Firmware on the Chip

The firmware on the Sigma Designs Z-Wave transceiver chip is based on the original design recommendations of Sigma Designs published in the System Development Kit 6.51 (5th gen) and 4.54 (3rd gen). (This SDK is accessible under NDA with Sigma Designs only).

The firmware implements a static network controller supporting Network Wide Inclusion, Explorer Frame Network Healing and Wakeup of FLIRS device. The SUC and SIS function of the old Z-Wave network management architecture is not implemented for 3rd gen hardware. 

Compared to the standard firmware design used by almost all Z-Wave USB Sticks and other Z-Wave Host Interface hardware, the RaZberry firmware offers several extensions and enhancements:

  • Backup and recovery function including network topology
  • Extended Node Information Frame (up to 20 (3rd gen) and 35 (5th gen) Command Classes possible)
  • Optimized transmitting queue handling to speed up transmitting process
  • Firmware update from the Raspberry PI OS level in the field
  • Extended Wakeup Notification
  • Handling to extend battery life time of battery operated devices in the network
  • Watch Dog function

The firmware comes preloaded to the Sigma Designs transceiver hardware. It is possible to upgrade or downgrade the firmware, but the update file must be provided by Z-Wave.Me.

For 3rd gen hardware beside the standard firmware based on SDK 4.5.4 there is a downgraded firmware based on SDK 5.03

Attention: Do not flash a standard Sigma Design Firmware to the chip on the RaZberry Daughter board. The Z-Way Z-Wave Controller stack solution will not work anymore after such an operation.

Z-Way Z-Wave Controller

The transceiver firmware communicates with the Z-Way communication stack using the serial interface /dev/ttyAMA0. The Z-Way communication protocol stack organizes and manages the Z-Wave network and its devices and offers a simple to use and simple to understand User Interfaces hiding most of the complexity of the Z-Wave wireless network. The Z-Way API allows to write own Applications and Designs on top of the stable Z-Way protocol stack. The Application Programmers Interface to do this is documented and can be used without any Non Disclosure Agreement Restrictions. The Z-Way protocol stack offers a lot of unique features:

  • Certified Z-Wave Middleware written in C (Z-Wave Alliance Certification Number ZC10-14110009)
  • Full Z-Wave based Smart Home Gateway
  • Network management (Include, Exclude, Reorganize)
  • Device interview and configuration
  • Management of direct associations between devices
  • Sensor access and polling
  • Operating actors and access actors status
  • Automation engine with rules, scripts and timers with scripts in JavaScript
  • Job queue management
  • Tested against Raspbian "wheezy" OS (both hard float and soft float) and OpenElecOS
  • Implements Z-Wave Network controller based on SDK 6.51 or 4.54
  • Offers a native C level API plus web based JSON API
  • Local scripting based on Google Java Script Engine V8
  • Optimized data subscription model to minimize data traffic over the net
  • Localization based on XML language files
  • Utilizes the Pepper One Z-Wave device data base or user friendly configuration and association handling

Compatible with new Model B+ and Raspi 2 and 3

RaZberry is compatible with old Raspberry Pi Model B as well as with new Model B+. 2 and 3. on Raspi 3 you cant use Bluetooth together with Z-Wave since both require a real hardware UART but Raspi 3 only has one.

Users Voice

Yesterday I received my Razberry, plugged it on my baseboard and was up and running. Great Work Guys! Saves me month of effort dealing with the low-level Z-Wave stuff.

Wayne Hunt, Moonlight Software

Z-Wave Book

The new Book about Z-Wave (264 pages) written by Dr. Christian Paetz, is now available at or It mentions a lot of the UI elements of the current RaZberry demo UI and is a great documentation about Z-Wave in general.