What is a device?

A device in thingsHub represents the IoT device installed in the field. For example an room sensor, asset tracker or retrofit adapter.


Where to manage devices?

Under "Devices" all devices are displayed in a list. In this overview there is the possibility to search for a device directly, four columns to sort the view and in the last column the possibility to show a short info, to edit the device or to delete it. For a detailed view about a single device click either on the ID or name of the device. In the top right corner you will find the button "Add Device" which can be used to register new devices.


How to search for devices?

Enter your search term into the search text field. You can search for:

  • Device ID
  • Name of device
  • Name of device driver
  • Specific date and/or time
  • Network connector
  • Device Labels

How to add a device?

To analyse device data or transmit data to your integration, thingsHub needs to know the devices you are using to collect or transmit data. Prerequisite for the following steps is that you have a working LoRaWAN device and it's set of keys, i.e. DevEUI, AppEUI, and AppKey. Given these, new devices can be created in the system using three different approaches:

  1. With the "Device Wizard" even non-technical users can register and configure new devices in thingsHub.
  2. ThingsHub supports a so-called "Auto activation" options per IoT Network Connector. It allows to automatically register devices in thingsHub which have been registered on the Network Server.
  3. Devices can be created, modified and deleted by any IT or OT application using thingsHub´s REST API.

In the following you will find options 1 and 2 explained in more details. Have a look at the REST API documentation to learn how devices can be created or modified automatically.

Add devices via the Add Device Wizard

With the "Device Wizard" new devices can be created easily and conveniently via a step-by-step wizard. Advantages of this approach are:

  • Persons without expert knowledge about LoRaWAN or IoT can roll out new IoT devices easily and guided.
  • The wizard guides you through all necessary steps to completely set up a device.
  • The system provides quick feedback if missconfiguration happens.

Click on "Add Device". The wizard will guide you to the following steps:

Step 1) Give your device a name and thingsHub will automatically generate a unique ID. The ID uniquely identifies the device. In case of a duplicates thingsHub will warn you.


Step 2) Enter the keys of your LoRaWAN device. Here you can choose whether you want to create an OTAA or an ABP device. What this means and where the differences lie, you can read here (Link Support Portal). Now enter the DevEUI, the AppEUI and the AppKey in the window.


Step 3) Register your device on your IoT network(s): here you can select the appropriate IoT network (connector). ThingsHub will automatically register the new device on the selected network / network server. If you haven´t created a network connector, visit the following page: IoT Network Connectors.


Step 4: Select the correct device driver for your device. ThingsHub communicated with the device through the device driver. Payload data will be decodes and encodes or it does allows to do configuration changes over the air and provides other unique features (link driver).


Add devices through the "Auto Activation" option from a network connector

With the flag "auto_activate" set to "true" on your IoT Network Connectors, thingsHub automatically creates a new device and assigns an ID when it receives a payload from an unknown device for the first time. With "Auto Activation" set to "true" thingsHub expect all devices beeing managed through the network server. Even devices which have been created in thingsHub through this options can be further configured and managed using thingsHub web interface.

See the following screenshot to understand the Auto Activation better. 


Autoactivation figure 1: device list before a new auto activated device has been created. Four devices in total.


Autoactivation figure 2: a new device is registered in the Waynes Management Center (LoRaWAN Network Server).


Autoactivation figure 3: After the newly registered device has sent data for the first time, it will automatically appear in the device list in thingsHub. Five instead of four devices are shown.


Autoactivation figure 4: in the left column of the newly created device it can be seen that this device is "auto activated".


Autoactivation figure 5: after the device driver has been assigned all new reception got decoded.


What is a device driver?

Device drivers make it possible access device-specific functionality across a large number of device types from different manufacturers via a unified interface. Device drivers also allow to conveniently use advanced device functionality such as over-the-air-configuration and even complex communication patterns like batch reporting and payload splitting. All of this is possible without the user having to know or understand the device's payload specification or implementing custom code.

Why drivers are an essential part of thingsHUB or if you want to learn more about the concept of device drivers see here.


How to assign a device driver?

There are several ways to assign a driver to a device:

  • Within the Add Device Wizard (when creating a new device).
  • At the detailed view / page from a device using the device driver dropdown:

The grayed out field above the select box shows the currently assigned device driver. If not driver is set it will show "not set".

To assign a device driver to your device you can search for manufacturer or model within the dropdown box as shown above. Click on the "Assign" button afterwards to save your selection.

An assigned device driver can be changed or removed at any time. Set the driver to "none" and click on "Assign" to remove a currently set driver.


Where can received device data be viewed?

In the web interface you can view received data via the WebUI by clicking on a device ID or a device name in the device list to open the detailed view.

The field "Last Data Recieved" (1) shows the time stamp of the last received data from the device in the current time zone of the browser. The field "Last Recieved Payload" (2) shows the hexadecimal payload, thus the data sent by the device before decoding.

More about the fields "Reported State" and "Desired State" can be found below.

Below the State information a list shows the time and values of the last 100 recieved data transfers (3). The list adaptively changes depending on the device type to always represent the relevant values. The example below is taken from a room sensor with CO2 measuring so the table shows CO2 concentration, temperature, air humidity etc.


How can device data be analyzed and visualized? How can dashboards and charts be created?

It is often necessary to visualize and process data obtained from certain devices. ThingsHub´s Visualizer helps you with this. With powerfull visualization options its easy to understand and analyze the date of your IoT devices. Build dashboards using the different widgets (line and bar charts, tables, maps and many more) and share these with your customers and colleagues.

In the Documentation for the Visualizer you will find everything you need to know.


How to delete a device?

There are several ways to delete a device from the thingsHub:

  • Via the web interface under "Devices" click on the trash can symbol of the respective device. If the device is registered on a network server from thingsHub, thingsHub will also deleted the device on this system.
  • By REST-API-Call using the "/api/v3/devices/{id}" DELETE endpoint. If the device is registered on a network server from thingsHub, thingsHub will also deleted the device on this system.


How to organize devices through labels?

Labels are designed to reflect the organizational structure of your company or IoT use case. Most often users of IoT are less interested in the IoT devices themself and more in the "things" they are connected to. Like the "temperature" of "Meetingroom 27 in Building 4C" or if all security relevant doors are closed in the ground floor. The allocation of labels to devices makes it possible to establish exactly this connection. Labels thus provide an abstraction level that is completely independent from the infrastructure of the network underneath.

On the other hand "Labels" can also be used to flag certain meta data of device e.g. the firmware version of the device or the type of sensors it supports ("temperature" or "humidity").

Read more about labels aswell as some practical examples here: labels and selectors page.


How to forward device data to third party systems?

ThingsHub offers a variety of Integrations to easier connect IoT technology with the enterprise systems in your company. They help using LoRaWAN and other LPWAN IoT devices with the OT/IT system you own. Send and retreive device data using modern standards like MQTT and Websockets or directly push IoT data into your SQL databases and ERP system. For more information click here: Integrations