“TLDR; I built a openwrt based custom firmware(autom8box), that packs router_functionality+domoticz_server+mqtt_broker which is all-in-one home-automation-gateway-solution running on a cheap $20 router that can be purchased off-the-shelf.
Wifi based home automation products are cheaper compared to zigbee or z-wave products, but the downside is, wifi devices need internet connection to perform their function. Letting your home devices controlled by a bunch of cloud servers on the internet may not be the best idea.
Internet connectivity for home devices should be optional - user should be incharge of deciding whether he/she wants to expose the home-devices to internet(may be for remote monitoring/controlling purpose), but in today’s world, there are so called “alexa”/”google-home” compliant wifi devices who insist on internet else they wont work.
Thanks to the opensource community(tasmota/espurna/etc) for helping us to jailbreak those wifi devices like sonoff/blitzwolf/teckin/etc.. but jailbreaking solves part of the problem, still the need for a home-automation gateway is a challenge and requires some advanced knowledge of setting-up wifi_access_point + mqtt_broker + automation_gateway_server(ex: domoticz/openHab).
To address this gateway problem in a simplest and cheapest way, here is my attempt to convert an existing Off-the-shelf cheap wifi-router into a full-automation-gateway to support following functionalities.
dhcp and dns server
GL-MT300Nv2 is a ~$20 device which supports opensource firmware like openwrt. All I did was to build my own variant of openwrt firmware that includes all necessary components like domoticz and mqtt-broker.”