Quick Start with a Demo Setup

The ‘Demo’ is a quick and easy way to see the user interface for a virtual home and examples of the different widget types that exist.


Make sure that you have a JDK 8 installed.


openHAB comes as a platform independent zip file, which you only need to extract to some folder.

You will find the following folders:

Choosing Demo as a Base Package and Further Add-ons to be Installed

The demo package consists of example configuration files and samples of add-ons and UIs. In order to install the demo, you must edit the file ‘conf/services/addons.cfg’. Uncomment the line package= and set it to demo as shown below:

# The base installation package of this openHAB instance (default is "standard")
# Valid options:
#   - minimal  : Installation only with dashboard, but no UIs or other addons
#   - simple   : Setup for using openHAB purely through UIs - you need to expect MANY constraints in functionality!
#   - standard : Default setup for normal users, best for textual setup
#   - expert   : Setup for expert users, especially for people migrating from openHAB 1.x
#   - demo     : A demo setup which includes UIs, a few bindings, config files etc.
package = demo

Starting the Runtime

Once you have configured your runtime as above, start the openHAB runtime from the terminal by calling ./start.sh (start.bat on Windows):


Point your browser to http://<hostname>:8080 (allow the runtime some time to start before the HTTP server is available, especially on the very first start) and you will be welcomed by the openHAB Dashboard, which is the entry point to the different web UIs:


Selecting the Basic UI will give you a virtual home and examples of the different widget types that exist:


The files that are used by these demo setup are available in the conf folder. To understand their meaning and how you can tweak them all, please refer to our beginner tutorial.

Using the Shell

openHAB uses Apache Karaf and thus comes with a very powerful shell for managing the installation. Please check the Karaf command reference for details. Useful commands e.g. include: