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Run arbitrary package scripts


npm run-script <command> [--if-present] [--silent] [-- <args>]
npm run-script <command> [--workspace=<workspace-name>]
npm run-script <command> [--workspaces]
aliases: run, rum, urn


This runs an arbitrary command from a package's "scripts" object. If no "command" is provided, it will list the available scripts.

run[-script] is used by the test, start, restart, and stop commands, but can be called directly, as well. When the scripts in the package are printed out, they're separated into lifecycle (test, start, restart) and directly-run scripts.

Any positional arguments are passed to the specified script. Use -- to pass --prefixed flags and options which would otherwise be parsed by npm.

For example:

npm run test -- --grep="pattern"

The arguments will only be passed to the script specified after npm run and not to any pre or post script.

The env script is a special built-in command that can be used to list environment variables that will be available to the script at runtime. If an "env" command is defined in your package, it will take precedence over the built-in.

In addition to the shell's pre-existing PATH, npm run adds node_modules/.bin to the PATH provided to scripts. Any binaries provided by locally-installed dependencies can be used without the node_modules/.bin prefix. For example, if there is a devDependency on tap in your package, you should write:

"scripts": {"test": "tap test/*.js"}

instead of

"scripts": {"test": "node_modules/.bin/tap test/*.js"}

The actual shell your script is run within is platform dependent. By default, on Unix-like systems it is the /bin/sh command, on Windows it is cmd.exe. The actual shell referred to by /bin/sh also depends on the system. You can customize the shell with the script-shell configuration.

Scripts are run from the root of the package folder, regardless of what the current working directory is when npm run is called. If you want your script to use different behavior based on what subdirectory you're in, you can use the INIT_CWD environment variable, which holds the full path you were in when you ran npm run.

npm run sets the NODE environment variable to the node executable with which npm is executed. Also, if the --scripts-prepend-node-path is passed, the directory within which node resides is added to the PATH. If --scripts-prepend-node-path=auto is passed (which has been the default in npm v3), this is only performed when that node executable is not found in the PATH.

If you try to run a script without having a node_modules directory and it fails, you will be given a warning to run npm install, just in case you've forgotten.

Workspaces support

You may use the workspace or workspaces configs in order to run an arbitrary command from a package's "scripts" object in the context of the specified workspaces. If no "command" is provided, it will list the available scripts for each of these configured workspaces.

Given a project with configured workspaces, e.g:

+-- package.json
`-- packages
+-- a
| `-- package.json
+-- b
| `-- package.json
`-- c
`-- package.json

Assuming the workspace configuration is properly set up at the root level package.json file. e.g:

"workspaces": [ "./packages/*" ]

And that each of the configured workspaces has a configured test script, we can run tests in all of them using the workspaces config:

npm test --workspaces

Filtering workspaces

It's also possible to run a script in a single workspace using the workspace config along with a name or directory path:

npm test --workspace=a

The workspace config can also be specified multiple times in order to run a specific script in the context of multiple workspaces. When defining values for the workspace config in the command line, it also possible to use -w as a shorthand, e.g:

npm test -w a -w b

This last command will run test in both ./packages/a and ./packages/b packages.



  • Type: Boolean
  • Default: false

You can use the --if-present flag to avoid exiting with a non-zero exit code when the script is undefined. This lets you run potentially undefined scripts without breaking the execution chain.


  • Type: Boolean
  • Default: false

Skips running pre and post scripts.


  • Type: String
  • Default: null

Optional custom script to use to execute the command. If not defined defaults to /bin/sh on Unix, defaults to env.comspec or cmd.exe on Windows.


  • Type: Boolean
  • Default: false

You can use the --silent flag to prevent showing npm ERR! output on error.


  • Alias: -w
  • Type: Array
  • Default: []

Enable running scripts in the context of workspaces while also filtering by the provided names or paths provided.

Valid values for the workspace config are either:

  • Workspace names
  • Path to a workspace directory
  • Path to a parent workspace directory (will result to selecting all of the children workspaces)


  • Alias: --ws
  • Type: Boolean
  • Default: false

Run scripts in the context of all configured workspaces for the current project.

See Also