- What's Included
The findvera.com service makes it very easy to access Vera2 from any web browser in the world. When you are setting up Vera2 for the first time, on the findvera.com tab just pick a username and password. Then, from any web browser in the world go to findvera.com and enter that same username and password to be directly connected to your Vera2 and be in full control of your home with the ability to view your security cameras. The findvera.com website is secure, using the same security as online banks to protect your financial transactions.
- Secure remote access/control via the the gateway server - This feature allows you to utilize Mi Casa Verde's secure gateway, with nothing to configure, to access and control your system from a web browser or cell phone. If you know how to setup port forwarding or give Vera a routable IP, you can remotely access Vera2 for free. However, unless you have an SSL certificate, the connection won't be secure.
- SMS, Email or voice call alerts when an event occurs - With this feature, Vera will let you know when an event has occurred, per your setup. Note that Vera can be set up to use your own outgoing email service for free; however text messages are an extra fee. Text messages are not included as part of the basic FindVera.com service, but for $29/year you can receive notifications by SMS text message in addition to, or instead of, the free email notifications. This price includes up to 50 SMS text messages for the year, domestic or international, to any cell phone carrier worldwide. This price also includes 1GB of storage on the findvera server to store a video archive from your surveillance and IP web cams, which cameras can be tied to sensors and door locks so you have a video record of who is coming and going from the home. This is enough for about 50,000 images.
- Video archiving - If you'd prefer not to store videos on your PC, the FindVera.com service can do it for you. Up to 1GB of data can be stored and encrypted with a unique hardware key so only you have access to them on Mi Casa Verde's server.
- Energy logging - This feature will allow you to keep a record of all the energy usage reported by Vera every 60 minutes for every device in the home on the secure servers of Mi Casa Verde. Data is kept for a year, and charts and graphs displaying your usage are automatically generated. If you are familiar with setting up your own database server and know how to generate graphs, you could also do this yourself.
- Automatic daily backups - If you don't want to back Vera up yourself, this service will do it for you daily, with up to 15 backup sets. If anything happens to Vera, your configuration will be safe.
Vera makes it easy for you to create real, measurable changes in your energy usage. You can tell Vera2 to monitor how much energy you're consuming at certain times of the day, and to notify you if the energy usage is higher than normal. Vera2 can send an SMS text message, email or phone call when your energy consumption has reached certain points that you've set. You can then choose a scene that you've created to adjust the lighting and thermostat (and any other devices you're controlling) to be turned down or off while you're away from home. Additionally, Vera2 can make you aware of government or utility alerts when the power grid is being overloaded, if available in your area. You can program a scene that uses minimum power in your home, and when you receive one of these alerts, just choose the scene to execute.
The first time you access Vera2 you will see Vera2's setup page, as explained in the quick start guide. Once Vera is setup, you will instead see the dashboard. The dashboard is a simple control panel that shows you all the rooms in your home, and all the scenes and devices in those rooms. Click the 'go' button next to a scene to execute that scene. Or click one of the control buttons next to a device to control that device.
A scene is a group of commands or settings that you can do all at once, rather than one at a time. For example, when you leave your home, you may want to turn off 5 lights, turn on the porch light, ARM your motion detector so the alarm is active, turn on the garage light for 5 minutes so you have time to leave, and then turn it off again. You could do this using the dashboard by clicking on the control buttons for each of the lights and devices, and then waiting 5 minutes and turning off the garage light. But this is a lot of work. So, instead, you can create a scene, give it a descriptive name, like "Leave your home", and then put all the settings for those lights and the motion detector in the scene. This way, when you leave, you just choose the one scene "Leave your home", and Vera2 does the rest.
An event is how you tell Vera2 to do certain things in response to some event. To add an event, click the scenes tab, add a new scene, and click 'Add Event' to define what should trigger the scene. Then choose the type of event. The most common options are: Sunset, sunrise, a sensor is tripped, and an armed sensor is tripped. For sensor tripped events, you will be asked to choose which sensor(s) should trigger the event. You can then check off which users should be notified when the event occurs. These are the people you created on the users tab, and Vera2 will use the contact information (SMS/Email) you provided on that tab. After you specify the options for the event, you can tell Vera2 what you want her to do when that event occurs, in exactly the same way you do when creating a scene. As explained in the scene instructions, you can tell Vera2 to do something with a device and then after a period of time, do something else, such as: turn on the garage light and 30 seconds later turn it off again.
A timer is how you tell Vera2 to do certain things either at fixed intervals, like every 15 minutes, or at certain times, like Wednesday's and Friday's at 8:30, or on December 20 at 11:00. To add a timer, click the scenes tab, add a new scene, and click 'Add Timer' to define when the scene should be triggered. Next choose the type of timer. Your choices are:
- Interval based: For example, do something every x minutes, or every other hour. The minimum interval is 1 minute. There is no maximum. Specify the interval in hours or minutes.
- Day of week based: For example, do something at 7:00 and 9:00 on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. You can check off what days of the week you want this occur, and tell Vera2 what time of day. You can specify multiple times, separated by commas. For example, check off Monday and Wednesday and put in 7:00, 9:00, 21:00 to do this at those three times on Monday and Wednesday. You can specify the time in either 12-hour or 24-hour format, so you could also put in: 7:00am, 9:00am, 9:00pm.
- Day of month based: For example, do something at 8:00 on the 1st and 15th of each month. As explained above in "Day of week based", you can enter multiple times and use 12 or 24 hour.
- Absolute: For example, do something on 5 Mar 2005 at 11:15. Use this timer to do something one time, at a certain time.
After you specify the options for the timer, you can tell Vera2 what you want her to do at those times, in exactly the same way you do when creating a scene. As explained in the scene instructions, you can tell Vera2 to do something with a device and then after a period of time, do something else, such as: turn on the garage light and 30 seconds later turn it off again.
IP Camera Options
Vera2 makes it easy to connect wireless or wired IP cameras to your system for safety and security. All you have to do is plug them in, and within 60 seconds, they will show up on your control panel. Vera2 is smart enough to turn lights on in front of a camera when you're viewing it, too. You can view live video remotely, and Vera2 can archive your videos automatically at regular intervals or when sensors are tripped. The devices tab on Vera2's page shows all your devices and next to each is a + button that lets you specify additional options to configure those devices. For IP cameras, you have a form to check off with several options. You can archive a photo whenever sensors are tripped. You can even control which lights should be turned on when remotely viewing a camera.
Vera2 will work with any surveillance camera that can return the image as a .jpg (almost all do this). You just need to copy/paste the URL in the cameras settings. Vera2 has built-in plug & play detection for Panasonic and D-Link cameras, so if you set the username/pass to a pre-defined value (dceadmin/dcepass), Vera2 will find them as it monitors the network and add them automatically.
Manufacturer: Mi Casa Verde Manufacturer Product No.: VERA-US Z-Wave version: 5.02 Ethernet ports: 2 USB ports: 2 Wi-Fi: 802.11g Power Consumption: 6 watts Operating System: Linux CPU: Broadcom BCM5354 chip rev 2 (BCM3302 V2.9)
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