Find newer versions of dependencies than what your package.json allows

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npm install npm-check-updates@16.14.4



npm version Build Status Coverage Status

npm-check-updates upgrades your package.json dependencies to the latest versions, ignoring specified versions.

  • maintains existing semantic versioning policies, i.e. "react": "^16.0.4" to "react": "^18.2.0".
  • only modifies package.json file. Run npm install to update your installed packages and package-lock.json.
  • clean output
  • sensible defaults
  • lots of options for custom behavior
  • CLI and module usage
  • compatible with npm, yarn, and pnpm


  • Red = major upgrade (and all major version zero)
  • Cyan = minor upgrade
  • Green = patch upgrade


Install globally:

npm install -g npm-check-updates

Or run with npx:

npx npm-check-updates


Show all new dependencies (excluding peerDependencies) for the project in the current directory:

$ ncu
Checking package.json
[====================] 5/5 100%

 express           4.12.x  →   4.13.x
 multer            ^0.1.8  →   ^1.0.1
 react-bootstrap  ^0.22.6  →  ^0.24.0
 react-a11y        ^0.1.1  →   ^0.2.6
 webpack          ~1.9.10  →  ~1.10.5

Run ncu -u to upgrade package.json

Upgrade a project's package file:

Make sure your package file is in version control and all changes have been committed. This will overwrite your package file.

$ ncu -u
Upgrading package.json
[====================] 1/1 100%

 express           4.12.x  →   4.13.x

Run npm install to install new versions.

$ npm install      # update installed packages and package-lock.json

Check global packages:

ncu -g

Filter packages using the --filter option or adding additional cli arguments. You can exclude specific packages with the --reject option or prefixing a filter with !. Supports strings, wildcards, globs, comma-or-space-delimited lists, and regular expressions:

# upgrade only mocha
ncu mocha
ncu -f mocha
ncu --filter mocha

# upgrade packages that start with "react-"
ncu react-*
ncu "/^react-.*$/"

# upgrade everything except nodemon
ncu \!nodemon
ncu -x nodemon
ncu --reject nodemon

# upgrade only chalk, mocha, and react
ncu chalk mocha react
ncu chalk, mocha, react
ncu -f "chalk mocha react"

# upgrade packages that do not start with "react-".
ncu \!react-*
ncu '/^(?!react-).*$/' # mac/linux
ncu "/^(?!react-).*$/" # windows

How dependency updates are determined

  • Direct dependencies are updated to the latest stable version:
    • 1.21.3
  • Range operators are preserved and the version is updated:
    • ^1.2.0^2.0.0
    • 1.x2.x
    • >0.2.0>0.3.0
  • "Less than" is replaced with a wildcard:
    • <2.0.0^3.0.0
    • 1.0.0 < 2.0.0^3.0.0
  • "Any version" is preserved:
    • **
  • Prerelease and deprecated versions are ignored by default.
    • Use --pre to include prerelease versions (e.g. alpha, beta, build1235)
    • Use --deprecated to include deprecated versions
  • With --target minor, only update patch and minor:
  • With --target patch, only update patch:
  • With --target @next, update to the version published on the next tag:
    • 0.1.0 -> 0.1.1-next.1


--cache                    Cache versions to the cache file (default: false)
--cacheExpiration <min>    Cache expiration in minutes (default: 10)
--cacheFile <path>         Filepath for the cache file (default:
--color                    Force color in terminal
--concurrency <n>          Max number of concurrent HTTP requests to
                           registry. (default: 8)
--configFileName <s>       Config file name. (default: .ncurc.{json,yml,js})
--configFilePath <path>    Directory of .ncurc config file. (default:
                           directory of `packageFile`)
--cwd <path>               Working directory in which npm will be executed.
--deep                     Run recursively in current working directory.
                           Alias of (--packageFile '**/package.json').
--dep <value>              Check one or more sections of dependencies only:
                           dev, optional, peer, prod, bundle
                           (comma-delimited). (default:
--deprecated               Include deprecated packages.
--doctor                   Iteratively installs upgrades and runs tests to
                           identify breaking upgrades. Requires "-u" to
                           execute. Run "ncu --help --doctor" for details.
--doctorInstall <command>  Specifies the install script to use in doctor
                           mode. (default: npm install/yarn)
--doctorTest <command>     Specifies the test script to use in doctor mode.
                           (default: npm test)
--enginesNode              Include only packages that satisfy engines.node as
                           specified in the package file.
-e, --errorLevel <n>       Set the error level. 1: exits with error code 0 if
                           no errors occur. 2: exits with error code 0 if no
                           packages need updating (useful for continuous
                           integration). (default: 1)
-f, --filter <p>           Include only package names matching the given
                           string, wildcard, glob, comma-or-space-delimited
                           list, /regex/, or predicate function.
--filterVersion <p>        Filter on package version using
                           comma-or-space-delimited list, /regex/, or
                           predicate function.
--format <value>           Modify the output formatting or show additional
                           information. Specify one or more comma-delimited
                           values: group, ownerChanged, repo. Run "ncu --help
                           --format" for details. (default: [])
-g, --global               Check global packages instead of in the current
--groupFunction <fn>       Customize how packages are divided into groups
                           when using '--format group'. Run "ncu --help
                           --groupFunction" for details.
-i, --interactive          Enable interactive prompts for each dependency;
                           implies -u unless one of the json options are set.
-j, --jsonAll              Output new package file instead of human-readable
--jsonDeps                 Like `jsonAll` but only lists `dependencies`,
                           `devDependencies`, `optionalDependencies`, etc of
                           the new package data.
--jsonUpgraded             Output upgraded dependencies in json.
-l, --loglevel <n>         Amount to log: silent, error, minimal, warn, info,
                           verbose, silly. (default: "warn")
--mergeConfig              Merges nested configs with the root config file
                           for --deep or --packageFile options. (default:
-m, --minimal              Do not upgrade newer versions that are already
                           satisfied by the version range according to
--packageData <value>      Package file data (you can also use stdin).
--packageFile <path|glob>  Package file(s) location. (default:
-p, --packageManager <s>   npm, yarn, staticRegistry (default: npm). Run "ncu
                           --help --packageManager" for details.
--peer                     Check peer dependencies of installed packages and
                           filter updates to compatible versions. Run "ncu
                           --help --peer" for details.
--pre <n>                  Include prerelease versions, e.g. -alpha.0,
                           -beta.5, -rc.2. Automatically set to 1 when
                           --target is newest or greatest, or when the
                           current version is a prerelease. (default: 0)
--prefix <path>            Current working directory of npm.
-r, --registry <uri>       Third-party npm registry. Run "ncu --help
                           --registry" for details.
-x, --reject <p>           Exclude packages matching the given string,
                           wildcard, glob, comma-or-space-delimited list,
                           /regex/, or predicate function. (default: [])
--rejectVersion <p>        Exclude package.json versions using
                           comma-or-space-delimited list, /regex/, or
                           predicate function.
--removeRange              Remove version ranges from the final package
--retry <n>                Number of times to retry failed requests for
                           package info. (default: 3)
--root                     Runs updates on the root project in addition to
                           specified workspaces. Only allowed with
                           --workspace or --workspaces. (default: false)
-s, --silent               Don't output anything. Alias for --loglevel
--stdin                    Read package.json from stdin.
-t, --target <value>       Determines the version to upgrade to: latest,
                           newest, greatest, minor, patch, @[tag], or
                           [function]. (default: latest) Run "ncu --help
                           --target" for details.
--timeout <ms>             Global timeout in milliseconds. (default: no
                           global timeout and 30 seconds per
-u, --upgrade              Overwrite package file with upgraded versions
                           instead of just outputting to console.
--verbose                  Log additional information for debugging. Alias
                           for --loglevel verbose.
-w, --workspace <s>        Run on one or more specified workspaces. Add
                           --root to also upgrade the root project. (default:
-ws, --workspaces          Run on all workspaces. All --root to also upgrade
                           the root project.
-V, --version              output the version number
-h, --help                 display help for command

Interactive Mode

Choose exactly which upgrades to make in interactive mode:

ncu --interactive
ncu -i

Select which upgrades you want:

ncu --interactive

Combine with --format group for a truly luxe experience:

ncu --interactive --format group

Doctor Mode

Usage: ncu --doctor [-u] [options]

Iteratively installs upgrades and runs tests to identify breaking upgrades. Requires -u to execute (modifies your package file, lock file, and node_modules).

To be more precise:

  1. Runs npm install (or yarn) and npm test to ensure tests are currently passing. You can specify your own scripts with --doctorInstall and --doctorTest.
  2. Runs ncu -u to optimistically upgrade all dependencies.
  3. If tests pass, hurray!
  4. If tests fail, restores package file and lock file.
  5. For each dependency, install upgrade and run tests.
  6. When the breaking upgrade is found, saves partially upgraded package.json (not including the breaking upgrade) and exits.


$ ncu --doctor -u
npm install
npm run test
ncu -u
npm install
npm run test
Failing tests found:
  throw new Error('Test failed!')
Now let's identify the culprit, shall we?
Restoring package.json
Restoring package-lock.json
npm install
npm install --no-save react@16.0.0
npm run test
  ✓ react 15.0.0 → 16.0.0
npm install --no-save react-redux@7.0.0
npm run test
  ✗ react-redux 6.0.0 → 7.0.0
Saving partially upgraded package.json

Config File

Use a .ncurc.{json,yml,js} file to specify configuration information. You can specify file name and path using --configFileName and --configFilePath command line options.

For example, .ncurc.json:

  "upgrade": true,
  "filter": "express",
  "reject": ["@types/estree", "ts-node"]

Module/Programmatic Usage

npm-check-updates can be imported as a module:

import ncu from 'npm-check-updates'

const upgraded = await ncu({
  // Pass any cli option
  packageFile: '../package.json',
  upgrade: true,
  // Defaults:
  // jsonUpgraded: true,
  // silent: true,

console.log(upgraded) // { "mypackage": "^2.0.0", ... }


Contributions are happily accepted. I respond to all PR's and can offer guidance on where to make changes. For contributing tips see

Known Issues

  • If ncu prints output that does not seem related to this package, it may be conflicting with another executable such as ncu-weather-cli or Nvidia CUDA. Try using the long name instead: npm-check-updates.
  • Windows: If npm-check-updates hangs, try setting the package file explicitly: ncu --packageFile package.json. You can run ncu --loglevel verbose to confirm that it was incorrectly waiting for stdin. See #136.


File an issue. Please search existing issues first.