Zwave Home automation with VMC Controller & EventGhost

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jachin99

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Zwave Home automation with VMC Controller & EventGhost

#1

Post by jachin99 » Thu Sep 20, 2018 11:09 pm

If your looking for a way to incorporate your Zwave, Zigbee, or wifi smart devices among others, your options are very limited. There was power controller MCE, which worked with Zwave USB sticks but I haven't found any recent success stories with those although they still might work with newer hardware. A better solution in my opinion, is to use VMC controller. The homepage for VMC controller is hosted here: https://archive.codeplex.com/?p=vmccontroller

The name alone should give away that VMC controller was designed for Vista Media Center however, after a good amount of digging, I found updated installers for the program. I have tested these, and they work in both Win 7 AND 10. VMC Controller sets up a web service which both receives input, and broadcasts events for Windows Media Center. Now there are quite a few TCP/IP controllers for Media Center out there but this one is especially appealing to me because it lets other programs know about the happenings inside of WMC. It broadcasts events for pause, play, and a whole lot more. It even updates track times every second so if you play a song, it will broadcast a counter every second for the track duration. VMC also hooks into extender sessions although I haven't tried this just yet.

This is where Eventghost comes into play. I also found an eventghost plugin that receives these broadcasts although there are likely other programs out there that can do similar. eventghost has countless other plugins that can control TVs, AVRs, Garage doors, along with various smart devices. I'll be using the ZWave plugin paired with VMC controller to automate various tasks like dimming lights, and possibly waking PCs. I have included a link to download all of these, and I have it all working in WIn 7 and Win 10 build 1511. Here is a link to download the installers for VMC controller, and the EG plugin: https://drive.google.com/open?id=1rtM6W ... nxVl3evOXW

jachin99

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#2

Post by jachin99 » Fri Sep 21, 2018 2:44 am

Here is a list of the commands VMC controller is able to recieve

button-rec - sends key to application
button-left - sends key to application
button-up - sends key to application
button-right - sends key to application
button-down - sends key to application
button-ok - sends key to application
button-back - sends key to application
button-info - sends key to application
button-ch-plus - sends key to application
button-ch-minus - sends key to application
button-dvdmenu - sends key to application
button-dvdaudio - sends key to application
button-dvdsubtitle - sends key to application
button-cc - sends key to application
button-pause - sends key to application
button-play - sends key to application
button-stop - sends key to application
button-skipback - sends key to application
button-skipfwd - sends key to application
button-rew - sends key to application
button-fwd - sends key to application
button-zoom - sends key to application
button-num-0 - sends key to application
button-num-1 - sends key to application
button-num-2 - sends key to application
button-num-3 - sends key to application
button-num-4 - sends key to application
button-num-5 - sends key to application
button-num-6 - sends key to application
button-num-7 - sends key to application
button-num-8 - sends key to application
button-num-9 - sends key to application
dvdrom <open|close> - Opens and closes the default dvd drive door
msgbox "caption" "message" <timeout seconds>
goto <ExtensibilityUrl|FMRadio|InternetRadio|LiveTV|ManageDisks|MovieLibrary|MorePrograms|MusicAlbums|MusicArtists|MusicSongs|MyMusic|MyPictures|MyTV|MyVideos|PhotoDetails|RecordedTV|RecorderStorageSettings|ScheduledTVRecordings|Slideshow|SlideshowSettings|Start|TVGuide|Visualizations|WebAddIn> <optional page parameters>
playrate <Stop|Pause|Play|FF1|FF2|FF3|Rewind1|Rewind2|Rewind3|SlowMotion1|SlowMotion2|SlowMotion3|SkipForward|SkipBack>
position <seconds>
fullscreen - moves the current media playback experience into full-screen mode
version - returns the version of MediaCenter
capabilities - returns a key value pair list of device capabilities
volume <0-50|Up|Down|Mute|UnMute>
play-audio <The URL of the audio to play>
play-video <The URL of the audio to play>
play-dvd <A string in the following format: //path? address> http://msdn2.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms814628.aspx
play-radio <A string in the following format: band:nn.n or band:nn,n, depending on the locale. For example, "fm:103.1" or "fm:103,1". For band, only FM is currently supported>
play-tv <A string representing the call sign of the service to play, or channel number>
play-dvr <The URL of the video to play>
queueaudio <The URL of the audio to play>
schedule <recording|recorded|scheduled>
epg-lineup <all|channel,channel...>
epg-onnow <all|channel,channel...>
epg-details <all|channel,channel...>
window-close - sends command to Media Center Window
window-minimize - sends command to Media Center Window
window-maximize - sends command to Media Center Window
window-restore - sends command to Media Center Window
changer-load <Slot Address>

Beta 1 & 2 added: Exit - closes the connection (not useful via http) (note had to expost function CloseClient() to support)
mediametadata - returns information on the currently playing media (artist, title, album, etc - varries based on what is playing)
playrate-get - shows the current playrate of the currently playing media
playstate-get - shows the current playstate of the currently playing media
postition-get - shows the current position of the currently playing media
type - sends a string to the application
list-artists <filter>- returns a list of artists in the library (very slow - my 1K artists takes 1 minute to return)
list-artist-songs <filter | index> - returns a list of songs by a given artist (using the index returned by list-artists makes this fast)
list-artist-albums <> - returns a list of albums by a given artist (using the index returned by list-artists makes this fast)
list-albums <filter | index> - returns a list of songs by a given artist (using the index returned by list-artists makes this fast)
list-album-songs <filter | index> - returns a list of songs by a given artist (using the index returned by list-artists makes this fast)
list-all-custom
list-artist-custom
list-album-custom
list-song-custom
play-audio-artist <filter | index> - plays all songs by first matching artist (using the index returned by list-artists makes this fast)
play-audio-album <filter | index> - plays all songs on the specified album by index, or the first album by the first matching artist (using the index returned by list-artists makes this fast)
play-audio-song <filter | index> - plays the specified song by index, or the first song by the first matching artist (using the index returned by list-artists makes this fast)
queueaudio-artist <filter | index> - same as play, except adds to the queue
queueaudio-album <filter | index> - same as play, except adds to the queue
queueaudio-song <filter | index> - same as play, except adds to the queue

beta 3: added the music / photo commands: music-list-artists - lists matching artists
music-list-album-artists - lists matching album artists
music-list-albums - list matching albums
music-list-songs - list matching songs
music-list-details - lists info on matching songs / albums / artists
music-list-genres - list matching genres
music-list-recent - lists recently played / queued commands
music-play - plays matching songs
music-queue - adds matching songs to the now playing list
music-cover - serves the album cover of the first match
music-clear-cache - forces the cache to be cleared (normally only happens when the music library's length changes)
music-stats - lists stats (Artist / Album / Track counts, cache age, available templates, etc)
photo-clear-cache - Forces the index cache to reset (otherwise only resets when the number of photos changes)
photo-list - Lists all the matching images found in the photo collection
photo-play - list / play from photo collection
photo-queue - list / play from photo collection
photo-tag-list - Lists all the tags found in the photo collection
photo-serv - Serves the photo to a web browser (all filters apply, first or random matching image is returned)
photo-stats - Lists stats of the current querry (filters, counts, etc)

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DavidinCT

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#3

Post by DavidinCT » Mon Sep 24, 2018 5:36 pm

Will this work with some X-10 based stuff ? I still have a lot of stuff left over from my last home when I even had touch panels for automation. Most of the fancy stuff i sold off.
-Dave
Twitter @TheCoolDave

Windows Media Center certified and WMC MVP 2010 - 2012

jachin99

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#4

Post by jachin99 » Mon Sep 24, 2018 6:19 pm

I see X-10 brought up from time to time, and I'm sure it will work. Here is the wiki page but you will be better off asking in the forums. I haven't ever messed with X10 but as long as your gear plugs into EventGhost, It should work with VMC Controller. Here is a Wiki link but its dated http://www.eventghost.net/mediawiki/ind ... 10_Remotes

jachin99

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#5

Post by jachin99 » Mon Sep 24, 2018 10:35 pm

Also, depending on the drivers you need, you might need to disable driver signing enforcement but this is only needed for Win 10. On windows 7, and windows 8, you should be fine. I brought this up because I saw this thread: http://www.eventghost.net/forum/viewtop ... f=9&t=1589

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