PowerController Installation

PowerController is best installed on a PC that is always on so that it can monitor for devices being turned on and off. There are two sorts of PC that are most commonly always on, Media Center PCs and Home Servers. We therefore offer the ability to install the PowerController server on either of these systems. The server component is identical on each system, but the Media Center version has a native Media Center interface for configuring the system while the Home Server version has a Home Server settings tab for the basic settings.

Media Center

To install the Windows Media Center version of PowerController, download the latest version from here. Run the msi file to install the software, then open Windows Media Center and visit Extras -> extras library -> Power Controller. A wizard will walk you through the different options for using the system.

If you are using Z-Wave, you should install your dongle and it’s driver before configuring PowerController.

Home Server

To install the Windows Home Server version of PowerController, download the latest version from here, and put it in your Software/Add-Ins folder. Open settings and visit Add-ins, and click on Install next to PoweController. After installation, the home server console will close, so re-open it again and open the settings again. There will now be a PowerController tab in the settings. Enable the web server and enter a username and password, then visit the URL on the screen to continue the settings.

If you are using Z-Wave, you should install your dongle and it’s driver before configuring PowerController.

Mi Casa Verde

If you are using a Mi Casa Verde system then you can install a new device on your Vera to notify Power Controller whenever a change is made to your devices. Download it from here. Unzip it and upload all 4 files to your Vera by clicking on MiOS developers, then Luup files. In that tab, choose all 4 files to upload, check the Restart Luup after upload checkbox and press Go.

After the files are uploaded and the server has restarted, click on MiOS developers again, and pick the Create device tab. In there enter “PowerController Monitor” against the description field, and enter “D_PowerController.xml” in the UpnpDevFilename field, and then click the create device button. You don’t need to worry about what Room it is in, or any other fields. This will add a device which runs on the background to notify the PowerController system when there are state changes to binary switches or dimmers.


Next configure your system.


PowerController Setup


There are two ways of configuring PowerController – either through the web pages, or through the Media Center interface. The web interface is more sophisticated, so is better if you have a keyboard and mouse available.

Configuration from the web page – preferred option

After installing PowerControllerWHS or PowerControllerMCE, enable the web server as described in the installation instructions. The address of your server will be shown on the configuration screen, e.g. Visit that link in any web browser, and click Preferences in the top right hand corner.

Configuration from Media Center

After installing PowerControllerMCE, you will be asked to choose if you want to run in Local Mode where everything is run from the local PC, or remote mode where everything is run from another PC – i.e. the settings and Z-Wave USB device are on another PC.

In local mode, enter either the address of your BBSB controller, or pick your Z-Wave USB device, or enable MiOS (Mi Casa Verde) – or a combination of all three.
In remote mode, enter the name of the server that is the master machine, along with the username and password that you entered in the server settings. Note, the default username and password is “user” and “pass”.

If you use a BBSB controller, you may want to use a static IP address. Instructions for doing that can be found on the Bye Bye Standby forums here.

After you have set that up, you can set up the Zones in your house. This might be different rooms, or different floors that you want to group your devices by.

After you have set that, you can add your devices.

Give them a name, pick a type of device. The type is simply used to give an image, so don’t stress if your device type isn’t in there. It’s just used to show an icon. Then optionally pick a scene, and the control system type. For BBSB, pick the housecode and unitcode, and for Z-Wave pick the device number. For Mi Casa Verde, you can pick the device by name. For Webcams, enter the URL of the webcam that produces jpg images (most webcams have this somewhere!). If your webcam requires a username and password enter then in the URL as follows: http://username:password@webcam_address:webcam_port/, e.g. http://martin:welcome1@

You can also pick a shortcut key combination for turning devices on and off, and for dimmable Z-Wave devices for dimming it up and down. This is particularly useful for use with a universal remote control which can then be programmed to turn devices on and off without having to open the PowerControllerMCE application, or even without having to turn on your TV.

Next you can set up scenes. These are pre-set actions which can be performed such as turning some devices on and some off, and setting the dim level. You can also set up keyboard shortcuts for running scenes from your remote control too.

Once you have the system set up, you can turn on or off devices individually, or you can turn off all devices at once, all using your remote control.

You can also go in to the Scheduled Events page and set repeating times for your devices to turn on or off

You can pick to repeat the event hourly, 2 hours, 4 hours, 6 hours, 12 hours or Daily. So, for example, if you want your lights to go on at 6pm every day and off at 10pm, add one event to turn on your lights as 18:00 with a frequency of Daily, and then add another even to turn your lights off at 22:00 with a frequency of Daily. As long as your computer is running, the messages will be sent to the controller. Media Center does not have to be running for the events to be sent.

Home Server

If you are using Z-wave, install the Z-Wave USB controller software on your home server first.

To install the server version of Power Controller, download it and put it in your Software/Add-Ins folder on your home server. Then go to settings on the home server and install the add in. The home server console will close after installation, so open it up again and go to settings and choose PowerController. Either enter the BBSB controller address or pick your Z-Wave device (or both). You are then ready to start pointing your media center installations at this server.