How to Initialize a React Project using Webpack - a step-by-step tutorial

The first thing to do is open our terminal/command line. We need to install Webpack and Webpack Dev Server globally.

Installing these modules globally means that we can refer to use their respective command line interfaces in the terminal. Installing Webpack allows us to run webpack from the terminal to execute a Webpack script. Installing Webpack Dev Server allows us to run a localhost server using our Webpack configuration. This will all become clear a little later.

In your directory of choice, make a new directory, for example react-webpack-example , and change directory into it:

mkdir react-webpack-example && cd $_

Now that we’re in our new directory, we need to create our Webpack file, which will live in the root. This is a configuration file, and so we name it webpack.config.js .

touch webpack.config.js

Now, we can go ahead and initialise an npm project using the following command:

npm init

We can go ahead and press the enter key to cycle through the options presented to us in the terminal.

The npm init command will create a package.json file, which is going to contain important data about our project.

So far, this is what our tree should look like:

β”œβ”€β”€ package.json
└── webpack.config.js

If you open your package.json file, you should see something like this:

  "name": "react-webpack-example",
  "version": "1.0.0",
  "description": "",
  "main": "webpack.config.js",
  "scripts": {
    "test": "echo \"Error: no test specified\" && exit 1"
  "author": "",
  "license": "ISC"
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