While Docker is our preferred method for installing LibreChat due to its ease of setting up and consistency across different environments, we strongly recommend using npm for development purposes. This recommendation is based on several advantages that npm offers for developers:

  • Faster Iteration: npm allows for quicker iteration cycles during development. Changes made to the codebase can be immediately reflected without the need to rebuild the entire Docker image, leading to a more efficient development process.
  • Direct Dependency Management: Using npm gives developers direct control over the dependencies. It’s easier to install, update, or remove packages, and manage project dependencies in real-time, which is crucial for development.
  • Simplified Debugging: Debugging is more straightforward with npm, as developers can directly interact with the code and tools without the abstraction layer that Docker introduces. This direct interaction facilitates easier identification and resolution of issues.
  • Native Environment: Developing with npm allows the application to run in its native environment on your machine. This can help in catching environment-specific issues early in the development cycle.
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