Debian Install Node.JS globally with NVM

Recently I had to install Node.JS on a server and allow all users to be able to use it.

As I like the nvm concept to be able to easily install Node.Js, I would like to be able to install Node via NVM, and make Node.Js available for all users. I do not want users to be able to install their own version of Node.JS, and I want to control the Node.js global packages on that computer.

So we will do the following

Install some usefull packages

  • as root user[source, bash]
    apt-get install git vim curl build-essential sudo

Install nvm as “root” / superuser

First you need to clone the nvm repository :

  • clone nvm
    git clone /opt/nvm

Then create the directory /usr/local/nvm

  • create diretory
    mkdir /usr/local/nvm

The edit the ~/.bashrc and add the following line to the file :

  • ~/.bashrc
    export NVM_DIR=/usr/local/nvm
    source /opt/nvm/

Then logout and login again, or type source ~/.bashrc to enable nvm

  • try nvm
    nvm install 6.10.1

Now nvm is installed for root, but not all users.

To activate the node installation for users, we will add the script /etc/profile.d/ :

  • /etc/profile.d/
    VERSION=`cat /usr/local/nvm/alias/default`
    export PATH="/usr/local/nvm/versions/node/v$VERSION/bin:$PATH"

Then make that file runnable : chmod +x /etc/profile.d/

As user

Now connect as a user, and try to use node :

  • try node
    node -v

You should see the node version installed before (6.10.1)

Then try to install a new version of node :

  • try node
    nvm install 7.8.0

Result should be nvm : commande introuvable

Install some global packages

With node you may want to install some package globbaly (forever for example), and I think we should not allow users to install what they want so we may install global packages as root also.

As root run the command npm install -g nodemon yarn for example, then login as a user, and run nodemon index.js and it works.

So all global package should be installed as root (or other superuser).