Media players 2: Daphile

Daphile is an audiophile’s dream. Unlike the Runeplayer or Volumio, Daphile is not supported on ARM devices like the Raspberry Pi or the ARM devices. If you have an old PC lying around, this may be one way to put it to good use.  Unlike the Runeplayer and Volumio, Daphile is not built on the MPD player. It is based on a Logitech Squeezebox platform. As is customary  for internet streaming players, Daphile is accessible through a web interface.

When Home Assistant starts up, in recognizes Daphile and provides simple widget  interface for it.

daphile-widget

However, in typical fashion, My Home assistant has an iFrame for Daphile for more control.

Daphile iFrame.png

In addition, A dash button on my refrigerator has been hacked to play or pause my daphile player.(See my earlier post on dash buttons.)

There are several great features in Daphile. When you sign up for music services such as iHeartRadio or Pandora, they appear on Daphile. Daphile has built-in CD ripping capability, support for shared network drives , DSD playback and lastly exceptional sound quality surpassing any Raspberry pi media players.

One disadvantage is that Daphile does not support wifi for now and will need a ethernet connection.

iFrames in Home Assistant

Home assistant provides two ways to interface with other web pages on websites or on other servers. One is by the use of typical HTML link that most of us are familiar with. The other is by the use of iFrames that allows the embedding of a page inside another.

Sometimes a small feature may be one of the deciding factors in choosing a tool. A year ago, there was no easy way to link to an external site or page from OpenHab.(I am unsure if they have added the feature now.) The ability of adding an iFrame displaying another web page within a page is a big win for me. I have several iFrames in my setup.

As an AEM Architect with experience in building large content management systems and web sites I would not recommend using iFrames in commercial applications. Having said that, they work well with Home Assistant.

In my earlier post I described the MPD server. When Home Assistant is started, it detects all MPD players on the home network. It also provides a small widget to easilycontrol the player and displays status information for the player as shown below.

Now, by using an iFrame I can provide the detailed Rompr interface within Home Assistant for more fine-grained control.

Rompr.png

This gives my home automation system the best of both worlds. While some purists may not agree with my configuration, I see my home automation system as one holistic system that uses the best of all tools. It helps me to search and integrate the best tools available into my system.

Controlling my garage door

The house I live in has a Liftmaster garage door opener. One of my early goals was to automate it. Some research revealed that, if I needed to bring it online quickly, it had to be MyQ compliant. MyQ(not to be confused with MQTT, a lightweight protocol) is a proprietary protocol used typically by lift door  openers like Liftmaster or Chamberlain.

I will not detail the steps I took with additional instructions on how to get it working with your home automation system.

I decided to invest in a MyQ Internet Gateway. This device would enable you to communicate with your Liftmaster garage door opener. If you need to ensure compatibility with your garage opener, please ensure that you have the MyQ logo on your garage door opener.

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This device should first be confgured with your garage door. Next create an account for yourself at MyLifymaster.com. Now you will be able to login to the myliftmaster site either from a browser or an app on your android device or iphone.

Integrating with Home Assistant was not straightforward. For one thing, there is no official MyQ component as of this writing. Unfortunately the Wink Connected Home Hub I own does not support Liftmaster (as I discovered on the Wink forum).

After much investigation, I found a node program that provides command to open or close a MyQ garage opener and also provide the current status of the opener. I then integrated this program with a few changes into my HomeAssistant setup. The steps for this are outlined here.