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Home Automation Harmony… PC Based Total Home Control.

A PC Based Home Control system – Home Automation Harmony.

This article assumes that after careful thought, you have chosen a PC Based home control system and are now looking for the most efficient and powerful home control to suit your requirements.

Research for my articles on Home Automation has revealed some excellent products from respected companies, which fall into the PC Based category and I am providing a details of one here, to be followed by others in future linked pages.

Home Automation Harmony

Harmony is being developed by – iDomus, who are based in Oxford and is a leading UK developer of home automation software and associated controls and have been refining their sector leading software, Home Automation Harmony, for over 5 years.

Harmony home automation is now used by thousands of people to control their home automation systems and is available in a number of different versions:-

Windows 2000 / XP – Harmony Home Automation Server Version 5:- Lite, Gold or Pro.

Windows XP Media Centre – An exciting new plug-in to integrate Microsoft Windows XP Media Centre 2005, with the Harmony Home Automation Server software.

Home Automation Harmony UK Server – An Operating System for your Home.

Harmony home automation software allows you to control many different aspects of your home from a single, easy to use interface with award winning stability and performance.

For example, you can monitor your CCTV system and turn on X10 lighting when motion is detected or, with one click on your TV remote control you can dim lights, turn on your DVD player and lower the projector screen.


  • Support for all popular X10 compatible devices is built in and these include the Appliance Modules, Lamp Modules, Din Rail modules, Transceivers and key fob remote controls. Enables you to control up to 256 different groups of X10 devices around your home.
  • Schedules – Simple to set up schedules that recur every day / minute / hour or that operate once at specific times. Which means you can set your curtains to open or close at dawn, turn on your lights gently in the morning, or make your house looked lived in whilst you are away.
  • Events – Are easy to set up, using the key fob remote control or other X10 transmitting device, you can set in motion either sophisticated macros, or a simple sequence of x10 commands.
  • Macros – Harmony has a rich macro language very similar to Visual Basic(VBA)* for applications, complete with an online 127 page manual of the commands available.
  • Point and click interface – Harmony has a simple point and click interface to make it simple to turn lights on and off and to brighten or dim your lights etc.
  • Internet Interface – Harmony has a fully secure integrated web based interface (no other software is required). Provided you have a broadband connection, the Internet interface enables you to monitor and control your X10 compatible devices from anywhere in the world where you can access the Internet, including your office or whilst you are on holiday.
  • Easy to install and control – simple web interfaces for 99% of operations.
  • Audio intercom or Video door entry – security check callers at the door before remotely unlocking it.
  • Harmony Announcer – Brings speech announcements to Harmony 5 and Voice Control of functions is now being developed.

Security Devices

A full range of simple to install security devices to improve your safety and security are available, including a range of small peripheral products such as relays, sensors etc.; also additional advanced software, such as Vision Alert Real Time CCTV System,** and Harmony Web Alert Service.** that link seamlessly into the Harmony system. The versatile new Harmony X10 Touch screen is now available.

* VBA and Visual Basic for Applications are trademarks of Microsoft Corporation.

Additional Software and Services.

Vision Alert Real Time CCTV System (HVART)** Integrates your CCTV system with the Home Automation-Harmony Server, thus triggering events in your home, e.g. if motion is detected, lights will be switched on in your home and a mobile phone text alert will be sent to you. Harmony VART is a PC based CCTV Surveillance system that allows up to 4 CCTV cameras to be connected, enabling you to view and record real time video from each camera.

Features And Benefits 

  • Can be programmed to record only when motion is detected.
  • Live streaming of a CCTV Video feed.
  • Harmony VART has a built-in web server, which permits you to connect directly with your Harmony system from another Internet connected computer and view your cameras at home. Ideal for monitoring your home whilst at work or travelling.
  • Harmony VART integrated with your Harmony controlled home, allows events to be run based on the camera images. e.g. if motion is detected on a specific camera, a security light can be turned on for a pre set time period.

Harmony Web Alert Service.** Links your existing Harmony installation into the web.

This security service is operated at Simply Automate on their 24/7 servers, which ensures you will be contacted when an event occurs on your Harmony home automation system. Usually this is when X10 events occur, or when your CCTV detects motion. You will then be alerted by e-mail or text message, as previously specified by you in your control system.

This is a low cost monthly subscription service with unlimited e-mail alerts, which are free, however SMS text messages are charged on a credit based system. Additional units may be purchased in quantities of 1000 units for use with SMS alerts.

System Requirements Microsoft Windows 2000 or Windows XP, CM12 Computer Interface, Processor 1Ghz or higher,128 MB RAM, 30 MB Free hard disk space, CD ROM Drive.

The Touch Screen Controller-Harmony…Allows Centralised Home Control.

The Harmony Home Controller…Provides Complete Control Of Your Home Automation Devices.

CCTV System UK Harmony VART…Integrates Your CCTV system with your Home Automation Harmony Server.

The MicroLink dLAN Highspeed HomePlug…Provides The Easiest Broadband And Network Extension.

Home Wireless Network – Z-Wave..Takes Automated Home Control To New Levels.

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