Conbee Information

Felt like a good idea to create a thread for anyone wanting to know about Conbee Zigbee radio sticks, or those having issues with there setup. I will try and flesh out this first post over time. Happy for others to contribute... And correct my mistakes :slight_smile:

What is Conbee?

Conbee is a Zigbee radio in a USB stick, typically connected to a Raspberry Pi or Windows PC. There are currently 2 versions, a Conbee and Conbee2. Conbee supports various home automation brands, such as Philips Hue and IKEA.

Why might I need / want a Conbee stick incorporated into a Hubitat-based setup?

  1. More Options - You may have some Zigbee devices that are not natively supported by HE or certain features are not supported in the HE drivers. Some examples include IKEA On/Off switches and the "hold" function on the On and Off buttons of a Philips Hue Dimmer switch.
  2. Sniffing a Zigbee Network - some use the Conbee version one USB stick to sniff traffic on an existing Zigbee network.

Integrating Conbee into a HE Setup

One installation option is to attach a Conbee stick to a Raspberry Pi and install the DeConz and PhosCon software. The DeCONZ system has a REST API which has been utilised by @martinez.mp3 in his suite of HE drivers, allowing various switches and lights to be incorporated into a HE setup. See link in Community Threads section.

General (External) Links

Main Web Site:
https://phoscon.de/

Other Community Threads

Useful Support Related Links

Manually updating firmware for deCONZ (I typically follow the first link):
Resolving Firmware Issue On Conbee2
Update deCONZ manually ยท dresden-elektronik/deconz-rest-plugin Wiki

One example of why you should use a USB extension cable:

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I like the conbee but compared to hubitat, hubitat is far more stable and less buggy.

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Definitely, certainly not advocating anyone use it as a replacement for HE, or even a replacement for the Zigbee radio in HE. I have also found it to be buggy, repeatedly requesting to update the firmware when it is already up to date... so annoying...

Only reason I got one was to use some IKEA On/Off switches that I mistakenly purchased without reading up fully on whether they were supported natively by HE. It has also allowed me to use the hold option for my Hue Dimmers.

But yes, completely agree that anything that can be directly paired to the HE radio should be.

Yeah, I got a drawer full of 5 button ikea remotes, maybe one day it will be available in HE.

I do miss not having the zigbee network map and the ability to read and set the options.

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Do you set this up on the same Zigbee network as HE or do you need to run another network/mesh for it?

Asking because I'm considering this to make my Ikea buttons work but want to avoid having another network with interfereance and coverage issues etc..

If this can be on the same network but is just listening & injecting the right commands at the right time then I think that solves my issue...

Personally I have set this up on a separate network and I believe that is what you need to do.... Others may be able to comment on the technical reasons why....

I would expect using the same network as HE may only be useful in analysing the existing HE network. If you want to setup additional devices to those on the HE Zigbee network I believe you will need to configure Conbee on a separate channel. This is why I have asked for the Zigbee Channel to be added to the Hub Information driver and the DeCONZ driver to allow easy assessment of the channels being used.

Other options (I suspect) for "sniffing" the HE network may be covered under "everything xbee" thread(s).... Which may include options for using Conbee to "Sniff" the HE network...

Simon

Download the Hubitat app