Hello again,
Sorry to create another post but am hoping for some more info because I want to get my house set up soon. I was reading on some other smart home forums that on Hubitat it is better to use node-red for building rules and automations than to use the built in rule machine app.
I dont want o spend so much time doing something that I have to replace so please let me know which is the better way to do this ?

Wow, you could open up a real can of worms here.

It's really a matter of personal preference. There are threads on this forum that discuss the advantages of Node Red. One advantage is that it is platform agnostic, such that you can put all your automations in Node Red and then move the underlying radio platform to another hub's radio system. A disadvantage is that it runs on a separate piece of hardware. It's really, in the end, a matter of personal preference, and "better" is subjective. Once you become familiar with Rule Machine, it's quite usable.


Hubitat gives you lots of choices of automation engines. In addition to several built-in automation apps that run on your Hubitat (eg. Rule Machine, Motion Lighting), there are also community provided automation apps that run on your Hubitat (eg. WebCoRE, Event Engine).

Hubitat also supports external automation engines that depend on a built-in app called MakerAPI. Node-RED is just one example of an external automation engine.

In the end, the choice is yours.


If you had to choose one, and you are not already using a system that can support Node-Red, such as a raspberry pi, then administering two systems probably out-weighs the benefit it may bring by choosing Node-Red. The other thing to remember is that the core hardware and software on the HE hub is being maintained and supported by one group of people, including support from this Community. Node Red and the host platform is almost guaranteed to be distributed amongst different groups.

So I'd be pushing you in the direction of setting up your automations on your new HE hub. But if you have a host server that is already a part of your home IT setup and you maintain it in order to host other tools / services, then there may be merit in looking at Node Red early on, while considering other factors.


@672southmain is right. This is to a significant degree a philosophical question. The question is really what do I want to be the center of my home automation universe. The complexity of this becomes more obvious as you wind up having to add other hubs to your system. They can all host automations. Where does it make the most sense for you?

Since you are a new HE owner, keep it simple. Create your automations in HE (Button Controllers, Simple Automation Rules, Rule Engine, Motion and Mode Lighting Apps). There is a lot of complexity and tedium added when you expand to another “hub”.

Keep it simple and all in one hub for now. More hubs and support systems will come soon enough.


I agree with @wayne.pirtle but would recommend Basic Rules instead of Simple Automation Rules for someone starting out. There is nothing wrong with Simple Automation Rules but as @bravenel states in the post Basic Rule vs. Simple Automation Rule - #24 by bravenel "Basic Rules represents years of learning and experience about how to create automation rules."


I agree @Sakman. I was trying to list the variety of options available kind of in order of increasing complexity. I happens to forget basic rules. Thanks for adding that!

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