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I am looking to start some DIY lighting control and automation. I have been looking at some different options form ZWave. I'm using Irule with success to control my theater room AV equipment. Im want to keep using Irule for the basic Lighting control for now and then moving on to something else if needed for more advanced control. I want to stick with Tablets for the control devices.

A few things to add in the future will be HVAC, security, IP cams(3), and Garage opener.

I have a couple questions:

1. Other than the devices (Switches, Thermostat etc) what do I need to control Zwave devices? Controller? Will a USB controller or RS232 controller work with Irule?

2. If I use software (homeSeer) do i still need a controller? Can i still use Irule to send commands?