How to use Gulp in a Cloud Instance?



Gulp is an open-source JavaScript toolkit by Fractal Innovations and the open source community at GitHub, used as a streaming build system in front-end web development. It is a task runner built on Node.js and NPM, used for automation of time-consuming and repetitive tasks involved in web development like minification, concatenation, cache busting, unit testing, linting, optimization, etc. Gulp uses a code-over-configuration approach to define its tasks and relies on its small, single-purposed plugins to carry them out. The gulp ecosystem includes more than 300 such plugins.


Gulp is similar in its end results to Grunt. However, Gulp is a streaming build system which feels more like a build framework than a task runner. You can write JavaScript with streams like in a node application instead of relying on a configuration like Grunt.


Again, you will need a specific file for it – a gulpfile.js in your project root that contains your tasks. Still, note that Gulp prioritizes code over configuration which makes certain tasks very simple and efficient and also reduces wasted time during the actual creation of a build.


Gulp users can take advantage of more than 3600 plugins and with 850000 weekly downloads, it has become one of the top tools for developers in NPM.



Any installed plugin that is required to perform a task is to be added at the top of the gulpfile as a dependency in the following format.


//Adding dependencies

var gulp = require ( 'gulp');

var gutil = require ( 'util-gulp');



The tasks can then be created. A gulp task is defined by gulp.task and takes the name of the task as the first parameter and a function as the second parameter.


The following example shows the creation of gulp tasks. The first parameter taskName is mandatory and specifies the name by which the task in the shell can be executed


//Defining tasks

gulp.task ( 'taskName', function () {

//do something


Alternatively, a task that performs several predefined functions can be created. Those functions are passed as the second parameter in the form of an array.


function fn1 () {

// do something



function fn2 () {

// Do something else



// Task with array of function names

gulp.task ( 'taskName', ['fn1','fn2']);


Default task

The default task is to be defined at the end of the gulpfile. It can be run by the gulp command in the shell. In the case below, the default task does nothing.


// Gulp default task

gulp.task ( 'default', [ '']);