📄 Template repository for Lisk projects

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Last updateLast update2021-08-25


Goals of this repository

  1. To gather standards, patterns and workflows which we adopt, in order to provide a central source of truth regarding our “current thinking”, which can then be applied to individual Lisk projects as and when appropriate.
  2. To serve as a base for new projects.


When starting a new Lisk project, use this repository as a base. With a few small customizations, you will have a skeleton project up and running in a few minutes. The easiest way to bootstrap a new project is using the bin/bootstrap.sh script:

curl --silent --user my_github_username "https://raw.githubusercontent.com/LiskHQ/lisk-template/master/bin/bootstrap.sh" | bash -ls my-fresh-lisk-project

If you have two-factor authentication enabled on your GitHub account, you will need to generate an access token rather than authenticating via curl. Having logged into GitHub using a browser, view the bootstrap script in the same browser. Click "Raw" to view the raw file. Then copy the full URL (including the access token) and run the following:

curl --silent "the_url_i_just_copied?token=remember_the_token" | bash -ls my-fresh-lisk-project


  • my_github_username in the first command should be replaced with your GitHub username. You will be prompted for your GitHub password.
  • Watch out: some terminal applications automatically escape pasted strings, which may conflict with the quoting used in the examples above. If you get a 404 error and you've authenticated successfully with GitHub, check to see if the URL has escape characters which should be removed.
  • The -l option tells bash to act as if it had been invoked as a login shell. If you use nvm as your Node.js version manager, then it will be used to set the correct version of Node.js when installing NPM dependencies.
  • my-fresh-lisk-project should be replaced with the name you’ve chosen for your new project.

If you would rather complete this process on your own, you should follow these steps:

  1. Clone the repository.
  2. Reinitialise git (by removing the .git directory, running git init and committing everything into the initial commit).
  3. Find and replace all instances of lisk-template with your project name (assuming the name of your project is the same as its GitHub namespace).
  4. Commit these customization changes.
  5. Run npm install.

More precise steps can be viewed in the bin/bootstrap.sh script.


You will need to update the project description. Other fields will be given a sensible value but may need to be updated depending on the project.


Installed for your convenience are the following:

  1. Babel plus various plugins, presets and tools so you can write modern JavaScript without worrying about compatibility.
  2. Prettier for standard code formatting.
  3. ESLint plus various configs and plugins, to enforce additional rules beyond Prettier’s remit.
  4. Husky and lint-staged to help with running checks/builds before/after various git/NPM commands.
  5. Mocha, Chai and Sinon plus plugins for tests.
  6. nyc and Coveralls for coverage.

These can be removed as appropriate, along with the corresponding NPM scripts.


  • start will run your source code using babel-node, which is not performant but does not require transpilation.
  • format will format your source and test code using Prettier.
  • lint will lint everything relevant with ESLint.
  • test will run your tests and instrument your code using nyc. (With the initial setup this results in a failing test: the first step in TDD’s red-green-refactor process!)
  • test:watch will watch for changes and rerun your tests.
  • test:watch:min will do the same but using the min reporter (useful if you just want to check if your changes break a test).
  • cover will output a coverage report (differs based on the environment).
  • build will transpile your source code using Babel.
  • precommit will format staged files and lint everything before you commit.
  • prepush will lint and test before you push.
  • prepublishOnly will run the prepush checks and the build command. Note: this is run automatically before publishing in NPM v5+ but must be performed manually in NPM 3 (the currently supported NPM version).

Documentation for contributors

Several files especially relevant for contributors can be found in the docs directory:

  • CODE_OF_CONDUCT.md which should probably be left as it is.
  • CONTRIBUTING.md which will benefit from project-specific customization.
  • ISSUE_TEMPLATE.md and PULL_REQUEST_TEMPLATE.md which may need to be adapted to your project.
  • Additionally, in the root of the project is the LICENSE file, which should be left alone unless your project is being released under a different license. In this case the license field of the package.json file should be updated as well.

Project structure

  • Source code should go in src, test code should go in test.
  • File and directory names should be underscore_separated for best cross-file system compatibility. (I.e. not in camel case etc.)
  • nyc output goes into .nyc_output, and built files are put into a dist directory which is created when needed.
  • Files you do not want to commit can be placed in .idea or tmp (you will need to create these directories yourself).

Testing structure

The test directory has some configuration and setup files, and is otherwise divided into a specs directory and a steps directory. The intention is for specifications to contain implementation-neutral Mocha suites, and the (reusable) steps to be implemented in the steps directory. See this blogpost for an introduction.

If this approach does not suit your project the structure can be replaced as necessary. However, the configuration and setup should probably be preserved. Helpful things in place include:

  • Combining Babel, nyc and Mocha.
  • Adding Chai’s expect as a global, and initialising plugins.
  • Adding Given, When and Then from mocha-bdd as globals.
  • Adding sinon and a sinon sandbox as globals, and resetting the sandbox after each test in a global hook (it is recommended to use the sandbox wherever possible to avoid manual resets).

Continuous integration

This project assumes a standard CI setup on Jenkins. There are three Jenkinsfiles:

  • Jenkinsfile for branches/PRs which lints, tests, reports coverage to Coveralls, and notifies GitHub.
  • Jenkinsfile.private which checks branches/PRs for known vulnerabilities in the installed dependencies using Snyk if package.json has changed. The results should not be publicly viewable in Jenkins.
  • Jenkinsfile.nightly which checks the master branch for vulnerabilities nightly. The results should also not be publicly viewable in Jenkins.

The .snyk file configures Snyk.

In order to set up continuous integration for your project you will need to do the following:

  1. Modify the main Jenkinsfile to your requirements.
  2. Update your GitHub project settings to allow Jenkins to submit information.
  3. Set up the main Jenkins project, the private project, and the private nightly project in the nightly-builds folder.
  4. Add a Coveralls configuration file at ~/.coveralls.yml-lisk-template on all Jenkins nodes that will be used to build lisk-template.

Miscellaneous information

  • .editorconfig can be used in combination with plugins for a wide range of editors/IDEs to ensure consistency of certain key syntax details.
  • .npmignore ensures that as little as possible is included when published to NPM. This may require adjustment.
  • If the project is for a client, or otherwise will not be used as a library in other projects, consider replacing babel-plugin-transform-runtime and babel-runtime with babel-polyfill (see the details section of the Babel Polyfill documentation).
  • The official language for all Lisk projects is US English (although we may also support translations into other languages on a per-project basis).

Applying these standards

All of these standards should be applied with the specific project in mind. There might be good reasons to delay the application of some standard, or to avoid it completely. In particular, the following are very likely to vary from project to project:

  • The Babel plugins babel-plugin-transform-runtime and babel-runtime (where babel-polyfill might make more sense)
  • Use of Babel at all
  • The mocha-bdd dependency and the testing structure
  • The npm start script
  • The npm run build script




Copyright © 2017 Lisk Foundation

This program is free software: you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation, either version 3 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License for more details.

You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License along with this program. If not, see http://www.gnu.org/licenses/.