. It is using modern technologies to create a great experience. This component was so useful standalone that he has decided to release it as a standalone web component that anyone can use in their websites.

Screenshot of a light card showing a round slider.

Shout out to @iantrich who has been on fire in recent weeks squashing a ton of bugs and adding some nice features to improve the Lovelace experience. And a shout out to @SeanPM5 who has been bringing UX bugs and improvements to our attention. Our frontend team is seriously awesome.

Unused entities has been moved into the configure UI section and completely revamped by @bramkragten. It’s now a table, you can see a lot more info, you can sort it. If you are using Lovelace storage mode, you can select entities and add them to your UI directly from that screen.

Screenshot of the new unused entities page. Screenshot of the new unused entities page.

Now that we have a data table component, Bram also went ahead and used it in a new devices page. This page, still experimental, will allow users to see a list of all their devices and sort them by manufacturer, area or battery %. The goal is to create a one stop shop for device management.

Screenshot of the new devices page. Screenshot of the new devices page.

And there is a ton more, here are some of the other highlights:

  • Allow subscribing to an MQTT topic inside the MQTT dev tools @bramkragten
  • Option to display last changed in glance-card @iantrich
  • Add image option to glance card entities @iantrich
  • Allow controlling timer entities from the more info dialog @iantrich
  • Fill example data in dev tools @bramkragten
  • Stop effect in more-info-light @iantrich
  • Add vibration on mobile when controlling entities @bramkragten
  • Update Home Assistant logs when activating the info developer tool tab @bramkragten

Launch Home Assistant Cast from Python

Home Assistant now supports opening Home Assistant Cast from the backend. It is available as the service cast.show_lovelace_view. This allows you to open a view on your Chromecast as part of an automation. For example, show the frontdoor and who is home when your doorbell rings.

Note that Home Assistant Cast requires your Home Assistant installation to be accessible via https://. If you’re using Home Assistant Cloud, you don’t need to do anything. Otherwise you must make sure that you have configured the base_url for the http integration.

Hass.io

Hass.io is now able to work with your secrets stored in Home Assistant. So now you are able to use !secret my_value inside add-on options like you can do inside configuration.yaml. For more info about how to define secrets, check the docs.

We have published a release candidate of HassOS that is compatible with the new Raspberry Pi 4. Download it here.

In other news

Home Assistant had a booth this year at the CEDIA home tech trade show. We spend a lot of time talking to manufacturers about local APIs, official integrations and better support for open source systems.

We also had some great drinks in the evenings with companies that integrate with Home Assistant. In this picture Konnected.io and Senic.

@timmo has released version 2.0 of his Home Panel. This is an alternative user interface for Home Assistant.

New Integrations

New Platforms

Release 0.99.1 - September 19

Release 0.99.2 - September 19

Forgot to include frontend update 99.1.

Release 0.99.3 - September 25

If you need help…

…don’t hesitate to use our very active forums or join us for a little chat.

Reporting Issues

Experiencing issues introduced by this release? Please report them in our issue tracker. Make sure to fill in all fields of the issue template.

Read on →

Happy 6th Birthday

1 minute reading time
  • Announcements

Dear community, happy sixth birthday.

It has been six amazing years

Thanks to all the people working on the core of Home Assistant.

Thanks to all the people working on the Home Assistant frontend.

Thanks to all the people working on Hass.io.

Thanks to all the people workin on the mobile apps.

Thanks to all the people working on Hass.io add-ons.

Thanks to all the people who help with design and user stories.

Thanks to all the people who make the documentation possible.

Thanks to all the people active on the forums.

Thanks to all the people active in the chat rooms.

Thanks to all the people active on social media.

Thanks to all the people making videos helping people use Home Assistant.

Thanks to all the people making videos sharing their achievements using Home Assistant.

Thanks to all the people writing blog posts about Home Assistant.

Thanks to all the people invovled in making the Home Asssistant Podcast.

Thanks to all the people moderating our community, maintaining its high quality.

Thanks to all the people working on running our infrastructure.

Thanks to all the people who help out with code reviews and maintaining our code quality.

Thanks to all the people building and sharing cool frontends build with Lovelace.

Thanks to all the people creating and sharing custom Lovelace cards.

Thanks to all the people creating and sharing custom components.

Thanks to all the manufacturers that work on integrating with Home Assistant.

Thanks to all the companies providing the Home Assistant project with resources: Nabu Casa, GitHub/Azure/Microsoft, CloudFlare, Netlify, Lokalise.co, CARTO.

Thanks to the Material Design Icons team for beautiful icons.

Thanks to all the people who support Home Assistant by subscribing to Home Assistant Cloud.

Thanks to all the people who share the Home Assistant love.

Thanks.

❤️

Paulus


0.98: Improved entity management, options and Home Assistant Alerts

27 minutes reading time
  • Release-Notes

It’s time for the 0.98 release. As Home Assistant grows, some features will sometimes be left partially implemented, leaving things to be desired. In this release we’ve been focusing on tieing up these loose ends, sometimes with new features. Getting better all the time!

Entity Management

One of the things that we’ve been improving in this release is entity management. Historically we’ve let this up to integrations, but that caused users to learn multiple ways and more work for integration developers.

Generally entity management is not that important, you want all the entities created by your integrations! However this was less the case when we started migrating over device trackers. This became clear when we migrated over Unifi.

So in this release we’re introducing a couple of new features that are available for all entities in the entity registry and integrations that are set up via config entries.

The first feature is that it’s now possible to disable entities. If an entity is disabled, it will not be added to Home Assistant when an integration adds it. So now it will be easy to manage which entities will show up. This option is accessible from the entity registry

The second feature is a new option to automatically disable any new entities that an integration discovers. In the case of a device tracker, newly connected devices to the network won’t be added anymore. This option is accessible from the integration details page via a button on the toolbar at the top.

With these two features we are now at feature parity with the filtering features that are available in the device tracker integration. Next step will be polishing of the person integration to get all those shiny new device tracker entities under one roof.

Screenshot of integration system options. Screenshot of integration system options

Config Entry Options

We introduced config entries last year as our way as a generic way for integrations to store authentication and configuration. By allowing integrations to define the storage format, there are no more breaking changes for anything stored inside config entries!

Config entries also work great with people who prefer configuration.yaml. At startup a config entry is created/updated with the configuration.

With this release @kane610 added a new possibility for integrations to offer options in the UI. Options that previously required you to edit configuration.yaml can now be offered via the interface.

This release adds config entry options to Deconz and Unifi integrations with many more to come.

Screenshot of Unifi config options. Screenshot of Unifi config options

Home Assistant Alerts

Devices and services can receive updates that can cause integrations to break. This is frustrating and sometimes the cause can be hard to track down. Usually the users on forums/chat are aware and can help redirect people in the right direction, but that’s not a scalable solution!

So to combat this, we’re launching Home Assistant Alerts. Home Assistant Alerts is a website that will track known issues and explains in user friendly language what is going on. Alerts can be tagged with applicable Home Assistant versions, integrations and Python packages.

In the future we’re planning on integrating this directly in Home Assistant, so that users can be pro-actively notified of issue related to their configuration.

Docker base image change

If you run Home Assistant via Docker (not Hass.io) and are using the homeassistant/home-assistant container, the images are now using the same images as hass.io, which are using Alpine Linux instead of Debian.

The hass.io images are a third of the size of the old images and are heavily optimized thanks to the hard work by @pvizeli.

This change will only impact you if you were extending or customizing the image with Debian packages. If you want to continue to use the Debian based images, you can find the Dockerfile for the old images here.

For more background on this decision, see ADR-006.

Webscraping

With this release we have deprecated integrations that rely on webscraping. These will be removed from Home Assistant in a future release. Our scrape integration will remain part of Home Assistant.

Webscraping is fragile, breaks often requires frequent updates and there have been occassions where websites have banned our users.

Users that rely on these integrations can continue using them as custom components.

For more background on this decision, see ADR-004.

In Other News

Mason Made created a great video walking through her Lovelace UI with a fancy custom sidebar. Check it out:

Reddit user Skyfox2k has built a batcave for his robo vacuum. Once the vacuum starts, Home Assistant will open the door and the vacuum can come out to clean!

Photo of a robovacuum driving out of a tiny hole in the wall. Screencap of the batcave video.

New Integrations

New Platforms

Release 0.98.1 - August 29

Release 0.98.2 - September 2

Release 0.98.3 - September 4

Release 0.98.4 - September 4

Release 0.98.5 - September 6

We have been notified by Gregor Godbersen that our markdown renderer was vulnerable for an XSS attack if exposed to specially crafted markdown. This was introduced in the Home Assistant 0.98 release. We have verified that Home Assistant 0.98.0 does not render unsafe markdown, yet still wanted to make sure to issue an update as soon as possible.

More information in this frontend pull request.

If you need help…

…don’t hesitate to use our very active forums or join us for a little chat.

Reporting Issues

Experiencing issues introduced by this release? Please report them in our issue tracker. Make sure to fill in all fields of the issue template.

Read on →

0.97: Apache Kafka, Fortigate, Twente Milieu

29 minutes reading time
  • Release-Notes

It’s time for Home Assistant 0.97! It has been a very busy release cycle as we have been fine-tuning our development process, which makes it easier to maintain and contribute to Home Assistant in the future.

Python 3.5 support has been dropped

As per previous announcements, this is the first release that requires at least Python 3.6. If you are on Hassbian and are planning to upgrade Python, please take note of the known issues with the default wheel server.

Docker

This is the last release that bases our Home Assistant Docker image (homeassistant/home-assistant) on Debian. As decided in Architecture Decision Record 0006: Docker Images, the image will be based on Alpine Linux starting with the 0.98 release. These new Docker images will be running same the Home Assistant Docker image that powers Hass.io. You don’t need to change anything unless you have installed Debian packages manually or made any other changes to the running container. However, if that is the case, you’ll need to find the Alpine equivalent of whatever you were doing.

The main driver behind this change is that by re-using images, maintenance becomes easier, and users of the homeassistant/home-assistant image can benefit from the many optimizations that went into the Hass.io images.

Reload scenes from configuration.yaml

Thanks to @balloob it is now possible to reload scenes from configuration.yaml without restarting Home Assistant. This is part of an effort for Home Assistant 1.0 to make scenes a first-class citizen of Home Assistant, including creating/restoring scenes on the fly in the future. To track this effort, follow this page.

Home Assistant Cast

In case you missed the announcement, we released Home Assistant Cast yesterday. It allows you to transform any Cast interface into a display for Home Assistant. Read the announcement for more information..

Picture of a Google Nest Hub with the Home Assistant UI on it.

Home Assistant Cast opens a whole new world of possibilities for using Lovelace, and we are really excited to learn what cool things you will do with it! If you created something, feel free to share it on social media using the #homeassistantcast hash-tag. We are looking forward to your pictures!

UI changes

This release contains a couple of notable UI changes:

  • New Cast row available in the Lovelace entities card to start Home Assistant Cast.
  • Improved accessibility for visually impaired users. This is an ongoing effort on making the frontend accessible.
  • Split out configuration.yaml actions from the core configuration into a new server control config panel. Thanks @IcyPalm
  • Markdown card now has a size + 1, if it has a header defined. Some layouts might be moved around due to this.

In other news

Frenck wrote an excellent blog post on how to make a $2 smart doorbell using Home Assistant and ESPHome, which doesn’t require soldering.

Aaron created a great and detailed tutorial explaining how to add an interactive 3D floorplan to Home Assistant.

We wrote about how we use Azure DevOps to automate the development of Home Assistant. Interested to see how Home Assistant is automatically build? Check the developer blog.

@jimz011 has updated his amazing, HomeKit inspired, Lovelace config and shared it on the forums. Sneak preview on how it looks:

New Integrations

Release 0.97.1 - August 9

A new breaking change was introduced with 0.97.1 to accomodate for the HaveIBeenPwned shutting down v2 of their API on August 18. The integration has been migrated to using v3.

Release 0.97.2 - August 11

If you need help…

…don’t hesitate to use our very active forums or join us for a little chat.

Reporting Issues

Experiencing issues introduced by this release? Please report them in our issue tracker. Make sure to fill in all fields of the issue template.

Read on →

Home Assistant Cast

three minutes reading time
  • Announcements

Picture of a Google Nest Hub with the Home Assistant UI on it.

Home automation itself has never been a goal of Home Assistant. Instead, it’s a tool that allows us to have technology improve our life, and that of the people around us. I wrote about this 3,5 years ago, and it’s been our guiding principle in building out Home Assistant.

Today we’re introducing Home Assistant Cast to help with this. With Home Assistant Cast, people in your house can have quick access to see the state of your house and it’s residents, and quickly adjust the most important settings. This is achieved by running on Chromecast powered screens that you already have throughout your house: your Google Nest Hubs and TVs.

You can launch Home Assistant Cast by going to the Home Assistant Cast launcher website. It works with any version of Home Assistant released in the last year. Home Assistant Cast can show any Lovelace view, including support for custom cards and themes. Got no Lovelace configuration? Don’t worry, we’ll generate a view and show that instead.

For a demo, also check out the Home Assistant Cast launcher. If you have any questions, make sure to check the Frequently Asked Questions.

How it works

You need to authorize Home Assistant Cast to access your Home Assistant instance. Once it’s authorized, you can start Home Assistant Cast on your Chromecast device. Next, your Chromecast device will set up a direct connection to your Home Assistant instance and give you the option to pick a view to display.

Home Assistant Cast can:

  • Render Lovelace views, including custom cards.
  • Stream real-time data to make sure that the UI always shows the latest state of your house.
  • Navigate between views using navigate actions inside an entities card or using weblinks.
  • Instantly update the casted Lovelace UI when you update your Lovelace configuration.

About touch

We have been able to get touch controls working on the Google Nest Hub and other Google Assistant devices with a screen. The available configuration options to indicate that we’re a touch-optimized app did not work. We were still able to achieve touch controls by manipulating code that is injected into the Home Assistant Cast website when the Chromecast runs our receiver application.

There is no guarantee that touch controls will keep working, it might be blocked. It might stop this week, next month, next year, or it keeps working forever.

I hope that by releasing it with touch controls enabled, we can show Google that this is something that people want, and are willing to invest in for just this reason.

To make sure everyone sees it, I encourage people to share photos and videos of Home Assistant Cast in action on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and other social media with the hashtag #homeassistantcast. Let’s share the love!

Coming soon and future plans

On August 7, Home Assistant 0.97 will be released. This release will allow launching Home Assistant Cast from the Home Assistant frontend. You can do this by including a new cast row that can be placed inside an entities card.

# Example entities card configuration
type: entities
entities:
  - type: cast
    name: Lights
    # The path of the view (or number)
    view: lights
    hide_if_unavailable: true

This is the first release of Home Assistant Cast, and so we focused on the minimum that was worthy of a release. We still have some more things planned:


Piwheel issues with older versions of Raspbian/Hassbian

1 minute reading time
  • Announcements

If you are using Hass.io, Docker or a distro based on Debian Buster this does not apply to you.

After upgrading to Home Assistant version 0.96.0, some users started seeing errors like this:

ImportError: /usr/lib/arm-linux-gnueabihf/libssl.so.1.1: version `OPENSSL_1_1_1' not found (required by /srv/homeassistant/lib/python3.7/site-packages/cryptography/hazmat/bindings/_openssl.abi3.so

And all integrations that communicated with SSL (https) stopped working.

This applies if you have one of these installations with a manual installation or with Hassbian:

  • Raspbian Jessie
  • Raspbian Stretch

The reason for this, is the way piwheels determines the OS version you have by looking at the Python version that is in use.

@frenck added a writeup of the issue and potential solutions to this issue.

There are two potential solutions for this issue, where option 1 are considered the best of them.

Option 1

Upgrade your distribution to Debian Buster.

NB!: This option will upgrade your entire system and might negatively affect other things you might have running.

Before you continue with this, you should make sure that you have a recent backup of your system.

Steps

  1. Change stretch or jessie to buster in these files:
    • /etc/apt/sources.list
    • /etc/apt/sources.list.d/raspi.list
    • /etc/apt/sources.list.d/hassbian.list
  2. Run sudo apt-get update
  3. Run sudo apt-get -y dist-upgrade
  4. Run sudo reboot

Option 2

Disable piwheels prebuilt packages.

This option is a faster method initially, but it has the huge drawback of having to compile the packages locally. You should only use this option if you run other things on your system that will not work if you use the first option.

Steps

  1. edit /etc/pip.conf and comment out the line containing piwheels, like this:

    [global]
    # extra-index-url=https://www.piwheels.org/simple
    
  2. Run source /srv/homeassistant/bin/activate

  3. Run pip uninstall cryptography

  4. Run pip install --no-cache cryptography==2.7

  5. Run deactivate


0.96: Notion, updated sidebar, advanced mode

29 minutes reading time
  • Release-Notes

It’s time for Home Assistant 0.96. It’s a great release, but we also made some changes, so please pay attention.

Last release that supports Python 3.5

This will be the last release that supports Python 3.5. Home Assistant 0.97 will require at least Python 3.6. If you are using Hass.io or Docker, you will not have to do anything. If you are running Hassbian, upgrade instructions are here. If you run Home Assistant inside a virtual environment, please follow the instructions for your OS to update.

Home Assistant has adopted a new Python support strategy. Starting August 1, we will now support the last two minor stable releases of Python. This is currently Python 3.6 and Python 3.7. Python 3.8 is expected to be released near the end of the year. Once that is released, Python 3.6 support is deprecated and removed 2 months later.

Pimp my Sidebar

The sidebar has gotten an improved look! Idea started with a mockup by @JuanMTech on Twitter and grew into a full blown implementation. When visiting Home Assistant on devices with big screens (tablets, laptops, desktops), the sidebar will now always be visible in a minimized mode with the ability to fully hide it via the profile page. The developer tool buttons have been collapsed into a single menu item. The dev tools will now store it’s exact state when you navigate away, included the dev tool that is open. We’ve also taken the opportunity to make notifications accessible from the sidebar, instead of only via the Lovelace UI.

On mobile devices the sidebar will behave like it previously did. Check the demo for a preview.

Screenshot of the demo with the new sidebar. Screenshot of the demo with the new sidebar. Click to open.

Climate

This release includes a major clean up of our climate integration, correcting some architectural flaws from the past. The goal of this clean up was to a better job at providing an abstraction layer that fits many devices. This will improve compatibility with services that interact with Home Assistant (like Alexa/Google) and will allow us to make sure the UI works for everyone. We’ve done a lot of testing during the beta, but there might still be things that don’t work as expected. If you notice anything, please report by opening a bug report.

For a breakdown of what was driving the change, check our blog post on the dev blog.

The following things have been changed:

  • operation_mode has been renamed to hvac_mode to emphasize what the mode is for.
  • We split HVAC mode auto into auto and heat_cool. If it’s heat_cool, the user has set a temperature range the device has to use heating and cooling to stay within. Auto mode is now limited to devices that are running on a schedule or AI.
  • The state of a climate entity is now always equal to the HVAC mode.
  • hvac_action is introduced for integrations that know the current action: heating, cooling, idle.
  • set_away_mode and set_hold_mode have been merged into set_preset_mode. So instead of turn_away_mode_on(), we will now call set_preset_mode("away").
  • The is_on property has been removed. If a device is able to turn off, it should include the HVAC mode HVAC_MODE_OFF.
  • Property names have been aligned, anything ending with “_list” is now named “_modes”.
  • Integrations are only allowed to represent functionality that is present in the API. It is not allowed to add your own fake away mode.

Huge thanks to @pvizeli who drove the core implementation and to the following people for helping getting it past the finish line:

Advanced mode

As part of Home Assistant 1.0 effort, we’re simplifying the default user interface. We’re doing this by hiding certain configuration options like the customize panel behind a new “advanced mode” toggle. You can find this toggle on your profile page.

Advanced mode is only available to admin users and is a per-user setting. Enabling it for yourself won’t enable it for other admins.

In other news…

Raspberry Pi 4 support has arrived in beta. @pvizeli has been hard at work and the first beta release is available. If you flash this image, you will be able to update to a stable release later from within the UI.

Big shout out to @frenck who has been doing a lot of clean up on the website. Like, a lot lot. He has removed over 20.000 unused lines of code, and has simplified how we render code blocks, pages and headers. It takes Jekyll now a mere 14 seconds to generate the whole website! It used to be 6 minutes! 😲

Last week @balloob showed a preview of the upcoming Home Assistant Cast, a new interface for Home Assistant that runs on Chromecasts and Google Assistant devices with screens.

The Home Assistant code repository on GitHub has hit 25.000 stars! 🤩

The Home Assistant Podcast has published episode 53 to discuss all the ins and outs of this new release.

@isabellaalstrom has redone her Lovelace UI and it is looking fabulous!

New Integrations

New Platforms

Release 0.96.1 - July 18

Release 0.96.2 - July 19

Release 0.96.3 - July 21

Release 0.96.4 - July 23

Release 0.96.5 - July 25

If you need help…

…don’t hesitate to use our very active forums or join us for a little chat.

Reporting Issues

Experiencing issues introduced by this release? Please report them in our issue tracker. Make sure to fill in all fields of the issue template.

Read on →