Updating old kit

@TotallyInformation At the risk of getting off-track with discussions of supporting "old kit" I've found Linux to add new life to old stuff quite nicely once you've climbed the learning curve.

For example I turned an old i5 Thinkpad T-410, a "business class laptop" that was current when Windows 7 was what they shipped with, into a very effective host for my AI system. It lacks USB3 so it seemed hopeless, but then Google came out with Coral TPU modules in MPCIe and various M.2 form factors. This computer had an obolete WiFi "G" module in its MPCIe slot, replacing it with the TPU module and and replacing the Windows7 SATA drive with a SATA SSD with Ubuntu-Mate and presto, the old "dust collector" suddenly became very useful!

Moderator comment - moved due to being off topic in previous thread

We were really talking about mobile devices since desktops and laptops are very easily upgraded (well, as long as they are not Apple Mac's that is).

I moved from 2 Pi's to a single Thinkpad x240 (i5, 8GB RAM, 256GB HDD) quite some time back. Runs Debian without a desktop. Happily runs Node-RED, Mosquitto, InfluxDB, Grafana, Zigbee2MQTT, Docker, NGINX. Docker runs my Ubiquiti Wi-Fi controller (Java & MongoDB) and a very simple remote desktop in case I ever need one. It runs in low-power mode so no fans come on. Doesn't run Wi-Fi, it only uses Ethernet. It also has a USB 433 MHz transceiver dongle and the USB Zigbee dongle attached.

But it is mobile devices that are the problem with older browsers.

1 Like

I think it would be better, if the Dashboard itself would analyse the browser version and create a "fallback", meaning it would run old-code.

I know exactly this is 2x more difficult to program, but if would allow to use:

  • old tablets,
  • industrial tablets (not getting any upgrade), and
  • old phones (not used by the owner any more because new webpage does not work) Like:
  • Microsoft Lumia phones (which can not be rooted, so installing Linux is impossible)

Basically Node-Red would be a great "Greenpeace" system that would allow people to recycle old stuff again.

If it's too hard to program an auto-version checking system that support both old and new browsers >>

I recommend to have 2 dashboards:

  • /ui = old with legacy support
  • /ui2 = new one, compatible only with newest browsers.

But all of that would need to be developed and maintained - who would do that? Yourself?

If you want something that supports older browsers, why not install another instance of Node-RED running an older version with an older version of Dashboard?

Oh, and of course, don't forget that to support an older version, you will most likely also need older versions of any cusom ui nodes. And if you have any custom CSS, that might also not work so you might need to maintain 2 versions of all of that as well.

Its a nice idea for sure - but a heck of a lot of work.

Not necessarily, if we do not mix old with new.

We are going to build a completely new Dashboard.
Probably not even AngularJS based.
Instead of deleting / overwriting simply leave the current one as it is.

This way the old components will not mix with the new.
Also it would make easier to develop the new without interfering the current (WORKING) one.

Because avarage users have no idea, how to install NR to a:

  • non default direcory
  • listening on a non-default port
  • opening firewalls to a secondary port
  • and not having trouble with running + developing on both old and new system at the same time.


No-one is going to stop you continuing to use the current dashboard.

Well, I'm not going to get into an argument over it. I know that Dave works hard to update the current version and he is a volunteer like the rest of us. I very much doubt anyone has the bandwidth to maintain an old version as well with all of the caveats I've mentioned.

You still have to maintain working versions even if they are old.

You can already do this as I've pointed out. npm maintains old versions and nothing stops you from installing them.

Well, I don't think we were talking about average users. But if we are, it is very easy to install a different version and I've even produced a repo that will help.

All covered in my repo

Most people, especially average ones, won't be doing this and if they do, they really need to know what they are doing as we've discussed in this forum many times over the years. In any case, if they can do it for their main instance, they can do it for an alternative instance. But of course, they shouldn't if that instance is running older versions of code because there will certainly be security exposure in doing so.

You can't really have this both ways. If you need to run on old browsers you either have to maintain more than one version or you have to stick on an old version. There isn't another option. Both of these options are already available with Node-RED without trying to maintain anything specific centrally.

All the old versions of dashboard are still available on npm, complete with bugs and vulnerabilities.

This topic was automatically closed 60 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.