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       developers - Developer Guide

       So,  you've  decided  to	 use npm to develop (and maybe publish/deploy)
       your project.


       There are a few things that you need to do above	the simple steps  that
       your users will do to install your program.

   About These Documents
       These are man pages.  If	you install npm, you should be able to then do
       man npm-thing to	get the	documentation on a particular  topic,  or  npm
       help thing to see the same information.

   What	is a package
       A package is:

       o a) a folder containing	a program described by a package.json file

       o b) a gzipped tarball containing (a)

       o c) a url that resolves	to (b)

       o d) a <name>@<version> that is published on the	registry with (c)

       o e) a <name>@<tag> that	points to (d)

       o f) a <name> that has a	"latest" tag satisfying	(e)

       o g) a git url that, when cloned, results in (a).

       Even if you never publish your package, you can still get a lot of ben-
       efits of	using npm if you just want to write a node  program  (a),  and
       perhaps	if you also want to be able to easily install it elsewhere af-
       ter packing it up into a	tarball	(b).

       Git urls	can be of the form:


       The commit-ish can be any tag, sha, or branch which can be supplied  as
       an argument to git checkout.  The default is master.

   The package.json File
       You  need to have a package.json	file in	the root of your project to do
       much of anything	with npm.  That	is basically the whole interface.

       See npm help package.json for details about what	goes in	that file.  At
       the very	least, you need:

       o name:	This  should be	a string that identifies your project.	Please
	 do not	use the	name to	specify	that it	runs on	node, or is  in	 Java-
	 Script.  You can use the "engines" field to explicitly	state the ver-
	 sions of node (or whatever else) that your program requires, and it's
	 pretty	 well  assumed	that it's JavaScript.  It does not necessarily
	 need to match your github repository name.  So, node-foo  and	bar-js
	 are bad names.	 foo or	bar are	better.

       o version: A semver-compatible version.

       o engines:  Specify  the	 versions of node (or whatever else) that your
	 program runs on.  The node API	changes	a lot, and there may  be  bugs
	 or new	functionality that you depend on.  Be explicit.

       o author: Take some credit.

       o scripts:  If  you  have a special compilation or installation script,
	 then you should put it	in the scripts object.	You should  definitely
	 have at least a basic smoke-test command as the "scripts.test"	field.
	 See npm help scripts.

       o main: If you have a single module that	serves as the entry  point  to
	 your	program	 (like	what  the  "foo"  package  gives  you  at  re-
	 quire("foo")),	then you need to specify that in the "main" field.

       o directories: This is an object	mapping	names to  folders.   The  best
	 ones  to include are "lib" and	"doc", but if you use "man" to specify
	 a folder full of man pages, they'll get  installed  just  like	 these

       You  can	 use  npm init in the root of your package in order to get you
       started with a pretty basic package.json	file.  See npm help  init  for
       more info.

   Keeping files out of	your package
       Use a .npmignore	file to	keep stuff out of your package.	 If there's no
       .npmignore file,	but there is a .gitignore file,	then npm  will	ignore
       the stuff matched by the	.gitignore file.  If you want to include some-
       thing that is excluded by your .gitignore file, you can create an empty
       .npmignore  file	to override it.	Like git, npm looks for	.npmignore and
       .gitignore files	in all subdirectories of your package,	not  only  the
       root directory.

       .npmignore      files	 follow	    the	    same     pattern	 rules
       ing-Changes-to-the-Repository#Ignoring-Files as .gitignore files:

       o Blank lines or	lines starting with # are ignored.

       o Standard glob patterns	work.

       o You can end patterns with a forward slash / to	specify	a directory.

       o You can negate	a pattern by starting it with an exclamation point !.

       By  default,  the  following paths and files are	ignored, so there's no
       need to add them	to .npmignore explicitly:

       o .*.swp

       o ._*

       o .DS_Store

       o .git

       o .hg

       o .npmrc

       o .lock-wscript

       o .svn

       o .wafpickle-*

       o config.gypi

       o CVS

       o npm-debug.log

       Additionally, everything	in node_modules	is ignored, except for bundled
       dependencies.  npm  automatically handles this for you, so don't	bother
       adding node_modules to .npmignore.

       The following paths and files are never	ignored,  so  adding  them  to
       .npmignore is pointless:

       o package.json

       o README	(and its variants)

       o CHANGELOG (and	its variants)


       If,  given  the	structure of your project, you find .npmignore to be a
       maintenance headache, you might instead try populating the files	 prop-
       erty of package.json, which is an array of file or directory names that
       should be included in your package. Sometimes a whitelist is easier  to
       manage than a blacklist.

   Testing whether your	.npmignore or files config works
       If  you	want  to  double check that your package will include only the
       files you intend	it to when published, you can run the npm pack command
       locally	which  will  generate  a tarball in the	working	directory, the
       same way	it does	for publishing.

   Link	Packages
       npm link	is designed to install	a  development	package	 and  see  the
       changes	in real	time without having to keep re-installing it.  (You do
       need to either re-link or npm rebuild -g	to update  compiled  packages,
       of course.)

       More info at npm	help link.

   Before Publishing: Make Sure	Your Package Installs and Works
       This is important.

       If  you can not install it locally, you'll have problems	trying to pub-
       lish it.	 Or, worse yet,	you'll be able to publish it,  but  you'll  be
       publishing a broken or pointless	package.  So don't do that.

       In the root of your package, do this:

	 npm install . -g

       That'll show you	that it's working.  If you'd rather just create	a sym-
       link package that points	to your	working	directory, then	do this:

	 npm link

       Use npm ls -g to	see if it's there.

       To test a local install,	go into	some other folder, and then do:

	 cd ../some-other-folder
	 npm install ../my-package

       to install it locally into the node_modules folder in that other	place.

       Then go into the	node-repl, and try using require("my-thing") to	 bring
       in your module's	main module.

   Create a User Account
       Create a	user with the adduser command.	It works like this:

	 npm adduser

       and then	follow the prompts.

       This is documented better in npm	help adduser.

   Publish your	package
       This part's easy.  In the root of your folder, do this:

	 npm publish

       You can give publish a url to a tarball,	or a filename of a tarball, or
       a path to a folder.

       Note that pretty	much everything	in that	folder will be exposed by  de-
       fault.  So, if you have secret stuff in there, use a .npmignore file to
       list out	the globs to ignore, or	publish	from a fresh checkout.

   Brag	about it
       Send emails, write blogs, blab in IRC.

       Tell the	world how easy it is to	install	your program!

   See also
       o npm help npm

       o npm help init

       o npm help package.json

       o npm help scripts

       o npm help publish

       o npm help adduser

       o npm help registry

				September 2020			 DEVELOPERS(7)


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