How to control computers with ALEXA using batch files

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remotemass
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Mar 18, 2017 12:24 pm

How to control computers with ALEXA using batch files

Post by remotemass » Sat Mar 18, 2017 12:37 pm

[I am leaving this here, after posting it at http://www.echotalk.org/index.php/topic,1713.0.html
as I am sure this little step-by-step tutorial may help many people out there willing to run batch files in different computers using ALEXA voice commands to trigger them.]

Actually, having it working as I mentioned in the previous post was great because eventually doing my research on the web I found out that I can trigger batch files on my PC using Alexa.
So now, I am totally free to use Alexa to command my PC as I want!

This is what is needed.
1) https://ifttt.com (If you are not used to it make sure you don't get lost looking in the ready made recepies. Instead, once you create an account and log in, go straight to the top right corner and click the arrow next to your username and choose "New Applet"). Then click in the "+ this" of the big blue "if+this_then_that" and search for Amazon/Alexa and add it. Pretty easy to find it, as their is just one that will show up when you search for Alexa!

2) Then choose the first box: that says, "Say a specific phrase(...)" and choose the words/expression you want for Alexa to trigger an event.

3) Now click on the big blue "+_that" of the big blue text "if[ALEXA]_[then_+_that]"
Search for Pushbullet. You will need to create an account with facebook/or/google and also, make sure you download the desktop app of Pushbullet that you will need to play around with a bit, I suppose, to configure the settings and get to know it a bit better. You will need to set it to give you an API key and set an encryption password. You will later have to use the two things when you configure the "Plugin: PushBullet" in EventGhost itself, when you add it to the Autoplay. Then you just need to right-click on "Plugin: PushBullet" and choose "Configure item" from the context menu. I will explain it again, later on when we reach 5).

Anyway, we are still in www.ifttt.com, right? And so, now choose the action that says "Push a link (...)". The way I used it, you can give any Title and URL that you want. It doesn't matter, since you only want to use the trigger feature, without caring about the title and URL themselves.
Then just review and click FINISH at the end of the page.

[Quite simple, right? It took me a lot of time, though. Because I couldn't find much documentation or step-by-step tutorials out there. So just had to find my way, trying it out. You are lucky, to have it here all step-by-step!]

4) Now this part may be a bit more difficult but as I am explaining it all here, may be easy as well.
First, you'll want to install the latest build of Eventghost. Once installed you'll also want to download the Pushbullet Plugin for Eventghost. Extract the archived "Pushbullet" folder and place it in the Eventghost/plugins directory where you installed Eventghost.

Basically follow these 4 steps (as quoted from: viewtopic.php?f=9&t=5709)
A) Complete installation (for new users)
A.1) You have to download the file PushBulletPluginFolder.zip [download/file.php?id=4010]
A.2) Unzip it and the folder PushBullet (including content) move to the folder ...\EventGhost\plugins.
A.3) Download the file __init__.py (at the bottom of the post: download/file.php?id=5032) and move it to new folder ...\EventGhost\plugins\PushBullet.
A.4) Restart EventGhost and add the plugin PushBullet to your configuration [Menu->Configuration->Add Plugin (Find it in the last folder_OTHER)].

5) Once you have done this, open Eventghost, click New (CTRL-N) and you will see a blank page with a "Autostart" in the right pane. All your macros/actions will fall under this. To load Pushbullet, you will need to add a plugin to Autoplay.
This will load the plugin and allow you to begin pushing links to Eventghost.

Then, add a folder to the Configuration Tree, and call it as you wish. I called it 'MyMacro'.
Right-click it and choose 'Add event' giving it the name of the link name you gave in PushBullet.
Then, Right-click again your 'MyMacro' folder and choosing 'Add action' and then System-> Start Application and in the "Executable: " textfield you may put the path of an executable or of a batch file.

Should be all clear by now. I hope I am not missing anything important. Just make sure you set up the encryption password and API key in PushBullet and then set it in the EventGhost "PushBullet" event you will have to create.

And that's pretty much. Now you have the power of batch files and executables of your PCs in the hands of Alexa, at the commands of your voice. Great stuff, indeed!

>>> >>> >>> >>> >>> >>> >>> >>> >>> >>> >>> >>> >>> >>> >>>
Last, but not least, according to <<tetraecho>>, as he says (in this thread http://www.echotalk.org/index.php?topic=612.0): "You don't need IFTTT, or Pushbullet Look at: viewtopic.php?f=2&t=7429 to let Alexa talk to EventGhost without them".
That is if node.js and Lambda Functions do not scare you... I will certainly leave it for another time, as my solution is working fine.

koble73
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Jul 08, 2017 6:04 am

Re: How to control computers with ALEXA using batch files

Post by koble73 » Sat Jul 08, 2017 6:16 am

Hi,

I am following you guide and I am currently am able to send an event to eventghost via the alexa. I am simply putting the word "off" into my ifttt pushbullet link and my event ghost is registering an event when I trgger the IFTTT. I can also create a folder under my config tree and autostart pushpullet plugin; However, the problem comes when it is not allowing me to create another event under the "MyMacros" folder that I have created. How exactly is you configuration tree set up so that once you issue your IFTTT command, the event tree triggers the bat file.

blaher
Experienced User
Posts: 465
Joined: Thu Nov 17, 2011 1:27 am

Re: How to control computers with ALEXA using batch files

Post by blaher » Wed Jul 12, 2017 2:53 am

koble73 wrote:Hi,

How exactly is you configuration tree set up so that once you issue your IFTTT command, the event tree triggers the bat file.
Sounds like you need to use the 'System/Run Application action' and put the .bat file there. Then drag your event into that macro.

It's a long way to go about it using IFTTT. I'd recommend the HA bridge, in conjunction the EG's webserver plugin. It runs on Windows, just like EG, and will have a quicker response time, and be simpler to setup. Here's a quick example of how it works:

http://imgur.com/a/pC75f

I can help if you want to go down this path instead, if it's unclear.

Edit: apparently the HA Bridge can run .bat files directly, without even needing EG, but I couldn't get it to work. https://github.com/bwssytems/ha-bridge/issues/197 has some clues though.

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