The definition metadata defines core information about your Device Handler. The initial values are set from the values entered when creating your Device Handler.

Example definition metadata:

metadata {
    definition(name: "test device", namespace: "yournamespace", author: "your name") {

        capability "Alarm"
        capability "battery"

        attribute "customAttribute", "string"

        command "customCommand"

        fingerprint profileId: "0104", inClusters: "0000,0003,0006",
                    outClusters: "0019"


The definition method takes a map of parameters, and a closure.

The supported parameters are:

The name of the Device Handler
The namespace for this Device Handler. This should be your github user name. This is used when looking up Device Handlers by name to ensure the correct one is found, even if someone else has used the same name.
The author of this Device Handler.

The closure defines the capabilities, attributes, commands, and fingerprint information for your Device Handler.


To define that your device supports a capability, simply call the capability method in the closure passed to definition.

The argument to the capability method is the Capability name.

capability "Actuator"
capability "Power Meter"
capability "Refresh"
capability "Switch"


If you need to define a custom attribute for your Device Handler, call the attribute() method in the closure passed to the definition() method:

attribute(String attributeName, String attributeType, List possibleValues = null)

Name of the attribute
Type of the attribute. Available types are “string”, “number”, and “enum”
Optional. The possible values for this attribute. Only valid with the “enum” attributeType.
// String attribute with name "someName"
attribute "someName", "string"

// enum attribute with possible values "light" and "dark"
attribute "someOtherName", "enum", ["light", "dark"]


To define a custom command for your Device Handler, call the command() method in the closure passed to the definition() method:

command(String commandName, List parameterTypes = [])

The name of the command. You must also define a method in your Device Handler with the same name.
Optional. An ordered list of the parameter types for the command method, if needed.
// command name "myCommand" with no parameters
command "myCommand"

// comand name myCommandWithParams that takes a string and a number parameter
command "myCommandWithParams", ["string", "number"]


// each command specified in the definition must have a corresponding method

def myCommand() {
    // handle command

// this command takes parameters as defined in the definition
def myCommandWithParams(stringParam, numberParam) {
    // handle command


When a ZigBee or Z-Wave device is added to the SmartThings hub, we need a way to determine which device type to assign it. This process is known as a “join” process, or “fingerprinting”.

Device Handlers define “fingerprints” to specify which devices or what kinds of devices they support. Then, when a device is added, its join information is compared to all fingerprints in the default handlers and your self-published handlers to determine which type of device it is..

The fingerprinting process differs between ZigBee and Z-Wave devices.

ZigBee fingerprinting

For ZigBee devices, the main profileIds you will need to use are

  • HA: Home Automation (0104)
  • SEP: Smart Energy Profile
  • ZLL: ZigBee Light Link (C05E)

The input and output clusters are defined specifically by your device and should be available via the device’s documentation.

An example of a ZigBee fingerprint definition:

fingerprint profileId: "C05E", inClusters: "0000,0003,0004,0005,0006,0008,0300,1000", outClusters: "0019"

You can also include the manufacturer and model name in the fingerprint to limit the fingerprint to a specific product:

fingerprint inClusters: "0000,0001,0003,0020,0406,0500", manufacturer: "NYCE", model: "3014"

Z-Wave fingerprinting

Z-Wave fingerprints used to be based on the format used for ZigBee, but there is now a new format that is preferred. You may see the original fingerprints on older Device Handlers; see below for information on the legacy format.

The best place to start is to add your device to SmartThings and look for the Raw Description in its details view in the SmartThings developer tools.

Z-Wave raw description

Z-Wave devices added since the introduction of the new format will have raw description strings with multiple key-value fields, such as:

zw:Ss type:2101 mfr:0086 prod:0102 model:0064 ver:1.04 zwv:4.05 lib:03 cc:5E,86,72,98,84 ccOut:5A sec:59,85,73,71,80,30,31,70,7A role:06 ff:8C07 ui:8C07

Not all fields will be present for every device.

This field will start with ‘L’ for listening devices, ‘S’ for sleepy devices, and ‘F’ for beamable devices. See the Z-Wave Primer for the meaning of those terms. That capital letter will be followed by a lowercase ‘s’ if the device is securely included into the network via the Z-Wave Security Layer.
This field is the Z-Wave Device Class as a 16-bit hexadecimal number that combines the Generic and Specific Device Class codes. [1]
This 16-bit hexadecimal number identifies the device manufacturer. [1] The three values of mfr, prod and model uniquely identify a certified Z-Wave product.
This 16-bit hexadecimal number is the Product Type ID reported by the device.
This 16-bit hexadecimal number is the Product ID reported by the device.
This is the application firmware version reported by the device.
This is the version of the Z-Wave protocol stack being used by the device.
This indicates the type of Z-Wave protocol libary the device is based on. ‘01’ is a static controller, ‘02’ is a remote controller, ‘07’ is a bridge controller, and other values are normal non-controller devices.
The list of Z-Wave command classes supported by the device (without security encapsulation). See the Z-Wave Command Reference for the command classes represented by each hex code.
The list of Z-Wave command classes that the device can control. This refers to commands sent to other devices versus reports generated by the device.
These command classes are supported by the device only via Z-Wave Security encapsulation.
These command classes are controlled by the device only via Z-Wave Security encapsulation.
This indicates the Z-Wave Plus Role Type. [1]
This stands for “form factor” and corresponds to the Z-Wave+ Installer Icon type (An offset of 0x8000 is added for implementation reasons). [1]
This corresponds to the Z-Wave+ User Icon type.
[1](1, 2, 3, 4) See this document for the values of identifiers defined by the Z-Wave standard.

New Z-Wave fingerprint format

If you’re writing a Device Handler for a specific device, you can base the fingerprint on the manufacturer info. For example, the fingerprint to match the raw description example above would be:

fingerprint mfr: "0086", prod: "0102", model: "0064"

No other parameters are required. Note that you need to add quotes and commas to the more concise raw description format to make it valid Groovy code.

Sometimes related products are grouped under the same ‘prod’ ID. In that case you can use a fingerprint without the ‘model’ parameter.

If you are writing a general Device Handler that supports all devices of a certain type, you can still base the fingerprint on command class support.

fingerprint type: "10", cc: "25,32"

That fingerprint would match all devices of the Binary Switch generic device class – i.e. their ‘type’ starts with “10” – that support the Binary Switch (0x25) and Meter (0x32) command classes.

The supported parameters are:

Matches if it’s equal to or a prefix of the device’s ‘type’ value in the raw description. Aliased as ‘deviceId’.
mfr, prod, model:
Matches if ‘mfr’ matches the raw description and ‘prod’ and ‘model’ match as prefixes (if present).
cc, ccOut:
Takes a list of command class codes as a string: comma-separated, uppercase hexadecimal. Matches if all listed command class codes are reported as supported or controlled respectively in the device’s raw description.
sec, secOut:
The same as the previous parameter, but only matches against command classes the device supports/controls only via Z-Wave Security encapsulation.
Either of these parameters can be used to match against the corresponding fields of the raw description. It is only possible to use one of the following in a single fingerprint: ‘type’, ‘deviceId’, ‘ff’, ui’.
Not used for matching. If the fingerprint matches, the device will appear to the user with this name.

When multiple device fingerprints match an added Z-Wave device, they are ranked first by number of ‘mfr’, ‘prod’, and ‘model’ parameters, then by the number of command classes listed, and finally by the length of the ‘type’, ‘ff’, or ‘ui’ parameter. When fingerprints have the same rank, self-published Device Handlers take precedence over the default production ones.

Legacy Z-Wave fingeprint format

Legacy fingerprints include the device class – or type value (see above) – in the deviceId parameter and the command classes it supports in the inClusters parameter. So the fingerprint:

fingerprint deviceId:"0x1104", inClusters:"0x26, 0x2B, 0x2C, 0x27, 0x73, 0x70, 0x86, 0x72", outClusters: "0x20"

would be formatted in the new style as:

fingerprint type: "1104", cc: "26,2B,2C,27,73,70,86,72", ccOut: "20"

Fingerprinting best practices

Add multiple fingerprints

A Device Handler can have multiple fingerprints in order to work with multiple versions of a device. Each fingerprint is independent. If any of them is the highest ranking match, the device will use your device type.

You can distinguish between the different devices that use the handler by adding the ‘deviceJoinName’ parameter. For example:

fingerprint profileId: "0104", inClusters: "0000, 0003, 0004, 0005, 0006, 0008, 0702"
fingerprint profileId: "0104", inClusters: "0000, 0003, 0004, 0005, 0006, 0008, 0702, 0B05", outClusters: "0019", manufacturer: "sengled", model: "Z01-CIA19NAE26", deviceJoinName: "Sengled Element touch"
fingerprint profileId: "0104", inClusters: "0000, 0003, 0004, 0005, 0006, 0008, 0702, 0B05", outClusters: "000A, 0019", manufacturer: "Jasco Products", model: "45852", deviceJoinName: "GE Zigbee Plug-In Dimmer"
fingerprint profileId: "0104", inClusters: "0000, 0003, 0004, 0005, 0006, 0008, 0702, 0B05", outClusters: "000A, 0019", manufacturer: "Jasco Products", model: "45857", deviceJoinName: "GE Zigbee In-Wall Dimmer"

If an added device supports the inClusters in the first fingerprint but doesn’t match all the extra info in any of the next three, it will join with the name from the handler’s definition metadata, in this case “ZigBee Dimmer Power.”

Device pairing process

The order of the inClusters and outClusters lists is not important to the pairing process. It is a best practice, however, to list the clusters in ascending order.

The device can have more clusters than the fingerprint specifies, and it will still pair. If one of the clusters specified in the fingerprint is incorrect, the device will not pair.

Overly-general fingerprints

If you wish to publish or share a Device Handler, you must make sure that the fingerprints do not capture other devices that aren’t covered by your handler.

If you copied a working fingerprint from a default or template handler, it would be ambiguous which type should match if yours was published. The easiest way to remedy this is to include manufacturer and model info in all fingerprints.