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Universal Reloader

Universal reloader is a command line tool that refreshes your browser window when you change a file.

Why use it?

This tools aims to be simple to use and compatible with almost anything.

  • It works with your editor or IDE
  • It works with your web server

Quick Start


npm install -g universal-reloader

Navigate to the directory you want to watch. Execute:

universal-reloader --port 8080 --url http://your-dev-server-goes-here

Navigate to http://localhost:8080.

Save a change to one of your files and watch your browser reload.

How does it work?

  • You run the program on the command line
  • It hosts your page in an iframe or by reverse proxy
  • It opens a websocket
  • It watches the filesystem
  • You open your browser to Universal Reloader's webpage
  • You open a file and make a change
  • Your browser refreshes automatically


npm install -g universal-reloader

Then you can run:

universal-reloader [arguments]

--debounce, -d  Debounce interval for throttling websocket publications.         [default: 100]
--folder, -f    Root folder to watch for changes.                                [default: "."]
--host, -h      Method to use to host your url: iframe or proxy.                 [default: "proxy"]
--mask, -m      Pipe-delimited file masks to watch (e.g., "**/*.css"|**/*.js").  [default: "**/*"]
--port, -p      Port to run on.                                                  [default: 8080]
--recent, -r    Interval of checks to the most-recently modified file.           [default: 100]
--url, -u       Url to auto-reload on file changes (e.g.,   [required]
--verbose       Toggle verbose logging.


Using --host iframe, sites that publish an "X-Frame-Options: SAMEORIGIN" header won't work with universal-reloader.