javascript – How to get minified output with browserify?-ThrowExceptions

Exception or error:

Just started to use browserify, but I cannot find documentation for how to get it spilling out minified output.

So I am looking something like:

$> browserify main.js > bundle.js --minified
How to solve:

Pipe it through uglifyjs:

 browserify main.js | uglifyjs > bundle.js

You can install it using npm like so:

 npm install -g uglify-js

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As of 3.38.x you can use my minifyify plugin to minify your bundle and still have usable sourcemaps. This is not possible with the other solutions — the best you can do is map back to the uncompressed bundle. Minifyify maps all the way back to your separate source files (yes, even to coffeescript!)

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Or use uglifyify transform which “gives you the benefit applying Uglify’s “squeeze” transform before it’s processed by Browserify, meaning you can remove dead code paths for conditional requires.”

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After spending a few hours investigating how to construct new build processes, I thought others may benefit from what I ended up doing. I’m answering on this old question as it appears high in Google.

My use case is a little more involved than OP asked for. I have three build scenarios: development, testing, production. As most professional developers will have the same requirements, I think it’s excusable to go beyond the scope of the original question.

In development, I use watchify to build an uncompressed bundle with source map whenever a JavaScript file changes. I don’t want the uglify step since I want the build to finish before I’ve alt-tabbed to the browser to hit refresh and it’s not of any benefit during development anyway. To achieve this I use:

watchify app/index.js  --debug -o app/bundle.js -v

For testing, I want the exact same code as production (e.g. uglified) but I also want a source map. I achieve this with:

browserify app/index.js  -d | uglifyjs -cm -o app/bundle.js      --source-map "content=inline,filename='bundle.js',url='bundle.js.map'"

For production, the code is compressed with uglify and there is no source map.

browserify app/index.js  | uglifyjs -cm > app/bundle.js

Notes:

I have used these instructions on Windows 7, MacOS High Sierra and Ubuntu 16.04.

I have stopped using minifyify because it is no longer maintained.

There maybe better ways than what I am sharing. I have read it is apparently possible to get superior compression by uglifying all source files before combining with browserify. If you’ve got more time to spend on it than I have, you may wish to investigate that.

If you do not have watchify, uglify-js or browserify installed already, install them with npm thus:

npm install -g browserify
npm install -g watchify
npm install -g uglify-js

If you have old versions installed I recommend you upgrade. Particularly uglify-js as they made a breaking change to command line arguments which invalidates a lot of information that comes up in Google.

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No need to use plugins anymore to minify while preserving a source map:

browserify main.js --debug | uglifyjs --in-source-map inline --source-map-inline > bundle.js

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