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Ricardo Esteves
Ricardo Esteves

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Migrating from Express to Hono


In the ever-evolving landscape of Node.js frameworks, developers are constantly on the lookout for tools that streamline their workflow and provide enhanced performance and scalability. This post explores the advantages and disadvantages of migrating from Express, a widely used framework, to Hono, a promising alternative that brings a fresh perspective to Node.js web development.

Advantages of Hono over Express

  1. Microservices Architecture:

    • Hono is designed with microservices architecture in mind, allowing developers to seamlessly build and scale microservices-based applications. This architectural style promotes modularity, making it easier to manage and update individual components independently.
  2. Performance and Scalability:

    • Hono boasts impressive performance benchmarks, often outperforming Express in terms of raw speed. Its lightweight nature and efficient handling of requests make it an excellent choice for applications with high scalability requirements.
  3. Built-in WebSocket Support:

    • Hono comes with built-in WebSocket support, simplifying the implementation of real-time features in your applications. This is particularly advantageous for applications requiring instant data updates and two-way communication.
  4. TypeScript Support:

    • TypeScript is becoming increasingly popular among Node.js developers for its enhanced code maintainability and developer productivity. Hono natively supports TypeScript, providing type safety and improved tooling for a more robust development experience.
  5. Community Maintenance:

    • Hono benefits from an active and growing community that contributes to its development and maintenance. Community-driven projects often receive continuous updates, bug fixes, and improvements, ensuring a more sustainable and evolving framework.
  6. Maintainers of the Project:

    • The Hono project is actively maintained by a dedicated team of developers. Knowing that a project has committed maintainers is crucial for its long-term viability, as it ensures ongoing support, security updates, and compatibility with the latest technologies.


  • Express
const express = require('express');

const app = express();

app.get('/', (req, res) => {
  res.send('Hello from Express!');

const server = app.listen(3000, () => {
  console.log(`Server listening on http://localhost:3000`);
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  • Hono
const { Hono } = require('hono');

const hono = new Hono();
hono.on('message', (message) => {
  if (message.topic === '/hello') {
      topic: message.topic,
      data: 'Hello from Hono!',

  server: {
    port: 3000,
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Hono implementation is a lot more clean and readable.

Disadvantages of Hono

  1. Learning Curve:

    • Migrating from Express to Hono may present a learning curve for developers accustomed to the Express way of doing things. However, the benefits of Hono can outweigh the initial challenges, especially for those familiar with microservices architecture.
  2. Community and Ecosystem:

    • Express has a mature and extensive ecosystem with a large community, while Hono is still growing. Developers may find fewer third-party middleware and packages available for Hono compared to the well-established Express ecosystem.


While Express remains a reliable and widely adopted choice for Node.js development, Hono introduces exciting features and improvements that make it a compelling alternative, particularly for projects that benefit from a microservices architecture and enhanced performance. Consider your project's specific requirements, community support, and team expertise before making the switch, and enjoy the advantages that Hono brings to the table.

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