Manual installation on a Raspberry Pi

This installation of Home Assistant requires the Raspberry Pi to run Raspbian Lite. The installation will be installed in a Virtual Environment with minimal overhead. Instructions assume this is a new installation of Raspbian Lite.

You must have Python 3.5.3 or later installed (including the package python3-dev) which is the case for Raspbian Stretch.

Although these installation steps specifically mention a Raspberry Pi, you can go ahead and proceed on any Linux install as well. This guide is also referred to as the “Advanced Guide” for a virtual environment install.

Please remember to ensure you’re using an appropriate power supply with your Pi. Mobile chargers may not be suitable, since some are designed to only provide the full power with that manufacturer’s handsets. USB ports on your computer also will not supply enough power and must not be used.

Connect to the Raspberry Pi over SSH. Default password is raspberry. You will need to enable SSH access. The Raspberry Pi website has instructions here.

$ ssh pi@ipaddress

Changing the default password is encouraged.

$ passwd

Update the system.

$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get upgrade -y

Install the dependencies.

$ sudo apt-get install python3 python3-venv python3-pip

Add an account for Home Assistant called homeassistant. Since this account is only for running Home Assistant the extra arguments of -rm is added to create a system account and create a home directory. The arguments -G dialout,gpio adds the user to the dialout and the gpio group. The first is required for using Z-Wave and Zigbee controllers, while the second is required to communicate with Raspberry’s GPIO.

$ sudo useradd -rm homeassistant -G dialout,gpio

Next we will create a directory for the installation of Home Assistant and change the owner to the homeassistant account.

$ cd /srv
$ sudo mkdir homeassistant
$ sudo chown homeassistant:homeassistant homeassistant

Next up is to create and change to a virtual environment for Home Assistant. This will be done as the homeassistant account.

$ sudo -u homeassistant -H -s
$ cd /srv/homeassistant
$ python3 -m venv .
$ source bin/activate

Once you have activated the virtual environment (notice the prompt change) you will need to run the following command to install a required python package.

(homeassistant) homeassistant@raspberrypi:/srv/homeassistant $ python3 -m pip install wheel

Once you have installed the required python package it is now time to install Home Assistant!

(homeassistant) homeassistant@raspberrypi:/srv/homeassistant $ pip3 install homeassistant

Start Home Assistant for the first time. This will complete the installation, create the .homeassistant configuration directory in the /home/homeassistant directory and install any basic dependencies.

(homeassistant) $ hass

You can now reach your installation on your Raspberry Pi over the web interface on http://ipaddress:8123.

When you run the hass command for the first time, it will download, install and cache the necessary libraries/dependencies. This procedure may take anywhere between 5 to 10 minutes. During that time, you may get “site cannot be reached” error when accessing the web interface. This will only happen for the first time, and subsequent restarts will be much faster.

If you want to setup hass as a daemon and autostart it on boot please refer to Autostart Home Assistant.


To update to the latest version of Home Assistant follow these simple steps:

$ sudo -u homeassistant -H -s
$ source /srv/homeassistant/bin/activate
$ pip3 install --upgrade homeassistant

Once the last command executes restart the Home Assistant service to apply the latest updates. Please keep in mind that some updates may take longer to boot up than others. If Home Assistant fails to start make sure you check the Breaking Changes from the Release Notes.

Activating the virtual environment

When instructions tell you to activate the virtual environment, the following commands will do this:

bash $ sudo -u homeassistant -H -s $ source /srv/homeassistant/bin/activate