An overall update

For all those following the project before the Covid era, they may have noticed that not enough “new” stuff are announced any more and this is true.
Our life is far far away from being back to normal and our time dedicated to HestiaPi still very restricted to the bare minimum.
So this is a long overdue post to reassure everyone that our passion and interest to move this project ahead is still here. And this is a little teaser of what is yet to come…


  • Move to Buster (the latest) Raspbian release upgrading all packages to something very recent
  • Move to OpenHAB 3.0
  • Move to an OpenHABian distribution - a solution that may combine both above points

Hardware - PCB:

  • Use a new PCB with socket for the Pi so that people don’t have to solder the poor thing down
  • Moved back to (4) old-style clicky blue-block-type relays - long discussions behind this decision
  • 4 LEDs for easier troubleshooting or feedback on each relay state (optional)
  • Add a buzzer (optional)

Hardware - Case:

  • 3D printing isn’t everyone’s cup of tea and definitely having to move to mass production lines, there was no future with this approach. We will still be releasing .stl files though as 3D printing is the maker’s kingdom for sure
  • We designed, tested and improved (iteratively) a set of (6 sides+front and the back=7+1) PCB pieces that solder together to form the well-known hexagonal case. Front and back parts stay firmly together with our beloved PCB pin headers!

Moving to China and up-scaling is still a very high priority - running a second Crowdfunding campaign to fund this move is still being evaluated.


Almost forgot… there is another model with a different approach that we talked about:

running off ESP hardware that acts as a client to an openHAB/HomeAssistant instance running elsewhere for people that already have a smart home setup and their HestiaPi Zero will simply be an extension to it with little impact to the existing infrastructure.

Does there happen to be any build instructions for the updated Buster version? Also, you mentioned OpenHABian, are we planning to see 2 versions then? One based on OpenHABian and one on Buster?

No progress yet during Summer/holidays period yet. Plan to look into it from September. I plan to look into a lot of stuff from September, more like a project restart tbh but I won’t promise anything till I get the hours in.
Yes, OpenHABian and Buster will coexist.

I installed the dev image on a new pi and found there were issues with repos functioning. This was a problem for me, as I wanted to install nginx so I could get TLS on port 443 that just redirected to the nonstandard port.

I know there is work being done to use buster, and I’m guessing Bullseye is not far behind that. However, for the meantime, here’s the part of my deployment script that fixes up the apt sources.

# Sadly, we need to fix the apt.sources on a default install, as the values
# that are used out of the box do not work anymore (b/c jessie is very old)
ssh pi@$hestia "echo 'deb jessie main contrib non-free rpi' | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list"
# And the repo for openhab
ssh pi@$hestia "wget -qO - '' | sudo apt-key add -"
ssh pi@$hestia "echo 'deb stable main' | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/openhab2.list"
# And the repo for modquitto, also update an expired PGP key for this repo
ssh pi@$hestia "sudo apt-key del 30993623"
ssh pi@$hestia "wget -qO - | sudo apt-key add -"
ssh pi@$hestia "echo 'deb jessie main' | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/mosquitto-jessie.list"
# And now we should be able to run apt-get update without any problems
ssh pi@$hestia "sudo apt-get update"

Jessie uses some version of OpenSSL that is in the 1.0 line. In 1.1, support for Chacha20 was added. This is interesting because it’s much more efficient (assuming you don’t have hardware accelerated AES instructions, which we don’t) and still solid on the security front. I’m looking forward to be able to ise this on the newer O/S.

Also, the eco mode is amazing! Thank you so much for that!

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