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Fibaro – not reliable enough for home automation


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On 11/8/2017 at 9:45 AM, Igy said:

First of all I have to say, that I’m using Fibaro for more than 3 years intensively for myself and some of my customers. So far didn’t find better solution for all use cases I have, but I think its time to start to look more intensively for alternatives. Why? Here are the most critical reasons:

  1. Remote system access ...
  2. Push and email notifications ...
  3. Bugs and bugs and bugs ...
  4. Support…
  5. Development of user requested features – there are tons of requests on Fibaro forum, asking Fibaro to fix or develop small features that would significantly improve user experience. One of the examples is “low battery notification” being send by email every half an hour!!! That represent 96 emails if I’m away from a home for a weekend!!! 

So to conclude, I’m staying with Fibaro, but only until a time I do find a suitable alternative for my use cases. Then, good bye Fibaro.  

 

First of all I do share your frustration... but if it's very important for you, there are some ways to overcome these issues.

I admit all below are workarounds, but it works and keeps the system up and running.... that's the goal - isn't?

  1.  I have never used Fibaro remote access.
    • I'm using fixed IP,  off course it costs extra, but worth it. Never had an issue to access my system.
    • Another way to achieve direct access, is to have PC that sends your public IP to your eMail (in case IP changed). I've used this solution before purchasing fixed IP.
  2.  Push and emails sometimes unreliable or it takes few minutes to receive them, my solution is to use local GSM/SMS module to send (and to receive) important messages. Never fails, works like a clock. Again some extra cost and effort.
  3.  Bugs... I'm waiting few days after new update and checking other users responses on the new version. Some users have two HC2 for testing... and they are a reliable source of issues or bugs introduced at new version. 
  4.  Support - No workaround.  Fibaro team needs to improve their support, at least few days after new release. I think Fibaro team should start online support (chat) as done by Vera. In many cases the issue is very minor and could be solved in a matter of seconds.
  5.  I believe major part of requests will be never implemented, but even so right now HC2 is the "best" solution on the market. Referring your example of “low battery notification”, you can turn it off and use suggested solutions (scenes)  that available at this forum for batteries notification. I think this forum is an excellent source for workarounds on other issues as well.

I don't try to defend anyone, but as I've found instead of investing in other system(s)  extra capital and efforts I'm investing in workaround solutions (like fixed IP, GSM/SMS module and etc.) to get best of the system. 

Some private history... mine first attempt to create smart home has been based on HomeSeer .. then I moved to HC2 and few months ago I've purchased and tried Vera system, what can I say?  Fibaro is the best solution on the market right now and with all workarounds the system works >99% of the time (at least in my case).

BTW I'm continuously visit Vera, HomeSeer and few other forums and believe me bugs and problems are endless there as well. 

 

 

 

Edited by cag014
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I agree with @cag014 on all points and here is my 50 cents:

  1. I have HC2 for almost 2 years now. Except in two or three occasions I had never problems with remote access even from my work where internet can be really bad.
  2. Same goes for push, popup and e-mail notifications as for remote access. In few occasions when I had some problems, not all go to Fibaro account, I had issues with my home network and ISP too.
  3. I never install betas on my working HC2. When I get second box for testing purposes then will install everything they put out and hopefully write more about it. Every software has bugs and they can never be entirely cleaned, so some workarounds are needed, but my box is also working 99% of the time. Of that one percent when it is not  working more than 99% is caused by me :-) 
  4. I never needed Fibaro support help. I always found solution myself. I can write that I had my share of frustration with non configured or deleted devices but believe me or not, restoring backup always helped. When you consider this box as important part of your home, then what you do? Make backups, of course! And it is not that I'm smarter than others, I just don't panic when sh.t happens. Many people immediately do system recovery and fall even in deeper sh.t when maybe it was enough just to give box little bit longer time to recover from some task or simply reboot and restore backup. Ah, no, there is no backup to restore? Well, that is not Fibaro problem but yours! Also, before you start to build your z-wave network it would be advisable to gather some knowledge about it, or leave that job to professionals.
  5. I just hope that Fibaro has solid path ahead and goal. Looking at what pace they are releasing new products it seems to me that they have solid future. I also don't expect that they will or need to actualize all users requests specially if this requests are not in benefit of their path or major part of the user base. I mean what it is important to me does not immediately has to be important to everyone else ;-) I'm adapting my HA and building it on what is offered by this box and not solely on my wishes. Maybe that is why I'm happy user with coffee waiting for us every morning in the kitchen. Mmmm, smells really nice. I go now to enjoy coffee that our Angelina (HC2) prepared for us :-) 

 

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1. Fibaro is likely the best system out there at present

2. Nobody expects Fibaro to be perfect - but Fibaro (as most of us) can improve - and (as most of us) benefit from listening to others before making conscious decisions

3. Both Fibaro and the users have invested heavily - and we like to succeed - that is short term to be able to use and trust our HA-system - in the long term Fibaro will have to stay ahead of the pack or slide in to the sideline with a more limited scope

4. Bottom line: We need to continue to tell them whats good, what is not as good, and whats ugly

 

Edited by 1152
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I can only compare between another brand and Fibaro, but there is really no way to compare them. It's like night and day when it comes to hardware, stability, development and how a company treats it's customers. Suffice to say that Fibaro is a mature company with mature solutions and helpful support, and we have a great community here.

 

Edited by robw
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hi

heres my 2 cents worth.

a lot of what is said here is common sense and agree with it. i have had fibaro for 2 years personally and before this had Vera. I can say ive never been happier since the move to fibaro. i can do a lot more with fibaro and its also whats helped me sell/install more fibaro systems.

ive not had a single client that wants a refund or any warranty repair etc. which as installers can only be a good thing.

yes as with all I.T. systems we have a few hiccups but they do get resolved and as long as the system has been setup properly then no issues arise.

ive have small installs with just 6-7 modules to full house with 30 odd modules and extra VD for nest, sonos etc and as long as all configs are done properly it will be reliable.

and for that 1% of the time when things do fail a good recent working backup will always fix things so backups are crucial and important.

i currently monitor 10 systems and with the recent LUA service im offering, helping a few others to keep there systems running smoothly.

so personally i dont agree with the OP statement of fibaro not been reliable as its been the opposite for myself and my clients.

thanks

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  • 4 weeks later...

Actually in term of reliable, there are very reliable system in the market like Control4, Creston, Savant.....

 

The only issue i guess is the pricing as compared to Fibaro.... End of the day, what u pay is what u get?

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23 hours ago, waterfoe said:

Actually in term of reliable, there are very reliable system in the market like Control4, Creston, Savant.....

To Control4 one. Fibaro has better and cheaper Dimmer. Tested 8-). You can observe flickering with them (tested with halogen GU10).

 

I like Control4 for its multiroom sollution (even it's pricy one) and for what you have on TV screen you have in your mobile devices also. App layout is very consistent and same.

 

I like idea connecting Fibaro to Control4, because Fibaro is the best wireless HA system. I actually will be doing that in my heating renovation next year by adding new Danfoss TRVs to Fibaro when they come. Hippie ball does not look good in my place.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Completely agree with 'cag014'. Fibaro is flexible and reliable. I have personally installed 4 systems for a different purposes. All my clients satisfied. 

 

Never been let down with remote access. 

 

GSM module used in one installation, client requests

 

Bugs? Use fibaro modules, no bugs. And you can do anything and everything.

 

Support? fibaro forum have everything!

 

 

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14 minutes ago, Dkas said:

Completely agree with 'cag014'. Fibaro is flexible and reliable. I have personally installed 4 systems for a different purposes. All my clients satisfied. 

 

Never been let down with remote access. 

 

GSM module used in one installation, client requests

 

Bugs? Use fibaro modules, no bugs. And you can do anything and everything.

 

Support? fibaro forum have everything!

 

 

to be honest.... a forum is not support, serious it isn't

as for bugs, there are bugs, the last known one is the fibaro heatcontroller.

the best thing to do is, try the systeem and if "it fit's you" then stay with it,  i have problems that i can't sent mail using my own mail server and some other small problems.

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  • 1 month later...

I would just love to see some basic and easy to edit scenes made available... or even the scenes in all these amazing product videos being shared lol

 

For example, i just want my bathroom exhaust fan to turn off automatically after 15min of run time.. how hard is that?

 

The basic scene I've made acts like this:

 

turn fan on, timer starts..

 

lets say you turn fan off at 12min, then back on again.. the fan turns off in 3min (15min total)

 

How do I get the timer to restart?

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13 minutes ago, JamieSonegoAus said:

I would just love to see some basic and easy to edit scenes made available... or even the scenes in all these amazing product videos being shared lol

 

For example, i just want my bathroom exhaust fan to turn off automatically after 15min of run time.. how hard is that?

 

The basic scene I've made acts like this:

 

turn fan on, timer starts..

 

lets say you turn fan off at 12min, then back on again.. the fan turns off in 3min (15min total)

 

How do I get the timer to restart?

In Block scenes you could do by 2 scenes. One turn on fan and 2nd turn it off after 15 minuts (counter is in condition).

 

With lua, i would probably use VD than a scene (i just like VDs more). Code below:

local id_fan = 4

if fibaro:getValue(id_fan, "value") >= "1" then
	
	if onTime == nil then
		onTime = os.time() -- cannot use it as local variable, since you do not want to change this variable when loop start again
	else
		actualTima = os.time()
		difference = actualTime - ontime
		
		if onTime > 900 then
			fibaro:call(id_fan,"turnOff")
		end
	end
else
  onTime = nil
end

 

 

Edited by jakub.jezek
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5 hours ago, JamieSonegoAus said:

I would just love to see some basic and easy to edit scenes made available... or even the scenes in all these amazing product videos being shared lol

 

For example, i just want my bathroom exhaust fan to turn off automatically after 15min of run time.. how hard is that?

 

The basic scene I've made acts like this:

 

turn fan on, timer starts..

 

lets say you turn fan off at 12min, then back on again.. the fan turns off in 3min (15min total)

 

How do I get the timer to restart?

You know you can just set the auto off after a set time parameter in advanced parameters in switch?

you dont even need a scene.

 

Re your commant fibaro supplying basic scenes, I agree.

They are quick to say your systems not behaving because you are writing your scenes the wrong way, but they dont provide every day scenes that every user is going to use written the right way.  

I know ‘ Market Place’  and changes in ‘knowledge’ is a attempt improving things , but how hard is it to provide a rock solid lighting scene, a rock solid night day home away scene .

Its stuff that every user is going to use, and it would contain examples of all the basic calls  and LUA actions people people are going to use. This should come pre loaded in the box.

All the info you need to work this out is out there I know, other users scenes, and Developers section etc but for a new user its so spread out it takes weeks to put the whole puzzle together.

.... So easily fixed Fibaro, It would pay for itself  by freeing up the Fibaro support  system for a start.

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 2/28/2018 at 6:55 PM, Jamie mccrostie said:

Re your commant fibaro supplying basic scenes, I agree.

They are quick to say your systems not behaving because you are writing your scenes the wrong way, but they dont provide every day scenes that every user is going to use written the right way.  

I know ‘ Market Place’  and changes in ‘knowledge’ is a attempt improving things , but how hard is it to provide a rock solid lighting scene, a rock solid night day home away scene .

Its stuff that every user is going to use, and it would contain examples of all the basic calls  and LUA actions people people are going to use. This should come pre loaded in the box.

All the info you need to work this out is out there I know, other users scenes, and Developers section etc but for a new user its so spread out it takes weeks to put the whole puzzle together.

.... So easily fixed Fibaro, It would pay for itself  by freeing up the Fibaro support  system for a start.

 

And here comes UHAS to jump in and fill that gap. :-D 

 

As UHAS beta tester you should know how difficult is to write universal code that will satisfy not all, but at least majority of users ;-) 

Take the Very Smart Lights™ scene as an example. I rewrite it completely adding new possibilities just to end up with conclusion that I have to rewrite it again and even change it from scratch to make it much easier to setup and still keep all those nice possibilities.

 

 

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  • 1 month later...

I agree with all the comments. Fibaro support is non-existant. if it wasn't for this great community I would have had a useless HA system. The window sensors are really flaky and batteries last weeks on some of them - some just stop working and cannot be added back to the system. @Jamie mccrostie is right, it takes a new user weeks/months to get their head around everything and finding solutions is difficult due to lack of centralised support materials that non-developers can understand. I still struggle after 18 months.

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