Node.js

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Why use Node.js?

Node.js is a cross-platform JavaScript runtime environment that provides an infrastructure for running JavaScript code on the backend (server-side). It’s based on Google’s V8 engine that compiles JavaScript to machine code and ensures its super-fast execution. Node.js has an event-driven architecture and leverages asynchronous programming. Those features allow Node.js servers to process huge numbers of I/O requests coming from multiple clients at an unbeatable speed.

  • How to use Node.js?

    Early-stage startups often use Node.js for fast prototyping because it allows them to write the entire project in one language. Following this approach, you can get your simple MVP built by one full-stack JavaScript developer. In production, Node.js is mostly used for building backends for web apps. You should consider using it if you’re going to build a real-time app, a messaging app, or a SPA, which all require frequent and instant updates of data. Other good Node.js use cases are scalable microservices, data-intensive IoT apps, and video streaming services.

  • What is a Node server?

    With Node.js you can build fully-fledged scalable web servers that can handle HTTP requests, WebSockets, or API requests. You can also use Node.js to build proxy servers or front-end load balancers for other servers (Apache) and use them for routing client requests.

  • Why use Node.js?

    Node.js has stood the test of time and got a rich ecosystem maintained by the JavaScript community. Node.js has proved to be a super lightweight, scalable, and fast backend tool for event-driven real-time apps, single-page apps, and microservices. The use of Node.js helps startups benefit from full-stack JavaScript development, which simplifies and streamlines the app development cycle. Moreover, the list of enterprise-level apps using Node.js in production is constantly growing, which proves the health of the technology and guarantees its longevity.

  • Who uses Node.js?

    In 85% of cases, Node.js is used for the development of web apps. There are examples of successful projects that were built with Node.js from the ground up, like Trello, as well as those who moved to Node.js after trying other solutions, like LinkedIn. Among the most famous enterprise-scale Node.js app examples you’ll find Netflix, Twitter, and PayPal.

  • How secure is Node.js?

    Node.js is as secure as the code that is written using it. Most probably you’ll reuse code packages written by others and available in the Node.js ecosystem. The problem is when your project contains code from hundreds of different packages, it can be hard to spot a vulnerability. The good news is since 2018 the Node Security Platform (NSP) has been integrated directly into the npm library and runs security audits for every new module added. Anyway, for better security, make sure to use the latest maintainable versions of frameworks and modules, dive deep into the code package dependencies, and study the licensing information carefully. To mitigate the risk of attacks, hire experienced Node.js developers whose code is not vulnerable to the most common attacking techniques, such as man-in-the-middle, code injection, Advanced Persistent Threat, Cross-Site Scripting, Cross-Site Forgery Requests, and others.

  • What is Node.js not good for?

    Being a single-threaded runtime environment, Node.js is not suitable for the execution of CPU-intensive tasks. As all incoming requests are processed one by one, a heavy-computation task can block the main thread from processing all the subsequent requests. To cope with this drawback, Node.js offers a Worker Pool that summons a few separate threads for the execution of expensive tasks. However, if your app requires resource-consuming computation, it's better to use other languages (for example, Java) on its backend.

  • What is unit testing in Node.js?

    Individual units and components are tested separately in unit testing, which is a software testing method. The smallest testable bit of code in an application is referred to as a unit. Developers are typically running tests during the development phase of an application.

  • Most common Node.js testing frameworks

    There are several frameworks for running unit tests in Node.js, the most prominent of which are Jest, Mocha and Jasmine.

    Mocha has been around since 2011. It functions by using the help of third-party assertions, mocking software and spying software (which keep track of their interaction with other objects or pieces of code). It's extremely expandable, with a plethora of plugins, extensions, and libraries built to operate on top of it.

    Jest is a JavaScript testing framework created by Facebook and updated on a regular basis. It has grown in popularity since 2016, with a whopping 61 percent of JavaScript developers having tried it and intending to use it again.

    Jasmine has been around for a much longer time than Jest, having been developed by Pivotal Labs and launched in 2010. It is designed to operate on any JavaScript-enabled platform, it’s highly flexible and it’s compatible with a number of different testing frameworks and libraries, such as Sinon and Chai. It has a sizable community and plenty of resources—including libraries, blog posts, and tutorials, because of its longevity.

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