Saturday 4 November 2023

Announce ReoLink Doorbell on Echo Devices

I recently installed a Reolink POE Video Doorbell, and like it a lot. Its got great picture, doesn't require web connectivity, and integrates really well with my Blue Iris set up. The only issue I have is that notifications on my mobile are poor and often missed. The bundled chime works OK inside the house, but when I'm in my detached office, I can often miss visitors.

I thought it would be nice to have the doorbell ping my office Alexa when pressed. Of course, there's a skill for that, but as someone with a penchant for Node-Red automations and too much time on my hands, a project was born....

Thursday 24 August 2023

Backing up unRAID to Stabelebit Drivepool using Kopia

Since I retired Mediaserver 8.1 and  Mediaserver 8.2 in favour of Mediaserver 8.3, I've had a spacious ThermalTake Core X9 case and AMD FX-8320 based motherboard sitting around. I also have a selection of hard drives ranging from 500GB to 4TB that are retired from my main unRAID system. I'd been hankering to turn all of this into a backup server and, in fact, had made a few attempts that never really made it past proof of concept. It was time to attack the project seriously....

Monday 7 August 2023

Alexa Music Playback through Marantz / Denon Heos

Arising from a query on reddit, I revisited something I'd set up quite some time ago and forgotten all about: using Alexa to play music on my HT system. It works;

As can be seen, the processor is on CD input to start. When I ask it to play music, it switches to the HEOS input and plays. If the processor had been in standby, it would have been woken and switched to the correct input.

Also, only the music content plays through the speakers,, the Alexa responses come from the echo device itself.

Sunday 30 July 2023

Set up Reolink Doorbell video with BlueIris

I recently purchased a Reolink Video Doorbell PoE on Amazon prime day to replace the Comfort intercom thats going on 20 years old. I selected this item over others as it supposedly integrates with BlueIris which I use for all my other surveillance cameras.

There's no distinct guide for setting this up that I could find, so here's what I did, for posterity.

Friday 21 July 2023

Best Triple Monitor USB-C Dock I've used

I've bought my fair share of docks and peripherals over the years as I love multi-monitor work set ups. My main workstation comprised a client issued HP corporate laptop that I used with a couple of older Dell U3014 30" displays. This was nice, but I was itching to add a third display that I had lying around and found an adapter that works perfectly.

It's a 'Selore' branded USB C to Dual HDMI Adapter,7 in 1 USB C Docking Station to Dual HDMI Displayport VGA Adapter,USB C to 3USB 2.0, Multi Monitor Adapter. I'm sure there are plenty of versions and brands of this, but this one does the job.

It's got 2x HDMI outputs and a Display Port. I connected up my 3x 30" panels, et volia!

Unfortunately, this only works its magic with Windows as it seems to be able to mirror on Macs, but not span. For now, though, I'm happy with it and can multitask happily.

Wednesday 19 July 2023

Building an UnRaid Home Server for Media Storage and Automation

Are you looking to create a versatile and efficient home server that can handle your media storage needs while seamlessly integrating with your home automation system? If so, building an UnRaid home server might be the solution you've been searching for. In this post, we'll explore the benefits of UnRaid and provide practical advice on building your own home server for media storage and automation.

I've been using unRaid for home storage and automation for about 10 years now, and have been blogging about it here for almost as long. A lot of my posts are quite specific, so I thought I'd try a high level guide for those starting out. Let me know what you think, or if there are other specific topics you'd like to see covered.