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Q: How to set up and use NodeJS and NPM packages with PHPStorm?

+5 votes

how to use nodejs and npm with phpstorm

Hi, I've heard that if I install Node.js on my PC I can better organize and automate my programming and web developing work by installing and using various NPM packages...

I have some questions:

  • Can you please share how do you install NodeJS and npm on PHPStorm and maybe some tricks/hacks on working automation so the dev process is easier?
  • Do you have favourite npm packages you would recommend?
  • Maybe some npm packages which you use on a daily basis? Like automatic browser refreshing?


asked in Web Development category by user ak47seo
edited by user golearnweb

1 Answer

+4 votes


Firstly you need to install node.js on your PC (download from HERE); To check whether it is installed properly, you will need to check node js version in cmd (or in PHPStorm's terminal) by typing:

node -v

check nodejs version in phpstorm terminal

Then, in your project folder by using PHPStorm's terminal (or the Window's cmd) you need to initialize npm. In the terminal type:

npm init -y

In your project folder this will create node_modules folder with all the packages you are installing. It will also create package.json file with the dependencies information. Npm's file package.json  is kind of a recipe/grocery list of our project with npm packages dependencies you are installing.

Next, to install an npm package type in the terminal:

npm install lodash

In this case lodash is the name of the package. Here is another example (installing normalize.css):

npm install normalize.css

...or install couple of necessary npm packages separated by space:

npm install postcss-simple-vars postcss-nested autoprefixer --save-dev

All these packages come from - you can search there for a package you are interested in.

To run npm you should type:

npm run dev

install npm packages on phpstorm

So why is NPM important for our project?

For example if something happens to our PC (some sort of a crash), we can always recover our project by cloning the project from GitHub (learn how to use GitHub and Git with PHPStorm IDE) and after cloning the project - the package.json file (the resipe of our project) will be inside and after typing in the terminal npm install all of the npm packages will be installed/recovered again! Great! :-)

Here are some npm packages I use with PHPStorm:

Definitely use webpack-dev-server; Here is how to install this great automation npm package. Just type:

npm install webpack-dev-server --save-dev

For Lazy loading of the images I am using: lazysizes

You can install it by typing:

npm install lazysizes
answered by user golearnweb
edited by user golearnweb