In the ever-expanding world of home automation, Home Assistant has emerged as a popular platform that empowers users to create customized smart home setups. With its flexibility and extensive integration options, Home Assistant allows you to control and monitor various devices and services from a single centralized hub. However, managing and discovering new add-ons can sometimes be overwhelming. This is where HACS (Home Assistant Community Store) comes to the rescue! In this blog post, we will explore how HACS simplifies the process of discovering, installing, and managing add-ons, making it an essential tool for any Home Assistant user.

  1. What is HACS? HACS, short for Home Assistant Community Store, is an open-source plugin that integrates seamlessly with Home Assistant. It serves as an alternative add-on store, enabling users to explore and install a wide range of community-developed custom components, themes, automations, and more. With HACS, the process of discovering and managing add-ons becomes effortless, enhancing the overall Home Assistant experience.
  2. Streamlined Add-on Discovery Searching for new add-ons can be a daunting task without a centralized repository. HACS solves this problem by providing a curated platform where developers can showcase their creations. The user-friendly interface of HACS allows you to browse through various categories, sort add-ons based on popularity or recently added, and read detailed descriptions, reviews, and screenshots. This simplifies the process of finding the perfect add-on to enhance your smart home setup.
  3. Simple Installation Process Installing add-ons with HACS is a breeze. Once you’ve found an add-on you want to try, simply click the “Install” button, and HACS takes care of the rest. It handles the download, configuration, and installation process seamlessly, saving you time and effort. Additionally, HACS provides an easy-to-use management interface within Home Assistant, allowing you to update, remove, or configure installed add-ons with just a few clicks.
  4. Customization and Integration HACS not only offers a vast library of pre-built add-ons but also allows you to take customization to the next level. It provides a platform for developers to share their custom components, themes, Lovelace cards, and automations, enabling you to personalize your smart home environment according to your specific needs. With HACS, you can explore unique creations, integrate them into your setup, and unlock a world of possibilities for your Home Assistant instance.
  5. Active Community and Support One of the significant advantages of HACS is its vibrant and supportive community. With a large user base and active developers, you can rely on the community to provide guidance, answer questions, and troubleshoot issues. The official HACS Discord server serves as a central hub for discussions, sharing ideas, and getting assistance. This sense of community adds tremendous value to the overall Home Assistant experience and ensures you’re never left alone on your smart home journey.

Conclusion: HACS serves as an indispensable tool for Home Assistant users, simplifying the process of discovering, installing, and managing add-ons. With its user-friendly interface, streamlined installation process, and vast library of community-developed creations, HACS enhances the flexibility, functionality, and personalization of your smart home setup. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced enthusiast, integrating HACS into your Home Assistant instance is a game-changer that opens up endless possibilities for your home automation journey.

The Installation of HACS depends on the Home Assistant version you are using. The HASS OS/Linux OSĀ  manual is below and Docker on Linux OS is at the end of this page.

Install the HACS on Home Assistant (HASS OS/Linux OS)

Follow the steps below to download, install, and set up HACS on your Supervised Home Assistant Server running on Home Assistant OS (HASS OS) or Linux.

To locate and install HACS, you have to first install the Advanced SSH & Web Terminal Add-on. Just follow these steps:

  1. Within your Home Assistant frontend/home navigate to the Settings menu
  2. Click Add-ons
  3. Click ADD-ON STORE in the lower right corner
  4. Go to the Search add-ons box
  5. Type Terminal & SSH
  6. Click on Terminal & SSHĀ from the list
  7. Click INSTALL and wait for the Add-on to be installed
  8. Enable Start on boot, Show in sidebarĀ and Watchdog
  9. Click START to start the broker and wait for the Add-on to be started
  10. Open WEB UI from the Terminal & SSH Add-on or click Terminal from the sidebar
  11. In the terminal window, enter the following commands:
    cd /config
    wget -O - | bash -
  12. This will download HACS in theĀ config directory
  13. Reboot the Home Assistant Server
  14. After the reboot, go toĀ SettingsĀ >Ā Devices & ServicesĀ and click theĀ ADD INTEGRATIONĀ button
  15. Search forĀ HACSĀ and click on it
  16. Check all items and clickĀ Submit. You will see a URL and a code.
  17. Click on the displayed URL and sign in to your GitHub account to authorize. If you donā€™t have a GitHub account, sign up and then authorize.
  18. In the next screen, enter the code that was displayed to you in the Home Assistant server.
  19. ClickĀ Authorize HACS.
  20. Back on your Home Assistant server, clickĀ Submit.
  21. If everything goes well, you will see theĀ SuccessĀ screen. Choose the room and clickĀ Finish.
  22. In theĀ SettingsĀ >Ā Devices & ServicesĀ dashboard, you will see HACS.
  23. ClickĀ OptionsĀ orĀ ConfigureĀ and then enter a name and a number in theĀ Number of releases to showĀ field.
  24. Enable theĀ AppDaemonĀ andĀ NetDaemonĀ discovery options and clickĀ Submit.
  25. In case something goes wrong, you will be taken back to the configuration setup screen, where you can continue to set up HACS.

Installation is now completed. You can now add integrations from the HACS Store within Home Assistant. You will notice the HACS icon on the Home Assistant sidebar.

Install HACS on Non-Supervised Home Assistant Server (Docker on Linux OS)

As thereā€™s no option to install add-ons in the non-supervised Home Assistant server, we need to manually navigate to the Home Assistant directory in the terminal window to download and install HACS. The steps are as follows:

  1. In the SSH terminal window, navigate to theĀ home-assistantĀ directory using the following command,
    cd /home/UserName/docker/home-assistant
  2. Then run the following command to download HACS.
    wget -O - | bash -
  3. This will download HACS in the directory where the Home Assistant volume is mapped.
  4. Now reboot the system.
    sudo reboot
  5. Open the web browser window and log in to your Home Assistant server.
  6. Go toĀ Settings > Devices & ServicesĀ and then click theĀ Add IntegrationĀ button.
  7. Use the search bar to look for “hacs”. Click onĀ HACS.
  8. Check everything (itā€™s optional) and clickĀ Submit.
  9. You will see a code. Note it down or copy it and click on the URL displayed.
  10. Sign in to your GitHub profile and paste or type the code. ClickĀ Continue.
  11. Click theĀ Authorize HACSĀ button.
  12. Once authorization is successful, you can restart Docker or the system.
  13. After the system restarts, you will find that HACS is configured and ready to use.

Installation is now completed. You can now add integrations from the HACS Store within Home Assistant. You will notice the HACS icon on the Home Assistant sidebar.

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