Yarn vs NPM: Which One is Best to Choose in Development? – 2024


Yarn and npm(Yarn vs npm) are both popular package managers used in the JavaScript ecosystem, primarily for managing dependencies in Node.js projects. While they serve similar purposes, there are some differences between them:

Yarn vs npm:

  1. Package Installation:
    • npm: When you install packages using npm, it installs them in a flat directory structure within the node_modules folder of your project. This means that all dependencies are installed at the top level.
    • Yarn: Yarn installs packages using a more deterministic algorithm and creates a more efficient dependency graph. It also creates a yarn.lock file which ensures that the same dependency versions are installed across different environments.
  2. Performance:
    • npm: Historically, npm had some performance issues, especially with larger projects and complex dependency trees. However, npm has made significant improvements in recent years.
    • Yarn: Yarn was developed by Facebook with a focus on performance. It generally performs faster than npm, particularly in terms of package installation and dependency resolution.
  3. Concurrency:
    • npm: By default, npm runs operations serially, meaning it installs one package at a time. However, npm introduced a new feature called npm v7, which allows for some degree of concurrency by default.
    • Yarn: Yarn performs operations concurrently by default, which means it can install multiple packages simultaneously. This can lead to faster installation times, especially for large projects with many dependencies.
  4. Lock File:
    • npm: npm creates a package-lock.json file to lock dependency versions. This file records the exact versions of dependencies installed in your project.
    • Yarn: Yarn creates a yarn.lock file for the same purpose. This file ensures that the same versions of dependencies are installed across different environments, providing more deterministic builds.
  5. User Interface:
    • npm: npm has a command-line interface that provides various commands for package management.
    • Yarn: Yarn also has a command-line interface similar to npm, but it offers some additional features and improvements, such as better progress indicators and error messages.
  6. Registry:
    • npm: npm uses the npm registry by default (registry.npmjs.org), which hosts public JavaScript packages.
    • Yarn: Yarn can also use the npm registry but has its own registry (registry.yarnpkg.com) and cache system. This allows Yarn to perform certain operations more efficiently.

Certainly, here’s the information presented in a table format:

Package InstallationFlat directory structure (node_modules)Deterministic installation, optimized dependency graph
PerformanceHistorically slower, recent improvementsDesigned for performance, faster installation
ConcurrencySerial by default (with concurrency in npm v7)Concurrent by default, faster installations
Lock Filepackage-lock.jsonyarn.lock
User InterfaceCommand-line interfaceCommand-line interface, enhanced features
Registrynpm registry (registry.npmjs.org)npm or Yarn registry (registry.yarnpkg.com)

This table outlines the key differences between npm and Yarn in various aspects of package management.

Overall, both npm and Yarn are powerful package managers with similar capabilities, but Yarn tends to offer better performance and reliability in many cases. The choice between them often comes down to personal preference and specific project requirements.

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