NodeJs is one of the most in-demand skills when it comes to web development. You can build pretty much anything with raw node that you would with external libraries, However, this doesn’t mean ones should use them. Today in this article, let us have a look at some of the top Node web frameworks.
You probably have heard about express. This is considered more or less the de facto framework when talking about web development in node. It is one of the very first frameworks that were ever built for node. Express came out within a month of the first Node release. Express comes with a lot of modules in it, such as routing. Express has a great community and thousands of services run express. This is the reasons most of the beginners often begin and stay with express. It is fairly fast and stable.
Koa is a framework for the modern age. It was developed by the same team that developed express. Koa is extremely light and often ranks in among the lightest frameworks out there. It has less than 2k LOC. I personally prefer to use koa myself due to the extreme flexibility it offers. Koa does not come with baggage and you are expected to add all modules such as session routing etc yourself. Koa is not very popular among new developers for the same reason but it is a great choice for people who like control.
The hapi framework was initially built by the Walmart team to handle excessive traffic during their Black Friday sales. Hapi offers a solid structure when building apps. Hapi takes away your stress from things like data validation and authentication with its plugins. Hapi has an ecosystem of plugins made exclusively for hapi that are really helpful at getting things done easy and fast. I’ve seen more developers prefer hapi when building enterprise systems.
Very true to its name, Fastify is very fast. Apparently faster than any other framework. Fastify was built with the idea that a good server should have low infrastructural costs. It also has a plugin system like hapi. As of now, they have about 85 plugins and the list keeps growing. In a certain benchmark test by the fastify team, they boast serving over 31K requests a second which is significantly better than the next entry koa serving 22k requests.
Restify, as it sounds, was built for developing restful services and API. It is optimized for building systems that are semantically correct and scalable. Interestingly, It is used by Netflix, Pinterest, Napster, and even npm. Described as the future of node development, restify promises being easily debuggable. The plugin ecosystem is not the best out there but it is growing at a steady rate.
Sails is very different from other node frameworks. While most node frameworks try to keep things minimalistic, sails has a different approach. Sails is a fully features MVC framework for building enterprise level applications. It comes bundled with the waterline ORM that works with almost any database. Another thing I really like about sails is it has a great integration with sockets. Sails is more suited for building enterprise apps that require all things to be under one roof. It is also often compared with Ruby on Rails and Django.
So here we had some of the top Node JS frameworks from my perspective. Node JS has evolved a lot and is still evolving. I’ll be looking for some more interesting frameworks and keep you updated. Meanwhile, if I missed any of your favorites, do let me know in the comment section below.