A smarthome is not characterized solely by control via smartphone or voice commands. Instead, control should be intelligent and automatic. However, sometimes the magic behind it can be hard to grasp. In such cases, a log can help. We will not only guide you through the process of activating, filtering and evaluating logs, but also show you in what other situations they can be useful.

Enable Logging

When you open logs in Controller for HomeKit, you will see a button to start recording. Once you tap on “Enable Logging,” all activities in your home will be recorded and displayed in a list.

Enable logging

Apple Home and Matter accessories report states, such as changes, which Controller for HomeKit can display as long as the app is open. Once you close the app, no more activities will be recorded.

Analyze Logs

Depending on the number of Apple Home and Matter accessories, the list can quickly become extensive. If you’re simply curious about the logs, that’s fine. However, you often want to find something specific. In such cases, smart folders are useful.

You can add a new smart folder by tapping on the plus icon in the upper-right corner.

Add smart folder

Then, you can assign a name and set various filters.

Assign Names and Set Filters

You can filter accessories by room, name, service name, service type, or characteristic type. For example, if you want to see all changes from lamps in a room, you can select the room and choose “Lightbulb” under service type.

View Only Lamps in a Specific Room

If you only want to see the turning on and off of lamps, you can also add “Power Status” as a characteristic type.

View Only Lamp On/Off Changes

The distinction between service type and characteristic type can be simplified as follows: Service types encompass all accessory properties, whereas characteristic types focus on specific accessory properties.

Record Logs Over an Extended Period

Unfortunately, Apple currently does not allow background recording or control of Apple Home. To record logs over an extended period, the app must remain open. In this case, it’s advisable to keep Controller for HomeKit open on a Mac. Please note that the Mac must be turned on and not in sleep mode.


In the logs, you will find all status changes reported by accessories to Apple Home. It won’t show you what caused the change, such as an automation, accessory control, or the periodic status update from the accessory itself.

Additionally, as described in “Recording Logs Over an Extended Period”, the app must remain open to record changes. This is a limitation imposed by Apple, over which we have no control.


Logs can be extremely useful for various reasons. For instance, we use this feature to analyze unexpected behaviors of individual accessories, determine the default reporting intervals of sensors, or monitor and review automations.