N8n is amazing (free/open source) if you need to integrate with anything without too much hassle

I wrote this as part of a reply in another thread but figured that others could benefit from it and wouldn’t need to stumble on it.

You can think of n8n as a free alternative to something like Zapier, it allows you to create custom server side workflows with no code, using a similar visual node paradigm to Appgyver composer, in addition to Webhook workflow triggers (what we would likely use from Appgyver apps), you can trigger a workflow from many other things say an inbound SMS message from Twilio or a triggering message from Discord, Slack or mattermost for example.

You could probably get away with using it to run the entire backend of your Appgyver app on a cheap digitalocean server ($5/m) if you also installed a local database supported. by n8n (ie: Mysql, Postgres, MongoDB, CrateDB, etc)

I finally got around to messing around with n8n last night, it was so easy to get going locally, I was blown away!

Once you have node.js setup all you need to do is:

npm install n8n -g

to install it, then:

n8n start --tunnel

which sets up a tunnel and provides you with a publicly accessible URL to your local instance so that you can handle the callbacks when you do the OAuth authentication that many/most modern services require.

In about 15 minutes I was able to set up a workflow with a webhook trigger (and was also given a public URL for that) and connected it to a node to read from a selected sheet and return the result – for bonus points I also setup another workflow to read from a firebase collection and return the results.

From Appgyver you would just need an http request to the webhook URL passing whatever you need to the webhook and it would return the results from the last node of whatever workflow you triggered with your request.

It’s ridiculous how many services it supports!!!

Does anyone have any more experience with this they can share? I’m eager to learn more about it, and limitations, performance, etc.

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Update, I found an Easy and FREE way to get this running online using a one click deployment to Heroku

There were issues with the original version of this, but someone forked it and fixed the issue since the original author was not responsive to issues or pull requests:

You literally just either have to clone the repo and connect it to heroku, or use the single click deploy to Heroku button:

remember to change your user and password to something other than the default!

Everything looks to me as though it will be able to run full time on the free tier, if you take the extra step to enter your credit card details they give you enough hours to leave it running full time, and will notify you when you get to 80% of free usage so you can stop the app if you want to:

The only caveat is that the service will go to sleep after 30 minutes of inactivity, however any request will wake it up which takes about 10 seconds. Small price to pay IMO. Once you are in production on your appgyver app you can always switch to a paid Dyno.

The cheapest plan that won’t sleep on you is $7/month.

Enjoy!

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Have you taken a look at Node-Red? It’s pretty slick and you’ll recognize it if you use appgyver.

Yes thanks for the info on Node-Red. its like the thousands others out there just a pipe dream

Hi Tim,

Thanks sharing this it looks awesome. I’ve followed the steps but having trouble setting a webhook to trigger my google sheets integration. The webhook address is appearing as http://localhost:4733/webhook-test/b7e9ae3c-e329-4ee4-b68d-c303cf151d53 but appgyver won’t let me use that as its not https

I’m assuming I need to change it to relate to the Heroku instance but not techy enough to know what to change.

Appreciate any help

Cheers
David

Hi David, sorry for the delay in replying to you…

In your heroku app dashboard, you’ll see a button near the top right that will say ‘Open App’, you can hover over that to see the externally accessible root URL to your app. You would want to replace the http://localhost:4733/ part with the root URL to your app (and keep the rest, starting with webkook-test all the way to d53)

Thanks Tim no need to apologise. Appreciate the info. I just tried to log back in to N8N via the Heroku build and it comes up with an application error. Have created a new build and still the same error so think something in the app must have changed that kills the build. Would have been cool to have been able to use it but will continue with Integromat for the time being until I get to scale and pay for hosting for N8N or the cloud version which looks pretty reasonable. Thanks for all your work on this though, looked like a great app and simple build.

n8n setup on a $5 Digital Ocean droplet works pretty well.

Hope you all read the license agreement…not “free” or “open” per se…check out FAQ | Docs before you dive too deep. Great for small/internal stuff though.