The node.js shebang
1 - Do you need to use the shebang?
I would say that it depends on the situation, if for example each time I am starting a script by calling node first and then a path to the script like this:
Then it is not at all important as I am directly calling node each time I want to run the script. However I would say that it becomes important to use a Linux shebang when developing a stand alone Command Line Interface tool using node as the environment. When the stand alone command is called Linux or any other program that calls the script is going to need to know what program to use in order to run the script. So using the Linux shebang at the top of the main file is one thing that must be done when it comes to making a nodes project a stand alone command.
2 - Check your jsMin, or jsFormat tools.
3 - This is an important step in making a CLI tool with node.js
I have written a newer post that covers in greater detail how to go about getting started making a CLI tool in node.js. Be sure to check that out if you want to learn more about how to make global scripts that you can call from anywhere within the Command Line Interface.
4 - Other examples of shebangs, the shebang should always point to the binary to use to call a script.
A Linux shebang should be placed on top of any script, or source code file that is to be called directly and the script is in a langauge that is not compiled. For example if I where to write a simple little projecty in the C langaue there is no need to place a shebang at the top of a source code file, becuase C lanague source is compiled to a binary, and that binary file is what I can then call directly.
For example when working out a bash script I would want to have a shebang point to bash.
Whatever the scripting langaue is theer should be a binary that ise used to call it, the location of that binary should be the shebang.
5 - Making a script exacutabule with chmod
To make a script exacutabule by itself with chmod I just need to call chmod and use an octal code like 755 so that the file is exacuabule for at least the owner of the file, and still be able to read and write to it also.
So say I have a simple hello world script like this:
If I save it as something like hello.js I can then use chmod to make is exacutabule, and once that is the case I can call the script by itself.
There are many other octal codes for setting file access permissions of a file, including scripts. Setting a coe such as 777 will make it so all users have full permisions for reading, writing, and calling the script for example. I will not be getting into detail about the chmod script and file permsions in detail here though of course. I have wrote a post on chmod, and permsions if you want to read more about this one.
6 - Conclusion
That’s it, this is a short post aimed at a very specific topic of interest. It is a relevant part of getting into what is needed to be understood when it comes to developing CLI tools with node.js, but that is a whole other ball of wax as I see it. When it comes to it I will link and and expand this post accordingly.