iHost devices in NSPanel Pro

Bidirectional integration of iHost and NSPanel Pro is a must have feature. I don’t understand why it is not possible to control iHost devices from NSPanel Pro. Hope this will be done in the near future. Have you any information about it? Maybe this is under development? Also the iHost backup tool is crucial. No possible to use this device on a professional level without a backup feature.

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You mean the Zigbee devices added to iHost, yes? If you want to control them with NSPanel Pro, pair them with NSPanel Pro and you’re done. Then use Paral-sync in iHost and control as much as you can.

It’s a bit like complaining that a city car can’t carry 3 tonnes of cargo. Let’s agree that a home automation system like eWeLink or Home Assistant or HomeKit are inherently for personal home use. What professional level are you writing about then? There are professional systems for automating large facilities.
The topic of backup in CUBE has been rolled out a dozen times on this forum. The guys at eWeLink know about it and have promised to add this feature. Why does it take so long, that should be your question :man_shrugging:

Yes, you are right, I can add Zigbee devices to NSPanel Pro and forget this question. But not all the time. In case of large house or sub-buildings iHost is located in one place and NSPanels Pro could be mounted in any of these buildings where LAN is available. If we have bidirectional integration all devices can be controlled from any place in your household. So from my point of view this feature is very important.

Professional use does not always mean large facilities. And yes, electricians often use home automation systems like Shelly, eWeLink or Home Assistant in their commercial projects. They install it to people who want to have home automation but don’t understand anything about these smart devices at all. So the backup feature is also crucial not only for commercial home automation projects but for all of us. Personally I have approx. 50 smart devices in my house connected to iHost. I use HA and node-red. I’m really afraid that someday I might need to restore all this stuff manually. Moreover, how must feel sonoff distributors who sell non functional products. Ok, today iHost and NSPanel Pro look much better. But please back to the first quarter of 2023. You paid money for approx. 30% functionality! This is not normal.

I believe that iHost and NSPanel Pro are great products with a huge potential but poor functionality at this moment. Sonoff is the first company who made something new on the market. But they will pay a big price for this mistake in the near future because in the meantime other competitors will introduce their solutions with all features which are missing in Sonoff products.
I hope Sonoff hardware will not get obsolete while we wait for all these important updates.

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Hello Bogdan, Jam3.
I followed this discussion with great interest.

I have a question about that. I notice that both of you have a lot of knowledge regarding the two devices iHost and NSPanel Pro.

Both devices are available to me, of course, as well as other zigbee and wifi devices. So far I have connected all devices to the NSPanel pro and it is working wonderfully.

My question now is:
What makes more sense for the future? To teach all devices to the iHost and to use the NSPanel only for visualization. Of course, the iHost is more flexible in terms of application and there advantages to multiple protocols.
I would like to expand my number of devices (zigbee) and am not sure how to proceed iHost vs NSPanel Pro.
It bothers me a little that the zigbee devices who are teached on the NSPanel Pro can’t really be used in the iHost, Bogdan is right… the add-on “parasync” has not yet been fully thought out. I have problems integrating scenes that work, for example, with the sunrise or sunset function (roller shutter control).

Bogdan’s findings are justified.
But Jam3 is also right!

Is the iHost actually better than the NSPanel Pro in terms of transmission performance and reception (zigbee)?

What do you mean?

Electricians install commercially, but the application is domestic and on a rather small scale. The involvement of professional electricians in the installation does not make every single automation system a professional system :sunglasses:

Using this system on professional level I mean not an equipment itself (domestic or professional). If I install it commercially this is professional service from point of view of my client. Perhaps this term is confused and wasn’t used correctly but I hope you understand what I mean :slight_smile:

From my point of view, if you are not familiar with Raspberry pi / Home Assistant, Tasmota but you want to play with smart devices locally and learn Node-Red to make more complex scenes, the iHost is for you. But if you need this just as a Zigbee Hub and no matter for you that your scenes are stored in cloud servers you should use ZBBridge Pro or NSPanel Pro instead. NSPanel Pro is good for quick accessing your devices and not grabbing your phone each time you want to switch on/off your relay. But If bidirectional Paral-Sync will be finally implemented then I see a huge potential of iHost and NSPanel Pro working together. Or course if you have a tiny house and still don’t want to use a home automation server and Node-Red then NSPanel Pro is better than iHost and more convenient than ZBBridge.

Hello Bogdan,

thank you for your answer.
I see it similarly to you. I will wait for some time and when the bidirectional communication is available, adapt it to the iHost.

Thank you!

Don’t worry about this :slight_smile:
Your service is professional, but the automation system based on eWeLink, HomeKit and alike is not. From the point of view of your customer it may look like one, but you and me we both know very well it isn’t.
I just wonder if the Paral-Sync will ever be bidirectional. It may be helpful, all right. But it will ruin the concept of iHost being a local server. I think that the eWeLink guys once or twice mentioned their reservations about it. I cannot say I don’t subscribe to their point of view.
As for now, you may pair iHost as a Matter bridge with an NSPanel Pro, via app. For the time being, it’s pointless because only LAN devices added to iHost through eWeLink Smart Home add-on are mapped, so they are looped back! No Zigbee though. I wondered if this possibility had surfaced by chance as an unintended feature. I asked eWeLink but have not received an answer to date.
Try this Matter trick yourself if you haven’t already done so.

I didn’t know about this trick. I will try. By the way did you hear something about LAN control of Wifi devices from NSPanel Pro? I thought if NSpanel supports LAN it should work but it doesn’t. Also I found that sometimes when internet connection restarts eWelink shows offline status of NSPanel Pro devices. Only panel restart solves this problem.

No, I haven’t heard anything about it.

NSPanel Pro does not have any relays, so there’s nothing to control via LAN. Apart from basic functions, nothing else is supported in LAN mode. Scenes and likes are not performed. Mind that NSPanel Pro is not a local server.

I have never encountered the offline problem with NSPanel Pro. Maybe I’m just lucky? :nerd_face:

Node Red can have 2 eWelink Cube Servers, on the same node Red instance. So for example you could have NR on the iHost connected to both itself and the NSPP. I’ve tested this and you can add the iHost and NSPanel Pro. Not as easy as if paral-sync was bidirectional but combined with its ability to create virtual devices make me think it should work. Have only tested it in the iHost to NSPP direction though.
Also I think the eWeLink Cube works locally. I actually thought the NSPP Pro did too, but anyway…
Also if the iHost works locally for you, but the NSPP doesn’t then just sent an MQTT message from the NSPP Pro to the iHost. There is a graphical interface possible for Node Red but I have no idea how it appears on the NSPP small screen.

As a bonus you can backup flows in Node Red. I’m hopeful they will add this and bidirectional paral-sync but I don’t know when. There’s a standard backup format for Zigbee networks on GitHub too. It might be quicker to add that than a full backup facility.