Alternative to Vera

Unusal question for a Vera forum for sure. I am new to zwave and clearly can’t get it to do anything I want reliably and I guess I’m not bright enough to learn compiles networking and programming and rely ona wiki an a “less than optimal” forum search function. Can anyone point me to a reasonably functional equivalent zwave controller (power, locks, alarm interface, etc) that has a user friendly UI and won’t require me to spend months trying to figure out? There must be something out there.

If you are willing to pay a monthly fee and don’t need some of the advanced options that Vera offers, yes there is. Nexia by Schlage, Verizon’s home automation system and ADT’s Pulse system all use z-wave.

Lowe’s is releasing it’s own contender in the ring called Iris. Which uses both z-wave and I believe Zigbee devices. I believe they have a no monthly fee and a more powerful monthly fee option.

So far, I’m quite happy with a Vera 2 controlling my house. I have tried the Schlage-Link (Now Nexia) and have looked at Lowe’s Iris and Verizon’s system. My conclusion is that Vera can do all of the things the other systems can do without the monthly fee, plus far more. The “free” version of these systems is like crippleware on software. You literally cannot do anything interesting without having to pay that monthly fee.

For the simple things, the Vera menu system is actually pretty straightforward. For the more complex things such as some of the plug-ins or writing lua script or luup code, things can get a bit involved. The “scary looking” things in Vera are there to extend Vera to do pretty much whatever you want to do.

The community here is quite helpful with getting started as well as working on more complex projects. Stick with it.

Which is the reason I am upgrading to a Vera 3. With some hurdles. 8) Sheila is back on her way to MCV with Vera on it’s way to me. Hopefully Isaac won’t throw a wrench into the delivery. (The joys of having 3 localized Zwave implementations)

My Vera 2 has been rock solid as well and I’ve gotten fond of Ui5 and with teh upgrade offer I figured I might as well go for it.

Although I’m happy about Lowe’s Iris as that should mean more support for z-wave and possibly cheaper devices.

The Iris seems to mostly hang its hat on Zigbee, with Zwave for compatibility with existing technology and Wi-Fi for the higher bandwidth (e.g. Cameras).

I do hope Iris is successful because it will cause a lot of Zwave products to be stocked in Lowes stores. It was a major blow to see Home Depot and Radioshack back out of carrying the GE/Jasco line. I find the competition with Zigbee should drive down the Zwave product prices some.

@belltactical, Vera might not be perfect but I think it is a far sight better than anything else on the market. Plus, it does keep getting better. Most people are pretty happy with Vera once they get used to it.