TypeScript icon, indicating that this package has built-in type declarations

    4.11.0 • Public • Published

    npm version Gitter


    usb-detection allows you to listen for insert/remove events of USB devices on your system.



    npm install usb-detection

    Install for Electron

    This module uses native extensions and needs to be compiled for your target version of Electron. Precompiled binaries for recent Node.js and Electron versions are built and published using prebuild and can be installed automatically using electron-rebuild.

    See the Electron docs for using native modules to ensure your project is set up to correctly use the prebuilt binaries for your version of Electron.

    If you run into the following error, here are the exact steps you can use:

    detection.node was compiled against a different Node.js version using NODE_MODULE_VERSION 72. This version of Node.js requires NODE_MODULE_VERSION 80. Please try re-compiling or re-installing 
    1. npm i electron-rebuild --save-dev
    2. ./node_modules/.bin/electron-rebuild


    var usbDetect = require('usb-detection');
    // Detect add/insert
    usbDetect.on('add', function(device) { console.log('add', device); });
    usbDetect.on('add:vid', function(device) { console.log('add', device); });
    usbDetect.on('add:vid:pid', function(device) { console.log('add', device); });
    // Detect remove
    usbDetect.on('remove', function(device) { console.log('remove', device); });
    usbDetect.on('remove:vid', function(device) { console.log('remove', device); });
    usbDetect.on('remove:vid:pid', function(device) { console.log('remove', device); });
    // Detect add or remove (change)
    usbDetect.on('change', function(device) { console.log('change', device); });
    usbDetect.on('change:vid', function(device) { console.log('change', device); });
    usbDetect.on('change:vid:pid', function(device) { console.log('change', device); });
    // Get a list of USB devices on your system, optionally filtered by `vid` or `pid`
    usbDetect.find(function(err, devices) { console.log('find', devices, err); });
    usbDetect.find(vid, function(err, devices) { console.log('find', devices, err); });
    usbDetect.find(vid, pid, function(err, devices) { console.log('find', devices, err); });
    // Promise version of `find`:
    usbDetect.find().then(function(devices) { console.log(devices); }).catch(function(err) { console.log(err); });
    // Allow the process to exit



    Start listening for USB add/remove/change events. This will cause the Node.js process to stay open until you call usbDetect.stopMonitoring() (see below).


    Stop listening for USB add/remove/change events. This will also allow the Node.js process to exit.

    This is really only meant to be called once on exit. No guarantees if you start/stop monitoring multiple times, see https://github.com/MadLittleMods/node-usb-detection/issues/53

    usbDetect.on(eventName, callback)

    • eventName
      • add: also aliased as insert
        • add:vid
        • add:vid:pid
      • remove
        • remove:vid
        • remove:vid:pid
      • change
        • change:vid
        • change:vid:pid
    • callback: Function that is called whenever the event occurs
      • Takes a device
    var usbDetect = require('usb-detection');
    usbDetect.on('add', function(device) {
    /* Console output:
    	locationId: 0,
    	vendorId: 5824,
    	productId: 1155,
    	deviceName: 'Teensy USB Serial (COM3)',
    	manufacturer: 'PJRC.COM, LLC.',
    	serialNumber: '',
    	deviceAddress: 11

    usbDetect.find(vid, pid, callback)

    Note: All find calls return a promise even with the node-style callback flavors.

    • find()
    • find(vid)
    • find(vid, pid)
    • find(callback)
    • find(vid, callback)
    • find(vid, pid, callback)


    • vid: restrict search to a certain vendor id
    • pid: restrict search to s certain product id
    • callback: Function that is called whenever the event occurs
      • Takes a err and devices parameter.
    var usbDetect = require('usb-detection');
    usbDetect.find(function(err, devices) {
    	console.log(devices, err);
    // Equivalent to:
    //		usbDetect.find().then(function(devices) { console.log(devices); }).catch(function(err) { console.log(err); });
    /* Console output:
    		locationId: 0,
    		vendorId: 0,
    		productId: 0,
    		deviceName: 'USB Root Hub',
    		manufacturer: '(Standard USB Host Controller)',
    		serialNumber: '',
    		deviceAddress: 2
    		locationId: 0,
    		vendorId: 5824,
    		productId: 1155,
    		deviceName: 'Teensy USB Serial (COM3)',
    		manufacturer: 'PJRC.COM, LLC.',
    		serialNumber: '',
    		deviceAddress: 11


    The script/process is not exiting/quiting

    var usbDetect = require('usb-detection');
    // Do some detection
    // After this call, the process will be able to quit

    usbDetect.find() always returns the same list of devices, even after removal.

    Make sure you call usbDetect.startMonitoring() before any calls to usbDetect.find().

    npm run rebuild -> The system cannot find the path specified.

    If you are running into the The system cannot find the path specified. error when running npm run rebuild, make sure you have Python 2 installed and on your PATH.

    You can verify node-gyp is configured correctly by looking at the output of node-gyp configure --verbose.

    $ node-gyp configure --verbose
    gyp verb check python checking for Python executable "python2" in the PATH
    gyp verb `which` succeeded python2 C:\Python27\python2.EXE

    If you already have Python 3 installed, you can install Python 2 alongside and create a symlink called python2.exe via mklink "C:\Python27\python2.exe" "C:\Python27\python.exe" and add the directory to your path.

    To build a debug version with error outputs use:

    $ npm run rebuild --debug

    Development (compile from source)

    This assumes you also have everything on your system necessary to compile ANY native module for Node.js. This may not be the case, though, so please ensure the following requirements are satisfied before filing an issue about "Does not install". For all operating systems, please ensure you have Python 2.x installed AND not 3.0, node-gyp (what we use to compile) requires Python 2.x.


    If you are having problems building, please read this.

    Mac OS X:

    Ensure that you have at a minimum, the xCode Command Line Tools installed appropriate for your system configuration. If you recently upgraded your OS, it probably removed your installation of Command Line Tools, please verify before submitting a ticket.


    You know what you need for you system, basically your appropriate analog of build-essential. Keep rocking!

    To compile and install native addons from npm you may also need to install build tools (source):

    sudo apt-get install -y build-essential

    Also install libudev:

    sudo apt-get install libudev-dev


    We have a suite of Mocha/Chai tests.

    The tests require some manual interaction of plugging/unplugging a USB device. Follow the cyan background text instructions.

    npm test


    npm i @bigemap/usb-detection

    DownloadsWeekly Downloads






    Unpacked Size

    94.2 kB

    Total Files


    Last publish


    • charlyq