Two package.json Structure

develar edited this page Jan 15, 2017 · 4 revisions

Since version 8 electron-builder rebuilds only production dependencies, so, you are not forced to use two package.json structure.

  1. For development (./package.json)

    The package.json resides in the root of your project. Here you declare the dependencies for your development environment and build scripts (devDependencies).

  2. For your application (./app/package.json)

    The package.json resides in the app directory. Declare your application dependencies (dependencies) here. Only this directory is distributed with the final, packaged application.


  1. Native npm modules (those written in C, not JavaScript) need to be compiled and here we have two different compilation targets for them. Those used within the application need to be compiled against the electron runtime and all devDependencies need to be compiled against your local node.js environment. Thanks to the two package.json structure, this is trivial (see #39).
  2. No need to specify which files to include in the app (because development files reside outside the app directory).

Please see Loading App Dependencies Manually and #379.

If you use the two-package.json project structure, you'll only have your devDependencies in your development package.json and your dependencies in your app package.json. To ensure your dependencies are always updated based on both files, simply add "postinstall": "install-app-deps" to your development package.json. This will basically automatically trigger an npm install within your app directory so you don't have to do this work every time you install/update your dependencies.