Best practice and recommendations

Hey there,
I am a complete newbie in Node Red so sorry for the very basic questions.

I have some devices that I want to handle with NR:

  • a smart home system based on the homematic controller based on a a raspi (Raspberrymatic)
  • a management system for solar power based on Venus OS from Victron (on a second Raspi)
  • a Siemens Logo! SPS
  • some Shelly devices

In the future I also want to combine all this with iobroker.

And now the first and initial question is:
Where to install the NodeRed?
I am a complete Linux newbie so Windows would be cool.

Is it feasible to install NR on a windows 10/11 VM on a QNAP NAS?

This has - in my eyes - the following advantages

  • installed on a system that rins 24/7
  • independent from all the devices that it shall handle
  • easier to keep the NR most recent

Or woudld it be better to install it on a debian based Linux VM on the QNAP NAS?

Thanks for any hint

Yes, but that is (IMO) overkill and posses difficulties (like which user runs Node-RED, how to setup a service, unnecessarily running a FULL OS + GUI etc) not to mention all the setup to get NodeJS installed, Node-RED installed etc.

Better, but not the best. You are still running a full(er) OS than a container would and you still need to manage OS updates etc.

Since you can run containers on QNAP NAS, installing Node-RED as a docker image would be far less power hungry and even easier to maintain than having to upgrade OS packages, security patches etc etc.

Here is an older video - but the process has not changed much: 【】Node Red 1 - install Node-Red on QNAP NAS - YouTube

Urk! Maybe feasible if your QNAP has loads of memory. But, as Steve says, not the optimal approach.

If you are already using Docker, that would be a more sensible and less resource hungry approach. Oops, I now see Steve already said that. I'm not a great Docker fan but this is certainly a valid use-case if ever there was one.

Hey guys,
thanks for the hints.
Okay so VMs (either Win or Linux are overkill - understood.

So I will go for Docker.
Do I undertsand it right, that If I use a data folder that resides outside the container I can destroy and use a newer build (so update Node Red) without loosing any data ?


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Yes, but you should have a backup of your flows too. Backup everything in the flows folder except the node_modules folder.

Hey Colin,
thanks for that hint.

As I am a complete newbie sorry for the question: where can I find this folder?
I will install a testsystem this weekend and I can also do a search on my own to find the files....


It is the one you are mapping outside the container. It should contain your flows file, settings.js etc. In a normal install it is usually ~/.node-red, but I don't know about Docker. I presumed it was the data folder you mentioned. I was just pointing out that you should not rely on just mapping it out to the file system, you should also back it up (as should non-docker systems) in case of disc failure, or user error, for example.

Okay I will check where the files willl be stored.
And as the docker container will run on a QNAP NAS I will backup the data regularily as I do with all my data.

Is it as it is always with backups:
If you do backups, you never need them and yo always think "well the backups need a lot of space on the disks" but if you decide to stop data backup a week later the disaster happens :wink:
Happened to a friend 2 weeks ago and I was that sort of friend that told him "no backup no pity" :wink:


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