TypeScript execution environment and REPL for node.js, with source map support

typescript, node, runtime, environment, ts, compiler, nodejs, repl
npm install ts-node@7.0.1


TypeScript Node

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TypeScript execution and REPL for node.js, with source map support. Works with typescript@>=2.0.

Tip: ts-node differs slightly from tsc. It will not load files from tsconfig.json by default. Instead, ts-node starts from the input file and discovers the rest of the project tree through imports and references.


# Locally in your project
npm install -D ts-node
npm install -D typescript

# Or globally (not recommended)
npm install -g ts-node
npm install -g typescript

Tip: Installing modules locally allows you to control and share the versions through package.json.


# Execute a script as `node` + `tsc`.
ts-node script.ts

# Starts a TypeScript REPL.

# Execute code with TypeScript.
ts-node -e 'console.log("Hello, world!")'

# Execute, and print, code with TypeScript.
ts-node -p '"Hello, world!"'

# Pipe scripts to execute with TypeScript.
echo "console.log('Hello, world!')" | ts-node

TypeScript REPL


You can require ts-node and register the loader for future requires by using require('ts-node').register({ /* options */ }). You can also use file shortcuts - node -r ts-node/register or node -r ts-node/register/transpile-only - depending on your preferences.

Note: If you need to use advanced node.js CLI arguments (e.g. --inspect), use them with node -r ts-node/register instead of the ts-node CLI.


mocha --require ts-node/register --watch-extensions ts,tsx "test/**/*.{ts,tsx}" [...args]

Note: --watch-extensions is only used in --watch mode.


ts-node node_modules/tape/bin/tape [...args]


# Create a `gulpfile.ts` and run `gulp`.

Visual Studio Code

Create a new node.js configuration, add -r ts-node/register to node args and move the program to the args list (so VS Code doesn't look for outFiles).

    "type": "node",
    "request": "launch",
    "name": "Launch Program",
    "runtimeArgs": [
    "args": [

How It Works

TypeScript Node works by registering the TypeScript compiler for .tsx? and .jsx? extension (when allowJs == true). When node.js has an extension registered (via require.extensions), it will use the extension internally for module resolution. When an extension is unknown to node.js, it handles the file as .js (JavaScript).

P.S. This means if you don't register an extension, it is compiled as JavaScript. When ts-node is used with allowJs, JavaScript files are transpiled using the TypeScript compiler.

Loading tsconfig.json

Typescript Node loads tsconfig.json automatically. Use --skip-project to the loading tsconfig.json.

Tip: You can use ts-node together with tsconfig-paths to load modules according to the paths section in tsconfig.json.

Configuration Options

You can set options by passing them before the script path, via programmatic usage or via environment variables.

ts-node --compiler ntypescript --project src/tsconfig.json hello-world.ts

CLI Options

Supports --print, --eval and --require from node.js CLI options.

  • --help Prints help text
  • --version Prints version information

CLI and Programmatic Options

Environment variable denoted in parentheses.

  • -T, --transpileOnly Use TypeScript's faster transpileModule (TS_NODE_TRANSPILE_ONLY)
  • --cacheDirectory Configure the output file cache directory (TS_NODE_CACHE_DIRECTORY)
  • -I, --ignore [pattern] Override the path patterns to skip compilation (TS_NODE_IGNORE)
  • -P, --project [path] Path to TypeScript JSON project file (TS_NODE_PROJECT)
  • -C, --compiler [name] Specify a custom TypeScript compiler (TS_NODE_COMPILER)
  • -D, --ignoreDiagnostics [code] Ignore TypeScript warnings by diagnostic code (TS_NODE_IGNORE_DIAGNOSTICS)
  • -O, --compilerOptions [opts] JSON object to merge with compiler options (TS_NODE_COMPILER_OPTIONS)
  • --files Load files from tsconfig.json on startup (TS_NODE_FILES)
  • --pretty Use pretty diagnostic formatter (TS_NODE_PRETTY)
  • --no-cache Disable the local TypeScript Node cache (TS_NODE_CACHE)
  • --skip-project Skip project config resolution and loading (TS_NODE_SKIP_PROJECT)
  • --skip-ignore Skip ignore checks (TS_NODE_SKIP_IGNORE)

Programmatic Only Options

  • transformers An array of transformers to pass to TypeScript
  • readFile Custom TypeScript-compatible file reading function
  • fileExists Custom TypeScript-compatible file existence function

Watching and Restarting

TypeScript Node compiles source code via require(), watching files and code reloads are out of scope for the project. If you want to restart the ts-node process on file change, existing node.js tools such as nodemon, onchange and node-dev work.

There's also ts-node-dev, a modified version of node-dev using ts-node for compilation and won't restart the process on file change.