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Written by Miloslav Bien, Tuesday 22 November 2022

Node-Red Implementation

Two magic words
connected with the IoT world? Yes, Node-RED. We have been enabling our customers to work with this software (in Advantech routers) already for some time now.

The purpose of this post is not to explain how the Node-RED works, but rather to explain the installation options in our routers. If you decide to use Node-RED, you have two installation options.

The first option is to install individual Node-RED nodes as "Router-Apps". Details on how to install are possible to find in our comprehensive Application Note.

The second option is to use the Docker container solution and install Node-RED using the standard Docker "image" way. In this case, we are not responsible for the correct operation of Node-RED as a router hardware and software producer - Docker image is publicly available written by community authors, and ready for download on the Internet for free use.

Both solutions lead to the same goal – running Node-RED on our routers, but they differ in details that may be important for application operation. The first option gives you stability assurance as we work with the Node-RED as a „closed application“ and test Router App nodes with this “locked” Node-RED edition. In exchange, you need to accept that our „locked“ Node-RED edition is not up to date and running behind the Node-RED community releases. You may avoid this if you feel it is important for you by using installation option two for selected router models – Node-RED as a Docker image gives you a chance to work with the newest Node-RED community releases and nodes available on the Internet. Further differences between those 2 installation options would be well noticed from the table below.

 Node-Red via RouterAppsNode-Red via Docker
Hardware compatibility:
SmartStart SL305YesYes, Node-Red:minimal*
SmartFlex, SmartMotionYesNo
ICR-3200YesYes, Node-Red:minimal*
ICR-4400YesYes, Node-Red:latest**
Set of nodes adapted for and tested with Advantech routersYesNo
Router specific nodesYesNo
Latest versions of Node-Red
(update from the Internet)
Size consumed in the filesystemLowHigh
Preconfigured HTTPS with router certificatesYesNo
Installing as a single fileNoYes
npm installation support
(JS only or pre-compiled bins for ARM v7)
Yes, without
Advantech support
Advantech supportYesNo

Pull an image or a repository from a registry:
* docker pull nodered/node-red:2.2.3-12-minimal (actual version)
** docker pull nodered/node-red:latest