Extract text from documents with Apache Tika

Usage no npm install needed!

<script type="module">
  import shelfTikaTextExtract from 'https://cdn.skypack.dev/@shelf/tika-text-extract';


Tika Text Extract

Extract text from any document by Apache Tika

CircleCI npm David npm


The Apache Tika™ toolkit detects and extracts metadata and text from over a thousand different file types (such as PPT, XLS, and PDF). All of these file types can be parsed through a single interface, making Tika useful for search engine indexing, content analysis, translation, and much more.


This was mainly built for convenience usage in AWS Lambda environment.

If you want to use Tika from node.js you are left with these options:

  • Spawn a CLI - no, extremely inefficient to pay for Java startup time
  • Start HTTP Server
  • Use Java ?

Spawning a Tika as CLI is extremely inefficient. Using Java API from node.js is tedious. This module starts a Tika HTTP Server to stream files to and return a string of extracted text.

Requires java to be present on the system.


$ yarn add @shelf/tika-text-extract


import {readFileSync} from 'fs';
import tte from '@shelf/tika-text-extract';

await tte.startServer('/tmp/tika-server-1.14.jar');
const testFile = readFileSync('./README.md');

const extractedText = await tte.extract(testFile);

Execute Tika with a custom path to Java binary

const options = {executableJavaPath: '/bin/jre/java'};

await tte.startServer('/tmp/tika-server-1.14.jar', options);
// The next command will be executed:
// /bin/jre/java --add-modules=java.xml.bind,java.activation -Duser.home=/tmp -jar /tmp/tika-server-1.14.jar

Execute Tika with Java version less than 9

By default the library does not support Java version less than 9. In order to use it with Java 8, pass an option to startServer function

const options = {alignWithJava8: true};

await tte.startServer('/tmp/tika-server-1.14.jar', options);
// The next command will be executed:
// java  -Duser.home=/tmp -jar /tmp/tika-server-1.14.jar


You can see debug messages by setting env var DEBUG=tika-text-extract


Params: artifactPath - path to your tika-server.jar file.

Returns: Promise resolved when server is started. Rejects in case of error.


Params: fileInput - Buffer, String, Stream or Promise of file to extract text from.

Returns: Promise resolved with extracted text.


$ git checkout master
$ yarn version
$ yarn publish
$ git push origin master --tags


MIT © Shelf