Note: There’s an amazing boilerplate for npm modules. This post is based on what I learned from setting it up.
But have you ever wondered about writing your own utility/library and publishing it to NPM so you, along with the entire world can re-use it anywhere? If yes, then keep reading. ✨
We’ll go through the following sections in this post.
- Steps to Publish
When you’re working across multiple projects, you’ll often find yourself repeating simple things in more than one project. An example would be, parsing a date in your preferred way and formatting it. Most devs just copy the code from one project and use it in another as it’s just a few lines of code. But the better approach would be to extract that code and put it in a common place so you can access it from any project. NPM is a ideal and ever-growing ecosystem and it’s free to use. So publishing all your reusable code as npm packages will help you in the long run.
No matter how small the code is, be it one line or a thousand lines, publish it as a package so it can be easily consumed in more than one codebase.
Also, you get to become an author of a library. How cool is that! 😎
Steps to Publish
Publishing usually is a simple process.
code => test => publish => revise code => test => publish new version ...
Create a new directory and enter the following command from terminal.
Enter meaningful name and appropriate details for your package. This will create the
package.json for you. All NPM packages need
main key. This defines the entry point to our library. By default this will be
index.js but you can change it whatever you want your entry point to be.
For Babel or bundle based libraries, the entry point will usually be in the build dir.
If you are writing a small library, you can put all your code into
index.js. But more often, we will abstract our code and put it into separate files. So the ideal approach is to keep all your source code in
This is the most widely used and recommended setup for source code nowadays, although it varies from one library to other.
Most of you already know about these things, so I am going to leave it out for you to figure out.
You need to have thorough tests to make sure your code works as expected. There are various testing setups. You can use whichever suits your need best. Although, widely used test setups are
… and much more
Once your code is thoroughly tested, it is ready to be published.
- Create an account in npmjs.com.
- Run this command from the terminal
Enter your username and password. This will store the credentials so you don’t have to enter it for every publish.
- Now to publish, run
If you want to make changes to your package, you have to change the version number and publish again.
Remember to use npm commands
npm version patch,
npm version minor and
npm version major to update the version automatically rather than manually updating them. These commands are based on semantic versioning.
Link to Boilerplate — npm-module-boilerplate
You are amazing! Have a fantastic day! 🎉