Steve’s Node-Red Guide

What is Node Red? –Node red is a Open Source flow based tool and IOT platform and Dashboard developed by IBM and written in Node.js.

Node-red lets you easily build applications by joining together black box functions (nodes) using a web interface, and it requires very little, if any, programming knowledge.

Because of its flexibility and ease of use node-red is ideally suited for building IOT and Home control dashboards and automations as well as many other applications.

Node-red can be installed locally on Windows and Linux and also because of its small size also on the raspberry Pi.

It is also available as a cloud server from IBM and others like FRED and flowforge.

Node-Red Introduction and Overview

Here is a the official introductory video from the node-red team which give you a good overview of what node-red is.

Node-Red Tutorials – Quick Links

Getting Started

Before you can use node-red locally you will need to install it and start it running.

This tutorial Installing and Starting Node-Red explains how to do that.

The next step is to become familiar with the editor interface.

Node-Red Administration

Like all applications there is a certain amount of administration and configuration that needs to be done. These tutorials cover the main administration aspects.


Node-Red Nodes and Programming

Node-red works by passing messages between nodes and this is critical to understand before you start wiring nodes together and is explained in Understanding The Node-Red Message Object


Node-Red Dashboards

You can create node-red dashboards for IOT and Home automation and for a myriad of other applications.

However the nodes that allow you to do this aren’t part of the core nodes and need to be installed.


Node-Red IOT and Home Automation

Industrial IOT and home automation applications will generally use one or more of the following protocols.

  • MQTT
  • HTTP

Nodes for these protocols are part of the core nodes.You can find out how to use these nodes in the following tutorials:



However Industrial IOT projects also use modbus and there are modbus nodes available that you will need to be installed.



Many flows will utilize notification via email, SMS etc for errors and status messages.


Using the Node-Red Email Node

Node-Red Data Storage


Storing IOT data in a SQLite Database


Useful Tools

Useful Links

Summary Of Terms

Note: These are the terms and meanings used in tutorials and videos.

Workspace – Contains all of your flows

Flow – A collection of nodes and wires

Flow Canvas – The Flow Edit screen

Node – A packaged JavaScript function with data.

Wire – A connection between nodes.

Latest Tutorials

Latest tutorials are on the blog page


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