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webpack-route-manifest

Generate an asset manifest file, keyed by route patterns!

The Context

Modern applications (should!) take advantage of route-based code splitting. This enables an application to be compartmentalized into smaller, highly relevant "chunks" for a particular section or feature of that application. By default, this means that your application is only giving its client(s) the code it needs for that page.

The Problem

While amazing, this isn't (yet) a perfect solution. The client wants to navigate to other pages!

In a default, code-splitting configuration, when the client goes to a new page (eg; /blog), the blog page's assets only start downloading after the click has been made. What this means is that our super speedy and state of the art application is at the mercy of the client's network connection.

Our client is staring at a loading screen/spinner — or worse, a split-second flash of the loader — until the blog's code has loaded.

The Solution

With this plugin, you regain control of your application's assets. 💪

You are given the knowledge of exactly which files are going to be requested for each route of your application.

In turn, this means you can preemptively load the assets for /blog before the client clicks and waits.
You can begin preloading the assets for any/all routes if you desire (although all is not recommended), while still reaping the benefits of dynamic code-splitting, since the initial/critical code was kept as light as possible.

Further Reading

Install

$ npm install webpack-route-manifest --save-dev

Usage

// webpack.config.js
const RouteManifest = require('webpack-route-manifest');

module.exports = {
  // ...
  plugins: [
    new RouteManifest({
      routes(str) {
        // Assume all entries are '../../../pages/Home' format
        let out = str.replace('../../../pages', '').toLowerCase();
        if (out === '/article') return '/blog/:title';
        if (out === '/home') return '/';
        return out;
      }
    })
  ]
}

API

RouteManifest(options)

options.routes

Type: Function or Object
Required: true

Map your application's import() statements into the URL route patterns they'll operate on.

Note: Check out the supported route patterns.

When routes is a function, it receives the strings and expects a pattern (string) to be returned.

When routes is an object, its keys must be the expected import paths and its values must be the pattern strings.

Important: You may also return a falsey value to exclude the route from the manifest.

Example

Let's assume your src/app.js entry file imports pages from the sibling src/pages/* directory:

import React from 'react';
import Loadable from 'react-loadable';
import { Route } from 'react-router-dom';

// Route-Split Components
const loading = () => <div>Loading...</div>;
const load = loader => Loadable({ loader, loading });

// Our Lazy-loaded Page Components
const Home = load(() => import('./pages/Home'));
const About = load(() => import('./pages/About'));
const Article = load(() => import('./pages/Article'));
const Blog = load(() => import('./pages/Blog'));

// ...

// Assigning Routes to Components
<Route path="/" exact component={ Home } />
<Route path="/blog" exact component={ Blog } />
<Route path="/blog/:title" component={ Article } />
<Route path="/about" exact component={ About } />

At this point, your routes option will see:

  • './pages/Home'
  • './pages/About'
  • './pages/Article'
  • './pages/Blog'

As a function, routes should look like this:

routes(str) {
  let out = str.replace('./pages', '').toLowerCase();
  if (out === '/article') return '/blog/:title';
  if (out === '/home') return '/';
  return out;
}

As an object, routes should look like this:

routes: {
  './pages/Home': '/',
  './pages/About': '/about',
  './pages/Article': '/blog/:title',
  './pages/Blog': '/blog'
}

options.assets

Type: Function or Object

Optionally customize the type or as value of an asset.

Important: You may also return a falsey value to exclude the asset from the manifest.

The assets option receives the fully formed, public-facing URL of the file (aka, including output.publicPath).

Your function or object must return a valid resource "destination" value.

Below is the default assets parser:

function assets(str) {
  if (/\.js$/i.test(str)) return 'script';
  if (/\.(svg|jpe?g|png)$/i.test(str)) return 'image';
  if (/\.(woff2?|otf|ttf|eot)$/i.test(str)) return 'font';
  if (/\.css$/i.test(str)) return 'style';
  return false;
}

options.headers

Type: true or Function

Optionally include (and customize) a "headers" section per manifest entry.

Important: When configured, the output format of your manifest file will change! See Manifest Contents

When true, the default/internal function is used, which produces a HTTP Link header per pattern, pointing to the pattern's assets.

You may also provide a function to define your own Link header and/or add additional headers per route.
This function will receive:

  • assets – the Array<Asset> files for this route
  • pattern – the current route pattern string
  • filemap – the entire manifest file mapping ({ pattern: Asset[] })

Note: An Asset is defined as { type: string, href: string } shape.

options.filename

Type: String
Default: manifest.json

The output filename for the manifest.

This file is written to disk, in a compiler's configured output.path directory.

options.minify

Type: Boolean
Default: false

Minify the manifest's file contents.

options.sort

Type: Boolean
Default: true

If route patterns should be sorted by specificity. By default, this is true as to ensure client consumers (eg, route-manifest) find the correct entry for a URL path.

Note: See route-sorts Specificity explainer.

options.inline

Type: Boolean
Default: true

Attempts to inline the manifest file directly into your main entry file (eg; bundle.xxxxx.js).
When successful, the manifest will be available globally as window.__rmanifest.

While not required, it is strongly recommended that this option remains enabled so that the manifest contents are available to your Application immediately upon loading. This saves a network request and the trouble of coordinating subsequent prefetches.

Note: The manifest.json file will still be written to disk for easier developer analysis.

Route Patterns

The supported route pattern types are:

  • static – /users
  • named parameters – /users/:id
  • nested parameters – /users/:id/books/:title
  • optional parameters – /users/:id?/books/:title?
  • suffixed parameters – /movies/:title.mp4, /movies/:title.(mp4|mov)
  • wildcards – /users/*

Manifest Contents

The manifest file contains a JSON object whose keys are the route patterns you've defined for your application via the options.routes mapping.

Note: There will often be a "*" key, which signifies your common/catch-all route.
This typically contains your bundle.(js|css) files, and maybe some images that your main stylesheet requires.

Each key will point to an "Entry" item whose data type will vary depending on your options.headers configuration. Either way, this Entry will always contain an "Asset" array, so let's define that first:

interface Asset {
  type: string;
  href: string;
}

Now, without options.headers (default), the manifest pairs patterns directly to its list of Assets:

type Entry = Asset[];
// keys are `[pattern: string]`
type Manifest = Record<string, Entry>;

With options.headers configured, each manifest Entry becomes object containing "files" and "headers" keys:

interface Entry {
  files: Asset[];
  headers: any[]; // you decide its shape
}

// keys are `[pattern: string]`
type Manifest = Record<string, Entry>;

Lastly, if options.headers === true, the default function runs, providing you with this format:

interface Header {
  key: string;
  value: string;
}

interface Entry {
  files: Asset[];
  headers: Header[];
}

// keys are `[pattern: string]`
type Manifest = Record<string, Entry>;

License

MIT © Luke Edwards

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Generate an asset manifest file, keyed by route patterns!

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