NATS Server native + MQTT and Node-RED

Mon, Apr 12, 2021 2-minute read

Node.RED is a serious tools but also a great toy for quick prototyping. To run Node.RED locally we need to install NodeJS and thus having npm tool available. Then just issue following installation command: npm install -g --unsafe-perm node-red. If everything goes right, we have Node.RED installed, and we can run it by invoking node-red from command line.

When Node.RED running, we should see a following line in console listing:

12 Apr 08:15:02 - [info] Server now running at

That says Node.RED is running an HTTP UI on . Now we can use standard MQTT nodes and imported NAT plugin to make a publish/subscribe connections to NATS. The entire, somehow minimal, definition can look like this:


  • Node-RED MQTT definition for producer and subscriber looks like this (NATS contains MQTT support in default installation):


We are using both protocols (NATS native and MQTT) to exchange messages between them. We should be aware here, that topic name for MQTT and NATS has a different requirements. MQTT is using ‘/’ for separating words, NATS is using ‘.’ . To communicate between protocols we should address MQTT topic e.g. “prices/east” as “prices.east” from NATS native. It’s quite simple and easy to understand. Details are available in documentation here: .