Samples Rules

lsiepel edited this page Jan 1, 2018 · 53 revisions

feature overview


Setup intro

Linux and OS X





User Interfaces



(link to openHAB forum)



Application Integration



A good source of inspiration and tips from users gathered over the years. Be aware that things may have changed since they were written and some examples might not work correctly.

Please update the wiki if you do come across any out of date information.

Binding configurations

Use case examples

Item definition examples

Sitemap definition examples

Collections of Rules on a single page

Single Rules


Syntax highlighting for external editors

Release Notes

Clone this wiki locally

Samples for Rules

How to turn on light when motion detected and is dark?

Light is turned on when there is motion detected (corMotion) and brightness is below threshold. Every 1min it is checked whether there was motion since the last check. If not: turn light back off.

    var Number counter = 0
    var Number lastCheck = 0
    rule "corLightOn"
            Item corMotion changed from OFF to ON or
            Item corFrontDoor changed from CLOSED to OPEN
            counter = counter + 1
            if(corBright.state < 40) {
                    sendCommand(corLightCeil, ON)
    rule "corLightOff"
            Time cron "0 * * * * ?"
            if(lastCheck == counter) {
                    counter = 0
                    lastCheck = -1;
                    sendCommand(corLightCeil, OFF)
                    sendCommand(corMotion, OFF)
            } else {
                    lastCheck = counter

How to create a rule, which only executes some code, if a value does not change for a certain period of time

    import org.openhab.model.script.actions.Timer
    var Timer timer
    rule "do something if item state is 0 for more than 10 seconds"
    	Item MyItem changed
    	if(MyItem.state==0) {
    		timer = createTimer(now.plusSeconds(10)) [|
    			// do something! 
    	} else {
    		if(timer!=null) {
    			timer = null

How to calculate the sun position

    import org.openhab.core.library.types.*
    import java.lang.Math
    // Constants
    var Number K = 0.017453
    // Change this reflecting your destination
    var Number latitude = xx.xxxxxx
    var Number longitude = yy.yyyyyy
    rule "Set Sun and Dawn States"
        Time cron "0 0/5 * * * ?"
    	var Number tageszahl
    	var Number deklination
    	var Number zeitgleichung
    	var Number stundenwinkel
    	var Number x 
    	var Number y
    	var Number sonnenhoehe
    	var Number azimut
    	var month  = now.getMonthOfYear
    	var day    = now.getDayOfMonth
    	var hour   = now.getHourOfDay
    	var minute = now.getMinuteOfHour
    	// Source:
    	tageszahl = (month - 1) * 30 + day + hour / 24 
    	deklination = -23.45 * Math::cos((K * 360 * (tageszahl + 10) / 365).doubleValue)
    	zeitgleichung = 60.0 * (-0.171 * Math::sin((0.0337*tageszahl+0.465).doubleValue) - 0.1299 * Math::sin((0.01787*tageszahl-0.168).doubleValue))
    	stundenwinkel = 15.0 * (hour.doubleValue + (minute.doubleValue/60.0) - (15.0-longitude)/15.0 - 12.0 + zeitgleichung/60.0)
    	x = Math::sin((K * latitude).doubleValue()) * Math::sin((K * deklination).doubleValue()) + Math::cos((K * latitude).doubleValue()) * Math::cos((K * deklination).doubleValue()) * Math::cos((K * stundenwinkel).doubleValue())
    	y = - (Math::sin((K*latitude).doubleValue) * x - Math::sin((K*deklination).doubleValue)) / (Math::cos((K*latitude).doubleValue) * Math::sin(Math::acos(x.doubleValue)))
    	sonnenhoehe = Math::asin(x.doubleValue) / K
    	var break = hour.doubleValue + (minute.doubleValue/60.0) <= 12.0 + (15.0-longitude)/15.0 - zeitgleichung/60.0 
    	if (break) {
    		azimut = Math::acos(y.doubleValue) / K
    	} else {
    		azimut = 360.0 - Math::acos(y.doubleValue) / K
    	logDebug("Sun.rules", "month: " + month)
    	logDebug("Sun.rules", "day: " + day)
    	logDebug("Sun.rules", "hour: " + hour)
    	logDebug("Sun.rules", "minute: " + minute)
    	logDebug("Sun.rules", "tageszahl: " + tageszahl)
    	logDebug("Sun.rules", "deklination: " + deklination)
    	logDebug("Sun.rules", "zeitgleichung: " + zeitgleichung)
    	logDebug("Sun.rules", "stundenwinkel: " + stundenwinkel)
    	logDebug("Sun.rules", "x: " + x)
    	logDebug("Sun.rules", "y: " + y)
    	logDebug("Sun.rules", "sonnenhoehe: " + sonnenhoehe)
    	logDebug("Sun.rules", "azimut: " + azimut)
    	logDebug("Sun.rules", "Calculated new SunHeight angle '" + sonnenhoehe + "°'")
    	logDebug("Sun.rules", "Calculated new Azimut angle '" + sonnenhoehe + "°'")
    	// Send all calculations to the event bus
    	Sun_Dawn_Solar.postUpdate( if (sonnenhoehe < 0) ON else OFF )
    	postUpdate(Sun_Dawn_Civil, 	  if((sonnenhoehe <   0)  && (sonnenhoehe >=  -6) && (hour < 12)) {ON} else {OFF})
    	postUpdate(Sun_Dawn_Nautical,	  if((sonnenhoehe <  -6)  && (sonnenhoehe >= -12) && (hour < 12)) {ON} else {OFF})
    	postUpdate(Sun_Dawn_Astronomical, if((sonnenhoehe < -12)  && (sonnenhoehe >= -18) && (hour < 12)) {ON} else {OFF})
    	postUpdate(Sun_Dusk_Civil,	  if((sonnenhoehe <   0)  && (sonnenhoehe >=  -6) && (hour > 12)) {ON} else {OFF})
    	postUpdate(Sun_Dusk_Nautical,	  if((sonnenhoehe <  -6)  && (sonnenhoehe >= -12) && (hour > 12)) {ON} else {OFF})
    	postUpdate(Sun_Dusk_Astronomical, if((sonnenhoehe < -12)  && (sonnenhoehe >= -18) && (hour > 12)) {ON} else {OFF})

How to calculate public holidays


Switch Holiday	"Public Holiday"
String SpecialDay	"Day [MAP(]"

Transformation (

holy_trinity=Heilige 3 Könige
labor_day=Tag der Arbeit
ascension_day=Christi Himmelfahrt
assumption_day=Mariä Himmelfahrt
reunification=Tag der deutschen Einheit
day_of_repentance=Buß- und Bettag
1st_christmas_day=1. Weihnachtstag
2nd_christmas_day=2. Weihnachtstag


    rule "Public Holiday"
        Time cron "0 0 0 * * ?" or
        System started

Script (holiday.script):

var int year = now.getYear

var int a = year % 19
var int b = year / 100
var int c = year % 100
var int d = b / 4;
var int e = b % 4;
var int f = (b + 8) / 25;
var int g = (b - f + 1) / 3;
var int h = (19 * a + b - d - g + 15) % 30;
var int i = c / 4;
var int k = c % 4;
var int L = (32 + 2 * e + 2 * i - h - k) % 7;
var int m = (a + 11 * h + 22 * L) / 451;

var int month = (h + L - 7 * m + 114) / 31;
var int day = ((h + L - 7 * m + 114) % 31) + 1;

var boolean holiday = false
var String holidayName = null
var org.joda.time.DateTime easterSunday = parse(year+"-"+month+"-"+day)
var org.joda.time.DateTime stAdvent = parse(year+"-12-25").minusDays(((parse(year+"-12-25").getDayOfWeek) + 21))

var int dayOfYear = now.getDayOfYear
// bundesweiter Feiertag
if (dayOfYear==parse(year+"-01-01").getDayOfYear) {
    holidayName = "new_years_day" // Neujahr
    holiday = true
// Baden-Württemberg, Bayern, Sachsen-Anhalt
else if (dayOfYear==parse(year+"-01-06").getDayOfYear) {
    holidayName = "holy_trinity"// Heilige 3 Könige
    holiday = false 

// Dutch kingsday
else if (dayOfYear==parse(year+"-04-27").getDayOfYear) {
    holidayName = "kings_day"
    holiday = true

// Dutch liberation day, once every 5 year a holiday else if (dayOfYear==parse(year+"-05-05").getDayOfYear) { holidayName = "liberation_day" holiday = year % 5==0 }

// Carnival ;-)
else if (dayOfYear==easterSunday.getDayOfYear-48) {
    holidayName = "carnival_monday" // Rosenmontag
    holiday = false
// bundesweiter Feiertag
else if (dayOfYear==easterSunday.getDayOfYear-2) {
    holidayName = "good_friday" // Karfreitag
    holiday = true
// Brandenburg
else if (dayOfYear==easterSunday.getDayOfYear) {
    holidayName = "easter_sunday" // Ostersonntag
    holiday = false
// bundesweiter Feiertag
else if (dayOfYear==easterSunday.getDayOfYear+1) {
    holidayName = "easter_monday" // Ostermontag
    holiday = true
// bundesweiter Feiertag
else if (dayOfYear==parse(year+"-05-01").getDayOfYear) {
    holidayName = "1st_may"// Tag der Arbeit
    holiday = true 
// bundesweiter Feiertag
else if (dayOfYear==easterSunday.getDayOfYear+39) {
    holidayName = "ascension_day" // Christi Himmelfahrt
    holiday = true
// Brandenburg
else if (dayOfYear==easterSunday.getDayOfYear+49) {
    holidayName = "whit_sunday" // Pfingstsonntag
    holiday = false
// bundesweiter Feiertag
else if (dayOfYear==easterSunday.getDayOfYear+50) {
    holidayName = "whit_monday" // Pfingstmontag
    holiday = true
// Baden-Württemberg, Bayern, Hessen, NRW, Rheinland-Pfalz, Saarland sowie regional in Sachsen, Thüringen
else if (dayOfYear==easterSunday.getDayOfYear+60) {
    holidayName = "corpus_christi" // Frohnleichnahm
    holiday = true
// Saarland sowie regional in Bayern
else if (dayOfYear==parse(year+"-08-15").getDayOfYear) {
    holidayName = "assumption_day" // Mariä Himmelfahrt
    holiday = false
// bundesweiter Feiertag
else if (dayOfYear==parse(year+"-10-03").getDayOfYear) {
    holidayName = "reunification" // Tag der deutschen Einheit
    holiday = true
// Brandenburg, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Sachsen, Sachsen-Anhalt, Thüringen
else if (dayOfYear==parse(year+"-10-31").getDayOfYear) {
    holidayName = "reformation_day" // Reformationstag
    holiday = false
// Baden-Württemberg, Bayern, NRW, Rheinland-Pfalz, Saarland
else if (dayOfYear==parse(year+"-11-01").getDayOfYear) {
    holidayName = "all_saints_day" // Allerheiligen
    holiday = true
// religiöser Tag
else if (dayOfYear==stAdvent.getDayOfYear-14) {
    holidayName = "remembrance_day" // Volkstrauertag
    holiday = false
// religiöser Tag
else if (dayOfYear==stAdvent.getDayOfYear-7) {
    holidayName = "sunday_in_commemoration_of_the_dead" // Totensonntag
    holiday = false
// Sachsen
else if (dayOfYear==stAdvent.getDayOfYear-11) {
    holidayName = "day_of_repentance" // Buß- und Bettag
    holiday = false
// kann auch der 4te Advent sein
else if (dayOfYear==parse(year+"-12-24").getDayOfYear) {
    holidayName = "christmas_eve" // Heiligabend
    holiday = false
// bundesweiter Feiertag
else if (dayOfYear==parse(year+"-12-25").getDayOfYear) {
    holidayName = "1st_christmas_day" // 1. Weihnachtstag
    holiday = true
// bundesweiter Feiertag
else if (dayOfYear==parse(year+"-12-26").getDayOfYear) {
    holidayName = "2nd_christmas_day" // 2. Weihnachtstag
    holiday = true
// Silvester
else if (dayOfYear==parse(year+"-12-31").getDayOfYear) {
    holidayName = "new_years_eve" // Silvester
    holiday = false
if (holidayName!==null) {
if (holiday) {
else {

Create a timer for sunset

This example gets the sunset from an online api service (in this case The sunset time is parsed into a timer to switch on lights (or any other action)


String strSunset "Sunset" <clock> (gWeather) { http="<[<api_code>/astronomy/q/NL/rijswijk.xml:21600000:XSLT(wunderground_sunset.xsl)]" }

Replace <api_code> with your own API code (sign up for a developers account). Find a location near your home. The http refresh option can be set to once or twice a day.

Stylesheet (wunderground_sunset.xsl)

<?xml version="1.0"?>
<xsl:stylesheet xmlns:xsl="" version="2.0">
	<xsl:output indent="yes" method="xml" encoding="UTF-8" omit-xml-declaration="yes" />

	<xsl:template match="/">
		<!-- format: hh:mm:ss -->
		<xsl:value-of select="//sunset/hour/text()" /><xsl:text>:</xsl:text><xsl:value-of select="//sunset/minute/text()" /><xsl:text>:00</xsl:text>



    import org.joda.time.*
    import org.openhab.model.script.actions.Timer
    var Timer tIndoorLights
    rule "React to sunset"
    	Time cron "0 0 16 * * ?"   // Every day 16:00 hours, evaluate sunset
        var year   = now.getYear
        var month  = now.getMonthOfYear
        var day    = now.getDayOfMonth
        var datum  = year+"-"+month+"-"+day+" "+strSunset.state
        logInfo("Sunset","datum = " + datum)
        var DateTime sunset = parse(year+"-"+month+"-"+day+"T"+strSunset.state)
         * Indoor Lights
         // Cancel timer to avoid reschedule
        if(tIndoorLights!=null) {
    	logInfo("Sunset","Timer tIndoorLights cancelled") 
        logInfo("Sunset","Timer tIndoorLights created") 
        tIndoorLights = createTimer(sunset.minusMinutes(15)) [|
    	logInfo("Sunset","Timer tIndoorLights executed") 
    		sendCommand(Switch, ON)

Send an image from your webcam by e-mail

If your webcam offers a still picture in your local LAN e.g. at, you can simply send it as an attachment in a rule by e-mail with a line like: sendMail("", "Frontdoor", "There is motion at the frontdoor", "")

How to display the minimum and maximum values of an item in a given period

This example displays the minimum and maximum values and the time they where measured of the item "Temperature_Garden" for the current day. Other periods can be selected by modifying the parameter of minimumSince() and maximuSince() in the rule below.


Number Temperature_Garden "Garden [%.1f °C]" <temperature> ( gGarden) 	{ knx="9.001:1/2/3" }
String Temperature_Garden_Min_Formatted "- Min. Temp [%s]" <temperature>
String Temperature_Garden_Max_Formatted "- Max. Temp [%s]" <temperature>

The string items hold the formatted String to be displayed in the UI. The number item holds the current temperature, it must be updated periodically and persistence must be configured for this item. This example assumes, that the rrd4h persistence service is used, for other services the string "rrd4j" in the rule below must be modified accordingly.


    rule "Update Temperature Min- and Max values"
    	Item  Temperature_Garden received update
    	var Number Min
    	var Number Max
    	var String tmp
    	var SimpleDateFormat df = new SimpleDateFormat( "HH:mm" ) 
     	if (Temperature_Garden.state instanceof DecimalType) {
    		Min = (Temperature_Garden.minimumSince(now.toDateMidnight, "rrd4j").state as DecimalType)
    		tmp = (Math::round(Min.floatValue*10.0)/10.0) + " °C (" + df.format(Temperature_Garden.minimumSince(now.toDateMidnight, "rrd4j").timestamp) + " )"
    		postUpdate(Temperature_Garden_Min_Formatted, tmp)
    		Max = Temperature_Garden.maximumSince(now.toDateMidnight, "rrd4j").state as DecimalType
    		df = new SimpleDateFormat( "HH:mm" ) 
    		tmp = (Math::round(Max.floatValue*10.0)/10.0) + " °C (" + df.format(Temperature_Garden.maximumSince(now.toDateMidnight, "rrd4j").timestamp) + ")"
    		postUpdate(Temperature_Garden_Max_Formatted, tmp)


    import org.openhab.core.library.types.*
    import org.openhab.model.script.actions.*
    import java.lang.Math
    import java.util.Calendar
    import java.util.Date
    import java.util.TimeZone
    import java.text.SimpleDateFormat

The rules file probably needs the includes listed above.

How to use Colorpicker widget with KNX/DALI RGB LED STRIPE

The openHAB Colorpicker widget was primarily developed for being used with the DMX binding. The following example shows how to make it work with DALI (or any other technology) via KNX.


Dimmer LedR     "LED Red"               <dimmer>        (All) { knx = "11/0/0+11/0/1,   11/0/2,  11/0/3+11/0/4" }
Dimmer LedG     "LED Green"             <dimmer>        (All) { knx = "11/0/5+11/0/6,   11/0/7,  11/0/8+11/0/9" }
Dimmer LedB     "LED Blue"              <dimmer>        (All) { knx = "11/0/10+11/0/11, 11/0/12, 11/0/13+11/0/14" }
Color  RGB      "RGB Light"             <slider>

Items LedR, LedG, LedB are mapped in DALI-GW to respective light groups with KNX group addresses.

Explanation of group addresses in above example:

Group Address Description
11/0/0 ON/OFF for red channel
11/0/1 Current status (ON/OFF) for red channel
11/0/2 Dim value for red channel
11/0/3 Percentage value for the red channel for update (writing)
11/0/4 Current percentage value for the red channel (reading)

The item RGB is the object to store the current percentage values for each channel (R, G, B).


sitemap all label="Main Menu"
        Frame label="RGB"
                Colorpicker item=RGB


    import org.openhab.core.library.types.*
    var HSBType hsbValue
    var String  redValue
    var String  greenValue
    var String  blueValue
    rule "Set RGB value"
            Item RGB changed
            hsbValue = RGB.state as HSBType
            redValue   =
            greenValue =
            blueValue  =
            sendCommand( LedR, redValue )
            sendCommand( LedG, greenValue )
            sendCommand( LedB, blueValue )

Any change in value of the RGB Colorpicker item fires this rule. The HSB value of the item is determined and split to percentage values for red, green and blue which then get sent to the individual KNX items LedR, LedG and LedB.

How to log current timestamp to the openHAB log file


    import org.openhab.core.library.types.*
    import java.util.Date
    import java.text.SimpleDateFormat
    rule "MyTimeSTamp"
            // Any condition
            var SimpleDateFormat df = new SimpleDateFormat( "YYYY-MM-dd HH:mm:ss" )
            var String Timestamp = df.format( new Date() )
            logInfo( "FILE", Timestamp )

or, alternatively, if you rely on String Formatter only (e.g. in Persistence files):

    import org.openhab.core.library.types.*
    import java.util.Date
    import java.text.SimpleDateFormat
    rule "MyTimeSTamp"
            // Any condition
            var String Timestamp = String::format( "%1$tY-%1$tm-%1$td %1$tH:%1$tM:%1$tS", new Date() )
            logInfo( "FILE", Timestamp )

If you wonder, how to use the String::format option:
The syntax of the format method is format( <String>pattern, <object>obj1, <object>obj2 `[In the pattern String, use "%1" for parsing the first object, "%2" for the second object a.s.o.

e.g. pattern "%1$tY" refers to the first object passed into the format method after the pattern string and treats the input as a (t)imestamp extracting the two-digit (Y)ear.

For more information on how to use the format method please see the Java documentation.).

Irrigation controller

This assumes you have some way of turning your irrigation zones on/off. I use a 4 way relay board connected to the GPIO pins on a Raspberry Pi running my PiFace binding. Note: by using an external relay board I don't need the PiFace extension board but you could use one if you only had 2 zones (since the PiFace only has two relays).

The items/rules defined below allow you to configure how long each zone is 'ON' for and then apply a scaling factor to all zones. I.e. you might decide each zone needs 30mins, but in winter scale this back by 50%.

I haven't worked out a way to allow the 'start time' to be edited in the openHAB UI yet - anyone got any bright ideas?

The last rule will disable the irrigation system if there is any rain detected in the last 24 hours, or any rain in the forecast.


Group 		Irrigation
Group 		Weather

Switch 		Irrigation_Master		"Irrigation Master"			<power>			(Irrigation)
String		Irrigation_StartTime	"Start Time [%s]"			<calendar>		(Irrigation)
Number		Irrigation_ScaleFactor	"Scale Factor [%d %%]"		<water>			(Irrigation)

Number		Irrigation_LawnMins		"Lawn Sprinkler [%d mins]"	<water>			(Irrigation)
Number		Irrigation_VegeMins		"Vege Patch [%d mins]"		<water>			(Irrigation)
Number		Irrigation_BackMins		"Back Garden [%d mins]"		<water>			(Irrigation)
Number		Irrigation_FrontMins	"Front Garden [%d mins]"	<water>			(Irrigation)

Switch 		Irrigation_Lawn			"Lawn Sprinkler"			<water>			(Irrigation)	{ piface="irrigation:OUT:11" }
Switch 		Irrigation_Vege			"Vege Patch"				<water>			(Irrigation)	{ piface="irrigation:OUT:12" }
Switch 		Irrigation_Back			"Back Garden"				<water>			(Irrigation)	{ piface="irrigation:OUT:13" }
Switch 		Irrigation_Front		"Front Garden"				<water>			(Irrigation)	{ piface="irrigation:OUT:15" }

Number		Weather_Rain				"Rainfall [%.1f mm]"			<rain>   		(Weather)
String 		Weather_TodayIcon			"Today [%s]"        			<w>  			(Weather)				{ http="<[<YOUR_API_KEY>/forecast/q/pws:<YOUR_PWS_ID>.xml:3600000:XSLT(<YOUR_TRANSFORM>.xsl)]" } 
String 		Weather_TomorrowIcon		"Tomorrow [%s]"     			<w>  			(Weather) 				{ http="<[<YOUR_API_KEY>/forecast/q/pws:<YOUR_PWS_ID>.xml:3600000:XSLT(<YOUR_TRANSFORM>.xsl)]" } 


    import org.openhab.core.library.types.*
    import org.openhab.core.persistence.*
    import org.openhab.model.script.actions.*
    import org.joda.time.*
    rule "Irrigation startup"
    	System started
    	postUpdate(Irrigation_StartTime, "03:00")
    	sendCommand(Irrigation_Lawn, OFF)
    	sendCommand(Irrigation_Vege, OFF)
    	sendCommand(Irrigation_Back, OFF)
    	sendCommand(Irrigation_Front, OFF)
    rule "Irrigation run"
        Time cron "0 0 0 * * ?"
    	if (Irrigation_Master.state == ON) {
    		// get the scale factor - used to reduce the run times across the board
    		var Number scaleFactor = Irrigation_ScaleFactor.state as DecimalType
    	    // convert our start time to a joda.time.DateTime for today
        	var DateTime startTime = parse(now.getYear() + "-" + now.getMonthOfYear() + "-" + now.getDayOfMonth() + "T" + Irrigation_StartTime.state + ":00")
        	var DateTime endTime		
    		// get the raw run times for each zone (in mins)
    		var Number lawnMins = Irrigation_LawnMins.state as DecimalType
    		var Number vegeMins = Irrigation_VegeMins.state as DecimalType
    		var Number backMins = Irrigation_BackMins.state as DecimalType
    		var Number frontMins = Irrigation_FrontMins.state as DecimalType
    		// convert to the actual run times (by applying the scale factor)
    		var int lawnTime = ((lawnMins * scaleFactor) / 100).intValue
    		var int vegeTime = ((vegeMins * scaleFactor) / 100).intValue
    		var int backTime = ((backMins * scaleFactor) / 100).intValue
    		var int frontTime = ((frontMins * scaleFactor) / 100).intValue
    		// turn on each zone in turn (with a minute gap between each zone activation)
    		if (lawnTime > 0) {
    			endTime = startTime.plusMinutes(lawnTime)
    			createTimer(startTime) [| sendCommand(Irrigation_Lawn, ON) ]
    			createTimer(endTime) [| sendCommand(Irrigation_Lawn, OFF) ]
    			startTime = endTime.plusMinutes(1)
    		if (vegeTime > 0) {
    			endTime = startTime.plusMinutes(vegeTime)
    			createTimer(startTime) [| sendCommand(Irrigation_Vege, ON) ]
    			createTimer(endTime) [| sendCommand(Irrigation_Vege, OFF) ]			
    			startTime = endTime.plusMinutes(1)
    		if (backTime > 0) {
    			endTime = startTime.plusMinutes(backTime)
    			createTimer(startTime) [| sendCommand(Irrigation_Back, ON) ]
    			createTimer(endTime) [| sendCommand(Irrigation_Back, OFF) ]
    			startTime = endTime.plusMinutes(1)
    		if (frontTime > 0) {
    			endTime = startTime.plusMinutes(frontTime)
    			createTimer(startTime) [| sendCommand(Irrigation_Front, ON) ]
    			createTimer(endTime) [| sendCommand(Irrigation_Front, OFF) ]
    			startTime = endTime.plusMinutes(1)
    rule "Disable irrigation if any rain"
    	Item Weather_Rain changed or
    	Item Weather_TodayIcon changed or
    	Item Weather_TomorrowIcon changed
        // the rainfall threshold where we shutdown off irrigation
        var rainThreshold = 1
    	// check for any rain in the last 24 hours
        var rainInLast24Hours = Weather_Rain.maximumSince(now.minusHours(24), "rrd4j")
    	// default to the current rain value in case there is nothing in our history
    	var rain = Weather_Rain.state
        if (rainInLast24Hours != null)
        	rain = rainInLast24Hours.state
        // check if any rain is forecast
        var rainToday = Weather_TodayIcon.state == "chanceflurries" ||
        				Weather_TodayIcon.state == "chancerain" ||
        				Weather_TodayIcon.state == "chancesleet" ||
        				Weather_TodayIcon.state == "chancesnow" ||
        				Weather_TodayIcon.state == "chancetstorms" ||
        				Weather_TodayIcon.state == "flurries" ||    				
        				Weather_TodayIcon.state == "rain" || 
        				Weather_TodayIcon.state == "sleet" ||
        				Weather_TodayIcon.state == "snow" ||
        				Weather_TodayIcon.state == "tstorms"
        var rainTomorrow = Weather_TomorrowIcon.state == "chanceflurries" ||
        				   Weather_TomorrowIcon.state == "chancerain" ||
        				   Weather_TomorrowIcon.state == "chancesleet" ||
        				   Weather_TomorrowIcon.state == "chancesnow" ||
        				   Weather_TomorrowIcon.state == "chancetstorms" ||
        				   Weather_TomorrowIcon.state == "flurries" ||
        				   Weather_TomorrowIcon.state == "rain" || 
        				   Weather_TomorrowIcon.state == "sleet" ||
        				   Weather_TomorrowIcon.state == "snow" ||
        				   Weather_TomorrowIcon.state == "tstorms"
    	// shutoff irrigation if there has been rain or rain is forecast
        var logMessage = ""
    	if (rain > rainThreshold) {
    	    logMessage = "Rain in the last 24 hours (" + rain + " mm) is above our threshold (" + rainThreshold + " mm) - irrigation disabled!"
    	} else if (rainToday) {
    	    logMessage = "Rain is forecast for today - irrigation disabled!"
    	} else if (rainTomorrow) {
    		logMessage = "Rain is forecast for tomorrow - irrigation disabled!"
    	if (logMessage != "") {
    		if (Irrigation_Master.state == ON) {
            	logInfo("Irrigation", logMessage)
    			send("", logMessage)
    			postUpdate(Irrigation_Master, OFF)
    	} else {
    		if (Irrigation_Master.state == OFF) {
    	        logInfo("Irrigation", "No rain in the last 24 hours or any rain forecast - irrigation enabled!")
    			send("", "No rain in the last 24 hours or any rain forecast - irrigation enabled!")
    			postUpdate(Irrigation_Master, ON)

Fire detection

This rule will check all temperature sensors in an item group to see if any exceed a specified threshold (in my case 45oC). This means you can add/remove temperature sensors to your config whenever you like and be confident that they will all be monitored by this rule.

If the rule is triggered an alarm item is set, which can send notifications or activate a siren. In my case I turn on all lights in my house, to help any occupants find a way out!


Group    SensorTemperature    "Temperatures"    <temperature>

Number   Sensor_Temperature1  "Bedroom [%.1f °C]"    <temperature> (SensorTemperature) { <some-binding> }
Number   Sensor_Temperature2  "Kitchen [%.1f °C]"    <temperature> (SensorTemperature) { <some-binding> }
Number   Sensor_Temperature3  "Living [%.1f °C]"     <temperature> (SensorTemperature) { <some-binding> }


    rule "Fire detection"
        Item SensorTemperature received update
        // check for any temperature sensors in the house that are very high
        if (SensorTemperature.members.filter(s | s.state > 45).size > 0) {        
            if (Alarm_Fire.state != ON) {
                logInfo("sensor.rules", "Fire alarm tripped by temperature sensor!")

    rule "Fire alarm"
        Item Alarm_Fire received update ON
        // turn on all lights
        // send notifications
        notifyMyAndroid("Security", "FIRE alarm has been tripped!!!", 2)
        sendTweet("*** FIRE alarm - someone call the fire dept!!! ***")
        // send an email
        sendMail("", "FIRE ALARM!!", "The fire alarm has been activated!!!")

Koubachi remind the water level ### Hager KNX roller shutter actor position feedback

Some Hager actors have have an unusual feedback object for position and alarms. With this rule the position of the roller shutter is set according to the state of the feedback object:


    rule "Set Status Study"
        Item Rollershutter_Study_Feedback received update
        //Bit 0+1: Position 00=Intermediate position, 01=Upper end position, 10 =Lower end position
        //Bit 2-4: 000=Normal, 001=Forced control, 010=Wind alarm, 011=Rain alarm, 100=Blocked 
        var State = Rollershutter_Study_Feedback.state as DecimalType
        var Pos   = State.toBigDecimal.toBigInteger.intValue.bitwiseAnd(0x03)
       if (Pos == 00)  {
                Rollershutter_Study.state = new PercentType(50)
        } else if (Pos == 01) {
                Rollershutter_Study.state = new PercentType(0)
        } else if (Pos == 02) {
                Rollershutter_Study.state = new PercentType(100)


Rollershutter_Study_Feedback: The feedback object of the KNX actor
Rollershutter_Study: The "normal" roller shutter item.

To remind you to give your plant water use the following rule. First need the water level Item and some block Item to don't spam your self.


  String plant1_Water_Level "Water Level [%s]" <grass> (gPL) { koubachi="device:00066672ef98:recentSoilmoistureReadingValue" }
  Switch plantbswitch90 (gPL)
  Switch plantbswitch80 (gPL)
  Switch plantbswitch70 (gPL)
  Switch plantbswitch60 (gPL)
  Switch plantbswitch50 (gPL)
  Switch plantbswitch40 (gPL)
  Switch plantbswitch30 (gPL)

Following this two rules


        rule "water level"


        Item plant1_Water_Level received update
	var level = plant1_Water_Level.state
	if (plant1_Water_Level.state.toString.matches("9. %") && plantbswitch90.state == OFF{
	sendMail("", "Zamioculcas_zamiifolia", "I am well!My water level is " + level,           "")
	sendCommand(plantbswitch90, ON)
	sendCommand(plantbswitch80, OFF)
	sendCommand(plantbswitch70, OFF)
	sendCommand(plantbswitch60, OFF)
	sendCommand(plantbswitch50, OFF)
	sendCommand(plantbswitch40, OFF)
	sendCommand(plantbswitch30, OFF)
	if (plant1_Water_Level.state.toString.matches("8. %") && plantbswitch80.state == OFF ){
	sendMail("", "Zamioculcas_zamiifolia", "I am still well! My water level is " + level ,"")
	sendCommand(plantbswitch80, ON)
	sendCommand(plantbswitch90, OFF)
	if (plant1_Water_Level.state.toString.matches("7. %") && plantbswitch70.state == OFF ){
	sendMail("", "Zamioculcas_zamiifolia", "I am still well!My water level is "  + level ,"")
	sendCommand(plantbswitch70, ON)
	if (plant1_Water_Level.state.toString.matches("6. %") && plantbswitch60.state == OFF ){
	sendMail("", "Zamioculcas_zamiifolia", "I am still well!My water level is " + level ,"")
	sendCommand(plantbswitch60, ON)
	if (plant1_Water_Level.state.toString.matches("5. %") && plantbswitch50.state == OFF ){
	sendMail("", "Zamioculcas_zamiifolia", "Next I need water!My water level is " + level ,"")
	sendCommand(plantbswitch50, ON)
	if (plant1_Water_Level.state.toString.matches("4. %") && plantbswitch40.state == OFF ){
	sendMail("", "Zamioculcas_zamiifolia", "I need water! Please give me water. My water level is"  + level ,"")
	sendCommand(plantbswitch40, ON)
	if (plant1_Water_Level.state.toString.matches("3. %") && plantbswitch30.state == OFF ){
	sendMail("", "Zamioculcas_zamiifolia", "I realy need water! Please give me water ore i will        di.  My water level is "  + level ,"")
	sendCommand(plantbswitch30, ON)

        rule "set switch to off at start"


	System started

	sendCommand(plantbswitch90, OFF)
	sendCommand(plantbswitch80, OFF)
	sendCommand(plantbswitch70, OFF)
	sendCommand(plantbswitch60, OFF)
	sendCommand(plantbswitch50, OFF)
	sendCommand(plantbswitch40, OFF)
	sendCommand(plantbswitch30, OFF)

Create text item to combine two Values and format string options

If you do have two values/items like a current temperature and the toBe temperature but do not want to use to much space on the visualisations it might be usefull to combine the two values into a new item using a rule.

In this case we do have a current, a ToBe and a combined item whereby the first two are listening to the KNX bus:


Number Temperatur_UG_Flur_IST 		"UG Flur IST [%.1f °C]" 	<temperature> 	(Temperaturen) { knx="<1/2/1" }
Number Temperatur_UG_Flur_Soll 		"UG Flur Soll [%.1f °C]" 	<temperature> 	(Temperaturen) { knx="<1/1/1" }
String Temperatur_UG_Flur_komplett	"UG Flur [%s]"			<temperature> 	(Temperaturen, UG_Flur)	//Calculated via temperaturen.rule

The idea is that on change (received update) we do update our string with the new values. In case of the value has not been read from the KNX bus (status uninitialized) the post update will not convert the values to avoid a java error.


import org.openhab.core.library.types.*

rule UG_Flur_temperaturen

  		Item Temperatur_UG_Flur_IST received update or
  		Item Temperatur_UG_Flur_Soll received update
  	if (Temperatur_UG_Flur_IST.state != Uninitialized && Temperatur_UG_Flur_Soll.state != Uninitialized)
		Temperatur_UG_Flur_komplett.postUpdate("Ist: " + String::format("%.1f", (Temperatur_UG_Flur_IST.state as DecimalType).floatValue()) + " °C , Soll: " + String::format("%.1f", (Temperatur_UG_Flur_Soll.state as DecimalType).floatValue()) + " °C")
		Temperatur_UG_Flur_komplett.postUpdate("Values not yet read/updated from KNX bus")	

In addition you might want to format the values only with one or two digits behind the comma. So the trick here is to convert the .state value first to a DecimalType and then to a floatValue. The floatValue you can then format using %1.f for one digit or %2.f for two digits after the comma if you like. This exercise is needed because there is a difference between on how OpenHAB handles types (.state) and how Java is handling types (float).

Important is as well to "include" the org.openhab.core.library.types.* in the beginning of the rule so that this will work properly.

Get an email when battery powered devices are running low on power

One of my motion sensors ran out of battery because I wasn't paying attention, so I implemented a rule to send me an email if any of my battery operated devices are running low.

The rule fires every day at 7pm, and if any of the devices are reporting less than 10% charge I get an email giving the battery status of all devices, in ascending order of charge. I deliberately chose to list all devices as for example some of them might be quite close to 10% but still above it, and I might want to buy batteries for those as well while I'm at it.

All of my battery powered items have a Number entry in my .items files. The Number item is always in a group called Battery. For example:

Number	Battery_Hallway_Motion	"Hallway motion battery [%s %%]"	<energy>	(F0_Hallway,Battery)		{ zwave="40:command=BATTERY" }


Number	Battery_Hallway_Motion	"Hallway motion battery [%s %%]"	<energy>	(F0_Hallway,Battery)		{ insteonplm="25.A8.C3:0x00004A#data,field=battery_level" }

The rule:

import org.openhab.core.library.types.DecimalType

val String mailTo = ""
val int lowBatteryThreshold = 10

rule "Battery Monitor"
when Time cron "0 0 19 * * ?"
    if (! Battery.allMembers.filter([state < lowBatteryThreshold]).empty) {
        val report = Battery.allMembers.filter([state instanceof DecimalType]).sortBy([state]).map[
            name + ": " + state.format("%d%%")
        val message = "Battery levels:\n\n" + report + "\n\nRegards,\n\nopenHab"
        sendMail(mailTo, "Low battery alert", message)

Initialize all items which are still uninitialized after startup

With some databases it takes time until all values are initialized. This script checks if after some time there are still uninitialized items in a group called "gInitializeZero" and sets them to zero. Link to Gist

rule "Initialize all items"
	System started
	logInfo(	"Initializer", "Started Timer ...")
	createTimer(now.plusSeconds(45)) [|
		logInfo(	"Initializer", "... initializing!")
		//Wir warten 45 Sekunden, dann initalisieren wir alle die nicht aus der Datenbank befüllt wurden
		gInitializeZero.members.filter( x | x.state == Uninitialized).forEach[ item |
			postUpdate( item, 0)


Number  cTemperature_Chart_Period   (gInitializeZero)

Create a dynamic group that holds only items in state ON

Using these rules you can create a dynamic group that holds only items that match a certain criteria, in this case items in state ON. In my case the gAll group holds (almost) all the items via nested groups, but one can create similar rules for other groups as well, and get different dynamic groups.


Group gAll

Group		gStateON		"Whats ON"				<info>
Switch		sRefreshON		"refresh Whats ON"	


import java.util.concurrent.locks.ReentrantLock


var java.util.concurrent.locks.ReentrantLock lock  = new java.util.concurrent.locks.ReentrantLock()
var Timer ONtimer = null


// during startup there are many updates to the gAll group
// delay the initial population of gStateON to startup+20 seconds

rule "What's ON - Startup"
		System started
		ONtimer = createTimer(now.plusSeconds(20)) [| sendCommand(sRefreshON, ON)]

// the gAll group gets multiple updates per each item change, 
// therefore a timer is set and only one refresh will happen,
// after 10 seconds from the first update

rule "What's ON - gAll update"
		Item gAll received update 
		try {
			if(ONtimer.hasTerminated() ) {
				ONtimer = createTimer(now.plusSeconds(10)) [| sendCommand(sRefreshON, ON)]
		finally {

// gStateON is a dynamic group that holds all Items in state ON.
// The group gets refreshed whenever the gAll group gets an update, 
// i.e. whenever an item changes

rule "What's on - refresh"
        Item sRefreshON received update 
    	logDebug("rules","Group gStateON about to be refreshed")
    	gStateON.members.forEach[ item | gStateON.removeMember(item)]
		gAll.allMembers.filter(s | s.state == ON).forEach[ item | gStateON.addMember(item)]

Create a timer that pauses the execution of the rule


If I'm in a rule for any reason and I want to pause the execution of the rule for a period of time before continuing execution of the rule use Thread::sleep.

For example, I'm in a rule that was triggered because a computer went offline. I want to turn off the computer's plug, wait for a few seconds, then turn the outlet back on again.


In the above example there is a 20 second delay as the time is set in milliseconds (1000ms = 1sec).

Monitor updates of the devices

  • updateSince/changedSince/lastUpdate If I'm in a rule for another reason (e.g. Time triggered, triggered by another Item, triggered by a Group, etc.) and need to check whether an Item has changed or been updated within or beyond a certain amount of time these methods are what I would use.

For example, to get the most recently updated Item out of a Group:

val lastItem = gMyGroup.members.sortBy[lastUpdate].tail

The big distinguishing characteristic is that I'm already in the rule right now for another reason and I'm looking into the past to determine the behavior of my rule.

Pulse light

Gradually changes brightness of a light from 1% to 100% and back. Returns to initial ON/OFF-state and brightness level after three cycles.

import org.openhab.core.library.types.*
import org.openhab.core.types.Command 
import org.openhab.core.types.*
import org.openhab.core.items.GenericItem 

rule "pulselight"
Item DebugSwitch changed from OFF to ON
    var Number pulseDimmer = 1
    var Number i = 0
    var State InitialBrightness = Light_GF_Living_Ceiling_Brightness.state
    var State InitialState =  Light_GF_Living_Ceiling.state
    while (i<3) {
    i = i+1	

Shutdown Rollershutter if warm and the time is between 8.30pm and 3.30am

This Rule combines a netatmo temperature sensor and a knx rollershuter group to close the rollershutter in a given timeslot and a rising temperature above 21 degree celsius. The netatmo controller is positions in the north side of the house.

var boolean temphigh = false
rule "rollershutterdown-if-hot-and-between-9-and-3"
		Item Netatmo_Aussen_Temperatur received update
		if(Netatmo_Aussen_Temperatur.state <= 21)
                           temphigh = false
			if (temphigh == false)
// create timer - for a timecheck - 15.30 today.
				var DateTime heiss_bis = new DateTime(now.getYear(), now.getMonthOfYear(), now.getDayOfMonth(), 15, 30, 0)
// create timer - today 8.30pm
				var DateTime heiss_von = new DateTime(now.getYear(), now.getMonthOfYear(), now.getDayOfMonth(), 8, 30, 0)
// check if allready marked as hightemperature and in the time between 
				if(now.isBefore(heiss_bis) && (now.isAfter(heiss_von)) && (temphigh == false))
// Shutdown all rollershutter in the Group Jalousien_SONNE
					Jalousien_Sonne?.members.forEach(item,i|createTimer(now.plusSeconds(i)) [|sendCommand(item, DOWN)])
// set global variable 
					temphigh = true

Not act on motion sensor when it's a weekday and time is between 9am and 6pm

Involves Mqtt binding. Openhab Item (power state of LED) is ON and doesn't follow motion sensor signal if it is Mon-Fri AND between 9am and 6pm. Created the rule for Office Automation. LED follows the sensor signal all the other times. Also logs the info on openhab logs for easy debugging. Motion sensor sends it's state to a proxy item MotionSensor_Proxy which sends an Mqtt command to physical LED accordin to time and day.

rule "Motion sensor active rule to switch ON"
	Item MotionSensor_Proxy changed from OFF to ON or
	Item MotionSensor_Proxy changed from NULL to ON   //If Mqtt broker loses connection, then state goes to NULL. So when it comes back online, this statement ensures this rule works
	val String currentTime = String::format( "%1$tl:%1$tM%1$tp on %1$tA, %1$tB %1$te, %1$tY", new java.util.Date ) //Next two lines are used to show current date and time
	var Number currenthour = now.getHourOfDay		//Gets current hour of day according to joda.time library
	var Number currentday = now.getDayOfWeek		//Gets day of week according to joda.time library
	logInfo("On Log","Test: currentTime=[{}]",currentTime)
	logInfo("On2 Log","Test: hourofday=[{}]",currenthour)	//Log to show hour in 24 hour format(0-23) according to joda.time library
	logInfo("On3 Log","Test: dayofweek=[{}]",currentday)	//Log to show day of week according to joda.time library i.e. Monday(1),Tuesday(2)..,Saturday(6),Sunday(7)
	logInfo("Rule_ON_fired","")                         	//No rules are applied because lights need to be on if it's turned off due to motion sensor before 9am and need t be switched on if motion is detected after 9am
	publish("broker","LED/cmnd/power","on")         	//Set Mqtt parameters according to your broker,mqqt topic and payload to be sent

rule "Motion sensor active rule to switch OFF"
	Item MotionSensor_Proxy changed from ON to OFF or
	Item MotionSensor_Proxy changed from NULL to OFF
	var Number currenthour = now.getHourOfDay
	var Number currentday = now.getDayOfWeek
	val String currentTime = String::format( "%1$tl:%1$tM%1$tp on %1$tA, %1$tB %1$te, %1$tY", new java.util.Date )
	logInfo("Off Log","Test: currentTime=[{}]",currentTime)		//This log show that the execution block is executed when triggers are fired
	logInfo("Off2 Log","Test: hourofday=[{}]",currenthour)
	logInfo("Off3 Log","Test: dayofweek=[{}]",currentday)
	if(!(currenthour >= 9 && currenthour < 18) || !(currentday <= 5)){    //Conditions under which rule is fired. Involves boolean logic
		logInfo("Rule_OFF_fired","")		//This log shows you that your conditions are working correctly