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How I setup ESLint, Prettier and Commit Linting


As a software developer, maintaining the consistency and quality of my code is something I always keep on top of. One way I ensure this is through the use of linting. Today, I'd like to walk you through my process of setting up code linting, with a focus on commit linting. We will do this using ESLint, Prettier, Husky, and lint-staged.

Why use ESLint and Prettier together?
While ESLint helps in identifying and reporting potential issues in your ECMAScript/JavaScript code, its primary focus is not formatting. Prettier, on the other hand, is an opinionated code formatter, ensuring your code follows a consistent style. By using them together, we can get the best of both worlds

Code Linting

Linting is a method to automatically check your code for potential errors. It allows you to follow coding standards and avoid common mistakes.


1. Installing ESLint and Prettier

To begin with, we need to install ESLint, Prettier, and eslint-config-prettier. ESLint helps in identifying and reporting on patterns found in ECMAScript/JavaScript code. Prettier is an opinionated code formatter, and eslint-config-prettier is a config that disables ESLint rules that conflict with Prettier.

In your project directory, use the following npm command to install these as dev dependencies:

npm install eslint prettier eslint-config-prettier --save-dev

2. Initialise ESLint

Next, let's initialise ESLint with this command:

npm init @eslint/config

You'll be asked a few questions. When asked if you want to install 'eslint-config', answer 'Yes'. For the primary purpose of your configuration, choose 'To check syntax and find problems'. Answer the following questions based on your project.

3. Configure ESLint to Use Prettier

In your ESLint configuration file, add "prettier" to the extends array:

"extends": ["eslint:recommended", "prettier"]

4. Configure Prettier

To prevent certain files from being formatted by Prettier, add a .prettierignore file in your root directory:

# Ignore artifacts:

Then, add a .prettierrc file to configure Prettier. Here's an example:

  "trailingComma": "all",
  "tabWidth": 2,
  "semi": false,
  "singleQuote": true

5. Add Prettier and ESLint to Your Scripts

Add the following lines to the "scripts" section of your package.json file:

"prettier:check": "npx prettier --check .",
"prettier:fix": "npx prettier --write .",
"lint": "npx eslint ."

Commit Linting

Commit linting helps to enforce a consistent commit style, which is particularly useful when you want to automate tasks like releasing and generating changelogs.

6. Install and Initialise Husky

Husky is a tool that lets you run scripts when specific Git events happen (like pre-commit, post-commit, etc.). Install it and initialise it using:

npx husky-init && npm install --save-dev

7. Install lint-staged

lint-staged runs linters on staged files. Install it with:

npm install lint-staged --save-dev

Then, add a lint-staged configuration to your package.json file:

"lint-staged": {
  "*.{css,less,scss,html,json,jsx,js}": [
    "prettier --write ."
  "*.js": "eslint --fix"

8. Set Up Husky with lint-staged

Next, you need to set up Husky to use lint-staged whenever a commit is made. This is accomplished by adding a pre-commit hook. Use this command:

npx husky add .husky/pre-commit "npx lint-staged"

After running the above command, a pre-commit file will be generated in the .husky directory. Open this file and ensure it contains the command "npx lint-staged". If you see a "test" command, you can remove it.

9. Install Commitizen

Commitizen is a tool that makes creating commits following a standard format easier. To install Commitizen and initialize it with the cz-conventional-changelog adapter, use the following command:

npx commitizen init cz-conventional-changelog --save-dev --save-exact

The cz-conventional-changelog is an adapter that follows the conventional changelog specification. However, you can replace it with an adapter of your choosing.

10. Add Prepare Commit Hook

Finally, add a hook for preparing commit messages with Commitizen. Here's the command:

npx husky add .husky/prepare-commit-msg "exec < /dev/tty && npx cz --hook || true"

This command will create a prepare-commit-msg file in the .husky directory. This ensures that every time you commit, you are prompted to follow the commit conventions.

And that's it! You now have ESLint for checking your code, Prettier for formatting it, and lint-staged with Husky for managing your commits, all set up and ready to go. Happy coding!