Looking to convert from SmartThings to Hubitat

To be totally honest here.. I usually just keep my mouth shut on these “slow response” threads.. But on most you can easily spot the issue..

So many are using community apps that are using the events of all or most of their devices and spitting out this data to their dashboards that they have open on a tablet refreshing 24/7.. And some have RM rules that execute at insane time intervals..

But I step down from my soap box now..


My “Dashboard” is Homebridge running on a Skylake Windows 10 machine. I don’t use that very often either. I probably have close to 100 switches/dimmers/button controllers and 13 Alexas to control/override lights and hsm automations. Much faster and less aggravating to my non techie wife than thumbing through a phone or tablet.


Gotta maintain that WAF (Wife Acceptance Factor) :crazy_face:


I dont



Here's an opinion and a straight answer from someone that just simply enjoys the community. I'm not a developer. I have some creative ideas from time to time. I'm just your basic version of JQP. I was on smartthings for about a year or better before I switched to Hubitat. I've been on HE for about two and a half years now. There are benefits to smartthings. I'm not going to knock that. What turned me off was that I strive to create a system that I do not have to interact with. Things just have to happen. I don't use voice commands or a dashboard. So it felt klunky to walk in to a room and have to wait for 15 seconds for a light to turn on. With HE it's instantaneous. It totally makes my house look streamlined. Freaky fast. I also like the fact that hubconnect bridges that gap. Oh my gosh! The possibilities that creates. I've recently dusted off my smartthings hub to install echo speaks. It's true that certain things work better in different placements. Echo speaks is one of those things. But, it does sorely remind me of the latency with smartthings. I will continue to use smartthings as a secondary hub for things that are not expected to be too efficient. It's nothing different than using hue or lightify for integrations. (There are many more). I feel like it's going to be something that will compliment your environment with speed and agility. Since you're into developing, you'll have no problem porting over things that you need to make it work, but also a word of warning in doing that in taxing your hub past it's capabilities. But, mentioning again, hubconnect, you can delegate your environment into a sentient ecosystem to keep things separated into their respective compartments to keep your lights blazing fast and your more taxing automations doing their own things if that's how you set it up.

Wrapping up, I'm just going to say this bluntly. Rome wasn't built in a day. If you expect to put a bunch of custom stuff on your hub and not have any problems, then you'll be misled and disappointed. Some apps are better written than others. If you expect to put some serious thought into what you need local and invest the time to do it slowly so that you know what messes with your environment, then I think you'll be pleased with how Hubitat will compliment what you already have. And, probably become your hub of choice when you consider a server hub. There are lots of large builds here. Those users are well versed and helpful. One other thing that you get here. Respect and guidance. This forum is the tops. Welcome to the community. I look forward to your review after you get set up.


I do think since the OP is a dev, this is an issue he should be made aware of. He may be used to the unlimited processing of the cloud. Hubitat is amazing but it is not resource unlimited like the cloud.


Good point, well made. That's why I feel like he should keep smartthings in his environment for that reason. The point is not to say that HE exceeds every other hub out there. The point is to make an environment harmonious. Put the things you need to be impressive on HE. Keep the not so impressive where they land. That's something I've learned here over time. To be successful in all things, you need to surround yourself with the talent that makes you successful. That is no different with home automation. Compliment your system with what makes it successful. :wink:


Smartly Dashboard editor is close to release and welcoming testers/devs. It is going to have additional options, skins, custom tile names, and a very easy to use web interface.

@bjones14 If your having issues with ST, which I don't think you would not be here unless you did, you don't need any of us to sell you. The instability and lack open mindedness there should drive way somewhere else eventually :laughing:.

Give HE an honest go, and I think it will sell itself. Add this awesome community and a staff that gives a S*!%, why would you look anywhere else? :beers:


I am a standard user, I do not code, I use all the standard apps and drivers. HE is so robust! Now it's setup it just sits in the background and never fails. I did have some issues with the hub crashing but once I removed some custom apps/driver's it was fine. Definitely worth the move from ST.


So I've been doing a ton of research and I greatly appreciate all the feedback here. After much consideration I think that I'm going the Home Assistant route with a local server.

I'm a big FOSS advocate, and like I mentioned a software developer, so I am more than comfortable setting up a Linux server and familiar with Python to get the environment set up. This way I can fully utilize server hardware instead of being limited to what a hub can do. It was easy for me to decide this when I realized that I can just buy USB Z-Wave and Zigbee bridges to hook up to my server.

My biggest concern with Hubitat is that the core is closed-source, which speaks to profit motives. Albeit not necessarily bad ones, but motives nonetheless. This was my big issue with SmartThings and to me I want whatever is the complete opposite of that, and it seems like Home Assistant is the best out there for what I'm looking for.

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I'm a home assistant user.

I connect Hubitat and home assistant and love it. You get the pros of both worlds and minimize the cons of both.

The biggest con is not being compatible with all Ikea devices. However super cheap Iris v1 devices is very nice. Home assistant with deCONZ, ZHA or Z2m, does not support Iris v1. They started to explore it than just gave up.

If you don't use Hubitat, avoid that zwave/zigbee combo Nortek stick. I have it and every time I dust it off and tried ZHA. I am affirmed on how much better Hubitat is. ZHA is just missing so much in terms of their quirks and it couldn't handle my smartthings button. It kept having problems with registering the difference between press and double press.

I, recently, just tried ZHA with a Ikea remote. Nothing else connected just the remote and it would drop after a few hours.

I don't know about deCONZ or Z2m. I'm wanting to test them for fun sometime.

I agree that a system built upon open source technologies does lack the spirit of the concept and that is disappointing.

On the other hand it's hard to imagine HE being able to survive long term if the code was available, likely they'd be spending valuable time and resources dealing with a whole bunch of forks and competing devices - not saying it can't work just that it's another layer of difficulty.

A fundamental difference with ST though is even if the company changes direction you can retain your functionality for as long as you want. You do not have to upgrade, you don't need the internet beyond the initial installation and you can write your own apps/drivers for non supported devices etc. Your hub should last as long as it can hold up physically.

I think the advantage over HA is it provides a quicker path to get things running and things are maybe a bit more straightforward in terms of basic rules etc. HA is really nice because of all the things you can do with it but it is also that much more overwhelming (potentially).

I appreciate sharing your experience with this! It greatly helps me in making my decision.

I purchased a separate Aeotech Z-Stick Gen 5 to use with ZWave and that has been working good so far, and I have a cheap ZHA stick coming from AliExpress. I don't have the highest hopes for that, though - especially after seeing your experience.

However, I am the type of person who would want to further develop that plugin if I found issues with it, which is part of the appeal of Home Assistant to me. I just realized there was a LOT more work to be done on the SmartThings side to support the ecosystem I have. I was really pushing the limits of what WebCore could do.

I assume deCONZ or Z2m are different Zigbee plugins for Home Assistant?

It's definitely a different mentality. To me, Hubitat appears to be a great platform focusing on local networks and privacy, which are good things. It's definitely an improvement over the SmartThings platform in many ways that I can tell.

SmartThings, in my experience, works quite well for ZWave and Zigbee devices. Really haven't had much of an issue there. However, when it comes to integrating other devices and frameworks, it's quite lacking. There isn't as much of a developer base behind SmartThings so most of these things are just unsupported.

It's a bit of a personal preference for me as well, with HA being Python, and ST being Java. What language is used for Hubitat development?

I could see Hubitat being the ZWave/Zigbee hub for my local automation, as it seems like that is something that other people here are doing and it's working well for them. Considering the price is around $75 for both ZWave and Zigbee with a Hubitat hub, it seems like a solid value proposition.

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Like SmartThings HE uses Groovy for Apps and Rules. Very similar to javascript. Also (like HA) you will never have cloud outages that impact the functioning of your local devices which is nice.

You can do a lot of stuff externally with HE - using async http calls and the maker api. Also WebCoRE has been ported over as well (though HE won't support it).

For me HE was more of a pragmatic choice - I wanted to make the change but HA at the time was not as mature and it was a quick way of changing things over while keeping a lot of compatibility.

Also have you seen @srwhite's HubConnect? It can share devices between ST and HE (and also HE & HE) .. you can use that to transition devices over OR keep certain cloud compatible services on ST for ease of use. very nice work.


deConz is the home automation software for the Razberry (Raspberry PI Z-Wave daughterboard) and Conbee (USB Z-Wave stick) interfaces, made by Dresden Electronics in Germany.

Z2m is an abbreviation of Zigbee2mqtt, which is firmware for the cc253x zigbee development boards which allows the board to attach zigbee devices to a mqtt client.

mqtt stuff is definitely cool... hopefully will unify some things in the future (XKCD "Standards" strip notwithstanding).

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They are add-ons in the home assistant store.

But they are more complex than clicking the install button.

I can't speak of them beyond that though.

I think the overtone you will hear I would summarize as;

  1. This community is AWESOME.
  2. The platform is awesome, specially running things locally with decent cloud options
  3. Everything runs on your Hub device, so from a complexity, number of devices stand-point, keep that in mind. I know many power users have multiple HE hubs (or pair it to ST or HA). That is the pro/con of local survivability. I have roughly 100 devices connected to it, and many community apps, and am purring along just fine. But I'm probably at my upper bound for a single hub carrying that load, but I also expect that as it's a cheap and small hub running everything local!

I love HE, its super flexible, wicked fast, very programmable, tons of great community apps, and this community is incredibly active.

That is what brought me to HE, and has kept me super happy here. But I can't stress enough that you need to take into consideration that EVERYTHING is running on this tiny (awesome) piece of hardware you are buying for pretty cheap, there isn't any off device processing happening (outside of your cloud apps, tools, etc.). And for those who use more than one hub (I'm not there yet) there is an awesome way to connect your HE to another HE or ST.