Understanding dashboard management

Hello Thinger.io Community,

I have a few questions regarding the management of dashboards. I’d appreciate any guidance or insights you can provide.

Dashboards Management:
From my recent exploration, I’ve learned that I can create a product under “Products” and subsequently create a dashboard for this product (“Dashboard Product”). When I assign a device to this product, the dashboard created for the product is also visible under the assigned device (“Dashboard Product visible under Device”). Additionally, there is an option to create a dashboard directly under “Dashboards” (“Dashboard under Dashboard”).

Q1: Is it correct that I cannot share the “Dashboard Product” or “Dashboard Product visible under Device” with clients, and that I always need to create a “Dashboard under Dashboard” for sharing purposes?
Q2: Is there a simple way to copy a “Dashboard Product” to “Dashboards” to create a “Dashboard under Dashboard”?
Q3: If I have a device (product) that can be configured for two similar but different purposes, requiring the creation of two dashboards, is it possible to create two dashboards under one product?
Q4: If I always need to create a “Dashboard under Dashboard” to share it with clients and cannot copy a “Dashboard Product” to “Dashboards,” what is the purpose of having “Dashboard Product”?

Thank you for your assistance!

Hi @aeromek,

Thinger.io initially started without the concept of Products. There were only devices, buckets, dashboards, and other low-level features. At that time, dashboards could be shared, which was quite useful for quickly sharing some data.

Over time, our customer base grew to include companies offering services to other customers. In such cases, sharing dozens of dashboard links became impractical, as managing numerous links and the generated access tokens is challenging.

We realized the need for a more comprehensive way to share data with others, so we created Projects. Projects serve as workspaces where you can assign any type of resources, not just dashboards. This allowed our customers to organize their IoT resources with projects and share access via Project Members. Project Members offer fine-grained permissions, roles, and other features, allowing the Thinger.io console to adapt to the user’s allowed actions. For example, one user might only be allowed to view and export data buckets, while another can manage the device, access its API, and more.

This brings us to the introduction of Products. Our customers began deploying not just dozens but thousands of devices. Managing data buckets and dashboards for each device individually became cumbersome. For instance, if you create 100 dashboards, one for each device, and later decide to include an additional KPI or metric, managing these changes can be frustrating. Products address this issue. With a Product, you can define the “behavior” of a Device, specifying which data from its IOTMP resources or MQTT topics to collect in buckets and how to display this information on dashboards (to simplify its description). Any device associated with a Product inherits this configuration, providing data to the bucket and having its own Dashboard on the device screen.

The use of Products is the future of our platform. In fact, we already have some plugins in the marketplace that are Product definitions, such as those Shelly devices. The idea is to have a vast marketplace of devices where our end-users can simply install the Product and start working with the devices, with pre-configured data, dashboards, etc. Any device manufacturer can offer their integrations there, gaining significant visibility in the community. This improves decision-making when purchasing a product due to its ease of integration.

Now, regarding your questions:

Q1: The solution is to create a project for the customer and give them permissions to access the device(s). If your customer acquires more devices in the future, simply include the new devices in the project. There’s no need to share more links. You can even use Global Roles to simplify permissions.

Q2: Yes, it is possible to enter the Developer section on the Product dashboard and copy and paste its content to a regular dashboard in the same section. However, it is not recommended to duplicate content in this way.

Q3: To keep things simple, I recommend creating product variants, such as product_type_a and product_type_b, and assigning them to each device.

Q4: I believe this question has already been answered.

Hope this help!

1 Like

Thank you, @alvarolb, for your comprehensive and prompt response. Your explanation has given me a good start and understanding of the concepts. I still need some time to digest the information and experiment with it, but this is a great starting point.