Simple session middleware for Express with custom SID support

Usage no npm install needed!

<script type="module">
  import easyExpressSession from 'https://cdn.skypack.dev/easy_express_session';



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$ npm install express-session


var session = require('express-session')


Create a session middleware with the given options.

Note Session data is not saved in the cookie itself, just the session ID. Session data is stored server-side.

Warning The default server-side session storage, MemoryStore, is purposely not designed for a production environment. It will leak memory under most conditions, does not scale past a single process, and is meant for debugging and developing.

For a list of stores, see compatible session stores.


express-session accepts these properties in the options object.


Settings for the session ID cookie. See the "Cookie options" section below for more information on the different values.

The default value is { path: '/', httpOnly: true, secure: false, maxAge: null }.


Function to call to generate a new session ID. Provide a function that returns a string that will be used as a session ID. The function is given req as the first argument if you want to use some value attached to req when generating the ID.

The default value is a function which uses the uid-safe library to generate IDs.

NOTE be careful to generate unique IDs so your sessions do not conflict.

  genid: function(req) {
    return genuuid() // use UUIDs for session IDs
  secret: 'keyboard cat'

The name of the session ID cookie to set in the response (and read from in the request).

The default value is 'connect.sid'.

Note if you have multiple apps running on the same host (hostname + port), then you need to separate the session cookies from each other. The simplest method is to simply set different names per app.


Trust the reverse proxy when setting secure cookies (via the "X-Forwarded-Proto" header).

The default value is undefined.

  • true The "X-Forwarded-Proto" header will be used.
  • false All headers are ignored and the connection is considered secure only if there is a direct TLS/SSL connection.
  • undefined Uses the "trust proxy" setting from express

Forces the session to be saved back to the session store, even if the session was never modified during the request. Depending on your store this may be necessary, but it can also create race conditions where a client makes two parallel requests to your server and changes made to the session in one request may get overwritten when the other request ends, even if it made no changes (this behavior also depends on what store you're using).

The default value is true, but using the default has been deprecated, as the default will change in the future. Please research into this setting and choose what is appropriate to your use-case. Typically, you'll want false.

How do I know if this is necessary for my store? The best way to know is to check with your store if it implements the touch method. If it does, then you can safely set resave: false. If it does not implement the touch method and your store sets an expiration date on stored sessions, then you likely need resave: true.


Force a session identifier cookie to be set on every response. The expiration is reset to the original maxAge, resetting the expiration countdown.

The default value is false.

Note When this option is set to true but the saveUnitialized option is set to false, the cookie will not be set on a response with an uninitialized session.


Forces a session that is "uninitialized" to be saved to the store. A session is uninitialized when it is new but not modified. Choosing false is useful for implementing login sessions, reducing server storage usage, or complying with laws that require permission before setting a cookie. Choosing false will also help with race conditions where a client makes multiple parallel requests without a session.

The default value is true, but using the default has been deprecated, as the default will change in the future. Please research into this setting and choose what is appropriate to your use-case.

Note if you are using Session in conjunction with PassportJS, Passport will add an empty Passport object to the session for use after a user is authenticated, which will be treated as a modification to the session, causing it to be saved.


Required option

This is the secret used to sign the session ID cookie. This can be either a string for a single secret, or an array of multiple secrets. If an array of secrets is provided, only the first element will be used to sign the session ID cookie, while all the elements will be considered when verifying the signature in requests.


The session store instance, defaults to a new MemoryStore instance.


Control the result of unsetting req.session (through delete, setting to null, etc.).

The default value is 'keep'.

  • 'destroy' The session will be destroyed (deleted) when the response ends.
  • 'keep' The session in the store will be kept, but modifications made during the request are ignored and not saved.

Cookie options

Note Since version 1.5.0, the cookie-parser middleware no longer needs to be used for this module to work. This module now directly reads and writes cookies on req/res. Using cookie-parser may result in issues if the secret is not the same between this module and cookie-parser.

Please note that secure: true is a recommended option. However, it requires an https-enabled website, i.e., HTTPS is necessary for secure cookies. If secure is set, and you access your site over HTTP, the cookie will not be set. If you have your node.js behind a proxy and are using secure: true, you need to set "trust proxy" in express:

var app = express()
app.set('trust proxy', 1) // trust first proxy
  secret: 'keyboard cat',
  resave: false,
  saveUninitialized: true,
  cookie: { secure: true }

For using secure cookies in production, but allowing for testing in development, the following is an example of enabling this setup based on NODE_ENV in express:

var app = express()
var sess = {
  secret: 'keyboard cat',
  cookie: {}

if (app.get('env') === 'production') {
  app.set('trust proxy', 1) // trust first proxy
  sess.cookie.secure = true // serve secure cookies


The cookie.secure option can also be set to the special value 'auto' to have this setting automatically match the determined security of the connection. Be careful when using this setting if the site is available both as HTTP and HTTPS, as once the cookie is set on HTTPS, it will no longer be visible over HTTP. This is useful when the Express "trust proxy" setting is properly setup to simplify development vs production configuration.

By default cookie.maxAge is null, meaning no "expires" parameter is set so the cookie becomes a browser-session cookie. When the user closes the browser the cookie (and session) will be removed.


To store or access session data, simply use the request property req.session, which is (generally) serialized as JSON by the store, so nested objects are typically fine. For example below is a user-specific view counter:

// Use the session middleware
app.use(session({ secret: 'keyboard cat', cookie: { maxAge: 60000 }}))

// Access the session as req.session
app.get('/', function(req, res, next) {
  var sess = req.session
  if (sess.views) {
    res.setHeader('Content-Type', 'text/html')
    res.write('<p>views: ' + sess.views + '</p>')
    res.write('<p>expires in: ' + (sess.cookie.maxAge / 1000) + 's</p>')
  } else {
    sess.views = 1
    res.end('welcome to the session demo. refresh!')


To regenerate the session simply invoke the method. Once complete, a new SID and Session instance will be initialized at req.session.

req.session.regenerate(function(err) {
  // will have a new session here


Destroys the session, removing req.session; will be re-generated next request.

req.session.destroy(function(err) {
  // cannot access session here


Reloads the session data.

req.session.reload(function(err) {
  // session updated


Save the session back to the store, replacing the contents on the store with the contents in memory (though a store may do something else--consult the store's documentation for exact behavior).

This method is automatically called at the end of the HTTP response if the session data has been altered (though this behavior can be altered with various options in the middleware constructor). Because of this, typically this method does not need to be called.

There are some cases where it is useful to call this method, for example, long- lived requests or in WebSockets.

req.session.save(function(err) {
  // session saved


Updates the .maxAge property. Typically this is not necessary to call, as the session middleware does this for you.


Each session has a unique ID associated with it. This property will contain the session ID and cannot be modified.


Each session has a unique cookie object accompany it. This allows you to alter the session cookie per visitor. For example we can set req.session.cookie.expires to false to enable the cookie to remain for only the duration of the user-agent.


Alternatively req.session.cookie.maxAge will return the time remaining in milliseconds, which we may also re-assign a new value to adjust the .expires property appropriately. The following are essentially equivalent

var hour = 3600000
req.session.cookie.expires = new Date(Date.now() + hour)
req.session.cookie.maxAge = hour

For example when maxAge is set to 60000 (one minute), and 30 seconds has elapsed it will return 30000 until the current request has completed, at which time req.session.touch() is called to reset req.session.maxAge to its original value.

req.session.cookie.maxAge // => 30000


To get the ID of the loaded session, access the request property req.sessionID. This is simply a read-only value set when a session is loaded/created.

Session Store Implementation

Every session store must be an EventEmitter and implement specific methods. The following methods are the list of required, recommended, and optional.

  • Required methods are ones that this module will always call on the store.
  • Recommended methods are ones that this module will call on the store if available.
  • Optional methods are ones this module does not call at all, but helps present uniform stores to users.

For an example implementation view the connect-redis repo.



This optional method is used to get all sessions in the store as an array. The callback should be called as callback(error, sessions).

store.destroy(sid, callback)


This required method is used to destroy/delete a session from the store given a session ID (sid). The callback should be called as callback(error) once the session is destroyed.



This optional method is used to delete all sessions from the store. The callback should be called as callback(error) once the store is cleared.



This optional method is used to get the count of all sessions in the store. The callback should be called as callback(error, len).

store.get(sid, callback)


This required method is used to get a session from the store given a session ID (sid). The callback should be called as callback(error, session).

The session argument should be a session if found, otherwise null or undefined if the session was not found (and there was no error). A special case is made when error.code === 'ENOENT' to act like callback(null, null).

store.set(sid, session, callback)


This required method is used to upsert a session into the store given a session ID (sid) and session (session) object. The callback should be called as callback(error) once the session has been set in the store.

store.touch(sid, session, callback)


This recommended method is used to "touch" a given session given a session ID (sid) and session (session) object. The callback should be called as callback(error) once the session has been touched.

This is primarily used when the store will automatically delete idle sessions and this method is used to signal to the store the given session is active, potentially resetting the idle timer.

Compatible Session Stores

The following modules implement a session store that is compatible with this module. Please make a PR to add additional modules :)

[![★][cassandra-store-image] cassandra-store][cassandra-store-url] An Apache Cassandra-based session store. [cassandra-store-url]: https://www.npmjs.com/package/cassandra-store [cassandra-store-image]: https://img.shields.io/github/stars/webcc/cassandra-store.svg?label=%E2%98%85

[![★][cluster-store-image] cluster-store][cluster-store-url] A wrapper for using in-process / embedded stores - such as SQLite (via knex), leveldb, files, or memory - with node cluster (desirable for Raspberry Pi 2 and other multi-core embedded devices). [cluster-store-url]: https://www.npmjs.com/package/cluster-store [cluster-store-image]: https://img.shields.io/github/stars/coolaj86/cluster-store.svg?label=%E2%98%85

[![★][connect-couchbase-image] connect-couchbase][connect-couchbase-url] A couchbase-based session store. [connect-couchbase-url]: https://www.npmjs.com/package/connect-couchbase [connect-couchbase-image]: https://img.shields.io/github/stars/christophermina/connect-couchbase.svg?label=%E2%98%85

[![★][connect-mssql-image] connect-mssql][connect-mssql-url] A SQL Server-based session store. [connect-mssql-url]: https://www.npmjs.com/package/connect-mssql [connect-mssql-image]: https://img.shields.io/github/stars/patriksimek/connect-mssql.svg?label=%E2%98%85

[![★][connect-monetdb-image] connect-monetdb][connect-monetdb-url] A MonetDB-based session store. [connect-monetdb-url]: https://www.npmjs.com/package/connect-monetdb [connect-monetdb-image]: https://img.shields.io/github/stars/MonetDB/npm-connect-monetdb.svg?label=%E2%98%85

[![★][connect-mongo-image] connect-mongo][connect-mongo-url] A MongoDB-based session store. [connect-mongo-url]: https://www.npmjs.com/package/connect-mongo [connect-mongo-image]: https://img.shields.io/github/stars/kcbanner/connect-mongo.svg?label=%E2%98%85

[![★][connect-mongodb-session-image] connect-mongodb-session][connect-mongodb-session-url] Lightweight MongoDB-based session store built and maintained by MongoDB. [connect-mongodb-session-url]: https://www.npmjs.com/package/connect-mongodb-session [connect-mongodb-session-image]: https://img.shields.io/github/stars/mongodb-js/connect-mongodb-session.svg?label=%E2%98%85

[![★][connect-pg-simple-image] connect-pg-simple][connect-pg-simple-url] A PostgreSQL-based session store. [connect-pg-simple-url]: https://www.npmjs.com/package/connect-pg-simple [connect-pg-simple-image]: https://img.shields.io/github/stars/voxpelli/node-connect-pg-simple.svg?label=%E2%98%85

[![★][connect-redis-image] connect-redis][connect-redis-url] A Redis-based session store. [connect-redis-url]: https://www.npmjs.com/package/connect-redis [connect-redis-image]: https://img.shields.io/github/stars/tj/connect-redis.svg?label=%E2%98%85

[![★][connect-memcached-image] connect-memcached][connect-memcached-url] A memcached-based session store. [connect-memcached-url]: https://www.npmjs.com/package/connect-memcached [connect-memcached-image]: https://img.shields.io/github/stars/balor/connect-memcached.svg?label=%E2%98%85

[![★][connect-session-knex-image] connect-session-knex][connect-session-knex-url] A session store using Knex.js, which is a SQL query builder for PostgreSQL, MySQL, MariaDB, SQLite3, and Oracle. [connect-session-knex-url]: https://www.npmjs.com/package/connect-session-knex [connect-session-knex-image]: https://img.shields.io/github/stars/llambda/connect-session-knex.svg?label=%E2%98%85

[![★][connect-session-sequelize-image] connect-session-sequelize][connect-session-sequelize-url] A session store using Sequelize.js, which is a Node.js / io.js ORM for PostgreSQL, MySQL, SQLite and MSSQL. [connect-session-sequelize-url]: https://www.npmjs.com/package/connect-session-sequelize [connect-session-sequelize-image]: https://img.shields.io/github/stars/mweibel/connect-session-sequelize.svg?label=%E2%98%85

[![★][connect-sqlite3-image] connect-sqlite3][connect-sqlite3-url] A SQLite3 session store modeled after the TJ's connect-redis store. [connect-sqlite3-url]: https://www.npmjs.com/package/connect-sqlite3 [connect-sqlite3-image]: https://img.shields.io/github/stars/rawberg/connect-sqlite3.svg?label=%E2%98%85

[![★][express-nedb-session-image] express-nedb-session][express-nedb-session-url] A NeDB-based session store. [express-nedb-session-url]: https://www.npmjs.com/package/express-nedb-session [express-nedb-session-image]: https://img.shields.io/github/stars/louischatriot/express-nedb-session.svg?label=%E2%98%85

[![★][level-session-store-image] level-session-store][level-session-store-url] A LevelDB-based session store. [level-session-store-url]: https://www.npmjs.com/package/level-session-store [level-session-store-image]: https://img.shields.io/github/stars/scriptollc/level-session-store.svg?label=%E2%98%85

[![★][mssql-session-store-image] mssql-session-store][mssql-session-store-url] A SQL Server-based session store. [mssql-session-store-url]: https://www.npmjs.com/package/mssql-session-store [mssql-session-store-image]: https://img.shields.io/github/stars/jwathen/mssql-session-store.svg?label=%E2%98%85

[![★][nedb-session-store-image] nedb-session-store][nedb-session-store-url] An alternate NeDB-based (either in-memory or file-persisted) session store. [nedb-session-store-url]: https://www.npmjs.com/package/nedb-session-store [nedb-session-store-image]: https://img.shields.io/github/stars/JamesMGreene/nedb-session-store.svg?label=%E2%98%85

[![★][sequelstore-connect-image] sequelstore-connect][sequelstore-connect-url] A session store using Sequelize.js. [sequelstore-connect-url]: https://www.npmjs.com/package/sequelstore-connect [sequelstore-connect-image]: https://img.shields.io/github/stars/MattMcFarland/sequelstore-connect.svg?label=%E2%98%85

[![★][session-file-store-image] session-file-store][session-file-store-url] A file system-based session store. [session-file-store-url]: https://www.npmjs.com/package/session-file-store [session-file-store-image]: https://img.shields.io/github/stars/valery-barysok/session-file-store.svg?label=%E2%98%85

[![★][session-rethinkdb-image] session-rethinkdb][session-rethinkdb-url] A RethinkDB-based session store. [session-rethinkdb-url]: https://www.npmjs.com/package/session-rethinkdb [session-rethinkdb-image]: https://img.shields.io/github/stars/llambda/session-rethinkdb.svg?label=%E2%98%85


A simple example using express-session to store page views for a user.

var express = require('express')
var parseurl = require('parseurl')
var session = require('express-session')

var app = express()

  secret: 'keyboard cat',
  resave: false,
  saveUninitialized: true

app.use(function (req, res, next) {
  var views = req.session.views

  if (!views) {
    views = req.session.views = {}

  // get the url pathname
  var pathname = parseurl(req).pathname

  // count the views
  views[pathname] = (views[pathname] || 0) + 1


app.get('/foo', function (req, res, next) {
  res.send('you viewed this page ' + req.session.views['/foo'] + ' times')

app.get('/bar', function (req, res, next) {
  res.send('you viewed this page ' + req.session.views['/bar'] + ' times')