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Once more unto the breach with Securifi Almond z-wave dongle

Sometime in May 2017

Removed lock physically from the door (I’m getting good at this part now) and added it to almond.
Put lock back on the door and it worked.  Added codes. It worked. Then it stopped working.  I put the GE module next to it again to try to boost the signal.  No help.  Got busy and left it. A few days later it worked for a few cycles of lock and unlock.

Another learning point: I can reboot a z-wave hub many times without anyone noticing.  But rebooting the “primary” Almond --- not so much. Two teenagers and a wife who has her own consulting business with clients in many time zones. There is never a time when the wifi can be off for an hour without complaints.

I was not sure what was going on.  But now I am. After much trial and error I have discovered that if the Staples Connect is powered on the Almond z-wave dongle has a very limited chance of success.  I believe that in the week where the lock mysteriously worked there were some power outages and the order in which stuff rebooted made a difference.
... BTW has anyone noticed that the Almond 3 takes almost 4 minutes to reboot? ... longer than a modern PC ...

Also BTW the Staples Connect (RIP) probably was violating some security rule: either that or it has a powerful z-wave radio (which I doubt since they all use the same chipset), or because I believe it was able to do the initial connect to the locks over the mesh.  

Then I added one of the thermostats.  This worked sometimes, and now I could figure out how to make it work.  First turn off the staples connect then reboot the ‘primary” almond.   I know that my goal is to completely remove the Staples Connect. but this means fact is that I can not do so gradually and leave both running, not even for an afternoon. 

So I have abandoned the notion of using the Securifi Almond 3 for home automation.  Almond is a solid performer on the IP networking and wifi side and I am continuing to use it for that.   The almond might be a good solution for other people but it just isn’t working for me.  

Also Almond 3 had some weird behaviors: It lists the built in siren and the built in LED as devices. Okay, but I have three Almonds each with a siren and an LED.  Turns out you can only control the ones on the “primary” Almond 3.  I would say that about half of the frustration comes from the requirement that the Almond 3 that is “primary” for the IP network must also be primary (and in the case of siren and LED only) for the z-wave.


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