Wireless home automation with EnOcean

EnOceanLogoA year ago I installed a wireless switch in the kitchen to switch on the kitchen spots. I chose the Easyclick system by PEHA which works without batteries and it performs very well. This Easyclick system uses the EnOcean energy harvesting wireless technology. Based on this experience and my recent interest in home automation systems I came across a sensor kit for EnOcean on a blog post at Element14. To use the sensors a controller which can send and receive EnOcean (Funk) messages is needed. So I bought a Raspberry Pi with the EnOcean Pi (TCM 310 GatewayController) GPIO module. The Raspberry Pi and EnOcean Pi came first, so once all was setup I switched on the kitchen light switch and there it was the automatic registration in the controller software FHEM.

EnOcean setup

The sensor kit contains a temperature, rocker switch and contact switch. All are working as expected as you can see on the screen shot below.


Green phones in the house

Siemens-N300AA long time ago I did a post about the new home phone setup. Since that time I really liked the combination of Asterisk with the Siemens Gigaset VOIP handset. Now that I’ve moved to a bigger place with more than one floor I decided it was time to get another handset. I don’t know if it was a stupid coincidence, but the base station stopped transmitting the DECT signal a few days before moving. So this was a good moment to investigate what to buy as replacement. I eventually chose the N300A IP with two C610 handsets. The main reasons where IP for VOIP and the ECO DECT / ECO DECT+ option. The plus variant claims to shutdown the DECT signal completely while in standby modes, so it’s safe to put this one the night stand. It also has a baby phone function, which might get handy.

Also this new base station N300A works flawlessly with the running Asterisk setup.

Server upgrade

This week I decided it was time to upgrade my home server. The main reasons, lack of 64-bit support and virtualization technology (VT-x) in my existing setup. The performance gain was also a nice side effect. I have come up with the following new components:

  • Intel DQ67EPB3, S1155, Q67, 2xDDR3, mITX
  • Intel Core i3-2120T, 2.60GHz, 3MB, HD2000, S1155
  • Kingston ValueRam 8GB(2x4GB) DDR3 1333MHz CL9

The Intel motherboard claims to be energy efficient and the i3 processor has a max thermal design power (TDP) of 35W. I think this is a nice balanced setup to do low-end virtualization with low-power consumption in mind. I might do a power consumption measurement one day.

Once all was installed and the new system booted it appeared networking did not come up in Debian 5 (Lenny).

I had to download and build the driver manually, see the instructions below:

lspci showed: Ethernet controller: Intel Corporation Device 1502 (rev 04)

Look for the “Intel® 82579 Gigabit Ethernet Controller” on the http://downloadcenter.intel.com website.

[code lang=txt]
tar xvzf e1000e-1.9.5.tar.gz
cd e1000e-1.9.5/src
make install
modprobe e1000e
ifconfig eth0 up

UPDATE: The network driver works out of the box with Debian Squeeze and as of today (20130706) I can confirm it works on Debian Wheezy to0.