Telegram Binding

The Telegram binding allows sending and receiving messages to and from Telegram clients (https://telegram.org), by using the Telegram Bot API.

Prerequisites

As described in the Telegram Bot API, this is the manual procedure needed in order to get the necessary information.

  1. Create the Bot and get the Token
  • On a Telegram client open a chat with BotFather.
  • Send /newbot to BotFather and fill in all the needed information. The authentication token that is given will be needed in the next steps.
  1. Create the destination chat
  • Open a chat with your new Bot and send any message to it. The next step will not work unless you send a message to your bot first.
  1. Get the chatId
  • Open a browser and invoke https://api.telegram.org/bot<token>/getUpdates (where <token> is the authentication token previously obtained)
  • Look at the JSON result to find the value of id. That is the chatId. Note that if using a Telegram group chat, the group chatIds are prefixed with a dash that must be included in the config file. (e.g. bot1.chatId: -22334455)
  1. Test the bot
  • Open this URL in your web browser, replacing <token> with the authentication token and <chatId> with the chatId:
  • https://api.telegram.org/bot<token>/sendMessage?chat_id=<chatId>&text=testing
  • Your Telegram-bot should send you a message with the text: testing

Notice: By default your bot will only receive messages that either start with the '/' symbol or mention the bot by username (or if you talk to it directly). However, if you add your bot to a group you must either talk to BotFather and send the command "/setprivacy" and then disable it or you give admin rights to your bot in that group. Otherwise you will not be able to receive those messages.

Supported Things

telegramBot - A Telegram Bot that can send and receive messages.

The Telegram binding supports the following things which origin from the latest message sent to the Telegram bot:

  • message text
  • message date
  • full name of sender (first name + last name)
  • username of sender
  • chat id (used to identify the chat of the last message)
  • reply id (used to identify an answer from a user of a previously sent message by the binding)

Please note that the things cannot be used to send messages. In order to send a message, an action must be used instead.

Thing Configuration

telegramBot parameters:

Property Default Required Description
chatIds Yes Comma-separated list of chat ids
botToken Yes authentication token
parseMode None No Support for formatted messages, values: Markdown or HTML.

Channels

Channel Type ID Item Type Description
lastMessageText String The last received message
lastMessageDate DateTime The date of the last received message (UTC)
lastMessageName String The full name of the sender of the last received message
lastMessageUsername String The username of the sender of the last received message
chatId String The id of the chat of the last received meesage
replyId String The id of the reply which was passed to sendTelegram() as replyId argument. This id can be used to have an unambiguous assignment of the users reply to the message which was sent by the bot

Rule Actions

This binding includes a rule action, which allows to send Telegram messages from within rules.

val telegramAction = getActions("telegram","telegram:telegramBot:<uid>")

where uid is the Thing UID of the Telegram thing (not the chat id!).

Once this action instance is retrieved, you can invoke the `sendTelegram' method on it:

telegramAction.sendTelegram("Hello world!")

The following actions are supported. Each of the actions returns true on success or false on failure.

Actions to send messages to all configured chats

These actions will send a message to all chat ids configured for this bot.

Action Description
sendTelegram(String message) Sends a message.
sendTelegram(String format, Object... args) Sends a formatted message (See https://docs.oracle.com/javase/8/docs/api/java/util/Formatter.html for more information).
sendTelegramQuery(String message, String replyId, String... buttons) Sends a question to the user that can be answered via the defined buttons. The replyId can be freely choosen and is sent back with the answer. Then, the id is required to identify what question has been answered (e.g. in case of multiple open questions). The final result looks like this: Telegram Inline Keyboard.
sendTelegramAnswer(String replyId, String message) Sends a message after the user has answered a question. You should always call this method after you received an answer. It will remove buttons from the specific question and will also stop the progress bar displayed at the client side. If no message is necessary, just pass null here.
sendTelegramPhoto(String photoURL, String caption) Sends a picture. The URL can be specified using the http, https, and file protocols or a base64 encoded image.

Actions to send messages to a particular chat

Just put the chat id (must be a long value!) as the first argument to one of the above mentioned APIs:

telegramAction.sendTelegram(1234567L, "Hello world!")

Full Example

Send a text message to telegram chat

telegram.rules

rule "Send telegram with Fixed Message"
when
   Item Foo changed
then
   val telegramAction = getActions("telegram","telegram:telegramBot:2b155b22")
   telegramAction.sendTelegram("item Foo changed")
end

Send a text message with a formatted message

telegram.rules

rule "Send telegram with Formatted Message"
when
   Item Foo changed
then
   val telegramAction = getActions("telegram","telegram:telegramBot:2b155b22")
   telegramAction.sendTelegram("item Foo changed to %s and number is %.1f", Foo.state.toString, 23.56)
end

Send an image to telegram chat

http, https, and file are the only protocols allowed or a base64 encoded image.

telegram.rules

rule "Send telegram with image and caption from image accessible by url"
when
    Item Light_GF_Living_Table changed
then
    val telegramAction = getActions("telegram","telegram:telegramBot:2b155b22")
    telegramAction.sendTelegramPhoto("http://www.openhab.org/assets/images/openhab-logo-top.png",
        "sent from openHAB")
end

telegram.rules

rule "Send telegram with image without caption from image accessible by url"
when
    Item Light_GF_Living_Table changed
then
    val telegramAction = getActions("telegram","telegram:telegramBot:2b155b22")
    telegramAction.sendTelegramPhoto("http://www.openhab.org/assets/images/openhab-logo-top.png",
        null)
end

To send a base64 jpeg or png image:

telegram.rules

rule "Send telegram with base64 image and caption"
when
    Item Light_GF_Living_Table changed
then
    val telegramAction = getActions("telegram","telegram:telegramBot:2b155b22")
    var String base64Image = "iVBORw0KGgoAAAANSUhEUgAAAEAAAABACAMAAACdt4HsAAAAS1BMVEUAAABAQEA9QUc7P0Y0OD88QEY+QUhmaW7c3N3w8PBlaG0+QUjb29w5PUU3O0G+vsigoas6P0WfoKo4O0I9QUdkZ2w9Qkg+QkkkSUnT3FKbAAAAGXRSTlMACJbx//CV9v//9pT/7Ur//+z/SfD2kpMHrnfDaAAAAGhJREFUeAHt1bUBAzAMRFGZmcL7LxpOalN5r/evLIlgGwBgXMhxSjP64sa6cdYH+hLWzYiKvqSbI4kQeEt5PlBealsMFIkAAgi8HNriOLcjduLTafWwBB9n3p8v/+Ma1Mxxvd4IAGCzB4xDPuBRkEZiAAAAAElFTkSuQmCC"
    telegramAction.sendTelegramPhoto(base64Image, "battery of motion sensor is empty")
end

To send an image that resides on the local computer file system:

telegram.rules

rule "Send telegram with local image and caption"
when
    Item Light_GF_Living_Table changed
then
    val telegramAction = getActions("telegram","telegram:telegramBot:2b155b22")
    telegramAction.sendTelegramPhoto("file://C:/mypicture.jpg", "sent from openHAB")
end

To send an image based on an Image Item:

telegram.rules

rule "Send telegram with Image Item image and caption"
when
    Item Webcam_Image changed
then
    val telegramAction = getActions("telegram","telegram:telegramBot:2b155b22")
    telegramAction.sendTelegramPhoto(Webcam_Image.state.toFullString, "sent from openHAB")
end

To receive a message and react on that:

telegram.items

String telegramMessage "Telegram Message" { channel = "telegram:telegramBot:2b155b22:lastMessageText" }

telegram.rules

rule "Receive telegram"
when
    Item telegramMessage received update "lights off"
then
    gLights.sendCommand(OFF)
end

To send a question with two alternatives and a reply from the bot:

telegram.items

String telegramReplyId "Telegram Reply Id" { channel = "telegram:telegramBot:2b155b22:replyId" }

telegram.rules

rule "Send telegram with question"
when
    Item Presence changed to OFF
then
    val telegramAction = getActions("telegram","telegram:telegramBot:2b155b22")
    telegramAction.sendTelegramQuery("No one is at home, but some lights are still on. Do you want me to turn off the lights?", "Reply_Lights", "Yes", "No")
end


rule "Reply handler for lights"
when
    Item telegramReplyId received update Reply_Lights
then
    val telegramAction = getActions("telegram","telegram:telegramBot:2b155b22")

    if (telegramMessage.state.toString == "Yes")
    {
        gLights.sendCommand(OFF)
        telegramAction.sendTelegramAnswer(telegramReplyId.state.toString, "Ok, lights are *off* now.") 
    }
    else
    {
        telegramAction.sendTelegramAnswer(telegramReplyId.state.toString, "Ok, I'll leave them *on*.")
    }
end