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  1. #1
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    Smile New to this game - a few questions.

    I have been interested in home automation for quite a while and am wanting to experiment with it in the near future.

    I live in rented accommodation so the scale of automation would have to be limited to devices that plug into light sockets and wall sockets. I use low energy lighting but I notice that most X10 light controls use dimmers which are incompatible with Low-energy products. Does anyone know of any simple on/off type devices I could use instead?

    Also, are light devices limited to normal size screw fitting? I have GU10, Super mini Spiral and Standard bayonett type light fittings in my house, it would be useful to have x10 fittings for all of those although I'm guessing with GU10 this won't be possible (due to the fact that, to my understanding, GU10 lights are powered via a DC converter which would undoubtably remove any signals carried over the AC powerlines).

    I'm also looking into X10 to infrared (and vice versa) control or something similar so that I can extend my control of my stereo and possibly enable it to be controlled via my computer.

    Finally does anyone know of some free or cheap X10 software. Primarily I'm looking at Windows based software for my sole system (I have XP Home and am still wishing I'd plumped for XP Professional when I built it) but eventually I hope to build a cheap dedicated Home-control PC and use a Linux OS as its basis so any linux software recommendations would also be appreciated.

    Hope it's not too cheeky to ask for so much on my first post

  2. #2
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    Default Answering some of my own questions.

    Ok. No response as yet but I did a search on "Linux and X10" (Which I should have done first really...)

    Anyone else who wants to use Linux to control X10 could do worse than looking here:
    http://www.yolinux.com/TUTORIALS/Lin...etworking.html

    Here's also a page about Windows software

    http://home-automation.org/software/windows_and_dos/

    Only problem is that some of the stuff that was freeware when this was written is now Shareware or Commercial. Typical I might browse what's available and then ask about specific products here.

    I still need my hardware questions resolved before I shell out any money on hardware though. All answers appreciated!

  3. #3
    Moderator toscal's Avatar
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    Lighting modules, come as plugin modules, micro-modules and din rail versions.
    There are also appliance modules these just turn things on or off. As for free software, when you purchase a CM15 controller you also get the Activehome Pro software. I'm currently writing a review for it.
    I would avoid the light fitting X10 modules as they are unreliable.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by toscal View Post
    Lighting modules, come as plugin modules, micro-modules and din rail versions.
    There are also appliance modules these just turn things on or off. As for free software, when you purchase a CM15 controller you also get the Activehome Pro software. I'm currently writing a review for it.
    I would avoid the light fitting X10 modules as they are unreliable.
    Right. But my understanding is that unless I get them then I can't control my lights. Which doesn't leave a lot else for me to control other than 2 lamps. Unless I can get my landlady's permission to rewire the flat which I seriously doubt. As far as I can tell the plugin lighting modules only seem to come as standard screw and bayonet connectors in one size only and seem to all be dimmers rather than acting like the appliance modules. I'm not a big fan of dimming lights. I only want them on or off and I can't dim low energy bulbs anyway - they don't like it. My main reason for getting into X10 now is that I want to start playing so that when I have a house of my own I know what I'm doing more. But it would be nice to at least control most of the lights in my household. I dunno. Maybe I've picked the wrong technology with X10 but it seemed to be the best idea at the time.

  5. #5
    Moderator toscal's Avatar
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    The LM15EB Socket Rocket Lamp Module is basically an appliance module, as it only accepts on and of commands so no dimming.

  6. #6
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    Cool Much Thanks

    I'll look that up.

    I'm UK based so I'll have to search online. Apparently you can just stroll into a hardware store in America.

    You lucky people....

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