Project Update for October

Project Update

I have not posted in a couple of weeks but have been working on plenty of things, so I figure I would at least post a project update.

Electricity – ugh

It was just a matter of time before the number of devices I added to my homelab, network, and automation setup caught up to me. The old setup includes 2 FreeNAS boxes, a dedicated Docker pc, 4 full-size HP servers + 2 PCs to expand Ceph, a PC for PfSense, 2 52 port switches, and 12+ Raspberry Pi (3 & 4). So the question comes to want versus need versus what can I really afford. Which leads me to the next section.

Proxmox 6.0 and replacement server

I performed the upgrade from Proxmox 5.4 to 6.0 and as nail-biting as it was, all seemed to go well. After a few days I started seeing multiple corosync failures. This coupled with the electrical need to downsize and compact let me to just buy a better server and reinstall.

I found a good deal on a DL360 G7 and went to work. This involved reinstalling and migrating over a few of the better (more powerful and/or extensive hardware) servers. This was a good time to break out some of the Proxmox networks a little better. In particular corosync and Ceph considering the previously mentioned corosync problems. After a litte bit of a struggle with the network portion, I decreased the overall Proxmox network from 4 servers + 2 PCs down to just 4 servers in a better configuration. Too excited to be up and running again, I did not document this very well so no write-up.

ZoneMinder & Camera woes

For the longest time I had a dedicated PC for Zoneminder. With the original Proxmox and Ceph cluster built, a Zoneminde VM was created and running happily… until I tried to perform a backup. This failed time and time again and I am pretty positive it is just due to lack of knowledge on my part in how I set it up. Regardless, with a new cluster coming up, this was a good time to remedy this, partially if nothing else.

Once that was done and verified for a few days, a camera randomly went down and will not restore. This is aggravating to say the least but also this is one of the last remaining Foscam units I have and this gives me an opportunity to buy & try a full POE cam. I opted for an ANPIX IPC-D250W-S as it had pretty good reviews and a great price for me to ‘try’. More to come on this.

Dead Z wave garage door opener

Maybe one of the top 10 prouder moments in my home automation experience was when I figured out how to use a ZFM-80, a spare key fob, and a couple of scripts to be able to automate my garage door. It was pretty slick if I do say so myself. I could control via voice or web page, get alerts when it was left open, or have it open up automatically when I arrived home.

Unfortunately, something went awry an few months back and it no-worky anymore. I finally sat down to troubleshoot the other day. Due to lack of better options, have decided that the ZFM-80 no longer likes my Z wave network. I tried excluding and including multiple times, both normal and secure, and it never fully synced into Home Assistant or the Z wave controller that I can tell.

Missing the ability to control my garage door via automation has led me to try other means of control. I’ll be going with a MQTT ESP8266 option presented by D Khaz. More to come…

Plant soil moisture sensor

Last but not least, my wife has decided to once again to not kill a plant. A house tree to be specific. She has been rearranging the home (and is much better at it than I am) and feels a small tree would look very fine in the corner. I am onboard with this so long as we can keep it alive.

With all the other little automations and gadgets I have, why not get a notification when the soil goes dry? Enter a email (or text) solution based on my little friend, the Raspberry Pi. The Pi Hut is one of the few places that has a tutorial using a Pi Zero W. I would prefer to use the Pi Zero W from both a cost and energy perspective. I have already ordered the parts and plan to do a write-up as I go.

That’s all for now until the next project update.

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