1.Domotz app

The Domotz app is the main user interface and it talks to the Domotz Agent. The Domotz app is available for Android and iOS and can be downloaded from Google Play or the Apple app store. Below are some useful bits of information that will help you get started with the Domotz app, as well as some tips and tricks and some solutions to problems that you might run into.

Note that the screenshots used are from the Android version of the Domotz app and the iOS version will differ slightly.

1.1.Logging in to your account

Once you’ve installed the Domotz app, the first thing you need to do is to log in to the account you created when you installed the Domotz Agent on your NAS or Raspberry Pi. Simply enter your email address and password and tap on Login to log in to your account and access your Domotz.

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Assuming you only have one Domotz Agent installed, that Agent be the default view in the app when you log in to your account.

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If you have multiple Agents, simply tap on the drawer menu button to open the menu to access additional Agents. Tap on the one you want to access and it’ll take the place of the default Agent in the app.

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1.2.Getting to know your Domotz app

Now that you’ve logged in to the Domotz app, let’s get familiar with the interface and get to know what some of the different options and features are.

What you should see once you’ve logged in, is the main app dashboard. Here you have an easy overview of things, for example if any important devices are offline, how many connected devices you have and how many of those are online, your last speed test numbers and any alerts you’ve set.

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We’ll go into details about each of the menu options in section 1.3 and onwards, as each of the sections are also a button that takes you on to more advanced features.

At the top left hand side corner is the side drawer menu button. This is where you’ll find a list of your Agents, as well as an option to search for new agents on your network, as well as an option to log out of the app.

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1.3.Getting started

Let’s take a closer look at some of the features of the Domotz app to get you started with using it. As you should’ve seen by now, the app dashboard is made up eight tiles. Each tile can be tapped to give you further information.

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Tapping on the Important Devices tile will take you directly to a screen that shows you which of the important devices are offline. We explain how set a device as an important device in section 3.1.

Likewise, tapping on Devices will give you an overview of all the devices connected to your network and in section 2 and onwards we explain in more details what you can do here.

The Network tile takes you to a set of diagnostics tools that you can read more about in section 4.

The Alerts tab shows how many alerts you’ve set and if they’re a default “standard” alert or a custom alert. Tapping on the tile takes you to the Alert Manager which you can find out more about in section 2.3.

The final two tabs are a bit special, as they allow you to give others access to Domotz. The Collaboration tile allows you to invite others to access your Domotz, whereas the Give Domotz tile allows you to invite a friend to try Domotz on their own. More on these features can be found in section 6 and section 7.

2.Basic device settings

Let’s take a closer look at the basic device options in the Domotz app. First and most importantly, any device in the device list can be tapped to reveal more details about the specific device. We’ll cover all the options in more details in section 3 and its subsections, as there are simply too many options to cover them here. 

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Tapping on the magnifying glass in the top right hand side corner will bring up the search field. Simply type in a device name, location etc. to find what you’re looking for.

Two less obvious options that are located next to the Search is Sort by and Group by. Simply tap on the settings icon next to the magnifying glass to open up the options.

domotz_devices_sort

Sort by allows you to sort your devices by IP Address, Name, Status change and Status count.  You can select to sort from lowest to highest value, or highest to lowest. Group by allows you to group your device by Make, Type or Location, or you can select No Grouping if you don’t want to group your devices.

2.1.Device list

As you can see from the screenshot below, newly added devices provides basic information in most cases and you should see who the manufacturer is, the default name of the device and its IP address. You can add a “friendly” name, location and an icon to each device and you can find out from section 3.1.2 and onwards.

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You’ll also notice that there’s a green up arrow or a red down arrow with a time next to your devices. This is an indication of when the device joined or left the network most recently.

The green and red “circle” arrows with a number between them, next to the device icon, shows how many times the device has connected and disconnected to/from the network in the past 24h. This number is refreshed once per hour.

2.2.Top menu bar

The top menu bar – highlighted in red below – allows you to quickly move between all of your devices, your online devices and your offline devices. Tapping on the Categories option allows you to change the default All category to your Favourites, Important, Indifferent or Plugged-in devices.

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So what are all these different options? In section 3.1.5 we explain how you set Favourites and if you select this option from the Categories menu, only favourited devices will be displayed in lieu of All devices. Likewise in section 3.1.6 we explain how to set up Important and Indifferent devices. These are devices that are either matters or doesn’t matter as far as if one of them would go offline. Finally Plugged-in devices are explained in section 3.5. These are devices that would be connected to a power switch of some kind and can as such be turned on or off remotely.

The Online and Offline options in the menu are simply a quick way of seeing only devices that are online or offline and can be seen as a quick sorting option for those with a lot of devices.

3.Device details

By simply tapping on a device from the main view in the Domotz app you can access the Device details which displays a lot more detailed information about each of your devices.

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There are four default menu options available, Info, Remote, Alerts and Health, and some other menu options which depend on the type of device (e.g. see 3.5. Config for IP based power plugs). To navigate between them, you can either slide left or right on your phone, or simply tap on the menu names to get to the one you want.

We’re going to cover each menu in detail in the following sub sections.

3.1.Info

The info pane of a device allows you to do a lot of different things, from getting basic details about the device, to editing the device name and location, adding a note, selecting the type of device it is, etc. We’re going to cover all the options in detail here and explain what each and every option is for.

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Note that each of the device information sub menus can be expanded to full screen by swiping upwards from anywhere within the white area. This will hide the circles at the top, as per the screenshot below. Simply swipe down again to reveal the circles.

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As you can see, the info pane is littered with information and at first glance it might be hard to make sense of it all. Starting at the top, we have three circles with some key information, which is Status, IP Address and Changes. The status shows if the device is online or offline, the IP Address circle simply shows you the IP address of the device, something that can be very useful to know at times and finally the Changes circle shows how many status changes the device has had in the past 24h, i.e. how many times it’s gone offline/online over the past 24h.

We’re going to skip the menu here, as it was covered in section 4.

Next up we have a series of fields that allows you to manipulate how the device in questions shows up in your list of devices. The main options are Type, Name, Place, Note and Add to Favourites. There’s also an option to delete devices and one to set them as an important or indifferent device. We’re going to explain what all these options do in the sub sections below, but before we go there, we’re briefly going to cover the detailed device info listed at the bottom of the info page.

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Status: Displays the status of the device, if it’s online or offline. In this case it’s online.

Last Status Change: Shows when the device last went offline or online. In this case it was 16 days ago.

Status Changes 24h: How many times a device status has changed in the past 24h. In this case it’s none, as the device has been online for 16 days.

Make: Who the manufacturer of the device is. In this case it’s WMware, as this is a virtual machine we’re doing some testing with.

IP Address: The IP address of the selected device.

Hostname: This is the device name as recorded on the local network DNS. If the device supports further protocols (SNMP, Bonjour, etc), other names will be displayed in this detail list (SNMP Name, Bonjour Name, etc).

MAC Address: This is the MAC address of the selected device.

First Seen: This was the first time the Domotz Agent discovered the device. In this case it was the 3rd of August 2015.

3.1.1.Type

To change the device type, simply tap anywhere inside the Type box. A new screen will appear with options for several different devices. To select the type you want your device to be, simply tap on your preferred device type, in this case, it’s a NAS.

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3.1.2.Name

To change the name of your device, simply tap anywhere in the Name box and you’ll get a field to enter the name of the device. Tap on Clear field at the top to remove any text in the field. To save the name, simply tap on the Go button or equivalent on your on-screen keyboard or the green tick in the top right corner. Tap the red cross in the top left hand side corner to cancel any changes.

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3.1.3.Place

To change the place of your device, simply tap anywhere inside the Place square. A list of available options will appear that you can chose from, or alternatively you can enter a new room name in the available field at the top of of the screen. Simply tap on the Go button or equivalent on your on-screen keyboard to save the new room or tap on the green tick mark.

There are a few pre-sets provided to get you started, but you can add as many rooms/locations as you want.

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If you want to remove the room for a device, simply tap on Place square again and tap on Clear field and your device will be removed from the room.

3.1.4.Note

The note field allows you to add a short note about the specific device. This is for your own record only. Simply tap anywhere in the Note square to bring up a text entry field where you can add a note. Tap on Go or the equivalent on your on-screen keyboard to save the note, or tap on the green tick mark in the top right hand side corner.

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3.1.5.Add to Favourites

You can favourite devices to have quick access to a few key devices that you want to be able to check in on more often than the rest of your devices. To add a favourite, simply tap on the star in the Add to Favourites box and it’ll change from grey to yellow to indicate you made this device a favourite.

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If you go back out to the device list, you’ll notice a a small star by the device icon to show that this is a favourited device.

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To access your favourite devices, tap on Categories on the menu row and select Favourites.

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Now you’ll only see your favourite devices in the device list.

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To see all devices again, simply tap on Categories again and select All.

3.1.6.Important/Indifferent

The Important/Indifferent option allows you to filter devices based on if they’re important or not. For example, your NAS would potentially be a device that you would like to be sure it’s alway online and by tapping on the categories button in the main menu in the Domotz app, you can easily filter for important devices only.

Note that if you want to see all devices again, you need to tap on Categories again and select All to go back to the default view.

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It’s very easy to configure the Important/Indifferent status of a device. Simply tap on either word to change the device from important to indifferent. In this example, the device is set to Important.

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Note that for some some device types (e.g. Network Equipment) the device is marked as Important by default.

3.1.7.Delete Device

This option allows you to delete a device as the name suggests. However, you can only delete offline devices. You would use this option to remove a device that isn’t likely to re-appear on the network for whatever reason. In the screenshot below, we have a device that went offline 16 days ago and it should potentially be a prime candidate to be removed from your list of devices.

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Note that if you delete a device, it’s not permanently deleted, as if it reconnects to the network, it’ll appear again in the list of devices.

3.2.Remote

The Remote option allows you to remotely connect to a device in your home. Currently the Domotz app is limited to HTTP/HTTPS and RDP support, but we’re working on adding support for Telnet, SSH and VNC.

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To connect to a remote device via HTTP or HTTPS, you need to know which port its web UI is located on. The Domotz Agent identifies the most common ports used for HTTP/HTTPS connections (e.g. 80, 8080, 5000, etc) and provides them as suggestions, but you might have to change the port if your device is using a non-standard port.domotz_remote_2

For example, most routers use port 80 as this is the default HTTP server port: this port will be automatically recognised by the Domotz Agent. However, if you know that your device listen on a particular HTTP port not discovered by the Domotz Agent, you can set that by tap on Port button end enter the number in the field, and tap on Go orsimilar on your on-screen keyboard to save the port. HTTPS connections are also supported through the Port button. Now simply tap on Open connection to connect to the remote device.

Note that when outside your local network, the connection from the App to your home, is entirely managed on HTTPS secured protocol. When you Open Connection on local network the App will try to establish the connection directly to the end device. 

Once the connection has been established, the web browser on your mobile device will open the login screen of the device you’re trying to connect to and you can log in just as you would on your local network. To disconnect, simply close the browser.

Note that if outside the local network, the connection might be slow to the remote device, as the connection is going via a proxy server and it can take some time for the communication between your mobile device and the remote device to be established.

If you want to connect to a PC using RDP (Remote Desktop Protocol), simply tap on Remote Desktop and the Domotz app connect via RDP instead of HTTP/HTTPS.

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Simply tap on Open connection to connect to the PC.

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The web browser on your mobile device will open once the connection has been established and within a few seconds, you should be seeing your PC login screen. Log in with your username and password and you’ll be able to access your PC via your mobile device.

You can also use the Domotz web app to connect to your remote devices. If you’re doing this on a computer, you’ll have full keyboard/mouse access which makes it easier to control your remote devices.

3.3.Alerts

We’ve already covered alerts to some degree in section 2.3. The alerts here allows you to set exactly the same options when you create a custom rule for alerts, so we’re not going to go over those steps again. However, what you can do here is modify the Standard Alerts, which is the default alert sent from all devices using the Standard Alerts option in the Alert Manager.

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To edit the Standard Alerts, simply tap on the cogwheel by the Standard Alerts. You’ll see a warning message when doing so, which is letting you know that making any changes here, will affect all devices using Standard Alerts. The rest is exactly the same as when you set up a custom alert, just that it has an affect on all devices that you’ve selected to send Standard Alerts.

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You need to configure this option at least once, as by default the Standard Alerts option is blank. As such, you have to select the options you want to be the default here for all your devices. This can be done from any device.

3.4.History

The History menu shows you how many times your device has connected and disconnected from the network and at what time this happened. As you can see in the screenshot below, this is a device that is having some kind of a problem, as it’s disconnecting about once a minute. This would be a simple way of finding out that some investigation into why this is happening needs to be done and it’s something you might not notice normally. The information displayed here is a more detailed view of the red and green arrows next to the device icon in the device list.

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Note that the Domotz Agent pings devices on the network once every 30 seconds. This is currently not user configurable.

3.5.Config

If you own an IP based smart plug, you might be lucky and it works with Domotz, then you can do some interesting things with it. Supported smart plugs will have a field called Config in their menu, as you can see below.

 

 

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Here you have a basic on/off control of the switch, much in the same way as you would with the native app that comes with the plug. You’ll be prompted to make sure that you want to change the power state of the switch each time.

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In addition to this, Domotz has a pretty neat feature where you can “Connect a Device” to the plug. What this does is that it creates a symbolic link between the smart plug and the device it’s plugged in to, so you can easily keep track of what is plugged in where. This is great for more advanced smart plugs that have multiple controllable outlets.

To “Connect a Device” simply start by tapping on the plug symbol in front of the Connect a Device text.

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You should now see a screen similar to the one below. Tap on the plug symbol in front of the device that is plugged in to the smart plug to create the connected device.

 

 

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You should now see the icon of the device you connected to your plug instead of the plug symbol. This means that the two are linked up by Domotz.

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To remove a device from a smart plug, simply tap on the small red cross inside the icon of the device that’s connected to the plug and the smart plug will be unlinked from the device.

4.Network

Info

The  Info tab displays some potentially handy information such as your public (internet facing) IP address, your network gateway, DNS and DHCP server.

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Route Analysis  

The Route Analysis allows you to send test packets to any Internet Public Server and measure packet loss in percent, as well as round-trip delays.

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This can be useful to understand where bottlenecks and issues reside in communicating with an external Internet Server. For example, you can simply type in a website URL (server only to be specific) or an IP address to start the analysis, then select if you want to send 10, 20 or 50 packets. We’d recommend that you start with 10 packets. Once you’ve selected your options, simply click/tap on Start to start the test.

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Note you might have to scroll down to get to the Start button for the route analysis.

domotz_route_analysis_3You’ll see a graphical representation of the route and once the test is finished, you’ll see how long it took and if there were any obvious issues in the router at your Internet Provider, or between your Internet Provider and the target.

domotz_route_analysis_4You can click/tap on “See raw data” to get a full breakdown of the entire route. To start a new test, simply click/tap on Done and you’ll be taken back to the screen where you can enter a new URL or IP address.

This feature is based on MTR, a program that combines the functionality of traceroute and ping. It’s licenced under the terms of GNU General Public License Version 2 (https://www.gnu.org/licenses/old-licenses/gpl-2.0.html)

Speed Test

The Speed Test allows you to perform upload/download speed tests from your Domotz Agent to the nearest perfSonar server.

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The speed test is based on NDT (Network Diagnostic Tool) which provides a sophisticated speed and diagnostics test. It relies on perfSonar, a global, widely-deployed test and measurement infrastructure composed of thousands of servers maintained and used by science institutions around the world, of which many are available for public use as well.

To run a test, simply click/tap on Start and your Domotz Agent will automatically detect the nearest server and run the test.

You can find a list of perSonar test servers here: https://stats.es.net/ServicesDirectory/

For more information about perfSonar, please see: https://www.perfsonar.net/about/what-is-perfsonar/

For more information about NDT, please see: https://software.internet2.edu/ndt/

NDT is copyright of the University of Chicago and is used by Domotz in accordance to the terms of the NDT licence (https://vdt.cs.wisc.edu/licenses/2.0.0/ndt_license.txt)

 

5.Alerts

The Alert Manager is located in the menu which can be accessed by tapping on the menu button in the top left hand side corner, or by swiping from the left edge towards the right.

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Here, you’ll find a list of all the devices in your network and three option per device, Custom, Standard and No. By default, all devices are set to No, which means that the device in question won’t be sending any notifications. Standard notifications is a common notification that would be shared among all of your devices. To enable Standard notifications for a device, simply tap in the circle to change from No to Standard notification. You can configure the Standard notification under Alerts, see section 4.3.

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Custom notifications are created on a device per device basis. Simply tap on Create to set up a custom notification for a device. You’ll see the notification changing to a green tick mark and the Alerts Configurator should then be opened automatically. In the Alerts Configurator you have two sections, Add a new rule for device and Event/Action.

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Adding a new rule consists of selecting if you want a notification when a device goes down or comes back up on the network, or if it loses a heart beat. The difference between a lost heart beat and a device being down is that the heart beats are tested once every 30 seconds, so you’d get a notification sooner than if a device is down, as a device is only market as down if it misses four heart beats. You can also select if you want a mobile push notification or an email notification when said action takes place, or both.

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Once you’ve selected your options, tap on the small plus sign on the right to finish the notification rule.

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You should now see the rule you created appear under the Event/Action section and display the options you selected in the first step. You can add multiple rules at once and when you’re finished adding your rules, tap on Save in the top right hand side corner to Save your rule.

To test a rule, simply disconnect the device in question from your network and connect it again and depending on the type of notification rule you set,  you should be getting either a mobile push notification or an email, or maybe both.

6.Collaboration

One thing that can be very difficult to do, is to grant someone outside of your home access to your network and your connected devices. However, with Domotz Collaboration feature it’s as easy as typing in a persons email address and hitting send.

To give a friend or a trusted third party access to your network, simply tap on the Collaboration tile in the app and you’ll see the following screen.

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Tap in Invite a Guest.

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Now simply fill in the persons email address and tap on Send.

You’ll see a Pending notification until the other person has accepted the invite.

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The person you’ve invited will receive and email informing them that you’ve shared access to your Domotz with them and if they already have a Domotz account, they’ll get a notification in their app that they’ve been invited to access your Domotz. Your Domotz Agent will show up in their app under Guest Agents and they can select it from the list of agents and can access it just like any other Domotz Agent.

To revoke access, simply tap on the small red X by the persons email address and you’ll be asked if you want to remove the guest from your Agent.

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Simply tap on Yes, Remove and the person will have their access to your Agent revoked. An email will be automatically sent to inform the person that they can no longer access your Agent.

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It’s also possible to leave an Agent if you’ve been invited as a guest. Simply select the Agent you’re a guest user on from the list of agents in the drawer menu, then tap on the Collaboration tile.

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You can now simply tap on Leave Agent to leave the Agent.

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7.Give Domotz

As a Domotz user, you have the opportunity to share Domotz with your friends and family. The great thing here is that not only do they get to use Domotz free until the end of June 2016, but you get an additional three months of free service once they activate their Agent.

To share Domotz with your friends and family, simply tap on the Give Domotz tile in the main menu and you’ll see the screen below.

domotz_give_domotz

You can chose to either copy the unique URL tied to your Domotz account, or you can use the share button to share the link on social media, via SMS or email etc. You’ll see how many referrals you have at the bottom of this page.

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