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Lovelace Plugins

Thomas Lovén edited this page Feb 26, 2021 · 28 revisions

The Lovelace interface can be extended with custom cards, entities, rows and various plugins.

I recommend using HACS to install and keep track of plugins. If you do, steps two and three in the installation instructions below, and the updating procedure will be different. See the docs for HACS. Steps one(!) and four, as well as the rest of this article still applies, though.

Installing a plugin

For most plugins, the manual process is as follows.

Through this guide card-mod is used as an example only. The same process applies to any plugin, but references to e.g. card-mod.js will have to be replaced accordingly (I can't believe I have to make this comment!).

1: Read the docs

Be sure to read the documentation of the plugin you are interested in. The process of installing it might be totally different from what I'm describing below.

2: Download the plugin.

Most plugins are distributed as a single .js file, e.g. card-mod.js.

Make sure you get the Raw version if downloading from Github. Get Raw file

Place the file somewhere in <home assistant config>/www/ e.g. /config/www/plugins/card-mod.js or ~/.homeassistant/www/card-mod.js.

If www/ doesn't exist, you should create it and then restart Home Assistant.

Note: If you're comfortable with git, the easiest way to do this is to just navigate to www/ and run

git clone https://github.com/thomasloven/lovelace-card-mod

3: Import the plugin in your lovelace config

In Home Asistant 0.107 or later

There are two ways to import a plugin. The easiest is via the graphical user interface (GUI).

With Home Assistant 2021.3 or later, click this button: My Home Assistant and skip to step 6 below.

  1. Go to your profile
    At the bottom of the sidebar, there's a button with your initials in it. Click that.
    Sidebar

  2. Enable "Advanced Mode"
    Make sure the toggle is checked

  3. Go to "Configuration" The gear symbol near the bottom of the sidebar

  4. Select "Lovelace Dashboard"
    Lovelace Dashboards

  5. Select the "Resources" tab
    If you don't see the tab, go back and make sure you enabled "Advanced Mode". It can be both at the top and at the bottom of the page, depending on your screen size.
    Resources Tab

  6. Click the Plus to add a new resource. The url is the path to your downloaded file. Replace <config directory>/www/ with /local/.
    Add Resource

  7. Finish by clicking "Create"

  8. Refresh your browser

The second way is to add the resources to the lovelace section of your configuration.yaml. See Dashboards and Views.

4: Use the plugin

Here I can't help you. Read the documentation to find out how the plugin is used.

Updating a plugin

Sometimes things change. Plugins evolve, bugs are squashed, features are added.

To upgrade a plugin to the latest version, there are two steps to follow.

0: Read the documentation to see what's changed

1: Get the latest version of the file(s)

See above

2: Home Assistant version 0.106 or earlier: Update the version number in the resources section.

The internet as we know it works as well as it does due to caching. When you visit a new website, your browser downloads and stores a copy of it locally, so that the next time you wish to visit it you won't have to download it again, saving time and bandwidth. Even if you didn't have a local copy saved, it's likely you still didn't get the page directly from its server. Every computer your request has to go through on the way to the target may cache the page and serve the saved version instead.

This is a great thing, but can cause problems. For example, when you reload your lovelace interface after upgrading to the latest version of card-mod.js, your browser may think "Hey, I know this file already. No need to bother the server." and helpfully hand you the old version. Bummer.

However. If you use the version number described above, the browser might think "Hm... card-mod.js?v=2, eh? Well, I have a card-mod.js?v=1, but that's obviously a totally different file. Hey! Server! I want card-mod.js?v=2".

Meanwhile, the server will (in this case) ignore anything from the ? and on, and just serve the latest version of card-mod.js. Problem solved.

Seriously, this is important. Every time you change anything with the .js files you MUST update the version number.

Note: The version number doesn't have to be a number. As long as theres something after the ? and this something is unique and has never been used before by you for that file, the trick will work.

Note: The same trick works for images like /local/my_background.png?v=253.

Common problems

If something is not working, the first thing you should do is to check for error messages on screen or in the home assistant and browser logs.

On screen

Error message

Example of a clear error message telling you exactly what to do. Read them.

Home Assistant log

Home Assistant Log

You can find the Home Assistant log by going to `/dev-info and clicking the refresh symbol in the lower right corner. Look for anything that seems even remotely relevant. Most recent things are at the bottom.

Browser console

Browser log

In Google Chrome you can reach the browser console via F12, ctrl+shift+j, cmd+alt+j or by right-clicking the page, selecting "Inspect" and then "Console" at the top of the panel that pops up. All browsers have something similar. For mobile browsers, you may have to connect your phone to a computer and debug from there.

In the example above, the log says that the file not-card-modder.js can't be found. Perhaps I specified the wrong url in my resources?

Some common error messages:

Cannot convert undefined or null to object at Function.getPrototypeOf

This is due to a change in Home Assistant 0.88 and requires an update to the card. If the card you are trying to use depends on card-tools, updating card-tools will fix it. As of April 2020, if you get this error it's time to give up that specific custom card and move on.

Uncaught SyntaxError: Unexpected token <

You didn't download the Raw version from github. See Install step 2 above. And if you did, see Upgrade step 2 above.

Uncaught SyntaxError: Unexpected identifier

You may have specified the resource as type: js when it's supposed to be type: module. Read the docs again to make sure.

Can't find card-tools but card-tools is installed (you can see the green text in the browser console)

You may have specified card-tools as type: module. It should be type: js.

Cannot call a class constructor without |new| / Class constructor [...] cannot be invoked without 'new'

Make sure to configure your frontend with javascript_version: latest

Plugins don't work on iOS devices

Make sure to configure your frontend with javascript_version: latest

Things suddenly stopped working

  • First make sure you have the latest version of the plugin and any dependencies (such as card-tools). Even if you didn't change anything. This includes reading the docs again - things change.
  • Update the version numbers as described in Updating a Plugin
  • Clear your cache (See below)
  • Try again
  • If it doesn't work, go through the Common Problems section again.
  • Then ask for help.

If you need to go that far, including as many as possible of the following points in your question will get you better help faster:

  • Relevant information about your setup
  • What you were trying to do
  • How you were trying to do it
  • What you expected to happen (bonus points if you add why you expected that to happen)
  • What happened instead
  • What other things you have tried in order to fix it
  • Relevant screenshots

Clearing cache

In Google Chrome, the best way to clear your cache is:

  • Press F12 to open the developers console
  • Right click the refresh button to the left of the address bar
  • Select the bottom option to reset the cache and perform a hard refresh.

In Safari, the easiest way is to press Option+Command+E to clear cache, followed by Command+R to refresh the page.