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A quality library for the ANSI color/style management. Small. Clean. No dependencies.

npm install ansicolor

What for

Why another one?

Other tools lack consistency, failing to solve the simple hierarchy problem:

require ('colors') // a popular color utility

console.log (('foo'.cyan + 'bar').red)


WTF, bar is not rendered red! It sucks. This is because ANSI codes are not hierarchical (as with XML/HTML), they're linear, and without some special magic nothing will work. Ansicolor does that magic for you:

require ('ansicolor').nice // .nice for unsafe String extensions

console.log (('foo'.cyan + 'bar').red)



Crash course

Safe mode (default)

ansi = require ('ansicolor')
console.log ('foo' + ansi.green (ansi.inverse (ansi.bgBrightCyan ('bar')) + 'baz') + 'qux')
console.log (ansi.underline.bright.green ('foo' + ansi.dim.red.bgBrightCyan ('bar'))) // method chaining

Nice mode (by request)

ansi = require ('ansicolor').nice

It adds styling APIs directly to the String prototype, setting something like a DSL for infix-style string coloring. Convenient, but unsafe: avoid use in public modules, as it pollutes global objects, causing potential hard-to-debug compatibility issues.

console.log ('foo'.red.bright + 'bar'.bgYellow.underline.dim)

Supported styles

'foreground colors'
'background colors'
'bright background colors'
    .bright.dim.italic.underline.inverse // italic may lack support on your platform

You also can read these method names programmatically:

ansi.names // [ 'black', 'bgBlack', 'bgBrightBlack', 'red', 'bgRed', ...

Removing ANSI styles from a string

ansi.strip ('\u001b[0m\u001b[4m\u001b[42m\u001b[31mfoo\u001b[39m\u001b[49m\u001b[24mfoo\u001b[0m')) // 'foofoo'

Reading style information / CSS output

Inspection of ANSI styles in arbitrary strings is essential when implementing platform-agnostic logging — that works not only in terminal, but in browsers too. Here's how you do it:

const parsed = ansi.parse ('foo'.bgBrightRed.bright.italic + 'bar'.red.dim)

It will return a pseudo-array of styled spans, iterable with for ... of and convertable to an array with spread operator. There also exists .spans property for obtaining the actual array directly:

assert.deepEqual (parsed.spans /* or [...parsed] */,

    [ { css: 'font-weight: bold;font-style: italic;background:rgba(255,51,0,1);',
        italic: true,
        bold: true,
        color: { bright: true },
        bgColor: { name: 'red', bright: true },
        text: 'foo' },

      { css: 'color:rgba(204,0,0,0.5);',
        color: { name: 'red', dim: true },
        text: 'bar' } ])

Custom color theme

You can change the default RGB values:

ansi.rgb = {

    black:   [0,     0,   0],
    red:     [204,   0,   0],
    green:   [0,   204,   0],
    yellow:  [204, 102,   0],
    blue:    [0,     0, 255],
    magenta: [204,   0, 204],
    cyan:    [0,   153, 255],
    white:   [255, 255, 255]

ansi.rgbBright = {

    black:   [0,     0,   0],
    red:     [255,  51,   0],
    green:   [51,  204,  51],
    yellow:  [255, 153,  51],
    blue:    [26,  140, 255],
    magenta: [255,   0, 255],
    cyan:    [0,   204, 255],
    white:   [255, 255, 255]

Chrome DevTools compatibility

Some browsers support color logging with console.log, but they don't understand ANSI colors, implementing a proprietary CSS-based format instead. Ansicolor can help you with converting styled strings to argument lists acceptable by Chrome's console.log:

const string = 'foo' + ('bar'.red.underline.bright.inverse + 'baz').bgGreen
const parsed = ansi.parse (string)

console.log (...parsed.asChromeConsoleLogArguments) // prints with colors in Chrome!

Here's what the format looks like:

parsed.asChromeConsoleLogArguments // [ "%cfoo%cbar%cbaz",
                                   //   "",
                                   //   "font-weight: bold;text-decoration: underline;background:rgba(255,51,0,1);color:rgba(0,204,0,1);",
                                   //   "background:rgba(0,204,0,1);"
                                   // ]

You can even play with this feature online: demo page. Open the DevTools console and type expressions in the input box to see how it renders.

Happy logging!

See also