Browserify middleware to be able to require() text files (including templates) inside of your client-side JavaScript files.


Browserify plugin to require() text files (such as HTML templates) inside of your client-side JavaScript files.

NOTE: Has not been tested on Node below version 4.0.0, and has been tested up to Node 5.5.0. Please report (or put a Pull Request up for) any bugs you may find.

npm install stringify
browserify -t [ stringify --extensions [.html .hbs] ] myfile.js
var browserify = require('browserify'),
    stringify = require('stringify');
var bundle = browserify()
    .transform(stringify(['.hjs', '.html', '.whatever']))

You might have noticed that you can pass stringify an optional array of file-extensions that you want to require() in your Browserify packages as strings. By default these are used: .html, .txt, .text, and .tmpl

NOTE: You MUST call this as I have above. The Browserify .transform() method HAS to plug this middleware in to Browserify BEFORE you add the entry point (your main client-side file) for Browserify.

Now, in your clientside files you can use require() as you would for JSON and JavaScript files, but include text files that have just been parsed into a JavaScript string:

var my_text = require('../path/to/my/text/file.txt');

If you require an HTML file and you want to minify the requested string, you can configure Stringify to do it:

  extensions: ['.txt', '.html'],
  minify: true,
  minifier: {
    extensions: ['.html'],
    options: {
      // html-minifier options 

minifier options are optional.

Default minifier.extensions:

['.html', '.htm', '.tmpl', '.tpl', '.hbs']

Default minifier.options (for more informations or to override those options, please go to html-minifier github):

  removeComments: true,
  removeCommentsFromCDATA: true,
  removeCDATASectionsFromCDATA: true,
  collapseWhitespace: true,
  conservativeCollapse: false,
  preserveLineBreaks: false,
  collapseBooleanAttributes: false,
  removeAttributeQuotes: true,
  removeRedundantAttributes: false,
  useShortDoctype: false,
  removeEmptyAttributes: false,
  removeScriptTypeAttributes: false,
  removeStyleLinkTypeAttributes: false,
  removeOptionalTags: false,
  removeIgnored: false,
  removeEmptyElements: false,
  lint: false,
  keepClosingSlash: false,
  caseSensitive: false,
  minifyJS: false,
  minifyCSS: false,
  minifyURLs: false

To incorporate stringify into a gulp build process using browserify, register stringify as a transform as follows:

var browserify = require('browserify');
var source = require('vinyl-source-stream');
var stringify = require('stringify');
gulp.task('js', function() {
  return browserify({ 'entries': ['src/main.js'], 'debug' : env !== 'dev' })
        extensions: ['.html'], minify: true
    .pipe(source('main.js')) // gives streaming vinyl file object 

Allows you to "stringify" your non-JS files using the NodeJS module system. Please only use Stringify this way in NodeJS (Read: Not the browser/Browserify!)

var stringify = require('stringify');
  extensions: ['.txt', '.html'],
  minify: true,
  minifier: {
    extensions: ['.html'],
    options: {
      // html-minifier options 
var myTextFile = require('./path/to/my/text/file.txt');
console.log(myTextFile); // prints the contents of file. 

The reason I created this was to get string versions of my Handlebars templates required in to my client-side JavaScript. You can theoretically use this for any templating parser though.

Here is how that is done:


var browserify = require('browserify'),
    stringify = require('stringify');
var bundle = browserify()
    .transform(stringify(['.hbs', '.handlebars']))


var Handlebars = require('handlebars'),
    template = require('my/template/path.hbs'),
    data = {
      "json_data": "This is my string!"
var hbs_template = Handlebars.compile(template);
// Now I can use hbs_template like I would anywhere else, passing it data and getting constructed HTML back. 
var constructed_template = hbs_template(data);
  Now 'constructed_template' is ready to be appended to the DOM in the page!
  The result of it should be:
  <p>This is my string!</p>


<p>{{ json_data }}</p>

If you would like to contribute code, please do the following:

  1. Fork this repository and make your changes.
  2. Write tests for any new functionality. If you are fixing a bug that tests did not cover, please make a test that reproduces the bug.
  3. Add your name to the "contributors" section in the package.json file.
  4. Squash all of your commits into a single commit via git rebase -i.
  5. Run the tests by running npm install && make test from the source directory.
  6. Assuming those pass, send the Pull Request off to me for review!

Please do not iterate the package.json version number – I will do that myself when I publish it to NPM.

Please follow this simple style-guide for all code contributions:

  • Indent using spaces.
  • camelCase all callables.
  • Use semi-colons.
  • Place a space after a conditional or function name, and its conditions/arguments. function (...) {...}