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Getting Started with Lab of Things

This guide walks you through the process of setting up a Home Hub to try out Lab of Things. If you run into any issues, have a look at the Troubleshooting Guide.


Install Prerequisites

To build HomeOS you need the following:

  1. Windows 10, Windows 8/8.1 or Windows 7
  2. Microsoft .NET Framework 4.5
  3. Visual Studio 2012 or Visual Studio 2013  (need to be Professional edition or beyond).

    NEW: VS 2015 is also now supported with some configurations to the solution. See this page for more details.  

  4. Microsoft Sync Framework 2.1 Redistributable Package (Get the X86 version for both Synchronization and ProviderServices components regardless of your OS architecture)
  5. Windows Azure SDK - You will need the binaries from any of these versions of the SDK: 2.1, 2.2, 2.3 (Note: 2.4 and later versions are not supported; you will not be able to build the solution using them).  You can get the version 2.3 of the SDK at this location (pick the OS architecture applicable to you) and install both MSIs. 

Get the Source Code

The source code is available at If you want to work with the source code you will need to do a Git clone, which will copy the entire source code to your local computer. If you just want to quickly try it out you can download the pre-compiled output binaries.

To clone the source code

  1. Open a command prompt window.
  2. Run the following command:

git clone

For more information about cloning, see Git Basics - Getting a Git Repository.

To use the pre-compiled output binaries

  1. Go to the Downloads section on Codeplex, and get
  2. Unzip the file and run the code per the instructions (gettingstarted.txt) included in the zip file.

Build and Run the HomeOS Solution

Follow these steps to build and run the HomeOS solution. You can skip steps 1 and 2 if you downloaded the precompiled output binaries from Codeplex. 

  1. Start Visual Studio as Administrator.
  2. Load Core.sln  from \homeos2\Hub\ and build the solution. Note, by default the binaries will be built to the homeos2\Hub\output directory. 
  3. Open the Command Prompt as Administrator.
  4. Navigate to homeos2\Hub\output\
  5. Run startplatform.bat.

By default the platform logs activity in \Hub\output\Data\platform\homeos.log.

Important Note:

When you run platform for the first time, you will get a Windows Security Alert warning you that Windows Firewall is trying to block Hub Platform features. It's important to check all options (public, private and domain networks).

Security alert 

Configure the Home Hub

The Dashboard is the user interface for the Home Hub. In the Dashboard you can set up your hub and install new devices and applications. To access the dashboard, navigate to http://localhost:51430/guiweb/ in your browser. For convenience a shortcut is located in [root]\Hub\output\.

Important Note: The HomeOS platform must be running in order for the dashboard to work.

HomeOS Setup in Dashboard

When you launch the dashboard for the first time, you will be prompted to select a wireless network and enter
some information.

  1. Choose a wireless network and enter the network’s security key, then click Join.

    HomeOS Setup #1

  2. Enter a HomeID, password, and the email address to use for contact information, then click Next.

    HomeOS Setup #2

  3. Your dashboard information will be displayed. Copy this information for future reference.

    Dashboard Info

  4. Click Next to finish.

  5. You will see the main screen for the dashboard:

    Home Dashboard

Settings Page

Setting page allows you to view and edit important configuration information about the hub:

  • Enter or change your Org ID.

  • See the Azure account being used for cloud data storage (the default is “testdrive” which is a test account and its contents are deleted regularly) – to change the account name and account key, you have to go to settings.xml in Hub/output/Configs/[your config – default is “Config”]/ Your remote access URL is listed here; before you can access the hub remotely, you will need to add a user (see below).

  • Email listed here is the NotificationEmail which is the default notification email an app will use to send an email alert.

  • Add/remove users. The users you add here will be able to remotely access the hub (Dashboard and apps) using the URL for remote access shown on this page.

Important Note: the user you wish to add must be a valid Microsoft Account, and you will have to sign in and get authenticated by the Microsoft Account service to finish adding the user. See the screenshots below:

  • See, configure or remove a list of applications installed.
  • See a list of installed devices.

Add Devices

Currently four types of hardware devices are supported:

  • Webcam
  • Foscam Cameras
  • Z-Wave Devices
  • Microsoft .NET Gadgeteer

Adding Devices (Non Zwave)

  • Navigate to the Add Devices page.
  • A list of unconfigured devices will be displayed. (When you run HomeOS for the first time, most likely the only device that will be discovered by the platform is a web cam, if your PC or notebook has one.)

Add Devices

  • Click on the link of the discovered device (in this case Integrated Webcam). Now configure the device:

  1. Enter a name for the device and select a location.
  2. Check the appropriate checkboxes to install compatible applications, and/or to provide permission for other applications to access the device. In this example, the CameraViewer app shows up because it is compatible with webcam devices.
  3. Click Done to finish adding the device.

Final Device Setup

Z-Wave Devices

Z-Wave is a next-generation wireless ecosystem that lets all of your home electronics interact with each other, and with you, via remote control. The process for adding a Z-Wave device involves pairing, so the steps are a bit different.

Important Note: By default the Z-Wave driver module for HomeOS is not included in the solution. Please see the page Z-Wave Driver for HomeOS  for information on how to obtain the driver and get it running. Adding Z-Wave Devices

Follow these steps to add a Z-Wave device.

  1. Navigate to the dashboard (the platform must be running).
  2. On the Add Devices page, click Add ZWave. The Add Zwave Device page will appear.

Add Zwave Device

  1. First select the type of Zwave device you want to add. Currently we support the device types shown in the dropdown box in the screenshot.
  2. Press Pair.
  3. Within 10 seconds, press and hold the Program button on the Z-Wave device. The console will confirm whether registration was successful. Refer to the device instructions for the location of the button, as well as other details such as whether a short or long press is required. If you receive an error (timeout, device not found), see the Z-Wave Device Won't Pair entry in the FAQ & Troubleshooting section.
  4. On the Configure your Z-Wave Device page, enter a name and select the type and location for the device. If any applications are associated with the device you can provide permissions on this page.

Final Device Setup

  1. Press Done. The console will confirm that the device was configured.

Home Store

The Home Store has a selection of applications that you can choose from. The list of applications and the devices needed for these applications can be found in hub\output\homestore\moduledb.xml. For more information about developing applications, see How to: Create an App.

Home Store

Last edited Oct 20, 2015 at 12:17 AM by dannyh206, version 19


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