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JavaScript Nodejs

How to Handle Command Line Arguments in Node Apps

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We can use the minimist library to parse command line arguments.

We just have to install minimist by running:

npm i minimist

in our project.

Then, we can use it as follows:

index.js

const argv = require('minimist')(process.argv.slice(2));
console.log(argv);

Now if we run:

node index.js -x 3 -y 4 -n5 -abc --hello=world foo bar baz

We get:

{
  _: [ 'foo', 'bar', 'baz' ],
  x: 3,
  y: 4,
  n: 5,
  a: true,
  b: true,
  c: true,
  hello: 'world'
}

We can pass in an options object with an object that has some options.

The options are passed in as an object with the following properties:

  • string – string or array of string argument names to always treat as strings
  • boolean – string or array of string argument names to always treat as boolean
  • alias – string or array of string argument names to use as aliases
  • default – default values for arguments
  • stopEarly – populate argv._ with everything after the first non-option
  • ['--'] – populate argv._ with everything before -- and arv['--'] with everything after the --.

It can’t get any easier than that.

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