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Nate Radebaugh
Nate Radebaugh
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Configuring VSCode for Prettier

April 5, 2020 9:46 PM

VSCode has great support for prettier. Learn how to configure it to maximize using pretter across your company's projects and teams.

Hit the ground running with Visual Studio Code (VSCode) by installing the best extensions to make you productive.

While Visual Studio 2019 is a great IDE, its support for modern web development front-end toolkits is lacking. One such integration that is fairly incomplete in Visual Studio 2019 is integration with is the Prettier code formatter.

Installation

Install through VS Code extensions. Search for Prettier - Code formatter

Visual Studio Code Market Place: Prettier - Code formatter

Can also be installed in VS Code:

  1. Launch VS Code Quick Open (Ctrl+P)
  2. Paste the following command
    shell
    ext install esbenp.prettier-vscode
  3. Press enter.

Configuration

  • Format on Save

    1. From VSCode, open "File > Preferences > Settings"

    2. Choose the level of setting you'd like to manage:

      • User (applies to all workspaces on this machine)
      • OR Workspace (applies to just this workspace)
    3. Search for format on save

      • Check Editor: Format on Save if it isn't already checked
  • Require Prettier config to avoid mistakenly formatting files that are not explicitly opted in to using prettier.

    1. From VSCode, open "File > Preferences > Settings"

    2. Choose the level of setting you'd like to manage:

      • User (applies to all workspaces on this machine)
      • OR Workspace (applies to just this workspace)
    3. Search for prettier

      • Scroll down and find Prettier: Require Config
      • Check Prettier: Require Config if it isn't already checked

Explanation

Visual Studio will now look for a prettier config and, if it finds one, will format the file any time you save! Don't worry about tabbing or semicolons again -- prettier will handle all the heavy lifting.

Prettier Configuration files

Prettier (and its VSCode extension supports) a number of configuration files:

  • A "prettier" key in your package.json file.
  • A .prettierrc file, written in JSON or YAML, with optional extensions: .json/.yaml/.yml (without extension takes precedence).
  • A .prettierrc.js or prettier.config.js file that exports an object.
  • A .prettierrc.toml file, written in TOML (the .toml extension is required).

I recommend...

I recommend using all the prettier defaults, and creating a .prettierrc file in the topmost directory in your project you want to use prettier with

An empty .prettierrc file will do the trick to enable auto-formatting.

.prettierrc
{}

Gradually migrating large projects to prettier

Once added benefit to the Prettier: Require Config setting in VSCode if you're working with a large project that hasn't fully been migrated to use prettier for the whole setup, adding directory-level configuration files enables granular migration to prettier.

Further reading...