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Grunt homepage | Documentation table of contents

server (built-in task)

Start a static web server.


This task starts a static web server on a specified port, at a specified path, which runs as long as grunt is running. Once grunt's tasks have completed, the web server stops.

Need some help getting started with grunt? Visit the getting started page. And if you're creating your own tasks or helpers, be sure to check out the types of tasks page as well as the API documentation.

A Very Important Note

Your grunt.js gruntfile must contain this code, once and only once. If it doesn't, grunt won't work. For the sake of brevity, this "wrapper" code has been omitted from all examples on this page, but it needs to be there.

module.exports = function(grunt) {
  // Your grunt code goes in here.

Project configuration

This example shows a brief overview of the config properties used by the server task. For a more in-depth explanation, see the usage examples.

// Project configuration.
  // Configuration options.
  server: {}

Usage examples

Basic Use

In this example, grunt server will start a static web server at http://localhost:8000/, with its base path set to the gruntfile's directory. Of course, it will then immediately stop serving files, because grunt exits automatically when there are no more tasks to run.

The server task is most useful when used in conjunction with another task, like the qunit task.

// Project configuration.
  server: {
    port: 8000,
    base: '.'

Roll Your Own

Unlike the previous example, in this example the grunt server command will run a completely custom server task, because it has been overridden. This version is hard-coded to start a static web server at http://localhost:1234/, with its base path set to www-root subdirectory.

Like the previous example, it will then immediately stop serving files, because grunt exits automatically when there are no more tasks to run, but you'll undoubtedly be running additional tasks after this one.

// Project configuration.
  // This custom server task doesn't care about config options!

// Of course, you need to have the "connect" Npm module installed locally
// for this to work. But that's just a matter of running: npm install connect
var connect = require('connect');

// Redefining the "server" task for this project. Note that the output
// displayed by --help will reflect the new task description.
grunt.registerTask('server', 'Start a custom static web server.', function() {
  grunt.log.writeln('Starting static web server in "www-root" on port 1234.');

See the server task source for more information.

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