Npm Cheat Sheet

Kristian Ranstrom
October 4, 2021
2 min read

npm is a cli-based package manager for Node JS.  It comes installed when you install Node.js.  Here are a bunch of how-to scripts to handle common situations:


Install all items within the package.json or install an individual package into the npm repo.

-- installs anything in the package.json
npm install
npm i 
-- installs anything in the package.json except devDependencies
npm i --production
-- installs an individual package from the npm repo
npm i antd
npm i antd@latest
-- installs a package as a devDependency
npm i --save-dev antd


Once it's installed, you can run the program by using:

npm start

You can make a build of your project by using:

npm run-script build


Find packages that are outdated.  This will display a list of available updates.

npm outdated


List all of the installed packages…this is the same as just looking in the package.json file

npm list


Note that if there is a major update, it will not update to the latest.  To do that, you'll have to use npm i @latest.

-- updates anything in the package.json
npm update
-- updates global packages
npm update -g
– updates an individual package
npm update antd

You will periodically have to update npm itself globally.  This can be done with the following command:

npm i -g npm@latest

Weird Stuff

When I globally updated npm on my Windows machine, I noticed that it didn't really update it.  After digging I noticed that npm was installed in a couple areas in Windows:

  1. C:\Program Files\nodejs\node_modules\npm
  2. C:\Users\redap\AppData\Roaming\npm\node_modules\npm

Updating the npm package globally updated the second location, but the cmd line uses the first location.  That's frustrating.  To fix it, I just copied the contents of the second location to the first location and viola!, it was updated.