Standalone Node.js application


I am considering developing a desktop application composed of 2 parts:

  • user interface (Java app for example)
  • back-end Node.js server

The 2 parts connect through sockets. Don't ask why I know it's weird.

I will want to be able to provide to customers the application with an installer. I don't want that users have to install Node.js themselves.

Is there a way to have a Node.js server installed as standalone, i.e. no need to install Node.js globally on the system.

This is a question for any (Windows, Linux, Mac OS X...) environment.

8/3/2015 11:01:16 AM

Accepted Answer

You can bundle the binaries with your application. Won't have to install anything to run a Node app. The binaries are available on the same page as the installers.

You'll just have to know where the binaries are, but I assume you've got an installer that can put them somewhere known.

// To start the node process
$ /path/to/binaries/npm install
$ /path/to/binaries/node myApp.js
11/15/2012 3:07:48 AM

Update 2017-05-04: And there's a new kid in town:

Update 2016-11-14: Nowadays Electron and nwjs seem like the best options.


There are a number of steps you have to go through to create an installer and it varies for each Operating System. For Example:

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