Serves JSON files through REST routes.
Last updated 3 years ago by jamg44 .
MIT · Repository · Bugs · Original npm · Tarball · package.json
$ cnpm install json-server2 
SYNC missed versions from official npm registry.

JSON Server2

Fork from https://github.com/typicode/json-server

Get a full fake REST API with zero coding in less than 30 seconds (seriously)

Created with <3 for front-end developers who need a quick back-end for prototyping and mocking.

See also:

Table of contents


Create a db.json file

  "posts": [
    { "id": 1, "title": "json-server", "author": "typicode" }
  "comments": [
    { "id": 1, "body": "some comment", "postId": 1 }
  "profile": { "name": "typicode" }

Start JSON Server

$ json-server2 --watch db.json

Now if you go to http://localhost:3000/posts/1, you'll get

{ "id": 1, "title": "json-server", "author": "typicode" }

Also when doing requests, it's good to know that:

  • If you make POST, PUT, PATCH or DELETE requests, changes will be automatically and safely saved to db.json using lowdb.
  • Your request body JSON should be object enclosed, just like the GET output. (for example {"name": "Foobar"})
  • Id values are not mutable. Any id value in the body of your PUT or PATCH request wil be ignored. Only a value set in a POST request wil be respected, but only if not already taken.
  • A POST, PUT or PATCH request should include a Content-Type: application/json header to use the JSON in the request body. Otherwise it will result in a 200 OK but without changes being made to the data.


$ npm install -g json-server2


Based on the previous db.json file, here are all the default routes. You can also add other routes using --routes.

Plural routes

GET    /posts
GET    /posts/1
POST   /posts
PUT    /posts/1
PATCH  /posts/1
DELETE /posts/1

Singular routes

GET    /profile
POST   /profile
PUT    /profile
PATCH  /profile


Use . to access deep properties

GET /posts?title=json-server&author=typicode
GET /posts?id=1&id=2
GET /comments?author.name=typicode


Use _page and optionally _limit to paginate returned data.

In the Link header you'll get first, prev, next and last links.

GET /posts?_page=7
GET /posts?_page=7&_limit=20

10 items are returned by default


Add _sort and _order (ascending order by default)

GET /posts?_sort=views&_order=asc
GET /posts/1/comments?_sort=votes&_order=asc

For multiple fields, use the following format:

GET /posts?_sort=user,views&_order=desc,asc


Add _start and _end or _limit (an X-Total-Count header is included in the response)

GET /posts?_start=20&_end=30
GET /posts/1/comments?_start=20&_end=30
GET /posts/1/comments?_start=20&_limit=10

Works exactly as Array.slice (i.e. _start is inclusive and _end exclusive)


Add _gte or _lte for getting a range

GET /posts?views_gte=10&views_lte=20

Add _ne to exclude a value

GET /posts?id_ne=1

Add _like to filter (RegExp supported)

GET /posts?title_like=server

Full-text search

Add q

GET /posts?q=internet


To include children resources, add _embed

GET /posts?_embed=comments
GET /posts/1?_embed=comments

To include parent resource, add _expand

GET /comments?_expand=post
GET /comments/1?_expand=post

To get or create nested resources (by default one level, add custom routes for more)

GET  /posts/1/comments
POST /posts/1/comments


GET /db


Returns default index file or serves ./public directory



Static file server

You can use JSON Server to serve your HTML, JS and CSS, simply create a ./public directory or use --static to set a different static files directory.

mkdir public
echo 'hello world' > public/index.html
json-server2 db.json
json-server2 db.json --static ./some-other-dir

Alternative port

You can start JSON Server on other ports with the --port flag:

$ json-server2 --watch db.json --port 3004

Access from anywhere

You can access your fake API from anywhere using CORS and JSONP.

Remote schema

You can load remote schemas.

$ json-server2 http://example.com/file.json
$ json-server2 http://jsonplaceholder.typicode.com/db

Generate random data

Using JS instead of a JSON file, you can create data programmatically.

// index.js
module.exports = () => {
  const data = { users: [] }
  // Create 1000 users
  for (let i = 0; i < 1000; i++) {
    data.users.push({ id: i, name: `user${i}` })
  return data
$ json-server2 index.js

Tip use modules like Faker, Casual, Chance or JSON Schema Faker.


You can generate self-signed certificates using openssl, e.g.:

# http://blog.celogeek.com/201209/209/how-to-create-a-self-signed-wildcard-certificate/

mkdir certificates
cd certificates
openssl genrsa 2048 > host.key
openssl req -new -x509 -nodes -sha1 -days 3650 -key host.key > host.cert
#[enter *.domain.com for the Common Name]
openssl x509 -noout -fingerprint -text < host.cert > host.info
cat host.cert host.key > host.pem
chmod 400 host.key host.pem

And startup the server with:

$ json-server2 db.json --C certificates/host.cert -K certificates/host.key

Other simple way though is to use hotel.

Add custom routes

Create a routes.json file. Pay attention to start every route with /.

  "/api/": "/",
  "/blog/:resource/:id/show": "/:resource/:id",
  "/blog/:category": "/posts?category=:category"

Start JSON Server with --routes option.

json-server2 db.json --routes routes.json

Now you can access resources using additional routes.

/api/posts # → /posts
/api/posts/1  # → /posts/1
/blog/posts/1/show # → /posts/1
/blog/javascript # → /posts?category=javascript

Add middlewares

You can add your middlewares from the CLI using --middlewares option:

// hello.js
module.exports = (req, res, next) => {
  res.header('X-Hello', 'World')
json-server2 db.json --middlewares ./hello.js
json-server2 db.json --middlewares ./first.js ./second.js

CLI usage

json-server2 [options] <source>

  --config, -c       Path to config file           [default: "json-server.json"]
  --port, -p         Set port                                    [default: 3000]
  --host, -H         Set host                               [default: ""]
  --watch, -w        Watch file(s)                                     [boolean]
  --routes, -r       Path to routes file
  --middlewares, -m  Paths to middleware files                           [array]
  --static, -s       Set static files directory
  --read-only, --ro  Allow only GET requests                           [boolean]
  --no-cors, --nc    Disable Cross-Origin Resource Sharing             [boolean]
  --no-gzip, --ng    Disable GZIP Content-Encoding                     [boolean]
  --snapshots, -S    Set snapshots directory                      [default: "."]
  --delay, -d        Add delay to responses (ms)
  --id, -i           Set database id property (e.g. _id)         [default: "id"]
  --httpscert, -C    Path to HTTPS cert file (e.g. certificates/host.cert)
  --httpskey, -K     Path to HTTPS key file (e.g. certificates/host.key)
  --quiet, -q        Suppress log messages from output                 [boolean]
  --help, -h         Show help                                         [boolean]
  --version, -v      Show version number                               [boolean]

  json-server2 db.json
  json-server2 file.js
  json-server2 http://example.com/db.json
  json-server2 db.json --httpscert certificates/host.cert --httpskey certificates/host.key


You can also set options in a json-server.json configuration file.

  "port": 3000


If you need to add authentication, validation, or any behavior, you can use the project as a module in combination with other Express middlewares.

Simple example

$ npm install json-server2 --save-dev
// server.js
const jsonServer = require('json-server2')
const server = jsonServer.create()
const router = jsonServer.router('db.json')
const middlewares = jsonServer.defaults()

server.listen(3000, () => {
  console.log('JSON Server is running')
$ node server.js

The path you provide to the jsonServer.router function is relative to the directory from where you launch your node process. If you run the above code from another directory, it’s better to use an absolute path:

const path = require('path')
const router = jsonServer.router(path.join(__dirname, 'db.json'))

For an in-memory database, simply pass an object to jsonServer.router().

Please note also that jsonServer.router() can be used in existing Express projects.

Custom routes example

Let's say you want a route that echoes query parameters and another one that set a timestamp on every resource created.

const jsonServer = require('json-server2')
const server = jsonServer.create()
const router = jsonServer.router('db.json')
const middlewares = jsonServer.defaults()

// Set default middlewares (logger, static, cors and no-cache)

// Add custom routes before JSON Server router
server.get('/echo', (req, res) => {

// To handle POST, PUT and PATCH you need to use a body-parser
// You can use the one used by JSON Server
server.use((req, res, next) => {
  if (req.method === 'POST') {
    req.body.createdAt = Date.now()
  // Continue to JSON Server router

// Use default router
server.listen(3000, () => {
  console.log('JSON Server is running')

Access control example

const jsonServer = require('json-server2')
const server = jsonServer.create()
const router = jsonServer.router('db.json')
const middlewares = jsonServer.defaults()

server.use((req, res, next) => {
 if (isAuthorized(req)) { // add your authorization logic here
   next() // continue to JSON Server router
 } else {
server.listen(3000, () => {
  console.log('JSON Server is running')

Custom output example

To modify responses, overwrite router.render method:

// In this example, returned resources will be wrapped in a body property
router.render = (req, res) => {
    body: res.locals.data

Rewriter example

To add rewrite rules, use jsonServer.rewriter():

// Add this before server.use(router)
  '/api/': '/',
  '/blog/:resource/:id/show': '/:resource/:id'

Mounting JSON Server on another endpoint example

Alternatively, you can also mount the router on /api.

server.use('/api', router)


You can deploy JSON Server. For example, JSONPlaceholder is an online fake API powered by JSON Server and running on Heroku.




Third-party tools


MIT - Typicode

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