1.3.3 • Public • Published

grunt-prompt Build Status grunt-prompt

Interactive prompt for your Grunt config using console checkboxes, text input with filtering, password fields.

grunt-prompt in action
grunt-prompt in action

Getting Started

This plugin recommends Grunt 0.4.1 or newer.


npm install grunt-prompt --save-dev

Once that's done, add this line to your project's Gruntfile.js:


Grunt-prompt's UI is powered by the amazing Inquirer, a project created by Simon Boudrias.

grunt-prompt in action
grunt-prompt in action


In your project's Gruntfile, add a section named prompt to the data object passed into grunt.initConfig().

grunt-prompt is a multi-task. This means you can create multiple prompts.

  prompt: {
    target: {
      options: {
        questions: [
            config: '', // arbitrary name or config for any other grunt task
            type: '<question type>', // list, checkbox, confirm, input, password
            message: 'String|function(answers)', // Question to ask the user, function needs to return a string,
            default: 'value', // default value if nothing is entered
            choices: 'Array|function(answers)',
            validate: function(value)// return true if valid, error message if invalid. works only with type:input 
            filter:  function(value), // modify the answer
            when: function(answers) // only ask this question when this function returns true



Type: String required

This is used for three things:

  • It will set or overwrite the config of other Grunt tasks: config: 'jshint.allFiles.reporter'
  • The key in the resulting answers object: if (answers['jshint.allFiles.reporter'] === 'custom') {...
  • It can be an arbitrary value read using grunt.config: grunt.config('jshint.allFiles.reporter')

Type: String required

Type of question to ask:

  • list: use arrow keys to pick one choice. Returns a string.
  • checkbox: use arrow keys and space bar to pick multiple items. Returns an array.
  • confirm: Yes/no. Returns a boolean.
  • input: Free text input. Returns a string.
  • password: Masked input. Returns a string.

Here's an example of each type:

grunt-prompt example
grunt-prompt example

The documentation for Inquiry has more details about type as well as additional typess.


Type: String|function(answers):String required

The question to ask the user. If it's a function, it needs to return a string. The first parameter of this function will be an array containing all previously supplied answers. This allows you to customize the message based on the results of previous questions.

Hint: keep it short, users hate to read.


Type: String/Array/Boolean/'function' optional

Default value used when the user just hits Enter. If a value field is not provided, the filter value must match the name exactly.


For question types 'list' and 'checkbox': Type: array of hashes

  • name The label that is displayed in the UI.
  • value optional Value returned. When not used the name is used instead.
  • checked optional Choose the option by default. Only for checkbox.
choices: [
  { name: 'jshint', checked: true },
  { name: 'jslint' },
  { name: 'eslint' },
  '---', // puts in a non-selectable separator. Can be a string or '---' for default.
  { name: 'I like to live dangerously', value: 'none' }

Type: function(value) optional

Return true if it is valid (true true, not a truthy value). Return string message if it is not valid.


Type: function(value) optional

Use a modified version of the input for the answer. Useful for stripping extra characters, converting strings to integers.


Type: function(answers) optional

Choose when this question is asked. Perfect for asking questions based on the results of previous questions.


Type: function(results, done):Boolean optional

Runs after all questions have been asked.

The done parameter is optional, and can be used for async operations in your handler.

When you return true from this function, the grunt-prompt code will not complete the async, so you are able to do your own async operations and call done() yourself.

  prompt: {
    demo: {
      options: {
        questions: [
        then: function(results, done) {
          someAsyncFunction(function () {
          return true;

How to use the results in your Gruntfile

You can also modify how tasks will work by changing options for other tasks. You do not need to write code to do this, it's all in the config var.

Here we will let the user choose what Mocha reporter to use.

  prompt: {
    mochacli: {
      options: {
        questions: [
            config: 'mochacli.options.reporter'
            type: 'list'
            message: 'Which Mocha reporter would you like to use?',
            default: 'spec'
            choices: ['dot', 'spec', 'nyan', 'TAP', 'landing', 'list',
              'progress', 'json', 'JSONconv', 'HTMLconv', 'min', 'doc']

and create a shortcut:


And run it:

$ grunt test
grunt-prompt setting up Mocha
grunt-prompt setting up Mocha

How can values be accessed from my own code?

This config value is accessible to all other grunt tasks via grunt.config('<config name>').

If you had this:

config: 'validation'

Then later on in your custom task can access it like this:

var validation = grunt.config('validation');

Usage Examples

grunt-prompt with grunt-bump
grunt-prompt with grunt-bump

This is an example of how grunt-prompt for something like grunt-bump which makes it easy to update your project's version in the package.json, bower.json, and git tag.

prompt: {
  bump: {
    options: {
      questions: [
          config:  'bump.increment',
          type:    'list',
          message: 'Bump version from ' + '<%= pkg.version %>' + ' to:',
          choices: [
              value: 'build',
              name:  'Build:  '+ (currentVersion + '-?') + ' Unstable, betas, and release candidates.'
              value: 'patch',
              name:  'Patch:  ' +, 'patch') + ' Backwards-compatible bug fixes.'
              value: 'minor',
              name:  'Minor:  ' +, 'minor') + ' Add functionality in a backwards-compatible manner.'
              value: 'major',
              name:  'Major:  ' +, 'major') + ' Incompatible API changes.'
              value: 'custom',
              name:  'Custom: ?.?.? Specify version...'
          config:   'bump.version',
          type:     'input',
          message:  'What specific version would you like',
          when:     function (answers) {
            return answers['bump.increment'] === 'custom';
          validate: function (value) {
            var valid = semver.valid(value);
            return !!valid || 'Must be a valid semver, such as 1.2.3-rc1. See for more details.';
          config:  'bump.files',
          type:    'checkbox',
          message: 'What should get the new version:',
          choices: [
              value:   'package',
              name:    'package.json' + (!grunt.file.isFile('package.json') ? ' not found, will create one' : ''),
              checked: grunt.file.isFile('package.json')
              value:   'bower',
              name:    'bower.json' + (!grunt.file.isFile('bower.json') ? ' not found, will create one' : ''),
              checked: grunt.file.isFile('bower.json')
              value:   'git',
              name:    'git tag',
              checked: grunt.file.isDir('.git')

Release History

  • 1.3.0 - 26 Oct 2014 - Add {{done}} callback for {{then}}.
  • 1.2.1 - 4 Oct 2014 - Separator can be '' or { separator: 'any string' }. Fixed it so choices can be strings again.
  • 1.2.0 - 4 Oct 2014 - Separator in choices can be a falsey value or string
  • 1.1.0 - 4 Mar 2014 - Messages can be functions instead of strings for dynamic questions.
  • 1.0.0 - 4 Feb 2014 - Dropping support for Node 0.8.
  • 0.2.2 - 4 Feb 2014 - Updated readme to make it auto-generated.
  • 0.2.1 - 4 Feb 2014 - Fix bug when using a function to provide choices.
  • 0.2.0 - 26 Jan 2014 - Added then option which runs after questions. Improved docs.
  • 0.1.1 - 27 July 2013 - Some documentation cleanup, better screenshots, new example code in the gruntfile, reomved unused tests.
  • 0.1.0 - 18 July 2013 - First version, after an exhausting but fun day with the family at Hershey Park.

About the Author

Hi! Thanks for checking out this project! My name is Dylan Greene. When not overwhelmed with my two young kids I enjoy contributing to the open source community. I'm also a tech lead at Opower. @dylang @dylang

Here's some of my other Node projects:

Name Description npm Downloads
grunt‑notify Automatic desktop notifications for Grunt errors and warnings using Growl for OS X or Windows, Mountain Lion and Mavericks Notification Center, and Notify-Send. grunt-notify
npm‑check Check for outdated, incorrect, and unused dependencies. npm-check
shortid Amazingly short non-sequential url-friendly unique id generator. shortid
rss RSS feed generator. Add RSS feeds to any project. Supports enclosures and GeoRSS. rss
xml Fast and simple xml generator. Supports attributes, CDATA, etc. Includes tests and examples. xml
changelog Command line tool (and Node module) that generates a changelog in color output, markdown, or json for modules in's registry as well as any public repo. changelog
grunt‑attention Display attention-grabbing messages in the terminal grunt-attention
observatory Beautiful UI for showing tasks running on the command line. observatory
anthology Module information and stats for any @npmjs user anthology
grunt‑cat Echo a file to the terminal. Works with text, figlets, ascii art, and full-color ansi. grunt-cat

This list was generated using anthology.


Copyright (c) 2015 Dylan Greene, contributors.

Released under the MIT license.

Screenshots are CC BY-SA (Attribution-ShareAlike).

Generated using grunt-readme with grunt-templates-dylang on Wednesday, November 11, 2015. _To make changes to this document look in /templates/readme/

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