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    CLI framework for Node.js that's qui-ck and easy

    cli-ck provides a simple and flexible interface for creating cli apps in Node.js. Inspired by the Yargs api, cli-ck provides an API that is flexible and composeable, making it a breeze to write simple cli tools or complex, interactive REPL's.

    1. Synopsis
    2. API Reference
    3. Development


    npm install cli-ck


    #!/usr/bin/env node
    var Click = require('../lib/cli-ck')
    var cli = new Click()
        .description('demonstrates the cli-ck module')
        .option('fruit', {
            alias: 'f',
            desc: 'Type of fruit',
            choices: [ 'apple', 'banana', 'peach', 'pear' ]
        .command('say', { desc: 'Say words in different ways' }, require('./say'))
        .handler(function(args, opts) {
            console.log('please choose a command')


    #!/usr/bin/env node
    var Click = require('../lib/cli-ck')
    var cli = new Click()
        .usage('$0 [--volume {soft,medium,loud}] <...words>')
        .option('volume', {
            alias: 'v',
            desc: 'how loud do you want to say it? [loud, medium, soft]',
            choices: [ 'loud', 'medium', 'soft' ],
            defaultValue: 'medium'
        .handler(function (args, opts) {
            if (opts.volume === 'loud') {
                args = args.map(function(x) { return x.toUpperCase() })
            } else if (opts.volume === 'soft') {
                args = args.map(function(x) { return x.toLowerCase() })
            console.log.apply(null, args)

    Try these in your terminal:

    ~$ chmod u+x ./easy.js
    ~$ ./easy.js --help
    ~$ ./easy.js help
    ~$ ./easy.js help say
    ~$ ./easy.js say hi there
    ~$ ./easy.js say -v loud hey out there
    ~$ ./easy.js --repl
    > help
    > say hi
    > exit


    • Simple, chaining interface for easy and clear cli specification
    • Batteries included!
      • Auto-generated help/usage output
      • Default commands & options provided (help, exit, --version, --help)
      • Robust validation of commands, options, and argument values
      • Auto-included repl allows you to run your cli as an interactive repl


    var Click = require('cli-ck')

    new Click(config)

    Creates a new Click instance.

    • config (optional):
      • noHelp: set to true to exclude help command


    Parses a line and returns a parseResult

    • argv - CLI input to parse
      • expects string, array, or instance of ArgConsumer (internal class used for parsing)

    Most often you just want the args and opts parsed. parse returns an Object of the form:

        args: [... non-option arguments ...],
        opts: {... dict of optName: optValue ...},
        command: string of full command e.g. 'say loudly',
        context: <Click instance used to parse>
        lastContext: <Click instance for actually executing command>


    Parses and runs the CLI handler for the given input. run will only the handler for the lowest-down sub-command parsed from the input.

    • argv - CLI input to parse
      • expects a string, or an array of strings


    Starts an interactive repl session using the Click instance's cli specification. Each line submitted will execute Click.run() on the line, and print the results.

    Click has built-in tab-completion in the repl context. Click will do best effort completion for the following:

    • command names
    • option names
    • option values (for options with choices specified)

    You can also enter the repl mode by passing the --repl in your input to .run()



    CLI Metadata

    Note that all methods from here down can be chained (i.e. they all return the Click instance)





    .nargs(min, max)


    • handlerFn: Handler function called when Click.run() is called
      • function cb(args, opts, argv, context, finalContext) { ... }


    .option(name, config)

    • name - name of option
    • config - dict of configs for this option (see below)

    Option's support the following config keys:

    • demand/required - Option is required. Calling run without opt value will throw error.
    • desc/describe/description - Text description of option's purpose
    • alias - Either string or array of alternate names for option.
    • choices - array of string or number values allowed for the option.
    • defaultValue - value assigned to option if not specified
    • type - string, count, boolean, or number
    • boolean - set to true to set type to boolean
    • count - set to true to set type to count
    • number - set to true to set type to number
    • string - set to true to set type to string



    Click provides sophisticated support for sub-commands and an API that lets you easily compose multiple sub-cli's together to nest your commands as deep as you want.

    When parsing a line, once a command token is encountered, the parser uses the commands context to parse the rest of the line. This means, e.g. that your commands can be configured to support or require options that your top level program does not.

    .command(name, config, context)

    Registers a command name with a given context.

    • name - name of command
    • config - dict of configs for this option (see below)
    • context - CLI context for your sub-command
      • expects either function(cli) {} or a Click instance

    Commands's support the following config keys:

    • desc/describe/description - Text description of option's purpose
    var cli = new Click()
        // passing in a Click instance as `context`
        .command('foo', { 'desc': 'foo command' }, new Click()
            .handler(function(args, opts) {
        // passing in a setupFn as `context`
        .command('bar', { 'desc': 'bar command' }, function(barCli) {
            barCli.handler(function(args, opts) {

    You could also define and export your commands' sub-cli's in separate modules to make your top-level module much cleaner.

    var cli = new Click()
        // passing in a Click instance as `context`
        .command('foo', { 'desc': 'foo command' }, require('./commands/foo')))
        .command('bar', { 'desc': 'bar command' }, require('./commands/bar')))


    Main dev commands:

    # setup
    npm install
    # compile src
    npm run build
    # watch src files and re-build on change
    npm run watch
    # run tests, outputs result to mocha-test.html
    npm test
    # watch compiled files, and re-run tests on change
    npm run testwatch


    npm i cli-ck

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