Working with Node.js Versions Using NVM Print

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Node.js is a popular JavaScript runtime built on Chrome's V8 JavaScript engine, designed to build scalable network applications. It's important to have the correct version of Node.js installed for your projects to work effectively. However, managing Node.js versions can be challenging. Node Version Manager (NVM) provides a handy command-line utility for installing and switching between different Node.js versions.

This article will guide you through understanding Node.js versions, checking your current version, and how to upgrade or downgrade your Node.js version using NVM.

Understanding Node.js Versions

Node.js versions are released according to Semantic Versioning (SemVer), which includes major, minor, and patch releases. A major release usually includes new features that can break backward compatibility. Minor releases include new features that are backward-compatible, and patches involve bug fixes or other minor changes.

There are three types of Node.js releases:

1. Current: The latest version with the newest features.

2. Active LTS (Long Term Support): These versions are actively maintained and receive bug fixes, security updates, and documentation updates.

3. Maintenance LTS: These versions only receive critical bug fixes and security updates, and are typically older versions that have passed beyond the Active LTS stage.

You can check the Node.js release schedule [here](

Checking Your Current Node.js and NVM Version

Before you upgrade or downgrade your Node.js version, it's crucial to check the current version you're using. You can use the following commands to check your Node.js, NPM (Node Package Manager), and NVM version:

node -v

npm -v

nvm --version

Upgrading Node.js Version

If you want to use the latest Node.js version, you can upgrade it using the following NVM commands:

Install the latest Node.js version

nvm install node

Use the installed Node.js version in the current session

nvm use node

Set the installed Node.js version as the default

nvm alias default node

Additionally, it's a good practice to keep your NPM updated:

npm install -g npm@latest

After updating, verify that the installation was successful by checking the versions:

node -v

npm -v

Downgrading Node.js Version

In some cases, you might need to downgrade your Node.js version to match the requirements of a specific project. For instance, if your project requires Node.js 14, you can downgrade using the following NVM commands:

Install Node.js version 14

nvm install 14

Use the installed Node.js version in the current session

nvm use 14

Set the installed Node.js version as the default

nvm alias default 14

After downgrading, verify that the installation was successful by checking the version:

node -v

Building Node.js Applications

Once the appropriate Node.js version is set up, you can proceed to build your Node.js applications. You can start the build process of your application with the following command:

/usr/bin/node build

Replace `build` with the appropriate script for your application.


Having the correct Node.js version is crucial for your projects' successful development and operation. By using NVM, you can easily switch between different Node.js versions, ensuring compatibility and stability for your applications. Whether you need to upgrade to the latest version to leverage new features, or downgrade to an older version for compatibility reasons, NVM makes this process straightforward. Remember to check your project's Node.js version requirements and set your Node.js environment accordingly.

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