In a continuation of our journey into the world of Node.js, I’ve studied a bunch of tools and frameworks aimed at extending the functionality of the platform. Since solutions like Hapi.js and Express.js simplify some routine processes and lead to better results, I’ve described the best Node.js frameworks and tools below. If you are not yet familiar with Node.js, examine the following posts:
Table of contents
- 1 Hapi.js
- 2 Express.js
- 3 Socket.io
- 4 Mojito
- 5 Meteor
- 6 Derby
- 7 Mean.js
- 8 Sails.js
- 9 Koa.js
- 10 Total.js
- 11 Locomotive.js
- 12 Flatiron.js
- 13 Socketstream
- 14 Geddy.js
- 15 Interfake
- 16 IO.js
- 17 Math.js
- 18 Cyclon.js
- 19 Migrat
- 20 Eskimo.io
- 21 Taunus.io
- 22 PencilBlue
- 23 Passwordless
- 24 Broccoli
- 25 NodeOS
- 26 Kiss.js
- 27 Node Framework
Being a powerful Node.js web framework, Hapi.js suits best for building apps and APIs. It offers a reliable plugin system and numerous useful features, such as input validation, logging, implement caching, configuration-based functionality, error handling, etc. If you are interested in some real world examples, check Postmile – a collaborative list making application, or visit PayPal or Walmart websites, since all of them are somehow based on Hapi.js.
This framework is among the most popular Node.js frameworks, as it powers such websites as MySpace, Klout, Geekli.st, Segment.io, Yummly, and many more. Express.js is a minimalist and at the same time robust tool for building hosts of apps APIs. The most prominent features of this Node.js web application framework are template engines, database integration, and simplified multiple routing.
Express.io is a real-time Node.js web framework with the support for MVC architecture, utilized for creating web applications.
If you are looking for a more complex solution, then you should pay attention to Mean.js (MongoDB, Express.js, Angular.js, Node.js). The framework provides the ability to build web apps with the aid of NoSQL, MongoDB, and Angular.js for the client side and Node.js + Express.js for the server. Furthermore, there is a support for automated testing enabled by the Grunt tool. Mean stack consists of Mean.js and Mean.io.
In its turn Sails.js represents the most popular real-time Node.js framework. It provides an MVC pattern for implementing data-driven APIs. Sails.js is often used for building real-time chats, multiplayer games, and dashboards. The framework utilizes Waterline to provide database solutions and object-relational mapping. Being built on top of Node.js, it uses Express.js for HTTP requests. Moreover, Sails.js is compatible with Grunt modules and supports Angular, Backbone, and other front-end approaches.
Koa.js is yet another powerful Node.js server framework that makes developing web apps and APIs fast and enjoyable. It allows you to ditch callbacks through leveraging generators. As a result, you can significantly increase error-handling. Furthermore, Koa doesn’t bundle any middleware within the core of your projects.
Being one of the most powerful frameworks, Express based Locomotive.js offers MVC architecture, expressive routing, as well as routing helpers. Furthermore, it can be connected to any database or template engine. Other important features include RESTful routes and convention over configuration.
In its turn Flatiron.js is a modern Node.js web framework for build advanced web applications. The platform provides simple, but at the same time useful components to let developers do what they want.
Thanks to modular nature and advanced features, you can use Socketstream for all kinds of apps. For example, the framework is good for turning users’ content into documents. It lets developers rapidly deploy fast and secure platforms.
Geddy.js is a simple and well-structured MVC web framework, built with data versatility in mind. It incorporates Node’s built in cluster module for creating worker processes. The feature is highly configurable on an environment to environment basis.
If you work with Node.js, you should be familiar with Math.js, if not, give it a try. Math.js is a powerful and easy to use tool for Node.js development. Being an extensive math library, it provides a flexible expression parser, as well as offers an integrated solution for working with various types of data, such as units, matrices, numbers, big and complex numbers. In addition, I should mention that Math.js is easily extensible and supports chained operations.
For those looking for a reliable data migration tool, I propose to check Migrat. It is a pluggable Node.js migration solution, which supports multi-node environments and is not tied to any particular database engine. Developed for diverse processes and stacks, Migrat allows global and per server migrations.
In its turn Eskimo.io helps you utilize the power of Node.js for building API’s, applications and online stores. The framework relies on open-source packages, so you can create almost everything from coming soon pages to CDN-hosted assets with its aid.
Among MVC engines for Node.js, I’d like to draw your attention to Taunus, which is a micro isomorphic solution focused on delivering a progressively enhanced user experience. Two other goals, you will easily achieve with this software solution, are usability and performance.
There is also a Node.js based CMS in our list: PencilBlue is a fully responsive and completely scalable open source content management system, which is good enough for more than just a blog.
Passwordless is a tool which will significantly simplify your interaction with passwords. This open source framework introduce a token-based OTPW authentication, which is faster to deploy and more secure than other more common solutions. The middleware is aimed at Express & Node.js.
Another useful tool is Broccoli. It is a backend-agnostic browser compilation library, comparable to the Rails asset pipeline. The most important features of Broccoli are chainable plugins and fast rebuilds.
It is also necessary to mention Node OS, since it is the first npm powered operating system, which is built on top of the Linux kernel, and with a Node.js runtime.
This is an object-oriented Node.js web framework written in CoffeeScript. It is fast, reliable, and easy to use.
You can find 30+ Node.js frameworks listed on this website. They are divided into 4 categories: Node.js MVC frameworks, Node.js full-stack frameworks, Node.js REST API frameworks, and other libraries.
As you can see, this post includes almost 30 different frameworks, tools, and resources. If you know other interesting Node.js solutions, leave a comment under this post – the Firebear team would be delighted to hear from you!