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How to compile assets

Some components in PrestaShop, like Javascript or SCSS files, need to be compiled to be usable.


PrestaShop uses Webpack to compile assets, which requires NodeJS (get it here).

You will need a different NodeJS version depending on the PrestaShop version you’re working with:

PrestaShop Versions NodeJS Versions NPM Versions
1.7.0~1.7.6 8.x 5.x
1.7.7 10.x 6.x
1.7.8 12.x and 14.x 6.x

If you are struggling to compile assets, you might be using the wrong NodeJs version. We strongly recommend you to use a version manager such as ’n’ or nvm so you can easily switch between NodeJS versions.

On Windows, you’ll probably need to install windows-build-tools using npm i --global windows-build-tools in order to make node-gyp work.

Assets that need to be compiled

  • Back Office
    • Default theme
      • SASS files
        Located in admin-dev/themes/default/sass
    • New theme
      • SCSS files
        Located in admin-dev/themes/new-theme/scss
      • JS files
        Located in admin-dev/themes/new-theme/js
  • Front Office
    • Core assets
      • JS files
        Located in themes/_core/js
    • Classic theme
      • SCSS files
        Located in themes/classic/_dev/css
      • JS files
        Located in themes/classic/_dev/js

Compiling assets

  1. Switch to the root of the subproject
    Subproject Path
    Default theme cd admin-dev/themes/default/
    New theme cd admin-dev/themes/new-theme/
    FO Core cd themes/
    Classic theme cd themes/classic/_dev/
  1. Run npm install (first time only)

    npm install
  2. Run webpack

    npm run build

Build all assets at once

You can rebuild all the assets at once by executing this command from the project root:

# or alternatively, since 1.7.8:
make assets

Watching for changes

You can also make webpack listen for changes and compile only what’s needed as you work on your files:

npm run watch

Rebuild your changes before committing.

The “watch” build will optimize your assets for development. Please remember to rebuild for production when you are done using npm run build.


If npm install fails with error: Failed at the ... postinstall script.:

You may be using an old version or one we don’t support yet. Currently on 1.7.8, every folders containing a package.json is compatible with node 12. How we manage to work with this, as well as working on previous PrestaShop version, is that we use a tool to easily swap between node version.

There are a lot of tools able to do this. At PrestaShop, we mainly use the ’n’ package or nvm. This is pretty easy to use, when you are working on a directory which need an older or newer node version, use one of these tools to switch and then npm install && npm run build.