A toolbox of cli tools for building and running javascript applications.

Usage no npm install needed!

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  import soko from '';



A toolbox of cli tools for building and running javascript apps.

tool box

Dan Abromov talked about his idea for "tool boxes" in his talk The Melting Pot of Javascript which could bundle developers' tools together in an updatable package using the most sensible defaults that would enable new users to hit the ground running without getting tangled in a web of configuration. These are my tools.

These are certainly not exhaustive for every situation, but these are a set of core tools I find myself reusing in each of my projects. This way, when I want to update my version of babel, or use some new fangled compression algorithm, or add new deployment methods, I can do that in one place and all my projects will be updated.


npm install soko --save-dev

Install in your project locally to keep it in sync with how your project works.


npx soko <command>

Soko can be installed in your project's local node_modules folder and run using npm's new npx command (which will search in your $PATH, but also in your local node_modules/.bin for any matching command).

npx is a tool that came out with npm v5.2.0 "is meant to make it easy to use CLI tools and other executables hosted on the registry".

This is how you install node and update npm.

Launch a NodeJS Server

npx soko server /path/to/nodejs/app.js

If there's a server already running, kill it.

Watch for Changes

npx soko watch
  --cssIn /path/to/styles.scss
  --jsIn /path/to/app.js
  --assetsIn /path/to/assets/folder`

Watch source files for any changes and rebuild outputs if necessary.

Start Development Environment

npx soko dev /path/to/nodejs/app.js

Build all front-end files, start server, watch source files for changes, and restart server when they do.

Build All Front-end Assets

You can also execute all build commands in one go.

npx soko build
  --cssIn /path/to/styles.scss
  --jsIn /path/to/app.js
  --assetsIn /path/to/assets/folder`

Build React and/or ES2015+ Javascripts

npx soko build:js /path/to/app.js

Use Babel with the env preset to target specific environments (using browserlist format) for output along with Browserify to enable multi-file modules, then pass the results through uglify to make it super small.

Build SASS Styles

npx soko build:css /path/to/styles.scss

Compile SASS and minify CSS. Makes use of autoprefixer, so you can just write pure SASS/CSS.

Build Assets

Simply copy static asset files to build folder to place them altogether beside your scripts and styles. Static assets might also include HTML files ;)

npx soko build:assets /path/to/assets/folder

Revisioning All Files

npx soko rev

Copy all static assets to build folder and rename them using a hash of their contents such that the hash (and filename) will change if the contents change thereby breaking any cacheing mechanisms automatically.

Using a manifest of all renamed files, update all references to those files in any JS, CSS, or HTML files that need to load them.

Revisioning Static Assets

npx soko rev:assets

Revisioning JS

npx soko rev:js

Revisionsing CSS

npx soko rev:css

Revisioning HTML

npx soko rev:html

Deploy Build to Remote

npx soko deploy --host

Use rsync to sync files in your build folder with a remote server and run any necessary remote commands (e.g., npm install in nodejs folder to update its dependencies and then restart the server).


  • always reduce the amount of configuration required
  • add more error checking for inputs
  • return better error messages to make things obvious when they go wrong
  • write unit tests
  • add commands to build docker containers easily