API using HTTP


#1

Hi,

I am not a current Rachio user but having just been shafted by one of the competing vendors’ having changed the API without informing their users, am actively shopping around for an alternative. My constraint is that the API needs to be accessible via HTTP as well was HTTPS.

I can only see reference to HTTPS in the Rachio documentation, but can someone confirm whether or not it works via HTTP as well? I am aware of the security issues, but am of the view that this is an irrigation controller, not a credit card processor and that I can ensure that my network is protected via other means!

Thanks in advance
Marc


#2

Man I hope they don’t support http. It’s not hard to pull your zip code and long lat that will provide some assistance in answering security questions at another site but unlikely.

I think a more valid concern is a script kiddy starts screwing with schedules on large scale for the lulz and stars burning up lawns are costing a home owner a $1000 water bill

I find it odd that you could make http but not https, I assume you are making these pulls on some crazy lean processor that can’t handle the encryption routines?


#3

Like I said, the downside of HTTP isn’t that major for an irrigation controller 8-)) I am sure there are people sad enough to want to hack a controller and screw with schedules, but it would seem that the average 16 year old is more concerned with hacking something that might pay the bar bill or rig an election than turning on someone’s sprinklers for 24 hours non stop!

Joking aside, I do get that it isn’t optimal and you are right, I am working with a 2-series Crestron processor that doesn’t support HTTPS. The 3-series does but only via C# but two problems, I don’t have a 3-series and they start at mega-bucks and go up from there, plus I am a self-taught Crestron programmer who does it for home use only and I don’t have the time, inclination or pony-tail to learn C#.

I guess all will be revealed!

Marc


#4

Yea that’s tough, have you tried a http to https proxy?
https://www.stunnel.org/index.html


#5

Thanks, until about 2 minutes ago I had no idea something like that existed - looks complicated to me. One of the important features is to be able to receive and parse the feedback from a controller (zone info, running/suspended or not, schedule data etc) and if that had to go via a sausage grinder like that it would add a layer of complexity which would most likely be beyond me.

All would not be lost in Rachio world, there is actually a fully-baked Crestron module which would just drop into a program. Still needs a 3-series processor mind you…


#6

I wish I could grow a pony tail.

This thread is really interesting in hearing your hardware constraints, believe me I know the feeling. Unfortunately (or fortunately) we only support HTTPS. Might be your chance to use some cool hardware, new programming language, and grow a pony tail :wink:

:cheers:


#7

Man I am a 50-something bald dinosaur with a day job, a pony tail is even more out of the question than learning C#.

The correct response should have been “we already have a Crestron module, so you don’t need to develop it, you just need to buy a Rachio controller AND a 3-series Crestron processor and you are all set”…let me see how well that works when I run it past the wife.

My initial gambit : “remember that irrigation controller I spent £££ on a couple of years ago? Yes, the one whose app you have just learned to use, that one. Well, it doesn’t work with Crestron any more so my plan is to spend another £££ on a new irrigation controller, which needs a new Crestron processor. How much? Oh…££££ or thereabouts”

…after she stops swearing at me and reminds me that this is England, where the sky does most of the irrigation for us, I would welcome suggestions for my follow up gambit 8-))

Marc


#8

Just curious why Creston/API is a deal breaker?

Our mobile/web native apps are feature rich and we integrate with IFTTT if you want to do some simple recipes. We are also compatible with Amazon Echo and Google Assistant for voice control. If that doesn’t impress your wife, well I don’t know what would!

:cheers:


#9

There is a danger of getting into some very “first world problems” here, but since you asked, I don’t really consider having a bunch of iPhone apps to control different “IoT” (hate that term) devices, maybe with IFTTT papering over some of the cracks, to be proper integration. They all have their place and I am using IFTTT with Crestron to get out of jail in a couple of areas, Pushbullet and Honeywell Evohome integration for example, but to me it’s a kludge and there is little or no feedback via IFTTT (other than “we think it worked”).

In this case, the irrigation system is at a house we aren’t at during the week. We have a rainwater collection tank with a water depth sensor (0-5v output), which houses the pump and there is a natural well with another pump in it, connected to the main tank. The Crestron processor reads the output from the depth sensor and scales it to 0-100%. If it is less than 50% it turns on the well pump a couple of times a day to top up the main tank. If there isn’t enough water in the well or the main tank, I dont want to irrigate or at least only irrigate the vegetables or one lawn zone or whatever (bl00dy annoying as that is the time we need it most of course - why not use the mains water in this case, I hear you say) so the Crestron processor tells the other vendor irrigation processor to suspend all or certain zones. Try doing that lot with IFTTT, or even the fanciest iPhone app.

Like I said, it’s a bit of a first world problem and could I tap the mains to top up the main tank, of course I could and I probably will as a backup…but this is where functionality such as that delivered by Crestron comes into play. One bright spark even built his entire irrigation system using one of Crestron’s IO processors which has 8 relays and just programmed it, integrating weather and such. I would rather use the likes of you guys for all the heavy lifting, scheduling, weather data etc!

Still awake?

Marc


#10

@WayTooUnCool

Thanks for the clarification, makes much more sense to me now :wink:

Well, hopefully you find an HTTPS workaround and go with us!

:cheers:


#11

The main advantage of smart phone control is when performing maintenance. You can turn on and off zones to check their function, and interrupt zones to make a repair, and then immediately test your repair for further leaks.

This saves many trips to the controller when making repairs, and checking for satisfactory function of the irrigation system.


#12

Glad it’s only https. Move to control4, cheaper than crestron and there are 3 rachio drivers!


#13

Make no mistake, I use the app with my current system, for what you say and more I am not saying that iPhone (etc) apps have no place.

As for Control4 v Crestron, do we really want to go there? I am happy to but I am even more boring and annoying on that one!

I might have bullied my existing vendor into reactivating http for a limited period so at least I can be functional again whilst I decide what to replace it with…


#14

A 3-Series Crestron processor absolutely supports https but you have to do the programming in Simpl#. That being said you don’t have to write one because there are already fully functional modules available to interface a Crestron system with a Rachio sprinkler controller that can be downloaded from the Crestron web site.


#15

:joy: This got me good