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Delete Node Modules like a PRO 😎

Node modules are famous for being the heaviest object in the universe 😂 and deleting them is no joke. It takes a long of time and we even end up with freezed and unresponsive screens, but not anymore.

node-modules joke

There is an npm package that could help us to delete node modules faster and without any hassle.

npkill comes to the rescue!
npkill logo

You don't need to install npkill , just run npx npkill in your terminal

npx npkill

It will then scan for node_modules starting at the path where npkill command is executed and list them.

Move between the listed node modules folders with arrow keys, and press Space to delete it.

Select nodemodules and delete

Simple, isn't it?

Hope you liked the post and learned a trick along the way! 😃

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Top comments (27)

manjit2003 profile image
Manjit Pardeshi

rm -rf node-modules does the job too

benjaminv profile image

No it does not :-). It is rm -rf node_modules does

shinigami92 profile image

npx npkill can recursively traverse your directories
So you can use it from e.g. your HOME folder and then remove every unnecessary node_modules in every directory/project

mpetuska profile image
Martynas Petuška

So can rm -rf **/node_modules

Thread Thread
shinigami92 profile image

This will remove everything without any control

With npkill you can select each node_modules individually

Try it and you will see what I mean

zakiazfar profile image
Mohd Ahmad

nice tool, but have you tried rimraf. It can delete any folder recusively with a simple command i.e npx rimraf folder_name. And it also provieds api to work in node projects.

neenus profile image
Neenus Gabriel • Edited

You don't need to install another NPM package to remove node_modules you can use this command in your terminal and it will do exactly that

find . -name "node_modules" -type d -prune -print -exec rm -rf '{}' \;

this will look inside the folder you currently are in to remove all node modules folders that are found in the current directory and subdirectories recursively.

bilaltariq profile image
Muhammad Bilal

i am getting Acess denied, even though i am trying on admin CMD

neenus profile image
Neenus Gabriel

This command is for mac and linux I don't think it will work in Windows CMD ... but if should work for you if you install cmder terminal which is a console emulator for windows ... you can get it here

coryjamescrook profile image
Cory Crook

So the solution for excessive node_modules is to install another npm package?

frondor profile image
Federico Vázquez • Edited

I'd suggest rm -rf node_modules package-lock.json (don't forget package-lock.json), that little b🎺tch.

sabz72608404 profile image

I use rm - rf... for years and find is super fast ... Never knew about npkill will check it out

patarapolw profile image
Pacharapol Withayasakpunt • Edited
rm -rf $(find / -type d -name node_modules) 
Enter fullscreen mode Exit fullscreen mode

It shouldn't be that hard.

bobbyqgard profile image
Rob Gardner

Been using NPKill for a while - definitely recommend

ntshvicky profile image
Nitish Srivastava

I tried rm -rf, npkill rimraf all kind of command to delete my node module folder.. nothing is working..also it is using 99 to 100% of my cpu .. its not first time..who the fuck has developed this nodemodule of the most irritating library it is

virejdasani profile image
Virej Dasani

What's wrong with rm -rf node_modules?

benjaminv profile image

I'm also very curious about in what os does recursive deletion takes long time. I'm in Ubuntu and macOS for most of the time, rm -rf takes no time to remove the whole node_modules directory.

manamelacedric profile image

I haven't found myself in a situation where I need to delete node modules in different project all at once. rm still works fine for me.

vishnubhadri profile image
Vishnuraj Sivakumar

shift+del works for me...

shinigami92 profile image

@yaman27 you should add a gif to this blog article :)
That could make it a bit more clear why this is so powerfull

namaewayaman profile image

Will surely do from next time. Thanks!

pimentelleo profile image
Leonardo Araujo Pimentel

Why not Just mv node_modules fucking_modules && npm install && rm -rf fucking_modules

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