Node-Red's serialport module is outdated. How do you update it?

Many months ago, I used openhabian-config to install Node-Red. It’s been working well with the few flows I’ve created.

I recently used node-red-log to examine Node-Red’s log and discovered a warning message upon startup. Apparently, the serialport module is version 48 and the version of node.js that’s running requires version 57.

I googled the warning message and found many solutions but none that referred specifically to Node-Red + OpenHAB + Raspberry Pi (they often refer to something called “electron”). I’m hesitant to apply any of the solutions I found because I’m concerned I may make things worse. I don’t fully understand the implications of using “npm rebuild” or “npm install” for my openhabian-based installation of Node-Red.

On a somewhat related note, “Manage Palette” was missing from Node-Red’s main menu. I discovered this can happen when “npm” is missing. I installed npm and now Manage Palette is visible in the menu. That’s about the limit of my involvement with npm so far!

Can someone explain how I can (safely) upgrade the serialport module?

30 Sep 22:13:41 - [info] Node-RED version: v0.18.4
30 Sep 22:13:41 - [info] Node.js  version: v8.11.1
30 Sep 22:13:41 - [info] Linux 4.14.62-v7+ arm LE
30 Sep 22:13:41 - [info] Palette editor disabled : npm command not found
30 Sep 22:13:41 - [info] Loading palette nodes
30 Sep 22:13:50 - [info] Dashboard version 2.9.0 started at /ui
30 Sep 22:13:52 - [warn] ------------------------------------------------------
30 Sep 22:13:52 - [warn] [node-red-node-serialport/serialport] Error: The module '/root/.node-red/node_modules/serialport/build/Release/serialport.node'
was compiled against a different Node.js version using
NODE_MODULE_VERSION 48. This version of Node.js requires
NODE_MODULE_VERSION 57. Please try re-compiling or re-installing
the module (for instance, using `npm rebuild` or `npm install`).
30 Sep 22:13:52 - [warn] ------------------------------------------------------

You probably won’t see anything about that combination because the interface between NodeRed and OH is pretty well defined. For the most part the two are completely separate. There is very little you can do to NodeRed that will cause problems with OH.

So take a backup and do whatever the instructions tell you to do to upgrade that part of NodeRed.

Obviously, take a backup first.

Actually, I’m not concerned about causing problems for OpenHAB, the concern is for Node-Red.

I’ll post my question in the Node-Red community forum and share my results here.