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Topic: IoT Dashboard Options & Opinions (Read 2402 times) previous topic - next topic


Sep 05, 2018, 09:06 pm Last Edit: Sep 05, 2018, 09:08 pm by davie_gravy
I have developed a significant number of Arduino, Wemos, and Raspberry Pi based sensors and controls for a variety of things mainly home automation.  I am able to share information among those devices in a rather limited manner typically a client server relationship.  I found the MQTT protocol which opens up the lines of communication among devices.  That all seems good, but I'm ready to have some IoT server software of sorts that I can plug in all the independent sensors and configure those for displays/graphs and controls.

My question is:  What all IoT dashboards has everyone implemented and what are some of the pro/cons of those dashboards?  I would specifically like a IoT dashboard that can run locally, without the need for the internet.  I'm also interested in a MQTT server/broker that can perform tasks and display subscriber data in graphs and charts also which could operate without internet access.

So far, I have looked into Thingsboard and Adafruit IO, but both require the internet.  I also found Crouton, but it looks like it might depend on the internet as well.

I appreciate your input on this topic.  Thank you!


Are you wanting to view the dashboard only when you are home?

It seems without the internet that is the limitation?


Sep 05, 2018, 10:04 pm Last Edit: Sep 05, 2018, 10:04 pm by davie_gravy
Yes.  I would like the dashboard itself to operate on a local network only.  If it contains the ability to get on the web, that is fine, assuming I can toggle that capability.  I just don't want the sensor data to have to post to the cloud and therefore requiring the dashboard software to have internet access to pull that data back down.

It makes more sense to me as the sensors are local to my network, that the dashboard be local as well.  It also ensures a level of security as my sensors and dashboard software won't be accessible to the public world making them vulnerable to exploits, DOS attacks, etc.

Thank you in advance for your feedback.


I think this is more a matter of nomenclature, and you are looking for some sort of webpage for local use, rather than a dashboard for IOT use. I guess it is unreasonable to expect to lift somebody's IoT dashboard, which probably uses proprietory software, but I'm sure there are plenty of resources for web page design.

If you want to get really smarty-farty you could use Processing. You may never see an IoT dashboard that will do what that can do.


Another post eaten.

short version - Thingsboard looks interesting enough that I might try it.


Thanks for your replies.  The Processing UI in that video looks very appealing.

After further research, there is a clear distinction between a IoT dashboard and an IoT platform.

Initially, a dashboard was all that was desired in order to collect sensor data and display that in some easily readable manner, but the platform does so much more in the collection of sensors, the proprietary design of these toolkits, and heterogeneous nature of IoT.

With that being said, I have discovered openHAB (https://www.openhab.org/).  Does not rely on the cloud, but still supports it.  Open source too.  I'm going to try to stand up an instance of this.

Has anyone else tried openHAB or have any input on other IoT Platforms? Pros and cons?

Your feedback is greatly appreciated.



A couple of weeks back, I installed thingsboard onto a R-Pi(3), worked straight-up, no issues.
It is great for local use and I can get dashboards through my firewall by opening a single port, so dashboard can be accessed in a browser from anywhere.
I does not require an internet connection as its fully self-contained, all in the R-Pi.
The installation was simple. It took a bit more effort to get data into it, but once I got my head around it, it was actually pretty straightforward. I wrote a testing sketch to send data to it by both MQTT and HTML.
There is lots of reference material on the web site but its not always the easiest to follow.
I'll attach the sketch for reference (its for an ESP8266)

Its a worthwhile option in trying to get away from the cloud based services.

I also tried a local instance (again on a R-Pi) of Thingspeak. It was not straightforward. You need a 2nd-gen Pi to run it on, or at least I couldn't get it to work on a Pi-3.
It is working and I'm using it but its more of a curiosity to see how long it lasts.
The 'local' Thingspeak is a bit of a dead-end. No development since the MATLAB takeover. Its difficult to get it to compile now without a fair bit of effort.

A strange one, but entirely useable is the R-Pi software for the Open energy monitor (openenergymonitor.org).

I have one monitoring my solar/power system. It has all the display, graphing, tailored low-write database etc etc for constant logging and lots of display options.
You could easily use it for logging almost any time-series data, you dont have to monitor power with it.
You can post to it with MQTT, HTML, via a RFM69/RFM12 on a plug-in board.
It comes with Mosquito and node-red on the Pi image so quite a bit of versatility in the package.
I post my local stuff to it as well, just because :)
One of the handy things is it has an export function so you can back-up your database and system config. All done through a browser. There is extensive documentation and reference material on the web-site and a very active user base with lots of help available if required.

I'm new to Thingsboard so no definite opinion yet. It does have a reasonable collection of widgets for  your dashboards.
I have been using open-energy monitor for about 18-months and its been great.

Sketch for Thingsboard attached.

Good luck!



Thanks for the replies!

I had put aside deciding and testing a dashboard/platform for the time while I explored using a new chip, the WeMos Pro mini.  I've been using those along with PIR sensors and deep sleep for a low-power wifi enabled burglar alarm.  I finally got the bench test working publishing messages to a local hosted mosquitto server and now plan to download and install Thingsboard and see how to build some UI elements with it. 

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