As a developer you’ll no doubt need to work on or support software that has been developed using old outdated versions of a software framework or libraries within that framework. Your software development workstation will no doubt need to be able to house different versions of these frameworks you’ll often need some mechanism to switch different versions easily.
Node.JS has been around now for few years and there are a number of different versions of the framework out in the wild. There are obviously a plethora of applications out there, that need to be supported and developed further. This is where the Node Version Manager (NVM) comes into play, it enables you to install, manage and switch between different Node.JS on your workstation using the terminal window.
Installing NVM is fairly easy and can be done using the Terminal
It’s always good practice to ensure you update your ubuntu workstation with the latest packages by running these commands
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade -y && sudo apt-get dist-upgrade -y
You can then download and install the latest version of NVM straight from the github repository
curl -o- https://raw.githubusercontent.com/creationix/nvm/v0.33.8/install.sh | bash
We’ll use curl to download the latest install script and once it’s finished downloading we’ll execute via bash to install. You may be prompted to close and reopen your terminal window. Although this isn’t really necessary, and can be overridden by executing
I have found it to actually better to do as it instructs and close and reopen the terminal window. We can now check which version of NVM has been installed
This will print out the version number to screen.
It’s a good idea to check out the commands the are available :
We now have the capability of installing and using any number of different Node.JS versions on our work station. For instance we can install versions 5, 4 or even 0.12
nvm install 5.3.0
nvm install 4.2.0
nvm install 0.12
You can choose any version of node that is available and NVM will download a pre-built binary version of Node.JS and install it. Once install is complete NVM will display which version has been installed.
Now using node v5.3.0 (npm v3.3.12)
You can confirm this by asking node which version has been installed
Set a Default version
If you want to ensure that the same version of node is used next time you log in or access vai SSH, you can set a default
nvm alias default 5.3.0
Switch between versions
Now that we have multiple versions of node installed, we may need to switch between them as and when we need to.
nvm use 0.12
** Note that when switching between node versions, the associated npm version and any global npm packages will be changed as well. You may need to reinstall your global npm packages when switching to a recently installed version.
Get a list of installed version of node
To get a list of all the versions of node you have installed via the nvm simple use the following command
If make use of a proxy then you need to register the proxy with NVM
nvm proxy [insert proxy address here]
Get a list of available node versions
To get a list of available node versions to install
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