What to expect when you subscribe to Nightscout Pro
Hi, I’m Andy Low – I’m a web developer based in Scotland, UK. I was diagnosed back in 2004 as a Type 1 Diabetic at the age of 13. As I’m sure some of you can relate, I was in denial. I mistreated my diabetes and pretended like it didn’t exist.
It was tough. So many factors need to be considered:- What have I eaten today? How many carbs? Protein? Am I planning on doing any exercise in the next few hours? Do I already have COB or IOB? The list goes on.
Anyway, fast forward 13 years, three trips to the hospital with DKA and several other health complications as a result of my own negligence, I came across an online movement around 2017. Yep, You guessed it – #WeAreNotWaiting.
I was reading about how to turn the Freestyle Libre sensor into a CGM, store that data in the cloud and even operate a closed-loop DIY APS system. This completely blew my mind, and I was hooked.
I spoke with my healthcare team about this; luckily, they were happy to talk about it and even supported me in getting a loop-compatible pump. This was a game-changer. My HbA1c went from an “off-the-chart” 145 (16.5) to an “almost non-diabetic” reading of 54 (7.4) over the space of about a year.
This technology has truly been life-changing for me, and I want to give the same gift to as many other diabetics as I can!
Introducing Nightscout Pro
When I first learned about the magic of DIY diabetes technology, I had no idea how to write code. Luckily the people who did know had taken the time to carefully write step-by-step instructions on how to set things up, and I could blindly copy and paste this into Heroku and get a working copy of Nightscout up and running.
However, as I and many others have found, Any simple mistake doing this could take the whole system down and then you’re into troubleshooting territory, which can be painful.
The community is run by heroes, in my opinion. People are giving up their free time to #PayItForward and help muggles like me get through their problems and get things working.
Heroku announced they will sunset their free tier plans at the end of November 2022. As a result, thousands of people with diabetes worldwide either had to pay up to $7 per month to keep their service operational with Heroku or migrate their nightscout site to another platform where, for the time being, they can continue on a free tier. But how long would this last?
I am, and always will be, an advocate of the DIY (and hopefully free) nightscout approach. And am happy to help others achieve this. But I want to offer a simple, low-cost solution for people who wish to avoid the hassle of migrating or configuring their Nightscout site from scratch.
Nightscout Pro is an entirely hands-off way of starting (or migrating) your nightscout site. I manage the platform myself. On servers I have full, root access to and control.
Please understand that, at least at the time of writing this, It is just me here and your requests for support are answered by me, and only me. I aim to get back to you quickly. However, depending on the time of day, it could take me some time to respond. I do need to sleep occasionally.
What Happens when I sign up?
Originally, the process was somewhat manual, sending emails to me when you order, then I would set up your site and email you back. From April 2023, The service is now fully automated, meaning you will have your Nightscout site up and running within seconds!
You can create an account at https://my.nightscoutpro.com/signup – All you need to do is then choose the best subscription plan for you, then you’ll be redirected to a page where you can create the site.
To keep things simple, all you need to do at this stage is choose a name for your site, API Secret (Password) and DISPLAY_UNITS (mg/dl or mmol/L).
The site name will be the URL and it’s the only part that cannot be changed later. The URL format will be https://[SOMETHING].my.nightscoutpro.com/ – You can choose what you want the [SOMETHING] to be.
Then just click on ‘CREATE NIGHTSCOUT’ and wait 10 – 30 secxonds for your site to become active.
Config Vars (Settings)
With the automated system, you now have full control over the site settings, and these can be modified at any time. Simply log into your account and click on the ‘Config Vars’ button to view/modify any of the site settings.
Remote Overrides & Loop
Nightscout Pro currently supports the use of remote overrides with Loop. Please proceed with caution and only use this feature if you are an experienced looper and know what you are doing. To enable this feature, please email support and provide the following config vars as detailed in the official loopdocs.
Some Facebook support groups asked a common question about how to keep and transfer existing Nightscout data to a new instance.
I have created the data transfer tool to address and resolve this issue. It is freely available for anyone with a nightscout site hosted with Nightscout Pro or any other host.
When using the tool, you must enter your old Nightscout site URL. If your old site had AUTH_DEFAULT_ROLES set to ‘denied’ (meaning you had to enter your API SECRET to view the data), then you’d need to enter your old API SECRET too. Enter your new URL and new API SECRET, and you can quickly transfer profile, entries and treatment data between Nightscout instances.
Setting up companion apps
Nightscout is a data collection and storage tool. Therefore, it needs to be “fed” data to be valuable to its users.
There are many ways you can achieve this, and while I try my best to keep up to date with most methods, I am only human and only know as much as I know.
Your Nightscout site will be set up in a standard way as if you had followed the DIY method. I impose no restrictions and the software version is exactly the same.
I can help you work through any difficulties setting up your data feeds. Please also refer to the official documentation for whichever companion apps you are trying to set up.
Here are some valuable Links which may help: –