A mode represents a general condition that may affect many macros. For instance, maybe you have a bunch of macros that you like to have happen when you're at home, but you don't want to needlessly run up your electric bill if you're not home. And maybe you have some other macros for security purposes that you only want to happen when you're away. Some macros you'll want to happen regardless of whether you're home or away. You can easily add an "Away" mode and set all the macros that should only trigger when you're away to only allow them to be triggered when that mode is active, and for the macros that should only be allowed to trigger when you're home, you can set them up to not be allowed to trigger when the away mode is active. Nothing needs to be done with modes for macros that you want to happen regardless of the state of any mode.
The Set Mode action lets you control the state of a mode from a macro. Let's say you have a key chain remote that you want to turn the mode on and off. Just create a macro with a sensor trigger that watches for that X10 code, and add an action to turn the mode on. You can create another macro that watches for the off state of that same sensor and have it turn the mode off.
Name - This should be a brief description of the action. This is displayed in the action list so put something here that helps you figure out what this action is for. It puts a default there for you in case you're not very creative.
Description - If you like to be wordy, this field is where you would put all the nitty-gritty details about the action that you think are important. This field shows up in the selection list too, but otherwise isn't used.
Mode - Select the mode you with to control. If you haven't yet added the mode, you can click the Setup Modes button to bring up the window where you can add, delete or change modes.
Set To - Set the mode to On to turn the mode on, or Off to turn the mode off.
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