Stay on top of the latest updates in the software development market. Find out the advantages and disadvantages of the most popular package managers in 2022.
YARN vs NPM in 2022
Commons for NPM and Yarn
Both packages allow for a range of advanced steps toward development. The common features center around their functionality:
1. Functional workflow - package managers use terminals to run CLI commands, with a flattened dependency tree in use.
2. Package creator – allow for managing different versions of code and its dependencies.
3. Web Frameworks – standardized coding practices for managers include different options for web frameworks that support both client-side and server-side frameworks.
5. Development process – managers are created for operations to perform multiple types of transport and connections on different platforms including debugging techniques and much more.
6. Command line interface (CLI commands) – a range of powerful commands to support user functionality. Support for code repositories like Monorepo etc.
7. Integration – packages can link workspaces between users who participate in development in the same environment.
Strong sides and disadvantages
The disadvantages and limitations are visible from the differences between the two package managers. They cannot be ignored if the user has certain expectations for his or her project.
1. Installation - this process is different for both. YARN allows users to get to the library modules very quickly because the packages are installed in parallel. A feature built into YARN also allows users to skip the installation of certain packages if it takes too long. The difference comes from the fact that YARN stores all dependencies locally and can easily download packages from disk (no need to download them a second time), opposite to NPM, which installs them online.
2. Security and locking system - YARN solves the shield security problem with multiple users by adding a yarn.lock file. This is how a lock file is simply generated. This feature was also later implemented in NPM, but YARN seems to still be positioned as more secure.
3. Plug’n’Play – the latest version of YARN offers the function of an alternative approach to the installation strategy. It is suitable for large projects as it offers certain advantages, such as it can speed up installation.
4. Outlook – the coding used in the YARN terminal is more transparent than NPM. A better visual experience is a huge advantage of using YARN.
Developers once working with the NPM or YARN client can migrate from one environment to another without damaging the existing project. Simply run the command for each manager (for example, YARN uses a simple 'Yarn' query to migrate the entire project to its environment).
The packages are very similar. In general, YARN has developed the same procedures as NPM, but makes them look slightly different, basically on swapped wording (Command: uninstall package; YARN - yarn remove [package], NPM - npm uninstall -save-dev [package], and much more).
Alternatives through statistics
NPM and YARN are not the only players on the market in the Front-End Package Manager category. There is a development intended for smaller competitors. What’s interesting, is that some of these managers can solve problems that neither NPM nor YARN can't. Nevertheless, no migration from any other package is as smooth as between NPM and YARN. User statistics can best be seen through social media platforms dedicated to developers. Stackshare.io and GitHub.com collect data on commercially available packages.
- NPM – is the most quoted package manager, and its download statistics per package are higher than those of its competitors. It is important to remember that it is one of those that have been around the longest on the market. Online visibility defined through GitHub reaches over +83K stars and around +2K mentioned by user stacks.
- YARN – is a comprehensive package manager with very similar download statistics as the NPM package. GitHub stats reach over +41K stars and around +3K mentioned by user’s stacks.
- Bower – alternative package manager designed for the web and is an alternative to YARN and NPM. The package lacks extended system dependencies, and these cannot be shared between different applications. This can be described as a disadvantage. Bower usage statistics on GitHub reach approx. +15K stars and around +2K mentioned by user’s stacks.
YARN was originally dedicated to replacing NPM. The outdated NPM is not being pushed out of the market and is continuously improving most of the existing gaps. The services offered are similar for both. It doesn't look like the difference between the two managers in 2022 will be deep enough to completely cut one from the other. The race is still on.
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