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Getting Started with Vera Concierge


There are a number of steps to get started.
  1. If you plan to use the Android App you can down load Vera Concierge the Google Play Store.
  2. Download the Java App code onto a computer that is running all of the time.
  3. Configure the Java App.
  4. Publish the changes.
  5. Start conversing with your home.
We will now look at these in more details.

Download the Java App code

First you will need to decide where you are going to run the required Java app. On that computer: Download ConciergeServer.jar
You should create a directory on your computer to place this file. Other files will be created in this area as the program runs. Move the download file to this directory.
Make sure the file is named ConciergeServer.jar ... Rename as appropriate.

Platform Specific Installation

You will need Java. You can get Java (Version 1.8) at JavaSoft.com ... then Downloads ... then on the left side under Popular Downloads select Java for your Computer. And finish the install.

Windows Install

This is quite simple ... Just double click on the file: ConciergeServer.jar
This should start the Java App and open a web browser for you to customize the settings.

If you do not have Java installed this will fail ...

Note: The Java App will automatically be restarted if the computer is restarted.

Apple OS X Install

You will likely need to install Java ...
The Java software should have been installed in the following directory: /Library/Internet Plug-Ins/JavaAppletPlugin.plugin/Contents/Home
Open a terminal window on your Mac and enter the following commands:
cd <The directory specification where you installed ConciergeServer.jar>
/Library/Internet Plug-Ins/JavaAppletPlugin.plugin/Contents/Home/bin/java -jar ConciergeServer.jar

This should start the Java App and open a web browser for you to customize the settings.

Note: The Java App will automatically be restarted if the computer is restarted after you login. It will still run while you are logged out.
If you want this to start automatically when your Mac is rebooted you will need to customize the install.sh file that is created in the directory where you installed ConciergeServer.java.
Use a text editor and change the references of /Library/LaunchDaemons to /System/Library/LaunchDaemons.

Then Google OS X System Integrity Protection. You will find instructions how you can edit files in the /System area.

After you have temporarilly disabled the System Integrity Protection you can run the edited instal.sh for a terminal window as:
/bin/sh install.sh

You will also need to delete the file: /Library/LaunchDaemons/conciergeserver.plist created by the default install process.

Linux Install

This was tested with Debian and Ubunto on a laptop as well as testing on Raspberry Model B
Open a terminal window enter the following commands:
cd <The directory specification where you installed ConciergeServer.jar>
<Full Path Specification for java.exe> -jar ConciergeServer.jar

This should start the Java App and open a web browser for you to customize the settings.

Note: The Java App will automatically be restarted if the computer is restarted.

Other Install

You will need to have Java installed. To run the Java App ...
Open a terminal window enter the following commands:
cd <The directory specification where you installed ConciergeServer.jar>
<Full Path Specification for java.exe> -jar ConciergeServer.jar service

This should start the Java App. You will need to leave this terminal running.
You can then open a browser on that same machine using https://localhost:8989

Note: The Java App will die when the computer or the terminal is shut down. You will have to do this again or find a way to have this done automatically.

If you see a new.jar ... that means the software download an update ... rename new.jar to ConciergeServer.jar and restart.


Configure the Java App

To configure the Java App ... You can then open a browser on that same machine using https://localhost:8989
If you want to do so from another computer on your LAN you can use https://IpAddress.OfComputer.RunningJava.App:8989

Enter your Vera Cloud Account Information

This is used for two purposes.
  1. To find out what Vera's you have.
  2. To be used by the "Cloud" services to send commands to your Vera in responses to Google Home requests.
After you enter these ... click the Update and Restart and wait to see if it discovers your Veras (listed below the button).
Also listed below are any Google Home or Chrome Cast devices it finds on your network.
You will want to name all of these devices so that they can be identified by name when you talk to your Google Home devices.

Update Vera Concierge Server Cloud Info

You need to click this button to tell the Vera Concierge Cloud server information about your Veras, Google Home, and Chrome Cast devices.
Whenever you add, remove, or the change the names of these devices you should perform this step again.

Miscellaneous Settings

There are also options for:
  • Restarting the Java App every day at a specific time.
  • Auto Updating the Java App Software and/or some Vera specific software.
    You can also install any previous or test software versions. Test versions end in an even number i.e. 1.112
    Auto update will not update to a test version unless you are currently running a test version.
  • Test the Text to speech on your Vera Home and/or Chrome Cast devices.
    You can request a message be spoken on a specific Google Home or Google Cast devices or all devices.
    The Vera Alerts Vera plugin will have an option to send notifications as speech to these devices.
  • For diagnostic purposes you can capture the debug log file for the Java App.

Start conversing with your Vera home

You can start taking to your Vera Concierge ... Just say:
OK Google I want to talk to my Vera Concierge
or
OK Google ask my Vera Concierge to turn on the Kitchen Light
or
OK Google ask my Vera Concierge what is the Garage Door Status

Once you start conversing with Vera Concierge, you will not need to keep saying "OK Google ask Vera Concierge ..."
Your conversation will continue with it until it times out ... or you ask OK Google for something else.

Available Voice Commands


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