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Support & Suggestions


Questions and Posting Guidelines

There are two "official" ways to get support:

  1. Start a new topic in the Reactor category on the Vera forums;
  2. Open an issue in the Reactor Github repository.

When requesting support, please include the following:

  • A clear, sufficiently-detailed explanation of what you are trying to do, how you went about it, and what didn't meet your expectations (also see X-Y Problems below);
  • The output of the "Logic Summary" report — there's a link in the "Troubleshooting" section of the "Tools" tab of your ReactorSensor. Ideally, this report should be generated when the unexpected condition is happening, or immediately thereafter. The report header has clear instructions for posting on the forums, or for improved privacy, emailing to me directly.

Here are some other tips for ensuring the quickest and most accurate response; PLEASE:

  • DO make the Logic Summary immediately upon noticing something that is not meeting your expectations;
  • DO search the forums first to see if your question or issue has already been addressed;
  • DO start a new topic (or issue) for new problems (don't piggy-back or hi-jack other threads);
  • DO post in English, and translate, as much as you can, device names, group names, and comments in your Logic Summary if they contain non-English phrases. If you really can't manage English, then please go ahead and post in your native language and ask for help from the community for translation; there are lots of eager helpers out there;
  • DO use the email submission mechanism for your Logic Summary if you have privacy concerns about posting its content on the forums (very public and archived);
  • DO understand that I am relying on you to be my hands and eyes — I cannot see what you are seeing, or do what you are doing, or do by myself any of the experiments I might do if I was chasing an issue on my own system. I have no knowledge of your system, or its devices, its history, or your approach to building your logic. I am relying entirely on you to give me good and complete information, preferably starting with your opening post. Remote support requires you to put in the effort, not just me, and to follow directions carefully. The better you do it, the faster we get through it.

And here are some things you should avoid; PLEASE:

  • DO NOT restart the ReactorSensor, reload Luup, etc., before creating the Logic Summary, as these erase the history of events in the Logic Summary that are critical for diagnosis;
  • DO NOT post screen shots unless asked for them. Generally speaking, the Logic Summary is more informative;
  • DO NOT post excerpts from the Logic Summary that you think are the only relevant parts. Post (or email) all of it;
  • DO NOT include Vera/openLuup log files unless asked for them. It's usually not necessary, and when it is, I'll give you an easy way to get (probably) just the parts I need to see;
  • DO NOT wipe your Vera to factory default and restore from backup, or delete the ReactorSensor or configuration, or do anything else that is destructive to the conditions necessary to reproduce and troubleshoot the problem while we're working on it. That's time wasted, and an opportunity lost to maybe find an important problem and make things better.

I view all of the above collectively as the minimum standards for asking for support. Anything much less really makes it a lot harder for me (and the community) to support you, and I will ignore posts that I feel are too far out of line with these minimal requirements.

X-Y Problems

An "X-Y Problem" occurs in support communications when a user, in the attempt to solve a problem X, decides that Y is a step toward X, but the user doesn't know how to do Y (or it doesn't work as expected), and so the user asks about how to do Y, never mentioning X. Thus, the real problem X is hidden from the discussion, and Y may not even be a possible or efficient path to X, potentially resulting in an unproductive discussion and time wasted.

When asking for help solving a problem using Reactor, tell me generally what you are trying to accomplish, in addition to asking about any specific steps toward that goal you think you need. That will help me and others make sure you get the best solution possible. There is often more than one way to do things, and knowing as much detail as possible also helps choose the most applicable.

Put another way: always state the problem you need to solve, not just the problem with the solution you are trying to create.


Have a great idea for a feature? Let me know about in the Reactor category on the Vera forums.