node package manager



Checks if currently installed npm/bower dependencies are installed in the exact same versions that are specified in package.json/bower.json

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To install the package and add it to your package.json, invoke:

npm install check-dependencies --save-dev


When dependencies are changed in package.json (or bower.json), whether it's a version bump or a new package, one can forget to invoke npm install (or bower install) and continue using the application, possibly encountering errors caused by obsolete package versions. To avoid it, use the check-dependencies module at the top of the entry point of your application; it will inform about not up-to-date setup and optionally install the dependencies.

Another option would be to always invoke npm install (or bower install) at the top of the main file but it can be slow and check-dependencies is fast.


Once the package has been installed, it may be used via:


$ check-dependencies

All options from the API except log and error can be passed to the CLI, example:

$ check-dependencies --verbose --package-manager bower --scope-list dependencies

Options accepting array values in the API (like scopeList) should have each value passed individually, example:

$ check-dependencies --scope-list dependencies --scope-list devDependencies


require('check-dependencies')(config, callback);

where callback is invoked upon completion and config is a configuration object.

callback is invoked with the object containing fields:

    status: number,      // 0 if successful, 1 otherwise 
    depsWereOk: boolean, // true if dependencies were already satisfied 
    log: array,          // array of logged messages 
    error: array,        // array of logged errors 

The function returns a promise so passing a callback is not necessary; instead you can do:

    .then(function (output) {
        /* handle output */

The promise should never fail.

There is a synchronous alternative -- the following code:

var output = require('check-dependencies').sync(config);

will assign to output the same object that would otherwise be passed to the callback in the asynchronous scenario.

The config object may have the following fields:


Package manager to check against. Possible values: 'npm', 'bower'. (Note: for bower you need to have the bower package installed either globally or locally in the same project in which you use check-dependencies).

Type: string

Default: 'npm'


Path to the directory containing package.json or bower.json.

Type: string

Default: the closest directory containing package.json or bower.json (depending on packageManager specified) when going up the tree, starting from the current one


Ensures all installed dependencies are specified in package.json or bower.json.

NOTE: Don't use this option with npm 3.0.0 or newer as it deduplicates the file dependency tree by default so check-dependencies will think many modules are excessive whereas in fact they will not.

Type: boolean

Default: false


Installs packages if they don't match. With the onlySpecified option enabled prune excessive packages as well.

Type: boolean

Default: false


The list of keys in package.json or bower.json where to look for package names & versions.

Type: array

Default: ['dependencies', 'devDependencies']


The list of keys in package.json or bower.json where to look for optional package names & versions. An optional package is not required to be installed but if it's installed, it's supposed to match the specified version range.

This list is also consulted when using onlySpecified: true.

Type: array

Default: ['optionalDependencies']


By default, check-dependencies will skip version check for custom package names, but will still check to see if they are installed. For example:

    "dependencies": {
      "specialSemver059": "semver#0.5.9"

If checkCustomPackageNames is enabled, check-dependencies will parse the version number (after the hash) for custom package names and check it against the version of the installed package of the same name.

Type: boolean

Default: false


By default, check-dependencies will skip version check for packages whose version contains the full repository path. For example:

    "dependencies": {
      "semver": ""

If checkGitUrls is enabled, check-dependencies will parse the version number (after the path to the git repository and the hash) and check it against the version of the installed package.

Type: boolean

Default: false


Prints messages to the console.

Type: boolean

Default: false


A function logging debug messages (applies only if verbose: true).

Type: function

Default: console.log.bind(console)


A function logging error messages (applies only if verbose: true).

Type: function

Default: console.error.bind(console)

Usage Examples

The most basic usage:


This will check packages' versions and report an error to callback if packages' versions are mismatched.

The following:

    install: true,
    verbose: true,
}, callback);

will install mismatched ones and call callback.

The following two examples:

require('check-dependencies')({}, callback);

behave in the same way - callback is invoked upon completion; if there was an error, it's passed as a parameter to callback.

Supported Node.js versions

This project aims to support all Node.js LTS versions in the "active" phase (see LTS README for more details) as well as the latest stable Node.js.


In lieu of a formal styleguide, take care to maintain the existing coding style. Add unit tests for any new or changed functionality. Lint and test your code using npm test.


Copyright (c) 2014 Michał Gołębiowski. Licensed under the MIT license.