Selectable appearance for node status

Some nodes, like those integrating Home Assistant, include a fairly lengthy status message. I seem to spend too much time arranging nodes so they don't overlap. In some cases this results in a creeping ladder of nodes, that imho looks awful. Here is a small example:

I would be very happy if in the Appearance tab of nodes, I could ask for the node status to optionally appear at the top rather than the bottom. This way I could alternate top-bottom-etc to have a more pleasing result. In the pic, I could also move the Log node's status to the top to avoid clashing with the wire.

As can be seen below, it sort of fits if two vertically- and grid-aligned nodes have their status "kissing", but nobody would do that anyway.

image

Thinking about extending this further:

  • If the node status was ever extended to include the concept of info/warning/error, it would also be very nice to suppress info for some.
  • But given it doesn't currently work that way, perhaps the option of showing the date/time instead of the message?
  • Or the ability to hide the status.
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Hi Michael,

If Nick were chipping in, I'm fairly sure he would say that the Editor is not meant to be a dashboard. :slight_smile:

So the real answer may be to not have so many or so long status messages.

Having an option to show the status at the top would add complexity but would be confusing since you wouldn't be able to tell by looking whether a status message referred to the top or bottom node. If you want things closer together, you can turn off the snap to grid or make the grid smaller (I think?).

This is effectively possible already with the 2 icon shapes and different colours.

A custom node can already do that. Each node is responsible for its own statuses.

Again, each node is responsible for its own status so maybe pester the Home Assistant node authors to tidy up their nodes?

Hi, I mostly agree with @TotallyInformation write above so I wont go over them points again.

I will say a better suggestion may an option to clamp the visible text to the nodes width (or an arbitrary length) and have it show full length when mouse over or node select. This would mean there are not (potentially) 4000+ contrib nodes to reign in/fix up, as it would be a core feature.

Any others have an opinion?

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Yeah fair call (except the abhorrent suggestion of turning off snap-to-grid). You can't blame a guy for trying. It really is only the Home Assistant nodes in my experience. The suggestion from @Steve-Mcl would work nicely, perhaps at a Settings level.

And I agree that the Editor is not meant to be used as a dashboard, but I do want my editor to look nice, which is difficult when some nodes set large status text. And also I do want the editor to be a dashboard because I am lazy, which is why my Log subflow sets it.

We do say that status text should be short and under 20 characters in the docs: Node status : Node-RED.

The mistake we made was not enforcing this more formally.

It would certainly be worth feeding back to the HA nodes to see if they can find ways to provide status more succinctly.

We don't want to consider adding options to move the status text as it would then clash with other decorations on the node.

Clipping it and then revealing it on mouse over is certainly an option - but I'm sure there will be users out there who are happy with long status messages who value being able to see them at a glance without having to interact.

Making it a configurable setting is also an option - I'm just always wary of adding endless options to tweak things like this.

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