I am quite new to the RasPi community, but I got drawn here by a very specific use-case: I wanted to build my own (configurable) alarm clock connected to further devices in my home.

A first step would be to use a 433MhZ sender to trigger dimmable power outlets and slowly turn on the lights.

Further steps could include turning on a radio or the tv, a coffee maker, the shutters, etc.

For this I am using a Raspberry Pi B+ and the 10-4-2017 Raspbian-Jessie with Pixel Build.

I have seen many tutorials out there that show how to build an actual alarm clock with a segment display, buttons and a speaker on the Pi, however that is not something I am looking for.

What I am looking for is a solution that:

  1. has a GUI for setting an alarm time (remotely e.g. from a webservice to be set from my android phone and/or from X)
  2. allows custom scripts to be executed on, before and after the alarm time
  3. has a GUI that shows the current time on an LCD screen with X (optional)

An alternative solution would be putting the timekeeping part entirely on the Android phone and have the Pi just offer functions (i.e. triggering the lights via an event or web-api). In that case I would be looking for an Android Alarm Clock capable of that.

Is there anything out there which I am overlooking?

Thanks in advance!

1 Answer 1


Your question is rather broad but what you describe as an "Alarm Clock" controlling lights and turning on the tv etc is actually the scheduled automation of home devices which is easily achievable with a Raspberry Pi.

There are many different home automation backend systems our there which will run on the rpi and either give you a built in graphical frontend, allow you to plug in a third party gui or depending on your coding skills will allow you to create your own web based frontend that sends commands to the backend.

So the short answer is yes you can do everything you want in your question with an rpi B+ including creating a graphical frontend that looks exactly like an alarm clock and switches home devices including lights, tv, coffee maker etc on and off based on a configurable schedule - BUT, you will have to program that yourself. So whether you can 100% achieve your goal in the question will depend very much on your programming skills.

Here is some information as to how I have achieved some of what you want to do in your question with my rpi3b

On my rpi (jessie lite) I am running the following in docker containers

  • php as backend scripting language
  • mysql database
  • apache/nginx as the webserver
  • FHEM as the home automation backend

For hardware I have a - RFXtrx433E USB HA controller for controlling 433Mhz devices

On my client (laptop, smartphone etc) as the frontend gui I have an html5 web page built using framework 7 and jquery. From the webpage I can send commands to the backend to turn on and off 433Mhz wireless sockets, or Wifi enabled sockets. I store all my home data - devices, events, schedules in a database. The rpi queries and updates this.

I schedule events using data from the db or things like presence - if I am at home or not, and this is executed via a cron job running on the rpi. I would not recommend you trying to schedule things via your android device, for the schedule to be reliable the device needs to be always on, and always available.

I turn devices on and off depending on their type either via commands to FHEM or by directly sending data to the device - this is all done using php.

My gui looks like this

enter image description here

But it could also look like an alarm clock, or something our of Star Trek if I wanted!

If you are unable to program the frontend yourself here are some more links to home automation systems with gui interfaces to give you an idea of what you can do.

  1. Home Assistant
  2. Openhab
  3. FHEM Table UI demos

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