DIY Projects

Home Assistant Community Store (HACS), easily install themes and components

HACS (Home Assistant Community Store) is an extension that makes it easy to install components and themes without having to manually configure anything (once the HACS extension is installed of course).

 

The HACS extension is very well documented. Before you can take advantage of any community-developed plugins through HACS, you will need a (free) GitHub account.

Create a GitHub account (free)

HACS uses the GitHub API to list add-ons and retrieve their information (update, bugs, number of stars, etc.). This is a good thing, but it also requires having a user account on GitHub. If you don’t have it yet, go to the home page, otherwise you can go to the next step.

Fill in the required fields then click on Sign up for GitHub . Do not forget to go to your mailbox to confirm it. Creating an account is free. If you do a lot of development of connected objects, this account will always be useful to you.

Get a Developer Token

Once you have an active account, open the user menu located in the upper right corner of the screen and then go to the configuration page (settings) of your account.

Open the Developper Settings tab (at the bottom of the sidebar on the left of the screen).

Open the Personal Access Tokens tab then Generate New Token to create a new personal access token.

Give the token a name. No need to check the options.

Scroll down to the bottom of the options and click Generate .

The token will only be displayed once on the screen. Do not close the page until the HACS installation is complete or write it down somewhere.

You can create as many tokens as you want, so don’t panic, if the page is closed, create a new token. That’s it.

Install the HACS extension for Home Assistant

To install the HACS extension, you will need file access. If you use Hassio docker for Synology NAS, you don’t have to do anything. For the Raspberry Pi, you must first install and start the Samba Share add-on.

 

Open the Home Assistant config folder from Network Neighborhood on Windows and Network on macOS.

The config folder is simply called homeassistant on a Synology NAS

The HomeAssistant config folder running on the Docker image for Raspberry Pi (or Odroid)

If the custom_components folder already exists you can go on, otherwise create a new folder named custom_components at the same level as the configuration.yaml file .

Now download the project code from GitHub by going to this page.

Unzip the ZIP archive with your favorite software then move the hacs folder and all its contents to the previously created folder.

Restart the Home Assistant server by going to Configuration -> Server Control -> Restart (at the bottom of the page)

Add the HACS integration (extension) to Home Assistant

Once HASS has restarted, go to Configuration then Integration

Click the plus in the lower right corner of the screen.

In the window that appears, type hacs then click on the extension line to start the installation.

The installation takes a few minutes. At the end of the installation, HACS asks you to enter your previously created GitHub token.

Finish by clicking on submit . If everything is correct, you should get a success message. You can associate HACS with a part but it is not mandatory. Finally click on Finish

A new shortcut has been added to the sidebar.

On first start HACS needs a few minutes to list components and themes on GitHub. Don’t be surprised to find an empty list, it’s normal, you have to wait a bit.

Install components with HACS

And that’s it, you can now install components (integrations) developed by the Home Assistant community more easily than through the official Add-On Store. It is quite possible, but each time you want to install an add-on, you have to add the url to the GitHub repository. In addition, we have a search engine by keyword which avoids having to search everywhere to find a component for a home automation accessory.

Install themes with HACS

If you’ve followed the manual theme installation tutorial, you’ll love switching to HACS!

All themes are listed in the theme tab. You can search by keyword and filter themes and display components for the Lovelace interface.

Just click on Install to install the theme. No configuration is necessary. The themes are automatically installed in a themes folder in the config (or homeassistant on NAS) directory.

Theme selection is made from the user menu. Click on the user icon located at the bottom of the sidebar. Select the theme from the list. The theme is hot applied without having to restart or refresh the display.

Install additional automations

The search for automations is disabled by default. Go to configuration -> Integration and open the options from the HACS card

Check the desired options:

You can now search for new automations to install from HACS

Updates

2021/01/19 Publication of the tutorial

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