Node.js, ExpressJs, MongoDB and Vue.js (MEVN Stack) Application Tutorial

Node.js, ExpressJs, MongoDB and Vue.js (MEVN Stack) Application Tutorial

In this tutorial, you'll learn how to integrate Vue.js with Node.js backend (using Express framework) and MongoDB and how to build application with Node.js, ExpressJs, MongoDB and Vue.js

In this tutorial, you'll learn how to integrate Vue.js with Node.js backend (using Express framework) and MongoDB and how to build application with Node.js, ExpressJs, MongoDB and Vue.js

Vue.js is a JavaScript framework with growing number of users. Released 4 years ago, it’s now one of the most populare front-end frameworks. There are some reasons why people like Vue.js. Using Vue.js is very simple if you are already familiar with HTML and JavaScript. They also provide clear documentation and examples, makes it easy for starters to learn the framework. Vue.js can be used for both simple and complex applications. If your application is quite complex, you can use Vuex for state management, which is officially supported. In addition, it’s also very flexible that yu can write template in HTML, JavaScript or JSX.

This tutorial shows you how to integrate Vue.js with Node.js backend (using Express framework) and MongoDB. As for example, we’re going to create a simple application for managing posts which includes list posts, create post, update post and delete post (basic CRUD functionality). I divide this tutorial into two parts. The first part is setting up the Node.js back-end and database. The other part is writing Vue.js code including how to build .vue code using Webpack.

Dependencies

There are some dependencies required for this project. Add the dependencies below to your package.json. Then run npm install to install these dependencies.

  "dependencies": {
    "body-parser": "~1.17.2",
    "dotenv": "~4.0.0",
    "express": "~4.16.3",
    "lodash": "~4.17.10",
    "mongoose": "~5.2.9",
    "morgan": "~1.9.0"
  },
  "devDependencies": {
    "axios": "~0.18.0",
    "babel-core": "~6.26.3",
    "babel-loader": "~7.1.5",
    "babel-preset-env": "~1.7.0",
    "babel-preset-stage-3": "~6.24.1",
    "bootstrap-vue": "~2.0.0-rc.11",
    "cross-env": "~5.2.0",
    "css-loader": "~1.0.0",
    "vue": "~2.5.17",
    "vue-loader": "~15.3.0",
    "vue-router": "~3.0.1",
    "vue-style-loader": "~4.1.2",
    "vue-template-compiler": "~2.5.17",
    "webpack": "~4.16.5",
    "webpack-cli": "^3.1.0"
  },

Project Structure

Below is the overview of directory structure for this project.

  app
    config
    controllers
    models
    queries
    routes
    views
  public
    dist
    src

The app directory contains all files related to server-side. The public directory contains two sub-directories: dist and src. dist is used for the output of build result, while src is for front-end code files.

Model

First, we define a model for Post using Mongoose. To make it simple, it only has two properties: title and content.

app/models/Post.js

  const mongoose = require('mongoose');

  const { Schema } = mongoose;

  const PostSchema = new Schema(
    {
      title: { type: String, trim: true, index: true, default: '' },
      content: { type: String },
    },
    {
      collection: 'posts',
      timestamps: true,
    },
  );

  module.exports = mongoose.model('Post', PostSchema);

Queries

After defining the model, we write some queries that will be needed in the controllers.

app/queries/posts.js

  const Post = require('../models/Post');

  /**
   * Save a post.
   *
   * @param {Object} post - Javascript object or Mongoose object
   * @returns {Promise.}
   */
  exports.save = (post) => {
    if (!(post instanceof Post)) {
      post = new Post(post);
    }

    return post.save();
  };

  /**
   * Get post list.
   * @param {object} [criteria] - Filter options
   * @returns {Promise.<Array.>}
   */
  exports.getPostList = (criteria = {}) => Post.find(criteria);

  /**
   * Get post by ID.
   * @param {string} id - Post ID
   * @returns {Promise.}
   */
  exports.getPostById = id => Post.findOne({ _id: id });

  /**
   * Delete a post.
   * @param {string} id - Post ID
   * @returns {Promise}
   */
  exports.deletePost = id => Post.findByIdAndRemove(id);

Controllers

We need API controllers for handling create post, get post listing, get detail of a post, update a post and delete a post.

app/controllers/api/posts/create.js

  const postQueries = require('../../../queries/posts');

  module.exports = (req, res) => postQueries.save(req.body)
    .then((post) => {
      if (!post) {
        return Promise.reject(new Error('Post not created'));
      }

      return res.status(200).send(post);
    })
    .catch((err) => {
      console.error(err);

      return res.status(500).send('Unable to create post');
    });

app/controllers/api/posts/delete.js

  const postQueries = require('../../../queries/posts');

  module.exports = (req, res) => postQueries.deletePost(req.params.id)
    .then(() => res.status(200).send())
    .catch((err) => {
      console.error(err);

      return res.status(500).send('Unable to delete post');
    });

app/controllers/api/posts/details.js

  const postQueries = require('../../../queries/posts');

  module.exports = (req, res) => postQueries.getPostById(req.params.id)
    .then((post) => {
      if (!post) {
        return Promise.reject(new Error('Post not found'));
      }

      return res.status(200).send(post);
    })
    .catch((err) => {
      console.error(err);

      return res.status(500).send('Unable to get post');
    });

app/controllers/api/posts/list.js

  const postQueries = require('../../../queries/posts');

  module.exports = (req, res) => postQueries.getPostList(req.params.id)
    .then(posts => res.status(200).send(posts))
    .catch((err) => {
      console.error(err);

      return res.status(500).send('Unable to get post list');
    });

app/controllers/api/posts/update.js

  const _ = require('lodash');

  const postQueries = require('../../../queries/posts');

  module.exports = (req, res) => postQueries.getPostById(req.params.id)
    .then(async (post) => {
      if (!post) {
        return Promise.reject(new Error('Post not found'));
      }

      const { title, content } = req.body;

      _.assign(post, {
        title, content
      });

      await postQueries.save(post);

      return res.status(200).send({
        success: true,
        data: post,
      })
    })
    .catch((err) => {
      console.error(err);

      return res.status(500).send('Unable to update post');
    });

Routes

We need to have some pages for user interaction and some API endpoints for processing HTTP requests. To make the app scalable, it’s better to separate the routes for pages and APIs.

app/routes/index.js

  const express = require('express');

  const routes = express.Router();

  routes.use('/api', require('./api'));
  routes.use('/', require('./pages'));

  module.exports = routes;


Below is the API routes.

app/routes/api/index.js

  const express = require('express');

  const router = express.Router();

  router.get('/posts/', require('../../controllers/api/posts/list'));
  router.get('/posts/:id', require('../../controllers/api/posts/details'));
  router.post('/posts/', require('../../controllers/api/posts/create'));
  router.patch('/posts/:id', require('../../controllers/api/posts/update'));
  router.delete('/posts/:id', require('../../controllers/api/posts/delete'));

  module.exports = router;


For the pages, in this tutorial, we use plain HTML file. You can easily replace it with any HTML template engine if you want. The HTML file contains a div whose id is app. Later, in Vue.js application, it will use the element with id app for rendering the content. What will be rendered on each pages is configured on Vue.js route on part 2 of this tutorial.

app/routes/pages/index.js

  const express = require('express');

  const router = express.Router();

  router.get('/posts/', (req, res) => {
    res.sendFile(`${__basedir}/views/index.html`);
  });

  router.get('/posts/create', (req, res) => {
    res.sendFile(`${__basedir}/views/index.html`);
  });

  router.get('/posts/:id', (req, res) => {
    res.sendFile(`${__basedir}/views/index.html`);
  });

  module.exports = router;

Below is the HTML file

app/views/index.html

  <!DOCTYPE html>
  <html>
    <head>
      <meta charset="utf-8">
      <title>VueJS Tutorial by Woolha.com</title>
      <link rel="stylesheet" href="https://maxcdn.bootstrapcdn.com/font-awesome/4.4.0/css/font-awesome.min.css" type="text/css" media="all" />
      <link rel="stylesheet" href="https://maxcdn.bootstrapcdn.com/bootstrap/4.0.0/css/bootstrap.min.css" integrity="sha384-Gn5384xqQ1aoWXA+058RXPxPg6fy4IWvTNh0E263XmFcJlSAwiGgFAW/dAiS6JXm" crossorigin="anonymous">
      <script src="https://code.jquery.com/jquery-3.2.1.slim.min.js" integrity="sha384-KJ3o2DKtIkvYIK3UENzmM7KCkRr/rE9/Qpg6aAZGJwFDMVNA/GpGFF93hXpG5KkN" crossorigin="anonymous"></script>
    </head>
    <body>
      <div id="app"></div>
      <script src="/dist/js/main.js"></script>
    </body>
  </html>

Below is the main script of the application, you need to run this for starting the server-side application.

app/index.js

  require('dotenv').config();

  const bodyParser = require('body-parser');
  const express = require('express');
  const http = require('http');
  const mongoose = require('mongoose');
  const morgan = require('morgan');
  const path = require('path');

  const dbConfig = require('./config/database');
  const routes = require('./routes');

  const app = express();
  const port = process.env.PORT || 4000;

  global.__basedir = __dirname;

  mongoose.Promise = global.Promise;

  mongoose.connect(dbConfig.url, dbConfig.options, (err) => {
    if (err) {
      console.error(err.stack || err);
    }
  });

  /* General setup */
  app.use(morgan('dev'));
  app.use(bodyParser.json());
  app.use(bodyParser.urlencoded({ extended: true }));
  app.use(morgan('dev'));

  app.use('/', routes);

  const MAX_AGE = 86400000;

  // Select which directories or files under public can be served to users
  app.use('/', express.static(path.join(__dirname, '../public'), { maxAge: MAX_AGE }));

  // Error handler
  app.use((err, req, res, next) => { // eslint-disable-line no-unused-vars
    res.status(err.status || 500);

    if (err.status === 404) {
      res.locals.page = {
        title: 'Not Found',
        noIndex: true,
      };

      console.error(`Not found: ${req.url}`);

      return res.status(404).send();
    }

    console.error(err.stack || err);

    return res.status(500).send();
  });

  http
    .createServer(app)
    .listen(port, () => {
      console.info(`HTTP server started on port ${port}`);
    })
    .on('error', (err) => {
      console.error(err.stack || err);
    });

  process.on('uncaughtException', (err) => {
    if (err.name === 'MongoError') {
      mongoose.connection.emit('error', err);
    } else {
      console.error(err.stack || err);
    }
  });

  module.exports = app;

That’s all for the server side preparation. On the next part, we’re going to set up the Vue.js client-side application and build the code into a single JavaScript file ready to be loaded from HTML.

Then, we build the code using Webpack, so that it can be loaded from HTML. In this tutorial, we’re building a simple application with basic CRUD functionality for managing posts.

Create Vue.js Components

For managing posts, there are three components we’re going to create. The first one is for creating a new post. The second is for editing a post. The other is for managing posts (displaying list of posts and allow post deletion)

First, this is the component for creating a new post. It has one method createPost which validate data and send HTTP request to the server. We use axios for sending HTTP request.

public/src/components/Posts/Create.vue

  <template>
    <b-container>
      <h1 class="d-flex justify-content-center">Create a Post</h1>
      <p v-if="errors.length">
        <b>Please correct the following error(s):</b>
        <ul>
          <li v-for="error in errors">{{ error }}</li>
        </ul>
      </p>
      <b-form @submit.prevent>
        <b-form-group>
          <b-form-input type="text" class="form-control" placeholder="Title of the post" v-model="post.title"></b-form-input>
        </b-form-group>
        <b-form-group>
          <b-form-textarea class="form-control" placeholder="Write the content here" v-model="post.content"></b-form-textarea>
        </b-form-group>
        <b-button variant="primary" v-on:click="createPost">Create Post</b-button>
      </b-form>
    </b-container>
  </template>

  <script>
    import axios from 'axios';

    export default {
      data: () => ({
        errors: [],
        post: {
          title: '',
          content: '',
        },
      }),
      methods: {
        createPost(event) {
          if (event) {
            event.preventDefault();
          }

          if (!this.post.title) {
            this.errors = [];

            if (!this.post.title) {
              this.errors.push('Title required.');
            }

            return;
          }

          const url = 'http://localhost:4000/api/posts';
          const param = this.post;

          axios
            .post(url, param)
            .then((response) => {
              console.log(response);
              window.location.href = 'http://localhost:4000/posts';
            }).catch((error) => {
              console.log(error);
            });
        },
      }
    }
  </script>


Below is the component for editing a post. Of course, we need the current data of the post before editing it. Therefore, there’s fetchPost method called when the component is created. There’s also updatePost method which validate data and call the API for updating post.

public/src/components/Posts/Edit.vue

  <template>
    <b-container>
      <h1 class="d-flex justify-content-center">Edit a Post</h1>
      <p v-if="errors.length">
        <b>Please correct the following error(s):</b>
        <ul>
          <li v-for="error in errors">{{ error }}</li>
        </ul>
      </p>
      <b-form @submit.prevent>
        <b-form-group>
          <b-form-input type="text" class="form-control" placeholder="Title of the post" v-model="post.title"></b-form-input>
        </b-form-group>
        <b-form-group>
          <b-form-textarea class="form-control" placeholder="Write the content here" v-model="post.content"></b-form-textarea>
        </b-form-group>
        <b-button variant="primary" v-on:click="updatePost">Update Post</b-button>
      </b-form>
    </b-container>
  </template>

  <script>
    import axios from 'axios';

    export default {
      data: () => ({
        errors: [],
        post: {
          _id: '',
          title: '',
          content: '',
        },
      }),
      created: function() {
        this.fetchPost();
      },
      methods: {
        fetchPost() {
          const postId = this.$route.params.id;
          const url = `http://localhost:4000/api/posts/${postId}`;

          axios
            .get(url)
            .then((response) => {
              this.post = response.data;
              console.log('this.post;');
              console.log(this.post);
          });
        },
        updatePost(event) {
          if (event) {
            event.preventDefault();
          }

          if (!this.post.title) {
            this.errors = [];

            if (!this.post.title) {
              this.errors.push('Title required.');
            }

            return;
          }

          const url = `http://localhost:4000/api/posts/${this.post._id}`;
          const param = this.post;

          axios
            .patch(url, param)
            .then((response) => {
                console.log(response);
              window.alert('Post successfully saved');
            }).catch((error) => {
              console.log(error);
            });
        },
      }
    }
  </script>


For managing posts, we need to fetch the list of post first. Similar to the edit component, in this component, we have fetchPosts method called when the component is created. For deleting a post, there’s also a method deletePost. If post successfully deleted, the fetchPosts method is called again to refresh the post list.

public/src/components/Posts/List.vue

  <template>
    <b-container>
      <h1 class="d-flex justify-content-center">Post List</h1>
      <b-button variant="primary" style="color: #ffffff; margin: 20px;"><a href="/posts/create" style="color: #ffffff;">Create New Post</a></b-button>
      <b-container-fluid v-if="posts.length">
        <table class="table">
          <thead>
            <tr class="d-flex">
              <td class="col-8">Titleqqqqqqqqq</td>
              <td class="col-4">Actions</td>
            </tr>
          </thead>
          <tbody>
            <tr v-for="post in posts" class="d-flex">
              <td class="col-8">{{ post.title }}</td>
              <td class="col-2"><a v-bind:href="'http://localhost:4000/posts/' + post._id"><button type="button" class="btn btn-primary"><i class="fa fa-edit" aria-hidden="true"></i></button></a></td>
              <td class="col-2"><button type="button" class="btn btn-danger" v-on:click="deletePost(post._id)"><i class="fa fa-remove" aria-hidden="true"></i></button></td>
            </tr>
          </tbody>
        </table>
      </b-container-fluid>
    </b-container>
  </template>

  <script>
    import axios from 'axios';

    export default {
      data: () => ({
        posts: [],
      }),
      created: () => {
        this.fetchPosts();
      },
      methods: {
        fetchPosts() {
          const url = 'http://localhost:4000/api/posts/';

          axios
            .get(url)
            .then((response) => {
              console.log(response.data);
              this.posts = response.data;
          });
        },
        deletePost(id) {
          if (event) {
            event.preventDefault();
          }

          const url = `http://localhost:4000/api/posts/${id}`;
          const param = this.post;

          axios
            .delete(url, param)
            .then((response) => {
              console.log(response);
              console.log('Post successfully deleted');

              this.fetchPosts();
            }).catch((error) => {
              console.log(error);
            });
        },
      }
    }
  </script>


All of the components above are wrapped into a root component which roles as the basic template. The root component renders the navbar which is same across all components. The component for each routes will be rendered on router-view.

public/src/App.vue

  <template>
    <div>
      <b-navbar toggleable="md" type="dark" variant="dark">
        <b-navbar-toggle target="nav_collapse"></b-navbar-toggle>
        <b-navbar-brand to="/">My Vue App</b-navbar-brand>
        <b-collapse is-nav id="nav_collapse">
          <b-navbar-nav>
            <b-nav-item to="/">Home</b-nav-item>
            <b-nav-item to="/posts">Manage Posts</b-nav-item>
          </b-navbar-nav>
        </b-collapse>
      </b-navbar>
      <!-- routes will be rendered here -->
      <router-view />
    </div>
  </template>

  <script>

  export default {
    name: 'app',
    data () {},
    methods: {}
  }
  </script>


For determining which component should be rendered, we use Vue.js’ router. For each routes, we need to define the path, component name and the component itself. A component will be rendered if the current URL matches the path.

public/src/router/index.js

  import Vue from 'vue'
  import Router from 'vue-router'

  import CreatePost from '../components/Posts/Create.vue';
  import EditPost from '../components/Posts/Edit.vue';
  import ListPost from '../components/Posts/List.vue';

  Vue.use(Router);

  let router = new Router({
    mode: 'history',
    routes: [
      {
        path: '/posts',
        name: 'ListPost',
        component: ListPost,
      },
      {
        path: '/posts/create',
        name: 'CreatePost',
        component: CreatePost,
      },
      {
        path: '/posts/:id',
        name: 'EditPost',
        component: EditPost,
      },
    ]
  });

  export default router;


Lastly, we need a main script as the entry point which imports the main App component and the router. Inside, it creates a new Vue instance

webpack.config.js

  import BootstrapVue from 'bootstrap-vue';
  import Vue from 'vue';

  import App from './App.vue';
  import router from './router';

  Vue.use(BootstrapVue);
  Vue.config.productionTip = false;
  new Vue({
    el: '#app',
    router,
    render: h => h(App),
  });

Configure Webpack

For building the code into a single JavaSript file. Below is the basic configuration for Webpack 4.

webpack.config.js

  const { VueLoaderPlugin } = require('vue-loader');

  module.exports = {
    entry: './public/src/main.js',
    output: {
      path: `${__dirname}/public/dist/js/`,
      filename: '[name].js',
    },
    resolve: {
      modules: [
        'node_modules',
      ],
      alias: {
        // vue: './vue.js'
      }
    },
    module: {
      rules: [
        {
          test: /\.css$/,
          use: [
            'vue-style-loader',
            'css-loader'
          ]
        },
        {
          test: /\.vue$/,
          loader: 'vue-loader',
          options: {
            loaders: {
            }
            // other vue-loader options go here
          }
        },
        {
          test: /\.js$/,
          loader: 'babel-loader',
          exclude: /node_modules/
        },
      ]
    },
    plugins: [
      new VueLoaderPlugin(),
    ]

After that, run ./node_modules/webpack/bin/webpack.js. You can add the command to the scripts section of package.json, so you can run Webpack with a shorter command npm run build, as examplified below.

  "dependencies": {
    ...
  },
  "devDependencies": {
    ...
  },
  "scripts": {
    "build": "./node_modules/webpack/bin/webpack.js",
    "start": "node app/index.js"
  },

Finally, you can start to try the application. This code is also available on Woolha.com’s Github.

Fullstack Vue App with Node, Express and MongoDB

Fullstack Vue App with Node, Express and MongoDB

A dev gives a tutorial on creating a full-stack web application using Vue.js on the front-end, Node.js and Express.js on the backend, and MongoDB

A dev gives a tutorial on creating a full-stack web application using Vue.js on the front-end, Node.js and Express.js on the backend, and MongoDB

Much of application development, including web applications, has to do with CRUD – creation, reading, updating and deletion of data. Today, we will be building a fullstack Vue note-taking application and showing you how to perform the aforementioned processes, using Node.js running the Express.js framework for the back end, and MongoDB to store our data.

Below is a preview of the application we will be building:

Configuring the Development Environment

For this tutorial, I will be using the Eclipse IDE with the CodeMix plugin installed.

Please also ensure you’ve installed MongoDB.

| Need first-class support for Vue development? Look no further than CodeMix, an Eclipse plugin that lets you add Code OSS extensions directly into Eclipse—just install the Vue pack or the famed Vetur extension for Vue support. Codemix is compatible with all Eclipse-based IDEs and tools, such as MyEclipse, Spring Tools Suite, and JBoss Tools. |> | Need first-class support for Vue development? Look no further than CodeMix, an Eclipse plugin that lets you add Code OSS extensions directly into Eclipse—just install the Vue pack or the famed Vetur extension for Vue support. Codemix is compatible with all Eclipse-based IDEs and tools, such as MyEclipse, Spring Tools Suite, and JBoss Tools. |> | Need first-class support for Vue development? Look no further than CodeMix, an Eclipse plugin that lets you add Code OSS extensions directly into Eclipse—just install the Vue pack or the famed Vetur extension for Vue support. Codemix is compatible with all Eclipse-based IDEs and tools, such as MyEclipse, Spring Tools Suite, and JBoss Tools. |## Getting Started

Now we can create our project using the Eclipse IDE, by navigating to File > New > Project. Select the Vue option under the CodeMix list of projects, name the application and click Next to proceed (make sure to be connected to the Internet to enable CodeMix, to get the newest Vue.js template and folder structure for the application), as shown below:

Open the integrated Terminal+ in CodeMix 2.0. Alternatively, it can be opened using the command Ctrl + Shift + P, as shown below:

After that has been completed, we make some changes in the folder structure. First, we add an API folder in the root folder of our project. This folder would contain the express backend (which includes the server.js file). In the terminal, we run the following commands to install the required modules for the application:

npm install 
npm install --save axios body-parser cors express mongoose moment 

Axios – a promise-based HTTP client that we will use to communicate with the Node server.

Body-parser – a Node.js middleware for parsing request inputs.

CORS – middleware that is used to enable Cross-Origin Resource Sharing. 

Mongoose – an Object Data Modeling (ODM) library for MongoDB.

Moment – a library used to parse and format dates.

Next, we add the following line in the scripts object in the package.json file:

"scripts": {
    "serve": "vue-cli-service serve",
    "build": "vue-cli-service build",
    "lint": "vue-cli-service lint",
    "api": "node api/server.js"
  }

Running our Back End and Front End

Wait, already? Isn’t it too early to run these applications before writing any code? Actually, it isn’t – with the following scripts running, your code will be watched for changes, and the running backend and frontend applications will be automatically updated when necessary.

We can start the Vue.js application using this command in the terminal:

npm run serve 

Your browser will automatically open to http://localhost:3000, where you can see the Vue app slowly take shape as we add more code.

And let’s start the back end by using the command below in a different terminal (simply use the +button in the Terminal+ view to open a new terminal tab for the same project):

npm run api

Building the Back End with Node.js and Express.js

Creating the Note Model

Before setting up the actual server, let’s create the Note model, which is the only model for this application. A model is an object representation of the data in a database. Here, using Mongoose we can specify a schema of data as well; this helps with the validation of the data. In the folder, we create a new Note.js file that will contain the code below:

const mongoose = require('mongoose');
const Schema = mongoose.Schema;
const NoteSchema = Schema(
    {
        title: {type: String, required: true},
        body: {type: String, required: true},
    }, 
    { timestamps: true }
);
const Note = mongoose.model("Note", NoteSchema);
module.exports = Note;

The first parameter object describes the fields, their types, and constraints. The second parameter object of the schema constructor helps create a timestamp, i.e. two auto fields: createdAt which is set at data creation, and updatedAt which is set every time the data is modified.

Creating the Node.js Server

Next up, we create a server.js file in the API folder. This file will contain the Node.js configurations, as well as the routes we will be using in the application. The file will contain the code below:

'use strict';
const express = require('express');
const app = express();
const mongoose = require('mongoose');
const cors = require('cors');
const bodyParser = require('body-parser');
const bcrypt = require('bcrypt');
 
//models
const Note = require('./Note');
 
//connect server to mongoDB 
 
+mongoose.connect(
  'mongodb://localhost:27017/simple_blog', 
  { useNewUrlParser: true, useCreateIndex: true, }
);
mongoose.connection.on('error', console.error.bind(console, 'connection error:'));
 
app.use(bodyParser.json());
app.use(bodyParser.urlencoded({ extended: true }));
app.use(cors());
 
// retrieves all the notes
app.get('/api/note/list', (req, res) => {
  Note.find({}).sort({updatedAt: 'descending'}).exec((err, notes) => {
    if (err) return res.status(404).send('Error while getting notes!');
    return res.send({notes});
  });
});
 
// create a new note
app.post('/api/note/create', (req, res) => {
  const note = new Note({body: req.body.body, title: req.body.title});
  note.save( (err) => {
    if (err) return res.status(404).send({message: err.message});      
    return res.send({ note });
  });
});
 
// update an existing note with the given object id
app.post('/api/note/update/:id', (req, res) => {
let options = { new: true };
  Note.findByIdAndUpdate(req.params.id, req.body.data , options, (err, note) => {
    if (err) return res.status(404).send({message: err.message});
    return res.send({ message: 'note updated!', note });
  });
});
 
// delete an existing note with the given object id
app.post('/api/note/delete/:id', (req,res) => {
  Note.findByIdAndRemove(req.params.id, (err) => {
    if (err) return res.status(404).send({message: err.message});
    return res.send({ message: 'note deleted!' });
  });
});
 
const PORT = 5000;
app.listen(PORT);
console.log('api runnging on port ' + PORT + ': ');

The server.js module helps set up a simple connection to MongoDB using a mongoose method, while also listening for an error event on connecting to the database (which can be caused by improper installation or unavailability of MongoDB on the computer). The server.js also applies the necessary middlewares to the express server and provides four routes. The first route fetches all the notes in the database using the note model. The second route will allow the creation of a new note. The third route updates a note of a given ID which is passed as the route parameter; it also returns the updated note which, as a result of the options object, is passed to the findByIdAndUpdate method. The last route deletes a note with the ID passed in the parameter of the route.

Building the Front End with Vue.js

Web Service Calls with Axios

After we have completed the server part of the application, we can proceed to creating the repository.js file in the src folder. This file will contain all the server calls we would be making from the Vue.js application using the Axios module. The file code is below:

import axios from 'axios';
const BASE_URL = 'http://localhost:5000';
 
export function getNotes() {
        return axios.get(`${BASE_URL}/api/note/list`)
                .then(response => response.data);
}
 
export function deleteNote(id){
        return axios.post(`${BASE_URL}/api/note/delete/${id}`)
                .then(response => response.data)
                .catch(err => Promise.reject(err.message));
}
export function createNote(data) {
        return axios.post(`${BASE_URL}/api/note/create`, 
        { title: data.title, body: data.body }
        )      .then(response => {
                        return response.data
                })
                .catch(err => Promise.reject(err.message));
}
 
export function updateNote(data, id) {
        return axios.post(`${BASE_URL}/api/note/update/${id}`, { data })
                .then(response => {
                        return response.data
                })
                .catch(err => Promise.reject(err.message));
}

The application is styled using the Bulma CSS framework that is added to the public/index.html file in the head tag, as written below:

<link rel="stylesheet" type="text/css" href="https://cdnjs.cloudflare.com/ajax/libs/bulma/0.7.2/css/bulma.css">

Creating the Root Component

Next, we proceed to editing the App component, which is the entry component for the Vue.js application. In this file, we add the application header and render a couple of components that we will be building later in this article. The src/App.vue component also provides some methods which manage the application data. This component also loads the list of available notes in the database when the component has been mounted (loaded); it does this using the getNotes function provided in the repository.js module.

CodeMix is great for editing .vue files – these files allow you to keep the HTML, JavaScript and styles of a component in a single place, and the editor provides content assist and validation corresponding to the section you are in. Have a look at these quick GIFs to see the .vue editor in action.

This App.vue file contains the code below:

<template>
  <div id="app">
    <nav class="navbar is-light" role="navigation" aria-label="main navigation">
      <div class="container">
        <div class="navbar-brand">
          <a class="navbar-item" href="#">
            <span class="title is-size-1">NoteTaker</span>
          </a>
        </div>
      </div>
    </nav>
    <br><br>
    <div  class="container">
      <div v-if="notes">
        <CreateNoteModal @createNote="createNote"/>
        <br>
        <div>
          <noteItem v-for="(note, index) in notes" :note="note" :key="index" @deleteNote="deleteNote" @updateNote="updateNote"/>
        </div>
      </div>
    </div>
  </div>
</template>
 
<script>
import NoteItem  from './components/NoteItem.vue'
import CreateNoteModal  from './components/CreateNoteModal.vue'
import { getNotes }  from './repository'
 
export default {
  name: 'app',
  components: { NoteItem, CreateNoteModal  },
  data(){
    return {
      notes: []
    }
  },
  methods: {
    deleteNote(id){
      let notes = this.notes.filter(note => note._id != id)
      this.notes = notes;
    },
    updateNote(note){
      this.deleteNote(note._id);
      this.createNote(note);
    },
    createNote(note){
        this.notes = [note, ...this.notes];
    },
  },
  mounted(){
    getNotes()
      .then(data => this.notes = data.notes)
      .catch((err =>alert(err)));
  }
}
</script>

Creating Components

Next we create the CreateNoteModal component in the src/components/CreateNoteModal.vue, which contains the code below:

<template>
  <div>
    <div class="modal" :class="{ 'is-active': isActive }">
      <div class="modal-background"></div>
      <div class="modal-card">
        <header class="modal-card-head">
          Add Note
        </header>
        <section class="modal-card-body">
          <div class="field">
            <div class="control">
              <input v-model="title" class="input" type="text" placeholder="title">
            </div>
          </div>
          <div class="field">
            <div class="control">
              <textarea v-model="body" class="textarea"  placeholder="enter content">
                </textarea>
            </div>
          </div>
          <button @click="create" class="button is-primary is-pulled-right">Post</button>
        </section>
      </div>
      <button @click="toggle" class="modal-close is-large" aria-label="close"></button>
    </div>
    <button @click="toggle" class="button is-primary is-pulled-right">Create Note</button>
    <br>
  </div>
</template>
 
<script>
import { createNote }  from '../repository'
export default {
  name: 'CreateNoteModal',
  data(){
    return {
      title: '',
      body: '',
      isActive: false
    }
  },
  methods: {
    create(){
      let data = { title: this.title, body: this.body }
      createNote(data)
        .then(data => {
          this.$emit('createNote', data.note);
          this.title = this.body = '';
          this.toggle();
        })
        .catch(err => alert(err.message));
    },
    toggle(){
      this.isActive = !this.isActive;
    },
  },
}
</script>

This component is a form in a modal with both input in the form, title and body, bound to the component’s data with corresponding names. The submit button calls the create method which makes the server call, passing the data to the createNote function from the repository.js module. Upon a successful server request, this method emits a custom event that is handled by the parent component (which in this case is the App.vue component). It also clears the form and closes the modal.

Next up, we create the NoteItem component in the src/components/NoteItem.vue, which contains the code below:

<template>
  <article class="message">
    <div class="message-header">
      <p>{{ note.title }}</p>
 
      <button @click="deleteNote" class="delete" aria-label="delete"></button>
    </div>
    <div class="message-body">
      {{ note.body }}
      <br>
      <br>
      <span class="has-text-grey-light">Created at: {{ note.createdAt | moment }}</span>
      <br>
      <span class="has-text-grey-light">last updated: {{ note.updatedAt | moment }}</span><br>
      <UpdateNoteModal :note="note" @updateNote="updateNote" :key="note._id"/>
    </div>
  </article>
</template>
<script>
  import { deleteNote } from '../repository'
  import UpdateNoteModal from './UpdateNoteModal'
  import Moment from 'moment'
 
  export default {
    name: 'NoteItem',
    props: [ 'note' ],
    components: { UpdateNoteModal },
    methods: {
      deleteNote(e){
        e.preventDefault();
        deleteNote(this.note._id)
          .then(() => this.$emit('deleteNote', this.note._id))
          .catch(err => alert(err))
      },
      updateNote(note){
        this.$emit('updateNote', note)
      }
    },
    filters: {
      moment(date) {
        return Moment(date).format('MMMM Do YYYY, h:mm:ss a');
      }
    }
  }
</script>

This module renders each note, which is passed to it by its parent component (App.vue). It also provides two methods, the first of which is the deleteNote, which deletes the given note using the deleteNote function from the repository.js , by passing the note ID to it. Upon success, it emits a custom deleteNote event to the parent component, which deletes the note from the array of notes.

The second method, updateNode, emits an updateNode event in response to same event name, emitted by its child component, UpdateNoteModal, which we will create next. It also provides a moment date-time filter using the Moment module to format the date for the component.

Finally, we create the UpdateNoteModal component in the src/components/UpdateNoteModal.vue, which contains the code below:

<template>
  <div>
    <div class="modal" :class="{ 'is-active': isActive }">
      <div class="modal-background"></div>
      <div class="modal-card">
        <header class="modal-card-head">
          Update Note
        </header>
        <section class="modal-card-body">
          <div class="field">
            <div class="control">
              <input v-model="title" class="input" type="text" placeholder="title">
            </div>
          </div>
          <div class="field">
            <div class="control">
              <textarea v-model="body" class="textarea"  placeholder="enter content"></textarea>
            </div>
          </div>
          <button @click="update" class="button is-primary is-pulled-right">Post</button>
        </section>
      </div>
      <button @click="toggle" class="modal-close is-large" aria-label="close"></button>
    </div>
    <button @click="toggle" class="button is-small is-pulled-right">Update</button>
  </div>
</template>
 
<script>
import { updateNote }  from '../repository'
export default {
  name: 'UpdateNoteModal',
  data(){
    return {
      title: this.note.title,
      body: this.note.body,
      isActive: false
    }
  },
  props: ['note'],
  methods: {
    update(){
      let data = { title: this.title, body: this.body }
      updateNote(data, this.note._id)
        .then(data => {
          this.$emit('updateNote', data.note);
          this.toggle();
        })
        .catch(err => alert(err.message));
    },
    toggle(){
      this.isActive = !this.isActive;
    },
  },
}
</script>

This, much like the CreateNoteModal, is a Bulma styled modal, which has two inputs whose values are bound to the component data, which is initialized using the note passed through to the component as a property. It also provides an update method, which is called when the post button is clicked. This method uses the updateNote function from the repository.js module to update the note. Upon a successful request, it emits an event – the updateNote event, which is handled by the parent component (i.e. the NoteItem component, which further passes it to the App component).

We did it, our note taking app is complete! Remember, if you haven’t already run your backend and frontend applications, please scroll back to the Running our Back End and Front End sections for instructions.

Learn More

The Complete Node.js Developer Course (2nd Edition)

Learn and Understand NodeJS

Node JS: Advanced Concepts

GraphQL: Learning GraphQL with Node.Js

Angular (Angular 2+) & NodeJS - The MEAN Stack Guide

The Complete Developers Guide to MongoDB

Master MongoDB, the NOSQL leader with Clarity and Confidence

MongoDB, NoSQL & Node: Mongoose, Azure & Database Management

Build a ChatApp with: (Nodejs,Socketio, Expressjs ,MongoDB)

How to Use Express.js, Node.js and MongoDB.js

How to Use Express.js, Node.js and MongoDB.js

In this post, I will show you how to use Express.js, Node.js and MongoDB.js. We will be creating a very simple Node application, that will allow users to input data that they want to store in a MongoDB database. It will also show all items that have been entered into the database.

In this post, I will show you how to use Express.js, Node.js and MongoDB.js. We will be creating a very simple Node application, that will allow users to input data that they want to store in a MongoDB database. It will also show all items that have been entered into the database.

Creating a Node Application

To get started I would recommend creating a new database that will contain our application. For this demo I am creating a directory called node-demo. After creating the directory you will need to change into that directory.

mkdir node-demo
cd node-demo

Once we are in the directory we will need to create an application and we can do this by running the command
npm init

This will ask you a series of questions. Here are the answers I gave to the prompts.

The first step is to create a file that will contain our code for our Node.js server.

touch app.js

In our app.js we are going to add the following code to build a very simple Node.js Application.

var express = require("express");
var app = express();
var port = 3000;
 
app.get("/", (req, res) => {
&nbsp;&nbsp;res.send("Hello World");
});
 
app.listen(port, () => {
  console.log("Server listening on port " + port);
});

What the code does is require the express.js application. It then creates app by calling express. We define our port to be 3000.

The app.use line will listen to requests from the browser and will return the text “Hello World” back to the browser.

The last line actually starts the server and tells it to listen on port 3000.

Installing Express

Our app.js required the Express.js module. We need to install express in order for this to work properly. Go to your terminal and enter this command.

npm install express --save

This command will install the express module into our package.json. The module is installed as a dependency in our package.json as shown below.

To test our application you can go to the terminal and enter the command

node app.js

Open up a browser and navigate to the url http://localhost:3000

You will see the following in your browser

Creating Website to Save Data to MongoDB Database

Instead of showing the text “Hello World” when people view your application, what we want to do is to show a place for user to save data to the database.

We are going to allow users to enter a first name and a last name that we will be saving in the database.

To do this we will need to create a basic HTML file. In your terminal enter the following command to create an index.html file.

touch index.html

In our index.html file we will be creating an input filed where users can input data that they want to have stored in the database. We will also need a button for users to click on that will add the data to the database.

Here is what our index.html file looks like.

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>
  <head>
    <title>Intro to Node and MongoDB<title>
  <head>

  <body>
    <h1>Into to Node and MongoDB<&#47;h1>
    <form method="post" action="/addname">
      <label>Enter Your Name<&#47;label><br>
      <input type="text" name="firstName" placeholder="Enter first name..." required>
      <input type="text" name="lastName" placeholder="Enter last name..." required>
      <input type="submit" value="Add Name">
    </form>
  <body>
<html>

If you are familiar with HTML, you will not find anything unusual in our code for our index.html file. We are creating a form where users can input their first name and last name and then click an “Add Name” button.

The form will do a post call to the /addname endpoint. We will be talking about endpoints and post later in this tutorial.

Displaying our Website to Users

We were previously displaying the text “Hello World” to users when they visited our website. Now we want to display our html file that we created. To do this we will need to change the app.use line our our app.js file.

We will be using the sendFile command to show the index.html file. We will need to tell the server exactly where to find the index.html file. We can do that by using a node global call __dirname. The __dirname will provide the current directly where the command was run. We will then append the path to our index.html file.

The app.use lines will need to be changed to
app.use("/", (req, res) => {   res.sendFile(__dirname + "/index.html"); });

Once you have saved your app.js file, we can test it by going to terminal and running node app.js

Open your browser and navigate to “http://localhost:3000”. You will see the following

Connecting to the Database

Now we need to add our database to the application. We will be connecting to a MongoDB database. I am assuming that you already have MongoDB installed and running on your computer.

To connect to the MongoDB database we are going to use a module called Mongoose. We will need to install mongoose module just like we did with express. Go to your terminal and enter the following command.
npm install mongoose --save

This will install the mongoose model and add it as a dependency in our package.json.

Connecting to the Database

Now that we have the mongoose module installed, we need to connect to the database in our app.js file. MongoDB, by default, runs on port 27017. You connect to the database by telling it the location of the database and the name of the database.

In our app.js file after the line for the port and before the app.use line, enter the following two lines to get access to mongoose and to connect to the database. For the database, I am going to use “node-demo”.

var mongoose = require("mongoose"); mongoose.Promise = global.Promise; mongoose.connect("mongodb://localhost:27017/node-demo");

Creating a Database Schema

Once the user enters data in the input field and clicks the add button, we want the contents of the input field to be stored in the database. In order to know the format of the data in the database, we need to have a Schema.

For this tutorial, we will need a very simple Schema that has only two fields. I am going to call the field firstName and lastName. The data stored in both fields will be a String.

After connecting to the database in our app.js we need to define our Schema. Here are the lines you need to add to the app.js.
var nameSchema = new mongoose.Schema({   firstName: String,   lastNameName: String });

Once we have built our Schema, we need to create a model from it. I am going to call my model “DataInput”. Here is the line you will add next to create our mode.
var User = mongoose.model("User", nameSchema);

Creating RESTful API

Now that we have a connection to our database, we need to create the mechanism by which data will be added to the database. This is done through our REST API. We will need to create an endpoint that will be used to send data to our server. Once the server receives this data then it will store the data in the database.

An endpoint is a route that our server will be listening to to get data from the browser. We already have one route that we have created already in the application and that is the route that is listening at the endpoint “/” which is the homepage of our application.

HTTP Verbs in a REST API

The communication between the client(the browser) and the server is done through an HTTP verb. The most common HTTP verbs are
GET, PUT, POST, and DELETE.

The following table explains what each HTTP verb does.

HTTP Verb Operation
GET Read
POST Create
PUT Update
DELETE Delete

As you can see from these verbs, they form the basis of CRUD operations that I talked about previously.

Building a CRUD endpoint

If you remember, the form in our index.html file used a post method to call this endpoint. We will now create this endpoint.

In our previous endpoint we used a “GET” http verb to display the index.html file. We are going to do something very similar but instead of using “GET”, we are going to use “POST”. To get started this is what the framework of our endpoint will look like.

app.post("/addname", (req, res) => {
 
});
Express Middleware

To fill out the contents of our endpoint, we want to store the firstName and lastName entered by the user into the database. The values for firstName and lastName are in the body of the request that we send to the server. We want to capture that data, convert it to JSON and store it into the database.

Express.js version 4 removed all middleware. To parse the data in the body we will need to add middleware into our application to provide this functionality. We will be using the body-parser module. We need to install it, so in your terminal window enter the following command.

npm install body-parser --save

Once it is installed, we will need to require this module and configure it. The configuration will allow us to pass the data for firstName and lastName in the body to the server. It can also convert that data into JSON format. This will be handy because we can take this formatted data and save it directly into our database.

To add the body-parser middleware to our application and configure it, we can add the following lines directly after the line that sets our port.

var bodyParser = require('body-parser');
app.use(bodyParser.json());
app.use(bodyParser.urlencoded({ extended: true }));
Saving data to database

Mongoose provides a save function that will take a JSON object and store it in the database. Our body-parser middleware, will convert the user’s input into the JSON format for us.

To save the data into the database, we need to create a new instance of our model that we created early. We will pass into this instance the user’s input. Once we have it then we just need to enter the command “save”.

Mongoose will return a promise on a save to the database. A promise is what is returned when the save to the database completes. This save will either finish successfully or it will fail. A promise provides two methods that will handle both of these scenarios.

If this save to the database was successful it will return to the .then segment of the promise. In this case we want to send text back the user to let them know the data was saved to the database.

If it fails it will return to the .catch segment of the promise. In this case, we want to send text back to the user telling them the data was not saved to the database. It is best practice to also change the statusCode that is returned from the default 200 to a 400. A 400 statusCode signifies that the operation failed.

Now putting all of this together here is what our final endpoint will look like.

app.post("/addname", (req, res) => {
  var myData = new User(req.body);
  myData.save()
    .then(item => {
      res.send("item saved to database");
    })
    .catch(err => {
      res.status(400).send("unable to save to database");
    });
});
Testing our code

Save your code. Go to your terminal and enter the command node app.js to start our server. Open up your browser and navigate to the URL “http://localhost:3000”. You will see our index.html file displayed to you.

Make sure you have mongo running.

Enter your first name and last name in the input fields and then click the “Add Name” button. You should get back text that says the name has been saved to the database like below.

Access to Code

The final version of the code is available in my Github repo. To access the code click here. Thank you for reading !

MongoDB, Express, Vue.js 2, Node.js (MEVN) and SocketIO Chat App

MongoDB, Express, Vue.js 2, Node.js (MEVN) and SocketIO Chat App

The comprehensive tutorial on MongoDB, Express, Vue.js 2, Node.js (MEVN) and SocketIO Chat Application

The comprehensive tutorial on MongoDB, Express, Vue.js 2, Node.js (MEVN) and SocketIO Chat Application

MEVN Tutorial: The comprehensive tutorial on MongoDB, Express, Vue.js 2, Node.js (MEVN) and SocketIO Chat Application. Previously we have a tutorial on build chat application using MEAN Stack, now we build this chat application using MEVN (MongoDB, Express.js, Vue.js 2, Node.js) Stack. The different just now we use Vue.js 2 and Axios, we keep using MongoDB, Node.js, Express, and Socket.io.

Table of Contents:
  • Create a New Vue.js 2 Application using Vue-CLI
  • Install Express.js as RESTful API Server
  • Install and Configure Mongoose.js
  • Create REST API for Accessing Chat Data
  • Create Mongoose.js Model for Room and Chat
  • Create Vue.js 2 Component and Routing
  • Add Module for RESTful API Access and Styling UI
  • Modify Vue.js 2 Component for Room List
  • Modify Vue.js 2 Component for Add Room
  • Modify Vue.js 2 Component for Join Room
  • Modify Vue.js 2 Component for Chat Room
  • Integrate Socket.io With Existing Non-Real-time Chat Application
  • Run and Test The Chat Application

The scenario is very simple, just the rooms and the chats for each room. The first page will show the list of the rooms. After the user enters the room and fills the username or nickname then the user enters the chats with other users.

.The following tools, frameworks, and modules are required for this tutorial:

  1. Node.js (use recommended version)
  2. Express.js
  3. MongoDB
  4. Mongoose.js
  5. Vue.js
  6. Vue-CLI
  7. Socket IO
  8. Axios
  9. Terminal (Mac/Linux) or Node.js Command Line (Windows)
  10. IDE or Text Editor (we use Atom)

We assume that you have already installed Node.js and able to run Node.js command line (Windows) or npm on the terminal (MAC/Linux). Open the terminal or Node command line then type this command to install vue-cli.

sudo npm install -g vue-cli

That where we start the tutorial. We will create the MEVN stack Chat application using vue-cli.

1. Create a New Vue.js 2 Application using Vue-CLI

To create a new Vue.js 2 application using vue-cli simply type this command from terminal or Node command line.

vue init webpack mevn-chat

There will be a lot of questions, just leave it as default by always pressing enter key. Next, go to the newly created Vue.js project folder then install all default required modules by type this command.

cd ./mevn-chat

Now, check the Vue.js 2 application by running the application using this command.

npm run dev

Open your browser then go to localhost:8080 and you should see this page when everything still on the track.

2. Install Express.js as RESTful API Server

Close the running Vue.js 2 app first by press ctrl+c then type this command for adding Express.js modules and its dependencies.

npm install --save express body-parser morgan body-parser serve-favicon

Next, create a new folder called bin then add a file called www on the root of the Vue.js project folder.

mkdir bin
touch bin/www

Open and edit www file then add these lines of codes that contains configuration for an HTTP server, PORT, and error handling.

#!/usr/bin/env node

/**
 * Module dependencies.
 */

var app = require('../app');
var debug = require('debug')('mean-app:server');
var http = require('http');

/**
 * Get port from environment and store in Express.
 */

var port = normalizePort(process.env.PORT || '3000');
app.set('port', port);

/**
 * Create HTTP server.
 */

var server = http.createServer(app);

/**
 * Listen on provided port, on all network interfaces.
 */

server.listen(port);
server.on('error', onError);
server.on('listening', onListening);

/**
 * Normalize a port into a number, string, or false.
 */

function normalizePort(val) {
  var port = parseInt(val, 10);

  if (isNaN(port)) {
    // named pipe
    return val;
  }

  if (port >= 0) {
    // port number
    return port;
  }

  return false;
}

/**
 * Event listener for HTTP server "error" event.
 */

function onError(error) {
  if (error.syscall !== 'listen') {
    throw error;
  }

  var bind = typeof port === 'string'
    ? 'Pipe ' + port
    : 'Port ' + port;

  // handle specific listen errors with friendly messages
  switch (error.code) {
    case 'EACCES':
      console.error(bind + ' requires elevated privileges');
      process.exit(1);
      break;
    case 'EADDRINUSE':
      console.error(bind + ' is already in use');
      process.exit(1);
      break;
    default:
      throw error;
  }
}

/**
 * Event listener for HTTP server "listening" event.
 */

function onListening() {
  var addr = server.address();
  var bind = typeof addr === 'string'
    ? 'pipe ' + addr
    : 'port ' + addr.port;
  debug('Listening on ' + bind);
}

Next, change the default server what run by npm command. Open and edit package.json then replace startvalue inside scripts.

"scripts": {
  "dev": "webpack-dev-server --inline --progress --config build/webpack.dev.conf.js",
  "start": "npm run build && node ./bin/www",
  "unit": "jest --config test/unit/jest.conf.js --coverage",
  "e2e": "node test/e2e/runner.js",
  "test": "npm run unit && npm run e2e",
  "lint": "eslint --ext .js,.vue src test/unit test/e2e/specs",
  "build": "node build/build.js"
},

Next, create app.js in the root of project folder.

touch app.js

Open and edit app.js then add this lines of codes.

var express = require('express');
var path = require('path');
var favicon = require('serve-favicon');
var logger = require('morgan');
var bodyParser = require('body-parser');

var room = require('./routes/room');
var chat = require('./routes/chat');
var app = express();

app.use(logger('dev'));
app.use(bodyParser.json());
app.use(bodyParser.urlencoded({'extended':'false'}));
app.use(express.static(path.join(__dirname, 'dist')));
app.use('/rooms', express.static(path.join(__dirname, 'dist')));
app.use('/api/room', room);
app.use('/api/chat', chat);

// catch 404 and forward to error handler
app.use(function(req, res, next) {
  var err = new Error('Not Found');
  err.status = 404;
  next(err);
});

// error handler
app.use(function(err, req, res, next) {
  // set locals, only providing error in development
  res.locals.message = err.message;
  res.locals.error = req.app.get('env') === 'development' ? err : {};

  // render the error page
  res.status(err.status || 500);
  res.render('error');
});

module.exports = app;

Next, create routes folder then create routes file for the room and chat.

mkdir routes
touch routes/room.js
touch routes/chat.js

Open and edit routes/room.js file then add this lines of codes.

var express = require('express');
var router = express.Router();

/* GET home page. */
router.get('/', function(req, res, next) {
  res.send('Express RESTful API');
});

module.exports = router;

Do the same way with routes/chat.js. Now, run the server using this command.

npm start

You will see the previous Vue.js landing page when you point your browser to [http://localhost:3000](http://localhost:3000 "http://localhost:3000"). When you change the address to [http://localhost:3000/api/room](http://localhost:3000/api/room "http://localhost:3000/api/room") or [http://localhost:3000/api/chat](http://localhost:3000/api/chat "http://localhost:3000/api/chat") you will see this page.

3. Install and Configure Mongoose.js

We need to access data from MongoDB. For that, we will install and configure Mongoose.js. On the terminal type this command after stopping the running Express server.

npm install --save mongoose bluebird

Open and edit app.js then add this lines after another variable line.

var mongoose = require('mongoose');
mongoose.Promise = require('bluebird');
mongoose.connect('mongodb://localhost/mevn-chat', { promiseLibrary: require('bluebird') })
  .then(() =>  console.log('connection succesful'))
  .catch((err) => console.error(err));

Now, run MongoDB server on different terminal tab or command line or run from the service.

mongod

Next, you can test the connection to MongoDB run again the Node application and you will see this message on the terminal.

connection succesful

If you are still using built-in Mongoose Promise library, you will get this deprecated warning on the terminal.

(node:42758) DeprecationWarning: Mongoose: mpromise (mongoose's default promise library) is deprecated, plug in your own promise library instead: http://mongoosejs.com/docs/promises.html

That’s the reason why we added bluebird modules and register it as Mongoose Promise library.

4. Create Mongoose.js Model for Room and Chat

Add a models folder on the root of project folder for hold Mongoose.js model files then add Javascript file for Room and Chat.

mkdir models
touch models/Room.js
touch models/Chat.js

Next, open and edit models/Room.js then add this lines of codes.

var mongoose = require('mongoose'), Schema = mongoose.Schema;

var RoomSchema = new mongoose.Schema({
  room_name: String,
  created_date: { type: Date, default: Date.now },
});

module.exports = mongoose.model('Room', RoomSchema);

Open and edit models/Chat.js then add this lines of codes.

var mongoose = require('mongoose'), Schema = mongoose.Schema;

var ChatSchema = new mongoose.Schema({
  room : { type: Schema.Types.ObjectId, ref: 'Room' },
  nickname: String,
  message: String,
  created_date: { type: Date, default: Date.now },
});

module.exports = mongoose.model('Chat', ChatSchema);
5. Create Vue.js Component and Routing

Open and edit again routes/room.js then replace all codes with this.

var express = require('express');
var router = express.Router();
var mongoose = require('mongoose');
var Room = require('../models/Room.js');

/* GET ALL ROOMS */
router.get('/', function(req, res, next) {
  Room.find(function (err, products) {
    if (err) return next(err);
    res.json(products);
  });
});

/* GET SINGLE ROOM BY ID */
router.get('/:id', function(req, res, next) {
  Room.findById(req.params.id, function (err, post) {
    if (err) return next(err);
    res.json(post);
  });
});

/* SAVE ROOM */
router.post('/', function(req, res, next) {
  Room.create(req.body, function (err, post) {
    if (err) return next(err);
    res.json(post);
  });
});

/* UPDATE ROOM */
router.put('/:id', function(req, res, next) {
  Room.findByIdAndUpdate(req.params.id, req.body, function (err, post) {
    if (err) return next(err);
    res.json(post);
  });
});

/* DELETE ROOM */
router.delete('/:id', function(req, res, next) {
  Room.findByIdAndRemove(req.params.id, req.body, function (err, post) {
    if (err) return next(err);
    res.json(post);
  });
});

module.exports = router;

Open and edit again routes/chat.js then replace all codes with this.

var express = require('express');
var router = express.Router();
var mongoose = require('mongoose');
var Chat = require('../models/Chat.js');

/* GET ALL CHATS */
router.get('/', function(req, res, next) {
  Chat.find(function (err, products) {
    if (err) return next(err);
    res.json(products);
  });
});

/* GET SINGLE CHAT BY ID */
router.get('/:id', function(req, res, next) {
  Chat.findById(req.params.id, function (err, post) {
    if (err) return next(err);
    res.json(post);
  });
});

/* SAVE CHAT */
router.post('/', function(req, res, next) {
  Chat.create(req.body, function (err, post) {
    if (err) return next(err);
    res.json(post);
  });
});

/* UPDATE CHAT */
router.put('/:id', function(req, res, next) {
  Chat.findByIdAndUpdate(req.params.id, req.body, function (err, post) {
    if (err) return next(err);
    res.json(post);
  });
});

/* DELETE CHAT */
router.delete('/:id', function(req, res, next) {
  Chat.findByIdAndRemove(req.params.id, req.body, function (err, post) {
    if (err) return next(err);
    res.json(post);
  });
});

module.exports = router;

Run again the Express server then open the other terminal or command line to test the Restful API by type this command.

curl -i -H "Accept: application/json" localhost:3000/api/room

If that command return response like below then REST API is ready to go.

HTTP/1.1 200 OK
X-Powered-By: Express
Content-Type: application/json; charset=utf-8
Content-Length: 2
ETag: W/"2-l9Fw4VUO7kr8CvBlt4zaMCqXZ0w"
Date: Sun, 05 Aug 2018 13:11:30 GMT
Connection: keep-alive

[]

Now, let’s populate Room collection with initial data that sent from RESTful API. Run this command to populate it.

curl -i -X POST -H "Content-Type: application/json" -d '{ "room_name":"Javascript" }' localhost:3000/api/room

You will see this response to the terminal if success.

HTTP/1.1 200 OK
X-Powered-By: Express
Content-Type: application/json; charset=utf-8
Content-Length: 109
ETag: W/"6d-OGpcih/JWvJGrYAhMP+KBYQOvNQ"
Date: Sun, 05 Aug 2018 13:35:50 GMT
Connection: keep-alive

{"_id":"5b66fd3581b9291558dc90b7","room_name":"Javascript","created_date":"2018-08-05T13:35:49.803Z","__v":0}

6. Create Vue.js 2 Component and Routing

Now, it’s time for Vue.js 2 or front end part. First, create or add the component of the room list, add a room, join a room, chat room. Create all of those files into the components folder.

touch src/components/RoomList.vue
touch src/components/AddRoom.vue
touch src/components/JoinRoom.vue
touch src/components/ChatRoom.vue

Now, open and edit src/router/index.js then add the import for all above new components.

import Vue from 'vue'
import Router from 'vue-router'
import RoomList from '@/components/RoomList'
import AddRoom from '@/components/AddRoom'
import JoinRoom from '@/components/JoinRoom'
import ChatRoom from '@/components/ChatRoom'

Add the router to each component or page.

export default new Router({
  routes: [
    {
      path: '/',
      name: 'RoomList',
      component: RoomList
    },
    {
      path: '/add-room',
      name: 'AddRoom',
      component: AddRoom
    },
    {
      path: '/join-room/:id',
      name: 'JoinRoom',
      component: JoinRoom
    },
    {
      path: '/chat-room/:id/:nickname',
      name: 'ChatRoom',
      component: ChatRoom
    }
  ]
})

7. Add Axios and Bootstrap-Vue

For UI or styling, we are using Bootstrap Vue. BootstrapVue use to build responsive, mobile-first projects on the web using Vue.js and the world's most popular front-end CSS library Bootstrap v4. To install Bootstrap-Vue type this command on the terminal.

npm i bootstrap-vue [email protected]

Open and edit src/main.js then add the imports for Bootstrap-Vue.

import Vue from 'vue'
import BootstrapVue from 'bootstrap-vue'
import App from './App'
import router from './router'
import 'bootstrap/dist/css/bootstrap.css'
import 'bootstrap-vue/dist/bootstrap-vue.css'

Add this line after Vue.config.

Vue.use(BootstrapVue)

Next, we are using Axio for accessing REST API provided by Express.js. Axios is a promise-based HTTP client for the browser and node.js. To install it, in the terminal type this command.

npm install axios --save

8. Modify Vue.js 2 Component for Room List

Now, open and edit src/components/RoomList.vue then add this lines of codes.

<template>
  <b-row>
    <b-col cols="12">
      <h2>
        Room List
        <b-link href="#/add-room">(Add Room)</b-link>
      </h2>
      <b-table striped hover :items="rooms" :fields="fields">
        <template slot="actions" scope="row">
          <b-btn size="sm" @click.stop="join(row._id)">Join</b-btn>
        </template>
      </b-table>
      <ul v-if="errors && errors.length">
        <li v-for="error of errors">
          {{error.message}}
        </li>
      </ul>
    </b-col>
  </b-row>
</template>

<script>

import axios from 'axios'

export default {
  name: 'BookList',
  data () {
    return {
      fields: {
        room_name: { label: 'Room Name', sortable: true, 'class': 'text-center' },
        created_date: { label: 'Created Date', sortable: true },
        actions: { label: 'Action', 'class': 'text-center' }
      },
      rooms: [],
      errors: []
    }
  },
  created () {
    axios.get(`http://localhost:3000/api/room`)
    .then(response => {
      this.rooms = response.data
    })
    .catch(e => {
      this.errors.push(e)
    })
  },
  methods: {
    join (id) {
      this.$router.push({
        name: 'JoinRoom',
        params: { id: id }
      })
    }
  }
}
</script>

There are template and script in one file. The template block contains HTML tags. Script block contains variables, page lifecycle and methods or functions.

9. Modify Vue.js 2 Component for Add Room

Now, open and edit src/components/AddRoom.vue then add this lines of codes.

<template>
  <b-row>
    <b-col align-self="start">&nbsp;</b-col>
    <b-col cols="6" align-self="center">
      <h2>
        Add Room
        <b-link href="#/">(Room List)</b-link>
      </h2>
      <b-form @submit="onSubmit">
        <b-form-group id="fieldsetHorizontal"
                  horizontal
                  :label-cols="4"
                  breakpoint="md"
                  label="Enter Room Name">
          <b-form-input id="room_name" :state="state" v-model.trim="room.room_name"></b-form-input>
        </b-form-group>
        <b-button type="submit" variant="primary">Save</b-button>
      </b-form>
    </b-col>
    <b-col align-self="end">&nbsp;</b-col>
  </b-row>
</template>

<script>

import axios from 'axios'

export default {
  name: 'AddRoom',
  data () {
    return {
      room: {}
    }
  },
  methods: {
    onSubmit (evt) {
      evt.preventDefault()
      axios.post(`http://localhost:3000/api/room`, this.room)
      .then(response => {
        this.$router.push({
          name: 'RoomList'
        })
      })
      .catch(e => {
        this.errors.push(e)
      })
    }
  }
}
</script>

That code contains the template for room form, the script that contains Vue.js 2 codes for hold room model and methods for saving room to RESTful API.

10. Modify Vue.js 2 Component for Join Room

Now, open and edit src/components/JoinRoom.vue then add this lines of codes.

<template>
  <b-row>
    <b-col cols="6">
      <h2>
        Join Room
        <b-link href="#/">(Room List)</b-link>
      </h2>
      <b-form @submit="onSubmit">
        <b-form-group id="fieldsetHorizontal"
                  horizontal
                  :label-cols="4"
                  breakpoint="md"
                  label="Enter Nickname">
          <b-form-input id="nickname" :state="state" v-model.trim="chat.nickname"></b-form-input>
        </b-form-group>
        <b-button type="submit" variant="primary">Join</b-button>
      </b-form>
    </b-col>
  </b-row>
</template>

<script>

import axios from 'axios'

export default {
  name: 'JoinRoom',
  data () {
    return {
      chat: {}
    }
  },
  methods: {
    onSubmit (evt) {
      evt.preventDefault()
      this.chat.room = this.$route.params.id
      this.chat.message = this.chat.nickname + ' join the room'
      axios.post(`http://localhost:3000/api/chat`, this.chat)
      .then(response => {
        this.$router.push({
          name: 'ChatRoom',
          params: { id: this.$route.params.id, nickname: response.data.nickname }
        })
      })
      .catch(e => {
        this.errors.push(e)
      })
    }
  }
}
</script>

That code contains the template for join room form, the script that contains Vue.js 2 codes for hold chat model and methods for saving room to RESTful API.

11. Modify Vue.js 2 Component for Chat Room

Now, open and edit src/components/JoinRoom.vue then add this lines of codes.

<template>
  <b-row>
    <b-col cols="12">
      <h2>
        Chat Room
      </h2>
      <b-list-group class="panel-body">
        <b-list-group-item v-for="(item, index) in chats" class="chat">
          <div class="left clearfix" v-if="item.nickname === nickname">
            <b-img left src="http://placehold.it/50/55C1E7/fff&text=ME" rounded="circle" width="75" height="75" alt="img" class="m-1" />
            <div class="chat-body clearfix">
              <div class="header">
                <strong class="primary-font">{{ item.nickname }}</strong> <small class="pull-right text-muted">
                <span class="glyphicon glyphicon-time"></span>{{ item.created_date }}</small>
              </div>
              <p>{{ item.message }}</p>
            </div>
          </div>
          <div class="right clearfix" v-else>
            <b-img right src="http://placehold.it/50/55C1E7/fff&text=U" rounded="circle" width="75" height="75" alt="img" class="m-1" />
            <div class="chat-body clearfix">
              <div class="header">
                <strong class="primary-font">{{ item.nickname }}</strong> <small class="pull-right text-muted">
                <span class="glyphicon glyphicon-time"></span>{{ item.created_date }}</small>
              </div>
              <p>{{ item.message }}</p>
            </div>
          </div>
        </b-list-group-item>
      </b-list-group>
      <ul v-if="errors && errors.length">
        <li v-for="error of errors">
          {{error.message}}
        </li>
      </ul>
      <b-form @submit="onSubmit" class="chat-form">
        <b-input-group prepend="Message">
          <b-form-input id="message" :state="state" v-model.trim="chat.message"></b-form-input>
          <b-input-group-append>
            <b-btn type="submit" variant="info">Send</b-btn>
          </b-input-group-append>
        </b-input-group>
      </b-form>
    </b-col>
  </b-row>
</template>

<script>

import axios from 'axios'

export default {
  name: 'ChatRoom',
  data () {
    return {
      chats: [],
      errors: [],
      nickname: this.$route.params.nickname,
      chat: {}
    }
  },
  created () {
    axios.get(`http://localhost:3000/api/chat/` + this.$route.params.id)
    .then(response => {
      this.chats = response.data
    })
    .catch(e => {
      this.errors.push(e)
    })
  },
  methods: {
    logout (id) {
      this.$router.push({
        name: 'JoinRoom',
        params: { id: id }
      })
    },
    onSubmit (evt) {
      evt.preventDefault()
      this.chat.room = this.$route.params.id
      this.chat.nickname = this.$route.params.nickname
      axios.post(`http://localhost:3000/api/chat`, this.chat)
      .then(response => {
        // this.$router.push({
        //   name: 'ChatRoom',
        //   params: { id: this.$route.params.id, nickname: response.data.nickname }
        // })
      })
      .catch(e => {
        this.errors.push(e)
      })
    }
  }
}
</script>

<style>
  .chat .left .chat-body {
    text-align: left;
    margin-left: 100px;
  }

  .chat .right .chat-body {
    text-align: right;
    margin-right: 100px;
  }

  .chat .chat-body p {
    margin: 0;
    color: #777777;
  }

  .panel-body {
    overflow-y: scroll;
    height: 350px;
  }

  .chat-form {
    margin: 20px auto;
    width: 80%;
  }
</style>

That code contains the template of the main chat application consist of chat list and sends message form.

12. Integrate Socket.io With Existing Non-Real-time Chat Application

Previous steps show you a regular and non-realtime transaction chat application. Now, we will make it real-time by using Socket.io. First, install socket.io module by type this command.

npm install --save socketio socket.io-client

Next, open and edit routes/chat.js then declare the Socket IO and http module.

var app = express();
var server = require('http').createServer(app);
var io = require('socket.io')(server);

Add this lines of codes for Socket IO functions.

server.listen(4000);

// socket io
io.on('connection', function (socket) {
  console.log('User connected');
  socket.on('disconnect', function() {
    console.log('User disconnected');
  });
  socket.on('save-message', function (data) {
    console.log(data);
    io.emit('new-message', { message: data });
  });
});

In that code, we are running Socket.io to listen for ‘save-message’ that emitted from the client and emit ‘new-message’ to the clients. Next, open and edit src/components/JoinRoom.vue then add this import.

import * as io from 'socket.io-client'

Declare Socket IO variable.

data () {
  return {
    chat: {},
    socket: io('http://localhost:4000')
  }
},

Add Socket IO emit function after successful join room.

axios.post(`http://localhost:3000/api/chat`, this.chat)
.then(response => {
  this.socket.emit('save-message', { room: this.chat.room, nickname: this.chat.nickname, message: 'Join this room', created_date: new Date() });
  this.$router.push({
    name: 'ChatRoom',
    params: { id: this.$route.params.id, nickname: response.data.nickname }
  })
})
.catch(e => {
  this.errors.push(e)
})

Next, open and edit src/components/ChatRoom.vue then add this imports and use as Vue module.

import Vue from 'vue'
import * as io from 'socket.io-client'
import VueChatScroll from 'vue-chat-scroll'
Vue.use(VueChatScroll)

Declare Socket IO variable.

data () {
  return {
    chats: [],
    errors: [],
    nickname: this.$route.params.nickname,
    chat: {},
    socket: io('http://localhost:4000')
  }
},

Add this Socket IO on function to created method.

created () {
  axios.get(`http://localhost:3000/api/chat/` + this.$route.params.id)
  .then(response => {
    this.chats = response.data
  })
  .catch(e => {
    this.errors.push(e)
  })

  this.socket.on('new-message', function (data) {
    if(data.message.room === this.$route.params.id) {
      this.chats.push(data.message)
    }
  }.bind(this))
},

Add Logout function inside methods and add Socket IO emit method in the POST response.

methods: {
  logout () {
    this.socket.emit('save-message', { room: this.chat.room, nickname: this.chat.nickname, message: this.chat.nickname + ' left this room', created_date: new Date() });
    this.$router.push({
      name: 'RoomList'
    })
  },
  onSubmit (evt) {
    evt.preventDefault()
    this.chat.room = this.$route.params.id
    this.chat.nickname = this.$route.params.nickname
    axios.post(`http://localhost:3000/api/chat`, this.chat)
    .then(response => {
      this.socket.emit('save-message', response.data)
      this.chat.message = ''
    })
    .catch(e => {
      this.errors.push(e)
    })
  }
}

Finally, to make Chat list always scroll to the bottom of Chat element add install this module.

npm install --save vue-chat-scroll

That module already imported and declared above. Next, add to the Chat element.

<b-list-group class="panel-body" v-chat-scroll>
  ...
</b-list-group>

13. Run and Test The MEVN (Vue.js 2) Chat Application**

To run this MEVN (Vue.js 2) Chat Application locally, make sure MongoDB service is running. Type this command to build the Vue.js 2 application then run the Express.js application.

npm start

Next, open the different browser (ex: Chrome and Firefox) then go to the localhost:3000 on both of the browsers. You will see this page and you can start Chat.

That it’s, the MongoDB, Express, Vue.js 2, Node.js (MEVN) and SocketIO Chat App. You can find the full working source code on our GitHub.

Thanks!

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