Deploying an Apps Script Library Part 6: Deploying on NPM

Everyone says use Google Apps Script libraries for easier maintenance — I found a better way. Here’s why NPM modules might change the game for you too.

Last time, we covered how to deploy our library as a native Google Apps Script (GAS) library using Vite, GitHub Actions, and clasp. This setup is efficient, but there’s a notable drawback to using Apps Script libraries.

According to the official guide: Warning: A script that uses a library doesn’t run as quickly as it would if all the code were contained within a single script project. Although libraries can make development and maintenance more convenient, use them sparingly in projects where speed is critical. Because of this issue, library use should be limited in add-ons.”

Apps Script is not known for its speed, being a free runtime. Slowing it down further by using native GAS libraries is generally not advisable. Therefore, I prefer to avoid native GAS libraries whenever possible.

Instead, it’s much more efficient to bundle your dependencies directly into your source code, similar to how it’s done in Node.js. This is where NPM modules and Vite come into play.

In this post, we’ll cover:

  • Which NPM modules are compatible with Google Apps Script and which ones are not.
  • How to use NPM modules in your Apps Script projects.
  • How to build and publish a module on NPM.

Let’s start with compatibility.

Source: Deploying an Apps Script Library Part 6: Deploying on NPM

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