npm monthly, first edition: webpack, Sinon, async, Babel Loader and more!

Hey folks, JP from Gemnasium here. Welcome to our new npm monthly!

The goal of npm monthly is to tell you about notable package releases of the last month. It’s far from exhaustive, but we select well-known packages that had releases worth talking about.

Tell us what you think about it via the little chat widget at the bottom right or by sending me an email!

Enough talking, let’s dive right in!

webpack 2.4 & 2.5

The popular and active project got two major release in the last month or so. Version 2.4.0 and 2.5.0.

Here’s the highlight of 2.4.0:

  • import() now allows configuring a chunk name
  • require.ensure has an error callback

Those are the major additions, but it also came with an update to acorn 5, resolve context is provided to resolver, add warningsFilter to stats options to filter warnings, add __webpack_chunkname__ to ExtendedAPIPlugin, support string chunk ids, add NamedChunksPlugin which allows to set chunk id, i. e. to chunk name and finally this release also allows to provide different watch options for multiple compilations.

It also had a bunch of bug fixes. You can see them here.

2.5.0 had a smaller feature list, but also came with its bug fixes. Here are the features:

  • allow placeholders in the BannerPlugin
  • add an option to disable the module trace in stats

The latest version is now 2.5.1. It was a bug fix release.

Sinon.JS 2.2.0

I don’t know about you, but I love testing! And I love when great testing tools like Sinon gets new goodies. 2.0.0 got released in March, and we’re already at 2.2.0 now.

So, what’s in it for you?

  • Added usingPromise method to stub and sandbox.
  • Added support for React Native window location format Fixes sinonjs/sinon#1362
  • Fix error on call.toString() where stack has fewer than four lines.

By the way, if you would like to know which versions are used by your projects, you can go on the Sinon page on Gemnasium. If you’re logged in, go to the bottom page, and you’ll see the list of your projects with what they’re using! Handy, right?

async 2.4.0

Version 2.3.0 added support for ES2017 async functions…now what’s in 2.4?

They added queue.remove() that now makes it possible to remove items in a queue. tryEach was also introduced. That one is for, to use their words, “running async functions in parallel, where you only expect one to succeed.”.

There’s also improved performance and various fixes. All details here.

Babel Loader 7

Major release here, with a lot packed in it! It has some breaking changes, like dropping support for older node version (everything before 4) and webpack 1. It also comes with support for Babel 7, that will come out soon-ish (more on that later in this edition of npm monthly).

It also comes with bug fixes, documentation, and internal changes. All the details here.

Autoprefixer 7.0 & 7.1

So much to say. Where to start?

Autoprefixer 7.0 uses PostCSS 6.0, Browserslist 2.0 and caniuse-lite.

Browserlist 2 is six times faster than it’s predecessor.

Autoprefixer used to be one of the biggest CoffeeScript projects…but no more! They now moved to JS.

There’s a TON more new and breaking stuff in 7.0 and 7.1. Get all the details for 7.0 here and 7.1 here.

Jest 20.0.0

There is tens of additions, breaking changes and bug fixes here. There’s just too many to list them here.

The big things are the Multi-Project-Runner and the configuration overhaul. You can see the changelog here or the official blog post for this release here.

What’s coming soon?

Some packages are launching pre-release versions that are coming before stable versions. Some of them that got releases are:

Speak soon

Did you like this overview of the most notable package updates lately?

We would love to get your feedback to improve it quickly, so it becomes another tool that makes your life easier. You can use the chat widget on this page or just shoot me an email at

Speak soon!