Common tasks with the CLI

A full list of available tasks is returned by running lifx help.


The <reference> used in these common tasks is explained in the CLI reference. It determines which devices will be affected by the task used.

find_devices and find_ips

List the serial numbers of all discovered devices on the local network:

$ lifx lan:find_devices

List the serial numbers and associated IP address of all discovered devices:

$ lifx lan:find_ips

The find_ips action also comes with different output options. For example to get the ips as a HARDCODED_DISCOVERY export command:

$ lifx lan:find_ips -- '{"env_output": true}'

And to get them as yaml you can put in your configuration:

$ lifx lan:find_ips -- '{"settings_output": true}'

This task changes the power and colour of the target devices over an optionally specified duration. It can also perform waveform-based transformations similar to the Breathe and Pulse effects available via the LIFX HTTP API.

For example, turn off all the devices on the network

$ lifx lan:transform -- '{"power": "off"}'

Turn on a specific device:

$ lifx lan:transform d073d5001337 -- '{"power": "on"}'

Power on a group of devices and set to the color to red and brightness to 100% followed by a waveform to cycle between red and blue three times over three seconds at 50% brightness:

$ lifx lan:transform match:group_name=kitchen -- '{"color": "red", "brightness": 1, "power": "on"}'
$ lifx lan:transform match:group_name=kitchen -- '{"color": "blue", "brightness": 0.5, "effect": "SINE", "cycles": 3, "period": 1}'

This task gets or sets attributes on a device using a specific packet type. The packet type is specified in the <artifact> field of the lifx utility syntax, i.e. lifx lan:attr <reference> <artifact> -- <options>.

For example, get the color attribute value from all devices:

$ lifx lan:attr _ GetColor

Not all packet types include defaults for the available fields. For those types, a value must be explicity provided in the <options> field in valid JSON syntax:

$ lifx lan:attr match:label=den SetPower -- '{"level": 0}'

A full list of packet types and values is found on the packets page.


LIFX binary messages are a string of bytes represented as a hexadecimal value. For example a DeviceMessages.GetLabel in hex look likes:


Use the unpack task to retrieve the values from a LIFX binary message:

$ lifx unpack -- 2400001403b6cf3bd073d522932200000000000000000301000000000000000017000000 | jq
  "frame_address": {
    "ack_required": true,
    "res_required": true,
    "reserved2": "000000000000",
    "reserved3": "00",
    "sequence": 1,
    "target": "d073d52293220000"
  "frame_header": {
    "addressable": true,
    "protocol": 1024,
    "reserved1": "00",
    "size": 36,
    "source": 1003468291,
    "tagged": false
  "protocol_header": {
    "pkt_type": 23,
    "reserved4": "0000000000000000",
    "reserved5": "0000"


Tip: Pipe the output of the lifx unpack task through the jq utility to convert the JSON into human-readable format.


This task translates a dictionary of values into a LIFX binary message in hexadecimal format.

Using the same example as above, the pack command outputs the hexadecimal representation of the provided JSON:

$ lifx pack -- '{"frame_address": {"ack_required": true, "res_required": true, "reserved2": "000000000000", "reserved3": "00", "sequence": 1, "target": "d073d52293220000"}, "frame_header": {"addressable": true, "protocol": 1024, "reserved1": "00", "size": 36, "source": 1003468291, "tagged": false}, "protocol_header": {"pkt_type": 23, "reserved4": "0000000000000000", "reserved5": "0000"}}'

It is not necessary to provide values for all fields. The pack command only requires mandatory fields to be specified. For example, constructing a DeviceMessages.SetLabel message:

$ lifx pack -- '{"protocol": 1024, "pkt_type": 24, "source": 1, "sequence": 1, "target": "d073d5229322", "label": "basement"}'

Returns the currently running firmware effects on the specified devices. This only applies to devices with firmware effects, i.e. the Tile, Candle, Strip and Beam. Currently active waveforms are not considered an effect.


Starts a firmware effect on a Tile or Candle Colour device:

$ lifx lan:tile_effect _ morph

In the case of a range of device types being returned by the provided reference, only those with matrix firmware effects will be affected.

The available effects are morph, flame and off.


Starts a firmware effect on a Z Strip or Beam device:

$ lifx lan:multizone_effect _ move

In the case of a range of device types being returned by the provided reference, only those with multizone firmware effects will be affected.

The available effects are move and off.


Set a theme on your devices. By default, this applies a seven colour theme at 30% brightness onto the device.

Apply the default theme to all devices:

$ lifx lan:apply_theme

Apply a theme using only red and blue:

$ lifx lan:apply_theme -- '{"colors": ["red", "blue"]}'

Apply a theme using only red and blue at 100% brightness:

$ lifx lan:apply_theme -- '{"colors": ["red", "blue"], "overrides": {"brightness": 1}}'
Tile animations

See Tile animation commands