Outdated custom components and integrations might break in Home Assistant Core 2021.6

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With Home Assistant Core 2021.6, a new requirement will be introduced which might cause old custom components and custom integrations to stop working. The change in question was first announced over three months ago, with the release of Home Assistant Core 2021.3 and now that the grace period for developers has passed, it will come in to action with this month's release.

As of this month, custom components and custom integrations will universally require a version key. This key, which is part of the manifest.json file, should be a string with a major, minor and patch version (for example, "1.0.0").

Why custom components and integrations are changing

In lieu of the recent security issues that affected several popular and widely used custom components and custom integrations, a series of utilities were deprecated, and the version requirement was added.

Most components you can install using HACS already fulfil this requirement, as it allows users to know which version of a custom component or integration they are running, and whether they need an update or not. Additionally, the Home Assistant developers can also block any versions that have been deemed to be insecure. All in all, the requirement of a version key is a win for security.

What will happen to custom components that aren't updated?

Custom components and custom integrations that haven't been updated to include the version key will no longer be loaded as Home Assistant Core starts. The consequence is the same for existing and new installations of Home Assistant Core: the component will be broken until the developer fixes it.

Which custom components will no longer be supported?

Unfortunately, there is no easy way of creating a list of all custom components and custom integrations that need to be updated to work with Home Assistant Core 2021.6 and any upcoming releases. Though you can easily check any repository, you might be using, manually: Visit the GitHub repository of the component in question and navigate to the folder custom_components/NAME/. Inside that folder, look for the manifest.json file. In the examples below you can see that the BlueIris integration has a version key, but the gPodder integration does not.

The manifest file for the BlueIris custom component for Home Assistant without a version key.
The manifest file for the gPodder custom component for Home Assistant without a version key.
A portrait photo oif Liam Alexander Colman, the author, creator, and owner of Home Assistant Guide wearing a suit.

About Liam Alexander Colman

is an experienced Home Assistant user who has been utilizing the platform for a variety of projects over an extended period. His journey began with a Raspberry Pi, which quickly grew to three Raspberry Pis and eventually a full-fledged server. Liam's current operating system of choice is Unraid, with Home Assistant comfortably running in a Docker container.
With a deep understanding of the intricacies of Home Assistant, Liam has an impressive setup, consisting of various Zigbee devices, and seamless integrations with existing products such as his Android TV box. For those interested in learning more about Liam's experience with Home Assistant, he shares his insights on how he first started using the platform and his subsequent journey.

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