What is npm?

npm stands for “Node Package Manager” and is essentially a tool that allows developers to easily download, install, and manage third-party libraries and packages that are needed for their projects. npm is an open-source package manager that was created for Node.js, which is a JavaScript runtime environment that allows developers to write server-side code using JavaScript. However, npm is now widely used by web developers of all kinds, regardless of whether they use Node.js or not.

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npm Benefits

One of the primary benefits of npm is that it simplifies the process of finding and using packages that are created by other developers. Instead of having to manually download and manage packages, developers can simply use npm to install the packages they need with a single command. npm also makes it easy to update packages to newer versions, and it provides a system for managing dependencies so that developers can ensure that their projects are using the correct versions of all required packages.

  • npm is the world’s largest Software Registry.
  • It contains over 1,000,000 code packages and over 80,000,000,000.
  • Both open-source developers and companies use npm to share libraries or manage private development.

npm is free to use and can be used to download all npm public software packages without any user registration. Of course, to publish a package, you need to create and user and log in.

Developers can browse all packages at https://www.npmjs.com.

With the npm tool, developers can carry out specific tasks to a package on the repository, including package installation, version management, and dependency management. To use the npm CLI tool, you need to install Node.js.

How does npm work?

npm works by providing a command-line interface (CLI) that developers can use to interact with the npm registry, which is a database of all the packages that are available on npm. When a developer wants to install a package, they simply use the npm CLI to search the registry for the package they need, and then npm handles the download and installation process automatically.

Packages on npm are typically installed globally or locally. Global packages are installed on the developer’s machine and can be used across multiple projects, while local packages are installed within a specific project and are only available to that project. When a package is installed, npm also installs any dependencies that the package requires, and it keeps track of all installed packages and their versions in a file called package.json.

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