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Start a static web server.
JavaScript
branch: master

README.md

grunt-contrib-connect v0.10.1 Build Status: Linux Build Status: Windows

Start a connect web server

Getting Started

This plugin requires Grunt >=0.4.0

If you haven't used Grunt before, be sure to check out the Getting Started guide, as it explains how to create a Gruntfile as well as install and use Grunt plugins. Once you're familiar with that process, you may install this plugin with this command:

npm install grunt-contrib-connect --save-dev

Once the plugin has been installed, it may be enabled inside your Gruntfile with this line of JavaScript:

grunt.loadNpmTasks('grunt-contrib-connect');

Connect task

Run this task with the grunt connect command.

Note that this server only runs as long as grunt is running. Once grunt's tasks have completed, the web server stops. This behavior can be changed with the keepalive option, and can be enabled ad-hoc by running the task like grunt connect:keepalive.

This task was designed to be used in conjunction with another task that is run immediately afterwards, like the grunt-contrib-qunit plugin qunit task.

Options

port

Type: Integer
Default: 8000

The port on which the webserver will respond. The task will fail if the specified port is already in use (unless useAvailablePort is set). You can use the special values 0 or '?' to use a system-assigned port.

protocol

Type: String
Default: 'http'

May be 'http' or 'https'.

hostname

Type: String
Default: '0.0.0.0'

The hostname on which the webserver can be accessed.

Setting it to '*', like '0.0.0.0', will make the server accessible from any local IPv4 address like '127.0.0.1' and the IP assigned to an ethernet or wireless interface (like '192.168.0.x' or '10.0.0.x'). More info

If open is set to true, the hostname setting will be used to generate the URL that is opened by the browser, defaulting to localhost if a wildcard hostname was specified.

base

Type: String or Array or Object
Default: '.'

Type Result Example
String The base (or root) directory from which files will be served. Defaults to the project Gruntfile's directory. 'public'
Array Array of String (or Object) bases to serve multiple directories. The last base given will be the [directory][] to become browse-able. ['public','www-root']
Object Map containing path and options keys. options are passed on to the connect.static module. { path: 'public', options: { maxAge: 1000*60*5 } }

directory

Type: String
Default: null

Set to the directory you wish to be browse-able. Used to override the base option browse-able directory.

keepalive

Type: Boolean
Default: false

Keep the server alive indefinitely. Note that if this option is enabled, any tasks specified after this task will never run. By default, once grunt's tasks have completed, the web server stops. This option changes that behavior.

This option can also be enabled ad-hoc by running the task like grunt connect:targetname:keepalive

debug

Type: Boolean
Default: false

Set the debug option to true to enable logging instead of using the --debug flag.

livereload

Type: Boolean or Number
Default: false

Set to true or a port number to inject a live reload script tag into your page using connect-livereload.

This does not perform live reloading. It is intended to be used in tandem with grunt-contrib-watch or another task that will trigger a live reload server upon files changing.

open

Type: Boolean or String or Object
Default: false

Open the served page in your default browser.

This can be one of the following:

  • Specifying true opens the default server URL (generated from the protocol, hostname and port settings)
  • Specifying a URL opens that URL
  • Specify an object with the following keys to configure open directly:

    {
      target: 'http://localhost:8000', // target url to open
      appName: 'open', // name of the app that opens, ie: open, start, xdg-open
      callback: function() {} // called when the app has opened
    }

useAvailablePort

Type: Boolean Default: false

If true the task will look for the next available port after the set port option.

onCreateServer

Type: Function or Array Default: null

A function to be called after the server object is created, to allow integrating libraries that need access to connect's server object. A Socket.IO example:

grunt.initConfig({
  connect: {
    server: {
      options: {
        port: 8000,
        hostname: '*',
        onCreateServer: function(server, connect, options) {
          var io = require('socket.io').listen(server);
          io.sockets.on('connection', function(socket) {
            // do something with socket
          });
        }
      }
    }
  }
});

middleware

Type: Function or Array Default: Array of connect middlewares that use options.base for static files and directory browsing

As an Array:

grunt.initConfig({
  connect: {
    server: {
      options: {
        middleware: [
          function myMiddleware(req, res, next) {
            res.end('Hello, world!');
          }
        ],
      },
    },
  },
});

As a function:

grunt.initConfig({
  connect: {
    server: {
      options: {
        middleware: function(connect, options, middlewares) {
          // inject a custom middleware into the array of default middlewares
          middlewares.unshift(function(req, res, next) {
            if (req.url !== '/hello/world') return next();

            res.end('Hello, world from port #' + options.port + '!');
          });

          return middlewares;
        },
      },
    },
  },
});

Lets you add in your own Connect middlewares. This option expects a function that returns an array of middlewares. See the project Gruntfile and project unit tests for a usage example.

Usage examples

Basic Use

In this example, grunt connect (or more verbosely, grunt connect:server) will start a static web server at http://localhost:9001/, with its base path set to the www-root directory relative to the gruntfile, and any tasks run afterwards will be able to access it.

// Project configuration.
grunt.initConfig({
  connect: {
    server: {
      options: {
        port: 9001,
        base: 'www-root'
      }
    }
  }
});

If you want your web server to use the default options, just omit the options object. You still need to specify a target (uses_defaults in this example), but the target's configuration object can otherwise be empty or nonexistent. In this example, grunt connect (or more verbosely, grunt connect:uses_defaults) will start a static web server using the default options.

// Project configuration.
grunt.initConfig({
  connect: {
    uses_defaults: {}
  }
});

Multiple Servers

You can specify multiple servers to be run alone or simultaneously by creating a target for each server. In this example, running either grunt connect:site1 or grunt connect:site2 will start the appropriate web server, but running grunt connect will run both. Note that any server for which the keepalive option is specified will prevent any task or target from running after it.

// Project configuration.
grunt.initConfig({
  connect: {
    site1: {
      options: {
        port: 9000,
        base: 'www-roots/site1'
      }
    },
    site2: {
      options: {
        port: 9001,
        base: 'www-roots/site2'
      }
    }
  }
});

Connect.static Options

You can specify options to be passed to each instance of the connect.static module:

grunt.initConfig({
  connect: {
    server: {
      options: {
        port: 8000,
        base: {
          path: 'www-root',
          options: {
            index: 'somedoc.html',
            maxAge: 300000
          }
        }
      }
    }
  }
});

Roll Your Own

Like the Basic Use example, this example will start a static web server at http://localhost:9001/, with its base path set to the www-root directory relative to the gruntfile. Unlike the other example, this is done by creating a brand new task. in fact, this plugin isn't even installed!

// Project configuration.
grunt.initConfig({ /* Nothing needed here! */ });

// After running "npm install connect --save-dev" to add connect as a dev
// dependency of your project, you can require it in your gruntfile with:
var connect = require('connect');

// Now you can define a "connect" task that starts a webserver, using the
// connect lib, with whatever options and configuration you need:
grunt.registerTask('connect', 'Start a custom static web server.', function() {
  grunt.log.writeln('Starting static web server in "www-root" on port 9001.');
  connect(connect.static('www-root')).listen(9001);
});

Support for HTTPS

A default certificate authority, certificate and key file are provided and pre- configured for use when protocol has been set to https.

NOTE: No passphrase set for the certificate. If you are getting warnings in Google Chrome, add 'server.crt' (from 'node_modules/tasks/certs') to your keychain. In OS X, after you add 'server.crt', right click on the certificate, select 'Get Info' - 'Trust' - 'Always Trust', close window, restart Chrome.

For HTTPS livereload with grunt-contrib-watch see the last example here.

Advanced HTTPS config

If the default certificate setup is unsuitable for your environment, OpenSSL can be used to create a set of self-signed certificates with a local ca root.

### Create ca.key, use a password phrase when asked
### When asked 'Common Name (e.g. server FQDN or YOUR name) []:' use your hostname, i.e 'mysite.dev'
openssl genrsa -des3 -out ca.key 1024
openssl req -new -key ca.key -out ca.csr
openssl x509 -req -days 365 -in ca.csr -out ca.crt -signkey ca.key

### Create server certificate
openssl genrsa -des3 -out server.key 1024
openssl req -new -key server.key -out server.csr

### Remove password from the certificate
cp server.key server.key.org
openssl rsa -in server.key.org -out server.key

### Generate self-siged certificate
openssl x509 -req -days 365 -in server.csr -signkey server.key -out server.crt

For more details on the various options that can be set when configuring SSL, please see the Node documentation for TLS.

Grunt configuration would become

// Project configuration.
grunt.initConfig({
  connect: {
    server: {
      options: {
        protocol: 'https',
        port: 8443,
        key: grunt.file.read('server.key').toString(),
        cert: grunt.file.read('server.crt').toString(),
        ca: grunt.file.read('ca.crt').toString()
      },
    },
  },
});

Grunt Events

The connect plugin will emit a grunt event, connect.{taskName}.listening, once the server has started. You can listen for this event to run things against a keepalive server, for example:

grunt.registerTask('jasmine-server', 'start web server for jasmine tests in browser', function() {
  grunt.task.run('jasmine:tests:build');

  grunt.event.once('connect.tests.listening', function(host, port) {
    var specRunnerUrl = 'http://' + host + ':' + port + '/_SpecRunner.html';
    grunt.log.writeln('Jasmine specs available at: ' + specRunnerUrl);
    require('open')(specRunnerUrl);
  });

  grunt.task.run('connect:tests:keepalive');
});

Release History

  • 2015-04-03   v0.10.1   fixes npm corruption issue
  • 2015-04-03   v0.10.0   node 0.12 fixes doc updates fixes port finding other fixes
  • 2014-11-07   v0.9.0   Adds routable middleware. Switch to opn as it fixes some Linux issues. Add support for connect.static instance options.
  • 2014-06-09   v0.8.0   Update connect and connect-livereload.
  • 2014-02-27   v0.7.1   Fixes issue with the '*' hostname option.
  • 2014-02-18   v0.7.0   Update connect to ~2.13.0. Default hostname switched to '0.0.0.0'. Modified options.middleware to accept an array or a function.
  • 2013-12-29   v0.6.0   Open options.hostname if provided. Update connect-livereload to ~0.3.0. Update connect to ~2.12.0. Use well-formed ssl certificates. Support all options of open. Make directory browseable when base is a string.
  • 2013-09-05   v0.5.0   Add 'open' option.
  • 2013-09-05   v0.4.2   Un-normalize options.base as it should be a string or an array as the user has set. Fix setting target hostname option.
  • 2013-09-02   v0.4.1   Browse-able directory is the last item supplied to bases. Added directory option to override browse-able directory.
  • 2013-09-01   v0.4.0   Fix logging of which server address. Ability to set multiple bases. Event emitted when server starts listening. Support for HTTPS. debug option added to display debug logging like the --debug flag. livereload option added to inject a livereload snippet into the page.
  • 2013-04-10   v0.3.0   Add ability to listen on system-assigned port.
  • 2013-03-07   v0.2.0   Upgrade connect dependency.
  • 2013-02-17   v0.1.2   Ensure Gruntfile.js is included on npm.
  • 2013-02-15   v0.1.1   First official release for Grunt 0.4.0.
  • 2013-01-18   v0.1.1rc6   Updating grunt/gruntplugin dependencies to rc6. Changing in-development grunt/gruntplugin dependency versions from tilde version ranges to specific versions.
  • 2013-01-09   v0.1.1rc5   Updating to work with grunt v0.4.0rc5.
  • 2012-11-01   v0.1.0   Work in progress, not yet officially released.

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