FlowForge 0.6 released

Adding Devices to the platform

| Nick O'Leary

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Node-RED is well known for its role in IoT solutions - which often means running flows on devices.

This was something we always wanted to support in FlowForge and with this release we're taking the next steps in that direction.

Devices

This release includes the first alpha release of the FlowForge Device Agent. This is a small piece of node.js software that can be installed on a device, such as a Raspberry Pi. It connects back to the FlowForge platform to get the Node-RED flows it should be running.

This builds on the work we added in 0.5 that lets you register the device, generate credentials for it and pick which Project in your team it should be assigned to.

It makes it super simple to start developing your flows in FlowForge and push them out to a group of devices with a couple clicks.

There's plenty of work still to come on the Devices feature. Under the covers it uses an HTTP polling approach to check for updates. That was a pragmatic choice to get something working - but it isn't our long term strategy. We'll be working towards a more IoT-native MQTT/WebSocket appoach in the coming releases.

Snapshots

This release adds the ability to create Snapshots of your projects. These are point-in-time backups of your project's flows, credentials and settings.

With this release we support creating snapshots and pushing them to devices.

We don't have the ability to revert a project back to a previous snapshot, but that will come soon.

Other updates

Beyond these headline features, there are a number of smaller, but just as useful items in this release.

We've continued with the rebranding work started in 0.5 with some more improvements to the overall UX of the platform. Little touches like placeholder loading graphics give the UI a more responsive feel.

When you log out of the platform we now also automatically log you out of any Node-RED editor sessions you have open.

Upgrading FlowForge

FlowForge Cloud is already running 0.6 - ready for you to start creating snapshots and adding devices right now.

If you installed a previous version of FlowForge and want to upgrade, our documentation provides a guide for upgrading FlowForge on a local server.

Getting help

If you hit any problems with the platform, or have questions to ask, please do raise an issue on GitHub.

That also includes if you have any feedback or feature requests.

We also have a #flowforge channel on the Node-RED Slack workspace.

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