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README.md

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Start building a Preact Progressive Web App in seconds 🔥

Contents

Features

  • 100/100 Lighthouse score, right out of the box (proof)
  • Fully automatic code splitting for routes
  • Transparently code-split any component with an async! prefix
  • Auto-generated Service Workers for offline caching powered by sw-precache
  • PRPL pattern support for efficient loading
  • Zero-configuration pre-rendering / server-side rendering hydration
  • Support for CSS Modules, LESS, Sass, Stylus; with Autoprefixer
  • Monitor your bundle/chunk sizes with built-in tracking
  • Automatic app mounting, debug helpers & Hot Module Replacement
  • In just 4.5kb you get a productive environment:

Installation

Important: Node.js > V6.x is a minimum requirement.

$ npm install -g preact-cli

Usage

$ preact create <template-name> <project-name>

Example:

$ preact create default my-project

The above command pulls the template from preactjs-templates/default, prompts for some information, and generates the project at ./my-project/.

Official Templates

The purpose of official preact project templates are to provide opinionated development tooling setups so that users can get started with actual app code as fast as possible. However, these templates are un-opinionated in terms of how you structure your app code and what libraries you use in addition to preact.js.

All official project templates are repos in the preactjs-templates organization. When a new template is added to the organization, you will be able to run preact create <template-name> <project-name> to use that template.

Current available templates include:

  • default - Default template with all features.

  • material - material template using preact-material-components

  • simple - The simplest possible preact setup in a single file

  • widget - Template for a widget to be embedded in another website.

💁 Tip: Any Github repo with a 'template' folder can be used as a custom template:
preact create <username>/<repository> <project-name>

CLI Options

preact create

Create a project to quick start development.

$ preact create <template-name> <project-name>

  --name        The application name.
  --cwd         A directory to use instead of $PWD.
  --force       Force option to create the directory for the new app  [boolean] [default: false]
  --yarn        Installs dependencies with yarn.                      [boolean] [default: false]
  --git         Initialize version control using git.                 [boolean] [default: false]
  --install     Installs dependencies.                                [boolean] [default: true]

Note: If you don't specify enough data to the preact create command, it will prompt the required questions.

preact build

Create a production build

You can disable default: true flags by prefixing them with --no-<option>; for example, --no-sw, --no-esm, and --no-inline-css.

$ preact build

    --src              Specify source directory  (default src)
    --dest             Specify output directory  (default build)
    --cwd              A directory to use instead of $PWD  (default .)
    --sw               Generate and attach a Service Worker  (default true)
    --json             Generate build stats for bundle analysis
    --template         Path to custom HTML template
    --preload          Adds preload tags to the document its assets  (default false)
    --analyze          Launch interactive Analyzer to inspect production bundle(s)
    --prerenderUrls    Path to pre-rendered routes config  (default prerender-urls.json)
    -c, --config       Path to custom CLI config  (default preact.config.js)
    --esm              Builds ES-2015 bundles for your code.  (default true)
    --brotli           Adds brotli redirects to the service worker.  (default false)
    --inline-css       Adds critical css to the prerendered markup.  (default true)
    -v, --verbose      Verbose output
    -h, --help         Displays this message

preact watch

Spin up a development server with multiple features like hot-module-replacement, module-watcher

$ preact watch

    --src           Specify source directory  (default src)
    --cwd           A directory to use instead of $PWD  (default .)
    --esm           Builds ES-2015 bundles for your code.  (default true)
    --sw            Generate and attach a Service Worker  (default false)
    --rhl           Enable react hot loader  (default false)
    --json          Generate build stats for bundle analysis
    --https         Run server with HTTPS protocol
    --key           Path to PEM key for custom SSL certificate
    --cert          Path to custom SSL certificate
    --cacert        Path to optional CA certificate override
    --prerender     Pre-render static content on first run
    --template      Path to custom HTML template
    -c, --config    Path to custom CLI config  (default preact.config.js)
    -H, --host      Set server hostname  (default 0.0.0.0)
    -p, --port      Set server port  (default 8080)
    -h, --help      Displays this message

Note:

  1. You can run dev server using HTTPS then you can use the following HTTPS=true preact watch
  2. You can run the dev server on a different port using PORT=8091 preact watch

preact list

Lists all the official preactjs-cli repositories

$ preact list

preact info

Prints debugging information concerning the local environment.

Deploying

# create a production build:
npm run build

# generate configuration in Firebase Hosting format:
npm run serve -- --server config

# Copy your static files to a server!

Pre-rendering

Preact CLI in order to follow PRPL pattern renders initial route (/) into generated static index.html - this ensures that users get to see your page before any JavaScript is run, and thus providing users with slow devices or poor connection your website's content much faster.

Preact CLI does this by rendering your app inside node - this means that we don't have access to DOM or other global variables available in browsers, similar how it would be in server-side rendering scenarios. In case you need to rely on browser APIs you could:

  • drop out of prerendering by passing --no-prerender flag to preact build,
  • write your code in a way that supports server-side rendering by wrapping code that requires browser's APIs in conditional statements if (typeof window !== "undefined") { ... } ensuring that on server those lines of code are never reached. Alternatively you could use a helper library like window-or-global.

Custom Configuration

Plugins

To make customizing your configuration easier, preact-cli supports plugins. Visit the Plugins wiki for a tutorial on how to use them.

Browserslist

You may customize your list of supported browser versions by declaring a "browserslist" key within your package.json. Changing these values will modify your JavaScript (via babel-preset-env) and your CSS (via autoprefixer) output.

By default, preact-cli emulates the following config:

package.json

{
	"browserslist": ["> 1%", "IE >= 9", "last 2 versions"]
}

Babel

To customize Babel, you have two options:

  1. You may create a .babelrc file in your project's root directory. Any settings you define here will overwrite matching config-keys within Preact CLI preset. For example, if you pass a "plugins" object, it will replace & reset all Babel plugins that Preact CLI defaults to.

  2. If you'd like to modify or add to the existing Babel config, you must use a preact.config.js file. Visit the Webpack section for more info, or check out the Customize Babel example!

Webpack

To customize preact-cli create a preact.config.js or a preact.config.json file.

preact.config.js

// ... imports or other code up here ...

// these props are both optional
export default {
	// you can add preact-cli plugins here
	plugins: [
		// either a function
		// (you'd probably import this because you can use the `webpack` function instead of an inline plugin)
		function() {},
		// strings also work (they get imported by preact-cli), useful for the json config
		'plugin-name',
		// with options
		[
			'plugin-name',
			{
				option: true,
			},
		],
	],
	/**
	 * Function that mutates the original webpack config.
	 * Supports asynchronous changes when a promise is returned (or it's an async function).
	 *
	 * @param {object} config - original webpack config.
	 * @param {object} env - options passed to the CLI.
	 * @param {WebpackConfigHelpers} helpers - object with useful helpers for working with the webpack config.
	 * @param {object} options - this is mainly relevant for plugins (will always be empty in the config), default to an empty object
	 **/
	webpack(config, env, helpers, options) {
		/** you can change the config here **/
	},
};

See WebpackConfigHelpers docs for more info on helpers argument which contains methods to find various parts of configuration. Additionally see our recipes wiki containing examples on how to change webpack configuration.

Prerender multiple routes

The --prerender flag will prerender by default only the root of your application. If you want to prerender other routes you can create a prerender-urls.json file, which contains the set of routes you want to render. The format required for defining your routes is an array of objects with a url key and an optional title key.

prerender-urls.json

[
	{
		"url": "/",
		"title": "Homepage"
	},
	{
		"url": "/route/random"
	}
]

You can customise the path and/or name of prerender-urls.json by using the flag --prerenderUrls.

preact build --prerenderUrls src/prerender-urls.json

If a static JSON file is too restrictive, you may want to provide a javascript file that exports your routes instead. Routes can be exported as a JSON string or an object and can optionally be returned from a function.

// prerender-urls.js
module.exports = [
	{
		url: '/',
		title: 'Homepage',
	},
	{
		url: '/route/random',
	},
];

Template

A template is used to render your page.

The default one is visible here and it's going to be enough for the majority of cases.

If you want to customise your template you can pass a custom template with the --template flag.

The --template flag is available on the build and watch commands.

preact build --template src/template.html
preact watch --template src/template.html

Using CSS preprocessors

The default templates comes with a .css file for each component. You can start using CSS preprocessors at any given time during your project lifecycle by installing additional packages and then simply replacing those .css files.

SASS

  • npm install --save-dev node-sass sass-loader (inside your preact application folder)
  • start replacing .css files with .scss files

LESS

  • npm install --save-dev less less-loader (inside your preact application folder)
  • start replacing .css files with .less files
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