node package manager

enterify

Enterify

Easily package your Meteor apps with Electron, and butter.

TL;DR

npm install -g enterify
cd /your/meteor/app
enterify

Compatibility

Works on all Meteor's supported platforms.

Help

$ enterify -h
 
  Usage: enterify [command] [options]
 
  Commands:
 
    run       (default) start meteor app within enterify context
    bundle    bundle meteor app at `.enterify` dir
    package   bundle and package app to `--output` dir
 
  Options:
 
    -h, --help             output usage information
    -V, --version          output the version number
    -i, --input    <path>  meteor app dir       | default = .
    -o, --output   <path>  output dir           | default = .enterify/.dist
    -s, --settings <path>  meteor settings file | default = null (optional)
 
  Examples:
 
    # cd into meteor dir first
    cd /your/meteor/app
 
    enterify
    enterify run
    enterify package
    enterify package -o /dist/dir
    enterify package -o /dist/dir -s file.json
    enterify package -i /app/dir -o /dist/dir -s dev.json
    enterify package -- <electron-packager-options>
 
    # more info about electron packager options:
    # ~> https://www.npmjs.com/package/electron-packager

Installation

npm install -g enterify

For invoking Electron methods from Meteor, you'll also need to install the enteryazilim:enterify meteor package. For more info check Meteor x Electron integration.

Running app

cd /your/meteor/app
enterify

Packaging

cd /your/meteor/app
enterify package

The packaging process is done under the hood using electron-packager npm package. The following variables are automatically set:

  • --out -- comes from cli option [-o, --out]
  • --arch -- comes from system [current arch]
  • --platform -- comes from system [current platform]
  • --version -- comes from .enterify/package.json [current app version]

You can overwrite these default values and also set others by passing custom arguments directly to electron-packager after --, i.e:

cd /your/meteor/app
enterify package -- --icon=/folder/x/img/icon.png --version=x.y.z

All the available options for electron-packager can be found here: https://www.npmjs.com/package/electron-packager

Notes

The output app will match your current operational system and arch type.

  • To get an OSX app, run it from a Osx machine.
  • To get an Linux 32bit app, run it from a 32bit Linux machine.
  • To get an Linux 64bit app, run it from a 64bit Linux machine.
  • To get an Windows 32bit app, run it from a 32bit Windows machine.
  • To get an Windows 64bit app, run it from a 64bit Windows machine.

Due to NodeJS native bindings of such libraries such as Fibers -- which are mandatory for Meteor, you'll need to have your Meteor app fully working on the desired platform before installing this plugin and packaging your app.

So, at this time, you cannot package your app in a cross-platform fashion from one single OS.

Perhaps you can live with it? :)

DO NOT use options to output for multiple arch/platforms at once, such as --arch=all. It won't work, Enterify can bundle Meteor apps only for the platform you're running on.

Options

  1. -i, --input - Meteor app folder, default is current directory (process.cwd()).
  2. -o, --output - Sets output folder for your packaged app, default is /your/meteor/app/.dist
  3. -s, --settings Sets path for Meteor settings file, this will be available inside your Meteor code both in development and after being packaged.

Structure

You'll notice a new folder called .enterify in your meteor app dir, its structure will be like this:

/your/meteor/app
├── .enterify
│   ├── .gitignore
│   ├── enterify.json
│   ├── index.js
│   └── package.json
├── .meteor
└── ...

This is a pure Electron project, so you can use the whole Electron API from JS files in this folder. Also, you can install electron dependencies and store them in the package.json file. Note that the enterify package is itself a dependency.

See this folder as the desktop layer for your Meteor app. Remember to check out the index.js file, it constains the enterify start/stop usage.

The enterify.json file will hold specific preferences for Enterify, such as plugins and so on. It's still a WIP, but you can get around it.

Config (enterify.json)

For now there's only one option here: preserve_db.

Set it to true to preserve database between installs. It works by saving the mongo data dir inside user's data folder, instead of being self contained within the app folder (which gets deleted when new version is installed).

Customizing

Let's see how one would be able to do a simple SplashScreen:

var app       = require('app');
var browser   = require('browser-window');
var enterify = require('enterify')(__dirname);
 
var window = null;
var splash = null; // splash variable 
 
app.on('ready', function() {
  splash = new browser({ // starts splash window 
    // >>> your configs here 
  });
  splash.loadUrl('./splash.html'); // create the ".enterify/splash.html" file 
  
  // then move along and start enterify 
  enterify.start(function(meteor_root_url) {
 
    // before opening a new window with your app, destroy the splash window 
    splash.close(); // >>> or .destroy(), check what works for you 
 
 
    // from here on, well, nothing changes.. 
 
 
    window = new browser({
      width: 1200, height: 900,
      'node-integration': false // node integration must to be off 
    });
    window.loadUrl(meteor_root_url);
  });
});
 
 
// .... 
 

Meteor x Electron integration

You can seamlessly call Electron methods from your Meteor's client/server code.

Define your Electron methods inside the .enterify folder:

// `.enterify/index.js` file 
enterify.methods({
  'hello.world': function(firstname, lastname, done) {
    // do things with electron api, and then call the `done` callback 
    // as ~> done(err, res); 
    done(null, 'Hello '+ firstname +' '+ lastname +'!');
   }
});

Then, in your Meteor code (client and server), you can call this method like:

// Enterify.call(method_name, args, done_callback); 
Enterify.call('hello.world', ['anderson', 'arboleya'], function(err, msg) {
  console.log(msg); // Hello anderson arboleya! 
});

IMPORTANT

You can only call methods after the connection is made between Meteor and Electron, to make sure it's ready you can wrap your code in a startup block:

Enterify.startup(function(){
  Enterify.call(...);
});

Upgrading

When upgrading to newer versions, it's important to know that:

~> templates

Once these files exists on disk, they will not be overwritten.

  • .enterify/index.js
  • .enterify/package.json
  • .enterify/enterify.json
  • .enterify/.gitignore.json

~> api

As these files above is never overwritten, in case of any API change that needs adjustments, these will have to be made manually.

~> version matching

Always keep the same enterify version in your Meteor, and inside the .enterify folder, as per specified in .enterify/package.json file.