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Control lights in your house with your computer

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Step 2: Install/setup controller

You need a controller which will send commands over the power lines to your switch. I'm using the Insteon PowerLinc Controller with a Serial connection. This works with Windows and Mac. Windows has freeware easily found on Google.

Setup was easy. I plugged it into the wall outlet, plugged the serial connector to my PC, and that's it.

You need to download and install SDM SmartHome Device Manager. Now, once you've installed this, you can start sending commands to the PLC (PowerLinc Controller).

Since I had a MacBook in another room, I installed SDM Socket Server, which is freeware for Windows. This let me connect over TCP/IP from upstairs and send messages downstairs. Note: you need to edit a registry setting to make this software work with the Serial (COM1) port. HKEY_USERS\.DEFAULT\Software\Smarthome\SmarthomeDeviceManager
The port needed to be changed from USB4 to COM1.

Here are some various programs you might also find useful.
Bladtman2424 years ago
out of curiosity, how did you install the socket server on mac? in a VM or? oh and, is there any chance you wil release the code for your python script?:) Great project btw.
zer0_5 years ago
would be cooler with a arduino and a Ethernet Shield
THAT'S WHAT I WAS THINKING!!! lol but since i don't even have an arduino yet it'll probably take me a couple months to get it going haha
I have to laugh when someone points out their dust balls... So far so good... I am liking what I am seeing...
andrew.mac7 years ago
mac??