Node.js Tips

Node.js Tips — Unzipping Files, Storing Passwords, and REPLs

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ind of apps, there are difficult issues to solve when we write Node apps.

In this article, we’ll look at some solutions to common problems when writing Node apps.

Storing passwords with Node.js and MongoDB

We can store passwords in a MongoDB document with the bcrypt library.

For instance. we can write:

const mongoose = require('mongoose');
const Schema = mongoose.Schema;
const bcrypt = require('bcrypt');
const SALT_WORK_FACTOR = 10;

const UserSchema = new Schema({
  username: {
    type: String,
    required: true,
    index: {
      unique: true
  password: { type: String, required: true }

module.exports = mongoose.model('User', UserSchema);

We create the UserSchema with the Schema constructor.

It has the username and password string fields.

Then we can use the pre method to hash and salt the password before it’s saved.

To do that, we write:

UserSchema.pre('save', function(next) {
  const user = this;
  if (!user.isModified('password')){
    return next();

  bcrypt.genSalt(SALT_WORK_FACTOR, (err, salt) => {
    if (err) {
       return next(err);

    bcrypt.hash(user.password, salt, (err, hash) => {
      if (err) {
        return next(err);
      user.password = hash;

We override the plain text password with the hash and salted one/

To do that, we used the genSalt method to create the salt.

Then we create the hash from the password.

We passed our generated salt into the hashmethod.

Then we set the password property to the hash .

And finally, we call next to continue with saving the user data.

Fix Protocol “https:” not supported. Expected “http:” Error

We can fix this error, which occurs when we try to make HTTPS requests with http .

We’ve to use https.get instead of http.get to make a request to a URL that starts with https .

Mongoose Connect Error Callback

We can pick up the error in the callback we pass into connect .

For example, we can write:

mongoose.connect('mongodb://localhost/db', (err) => {
  if (err) throw err;

err has the error object that’s set when there’s an error.

Run Some Code and Then Go Into Node REPL

We can use the repl module to start the REPL.

For instance, we can write:

const repl = require("repl");
const r = repl.start("node> ");

We call start the REPL with the command prompt of our choice.

Get the Node.js Version at Runtime

We can get the Node version at runtime with the process.version property.

To get more version information, we can use the process.versions property.

Then we get something like:

  node: '12.16.3',
  v8: '',
  uv: '1.34.2',
  zlib: '1.2.11',
  brotli: '1.0.7',
  ares: '1.16.0',
  modules: '72',
  nghttp2: '1.40.0',
  napi: '5',
  llhttp: '2.0.4',
  http_parser: '2.9.3',
  openssl: '1.1.1g',
  cldr: '36.0',
  icu: '65.1',
  tz: '2019c',
  unicode: '12.1'

Unzip (Decompress) a NodeJS Request’s Module gzip Response Body

We can decompress a gzipped file by using the zlib library.

For instance, we can write:

const http = require("http"),
const zlib = require("zlib");

const getGzipped = (url, callback) => {
  const buffer = [];
  http.get(url, (res) => {
    const gunzip = zlib.createGunzip();

    gunzip.on('data', (data) => {
    .on("end", () => {
      callback(null, buffer.join(""));
    .on("error", (e) => {
  .on('error', (e) => {

getGzipped(url, (err, data) => {

We created the getGzipped function by making the GET request to get a zipped file with the http.get method.

Then call createGunzip to create the gunzip object that we can pipe the res stream object to.

Then we can listen to the data event to get the data.

We call push on the buffer object to gather the data.

Then when the end event is emitted, we call the callback to send the data to the callback.

When an error event is emitted from the gunzip or http.get methods, we’ll call the callback to send the error.

Then we can use the function to get the error or the unzipped file’s data.


We can get the version with the process object.

To unzip files obtained from the http.get method, we can unzip it with zlib .

We’ve to hash and salt the password manually if we want to store it securely.

We can use the repl module to access the REPL.

By John Au-Yeung

Web developer specializing in React, Vue, and front end development.

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