Thursday, April 02, 2015

Weaved: the perfect tool to access my remote Raspberry Pi

I already mentioned Weaved in passing in a previous post but the latest version is so awesome that I thought it deserves its own article. As noted in my update to that post, after updating to 1.2.8, I was able to setup a TCP service on port 1880 (node-red default editor port), connect to it and from the first try node-red editor worked as expected. I am so happy I didn't give up and I tried again.

And today I had another chance to see the amazing power of Weaved: I had my Raspberry Pi A (so no wired connection available, only a wifi dongle) with me at work, plugged it in and it connected right away to the guest wireless network. At least, I thought it connected because I've done this before and it worked without issues. But the app on my phone I normally use to find IPs, Fing, was not able to see it at all. I know that since last time I connected this Pi to the guest wireless the settings have been changed: not sure how, I have no network skills but I know most services are now blocked (I assume the discovery service Fing uses, if there is anything like this, is blocked as well). Almost gave up but then I remembered I had the SSH service from Weaved installed on the SD card so I decided to give it a try: logged in to my account and indeed the Pi was reported online; got the connect info and putty connected right away (also, the My Devices list showed the real IP so I was able to check that indeed it was an IP that was not showing in the Fing scan results). How awesome is this: a device not visible and not accessible even by another device on the same network, was accessed through Weaved without issues! Really amazing!

As far as Weaved pricing goes, the last info I've seen which is supposed to be valid after the beta program will end was something like this (these terms may change since they are not published on the website right now):
- Personal plan - FREE: 2 devices, up to 5 services, 300 generic notifications/month, mobile apps (iOS already out, Android in beta), no Pro features;
- Maker plan - $25/year: 5 devices, unlimited services, 1500 custom notifications/month, mobile apps, Pro features (longer connection times, device sharing, more storage);
- Maker Pro plan - $99/year: 25 devices, unlimited services, unlimited custom notifications, mobile apps and libraries, Pro features.

The free plan is enough for me personally but if I will decide to upgrade it really won't be an issue to pay a bit over $2 a month for all the added features. There are IoT related services out there charging way more for a lot less.

Weaved does more than just allow connections to remote Raspberry Pis (and recently, BeagleBones and even Intel Edison boards), just read some of the articles on their blog and you'll see what I mean. But for me and probably others as well, Weaved is going to be the main way of accessing a Raspberry Pi remotely, which is amazing in itself.

I hope all this will convince anyone who reads this to give Weaved a try. As for me I owe huge thanks to the Weaved team for all their great work!

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