How to update NodeJS and NPM to their latest versions?

In this article, we’ll learn how to upgrade Node.js, NPM, and my Node.js Modules to their latest versions?


npm update -g npm

See the docs for the update command:

npm update [-g] [<pkg>...]

This command will update all the packages listed to the latest version (specified by the tag config), respecting semver.

The following original answer is from the old FAQ that no longer exists, but should work for Linux and Mac:

How do I update npm?

npm install -g npm

Please note that this command will remove your current version of npm. Make sure to use sudo npm install -g npm if on a Mac.

You can also update all outdated local packages by doing npm update without any arguments, or global packages by doing npm update -g.

Occasionally, the version of npm will progress such that the current version cannot be properly installed with the version that you have installed already. (Consider, if there is ever a bug in the update command.) In those cases, you can do this:

curl | sh

To update Node.js itself, I recommend you use nvm, the Node Version Manager.

How to update NodeJS and NPM to their latest versions?

I found this really neat way of updating node, you can do it by installing n:

sudo npm cache clean -f
sudo npm install -g n
sudo n stable

It will install the current stable version of node.

EDIT: Please don’t use n anymore. I recommend using nvm. You can simply install stable by following the commands below:

nvm ls-remote
nvm install <version> 
nvm use <version>

Also, updating npm is easy:

npm install npm@latest -g

Answer #2:

I understand this question is for Linux machine but just in case anybody is looking for a Windows solution, just go to the Node.js site, click the download button on the homepage and execute the installer program.

Thankfully it took care of everything and with a few clicks of the ‘Next’ button I got the latest 0.8.15 Node.js version running on my Windows 7 machine.

Answer #3:

As you may already know, npm is currently bundled with node.js. It means that if you have installed node.js, you’ve already installed npm as well.

Also, pay attention to the node.js and npm release versions table that shows us approximate versions compatibility. Sometimes, versions discrepancy may cause incompatibility errors.

So, if you’re a developer, it’s kinda “best practice” to manage your development environment using one of the node.js version managers.

Here is a list and usage notes of some of the most popular:

Homebrew (macOS)

If you’re on macOS, you can use Homebrew.

Actually, it’s not just a node.js version manager.

To install Homebrew to your Mac:

$ ruby -e "$(curl -fsSL "

To install node.js and npm using Homebrew, run:

$ brew install node

Later, you will be able to update them using:

$ brew update && brew upgrade node

Also, you can switch between node.js versions as well:

$ brew switch node 0.10.26

npm will be upgraded/downgraded automatically.

(macOS, Linux)

n is most likely to rvm (Ruby Version Manager), and is used to manage node.js and npm versions simultaneously. It is written on pure Linux shell, and available as an npm module. So, if you already have any node.js version installed, you can install/update the n package through npm:

$ npm install -g n

Downloading, installing and switching to node.js and npm versions is as easy as:

$ n 0.10.26
$ n 0.8.17
$ n 0.9.6

To download, install, and switch to the latest official release, use:

$ n latest

To download, install, and switch to the latest stable official release, use:

$ n stable

To switch to the previously active version (aka $ cd -), use:

$ n prev

If you want to see the list of installed node.js versions, just run n from your command line. The output will be something like the following:

$ n

• 0.8.17

Where the dot (•) means that it’s a currently active version. To select another node.js version from the list, use Up/Down arrow keys and activate using the Enter key.

To list the versions available to install:

$ n lsr

nvm (macOS, Linux)

nvm is also like rvm, even the command names and usage are very similar.

To install nvm you can use the installation script (requires git) using cURL:

$ curl | sh

or wget:

$ wget -qO- | sh

To download and install a specific node.js and npm version, use:

$ nvm install 0.10

Then, you can switch to the installed version, using:

$ nvm use 0.10

Also, you can create the .nvmrc file containing the version number, then switch to the specified version using the following command:

$ nvm use

To see the list of installed node.js versions, use:

$ nvm ls

To list the versions available to install:

$ nvm ls-remote

nvm-windows (Windows)

nvm-windows is a node.js version management utility for Windows, ironically written in Go.

It is not the same thing as nvm. However, the usage as a node.js version manager is very similar.

To install nvm-windows, it is required to uninstall any existing versions of node.js and npm beforehand. Then, download and run the latest installer from releases.

To upgrade nvm-windows, run the new installer. It will safely overwrite the files it needs to update without touching your node.js installations.

nvm-windows runs in an Admin shell. You’ll need to start Powershell or Command Prompt as Administrator to use nvm-windows.

Before using, you may also need to enable nvm-windows with the following command:

C:\> nvm on

To download and install a specific node.js and npm version, use:

C:\> nvm install 0.12

Then, you can switch to the installed version, using:

C:\> nvm use 0.12

If you want to see the list of installed node.js versions, use:

C:\> nvm list

To list the versions available to install:

C:\> nvm list available

How to update NodeJS and NPM to their latest versions?

First check your NPM version

npm -v

1) Update NPM to current version:

View curent NPM version:

npm view npm version

Update npm to current version:

npm i -g npm

2) List all available NPM versions and make a custom install/update/roll-back

View all versions including “alpha”, “beta” and “rc” (release candidate)

npm view npm versions --json

Reinstall NPM to a specific version chosen from the versions list – for example to 5.0.3

npm i -g npm@5.0.3
  • Installing one version will automatically remove the one currently installed.
  • For Linux and iOS prepend commands with sudo

Answer #5:

Try the latest stable version of npm

See what version of npm you’re running:

npm -v

Upgrading on *nix (OSX, Linux, etc.)

(You may need to prefix these commands with sudo, especially on Linux, or OS X if you installed Node using its default installer.)

You can upgrade to the latest version of npm using:

npm install -g npm@latest

Or upgrade to the most recent release:

npm install -g npm@next

Upgrading on Windows

By default, npm is installed alongside node in

C:\Program Files (x86)\nodejs

npm’s globally installed packages (including, potentially, npm itself) are stored separately in a user-specific directory (which is currently


Because the installer puts

C:\Program Files (x86)\nodejs



on your PATH, it will always use the version of npm installed with node instead of the version of npm you installed using npm -g install npm@<version>.

To get around this, you can do one of the following:

  • Option 1: edit your Windows installation’s PATH to put %appdata%\npm before %ProgramFiles%\nodejs. Remember that you’ll need to restart cmd.exe (and potentially restart Windows) when you make changes to PATH or how npm is installed.
  • Option 2: remove both of
    • %ProgramFiles%\nodejs\npm
    • %ProgramFiles%\nodejs\npm.cmd
  • Option 3: Navigate to %ProgramFiles%\nodejs\node_modules\npm and copy the npmrcfile to another folder or the desktop. Then open cmd.exe and run the following commands:

cd %ProgramFiles%\nodejsnpm install npm@latest

If you installed npm with the node.js installer, after doing one of the previous steps, do the following.

  • Option 1 or 2
    • Go into %ProgramFiles%\nodejs\node_modules\npm and copy the file named npmrc in the new npm folder, which should be %appdata%\npm\node_modules\npm. This will tell the new npm where the global installed packages are.
  • Option 3
    • Copy the npmrc file back into %ProgramFiles%\nodejs\node_modules\npm

A brief note on the built-in Windows configuration

The Node installer installs, directly into the npm folder, a special piece of Windows-specific configuration that tells npm where to install global packages. When npm is used to install itself, it is supposed to copy this special builtin configuration into the new install. There was a bug in some versions of npm that kept this from working, so you may need to go in and fix that up by hand. Run the following command to see where npm will install global packages to verify it is correct.

npm config get prefix -g

If it isn’t set to <X>:\Users\<user>\AppData\Roaming\npm, you can run the below command to correct it:

npm config set prefix "${APPDATA}/npm" -g

Incidentally, if you would prefer that packages not be installed to your roaming profile (because you have a quota on your shared network, or it makes logging in or out from a domain sluggish), you can put it in your local app data instead:

npm config set prefix "${LOCALAPPDATA}/npm" -g

…as well as copying %APPDATA%\npm to %LOCALAPPDATA%\npm (and updating your %PATH%, of course).

Everyone who works on npm knows that this process is complicated and fraught, and we’re working on making it simpler. Stay tuned.

Answer #6:

To install the latest version of npm using npm:

sudo npm install npm@latest

I run this on Linux so I am not sure about other operating systems.

On Linux you can also run:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade

This will tell the apt-get package manager to update and upgrade all packages.

Answer #7:

Install npm => sudo apt-get install npm

Install n => sudo npm install n -g

latest version of node => sudo n latest

Specific version of node you can

List available node versions => n ls

Install a specific version => sudo n 4.5.0

Hope you learned something from this post.

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About ᴾᴿᴼᵍʳᵃᵐᵐᵉʳ

Linux and Python enthusiast, in love with open source since 2014, Writer at, India.

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