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  • Node-RED is a very powerful and easy-to-use web-based open-source editor that is used to make connections and communications between different systems possible.
  • Any devices such as IO, IoT, or IIoT can be connected easily through Node-RED and we can also connect API’S, Cloud-based systems and databases, and make any combinations between them as one can imagine.
  • Projects in Node-RED consist of nodes connected through wires (i.e. virtual wires) where each node output corresponds as an input to another node.
  • Node-RED is built on node.js, and it provides a very easy-to-use javascript editor to create our functions and do the analytics and modify the data according to our needs.
  • Node-RED is programmable on most of the systems that include- macOS, Windows, Linux, raspberry pie, and much more.
  • Node-RED provides a one-click deployment over the server, which makes it very easy to deploy the code.


  • Nodes are the functions or processes that are used to create a workflow in Node-RED.
  • Nodes can use pre-defined functionalities or we can define our functions in them.
  • Nodes can be triggered by any external events, timer, receiving output from previous nodes, HTTP requests, any pre-defined events, or manually also.
  • By default many nodes are pre-defined and we can easily use them by just clicking on them, there are n number of nodes that can be used with just one click
  • If we want to use some external nodes that are not provided then we can easily import them into our project.
  • There is a configured node that can be shared among different nodes for sharing a common configuration.
  • Debug Node is provided for debugging the flow.
  • Input Nodes have a small icon on the right while the output node has on the left, defining the type of action the node takes.

Flows And Wires

  • Flow is a set of nodes connected using wires.
  • Wires are the strings that connect two or more nodes and how the message will be conveyed.
  • Different flows can be interconnected with each other.


Installation (for mac only)

  • Node is a pre-requisite for running Node-RED, so firstly we will install node, we can directly install node from node.js official site or with the help of brew also, the command for brew is-
  •  brew install node
  • The command for installing Node-RED
  •  sudo npm install -g –unsafe-perm node-red
  • Command to run Node-RED locally
  •  node-red
  • If everything works fine then this will be printed in console-
  •  18 Jul 14:21:21 – [info] Server now running at
  •  18 Jul 14:21:21 – [info] Starting flows
  •  18 Jul 14:21:21 – [info] Started flows
  • On opening

On the left side of the image we can see the nodes while on the right we have debug, deploy, help ,config and other infos.

Creating a flow

  • We will create a simple flow that will publish the current timestamp.
  • Drag and drop the inject node and the debug node from the nodes options available on the left side of the screen.
  • Connect both the nodes, i.e. connect inject node with debug node using wires.
  • By default timestamp is provided in the inject node by node-red
  • Click on the deploy button, then click on the left side of the inject node.
  • On the debug window on the right side of the screen you will be able to see the current timestamp.
  • These two nodes connected with a wire is known as a flow.


  • https://nodered.org/docs/getting-started/

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