How to fix an npm package

It might happen that an npm package you want to use has some bugs. Should you just wait for maintainers to fix them? Sure not 😉. You can eliminate the bug and host package by yourself. Then create a pull request and possibly become an open-source contributor 💪.

by rawpixel

Bugs happens 🐛

Recently I used a react-ga npm package to connect React based Single Page App to Google Analytics services.

To start I followed an usual procedure, including react-ga in package.json file. npm install went well, then on npm start:

Failed to compile.

(87,20): A rest parameter must be of an array type.

🙀 This is unusual… Clearly there is a TypeScript related bug in this package… Having a look on the mentioned index.d.ts file, line 87:

export function ga(...args: any): void;

Well, I guess I just follow the message of TypeScript compiler and make it:

export function ga(...args: any[]): void;

So I saved the changes locally and tested. It worked! But you can’t just rely on modifying a node module source files… You probably ignore node_modules files in your repo, which is a good common practice. Any time you (or your colleague) reinstall the package it will be downloaded again from original source.

Fork and fix 🍴

Usually (if not always, not sure) package source code is served on github. What’s more, you can point a github repository in package.json to download a package from there. Can you see where it goes 😉?

  1. I forked the package,
  2. cloned to my machine so I can edit the source code git clone,
  3. created a fix branch, committed the fix,
  4. pushed it to my forked repo.

In package.json, instead of version number, I pointed to the repo I just forked and created, with fix commit hash to make it explicit what code I refer to:


  "react-ga": "git+",


After re-npm install I could enjoy implementing this great package!

Contribute 💪

Don’t be afraid to share your fix with the community! Raise an issue and create a pull request with your changes. Once you implemented them in your forked repo, it is easy!

pull request
Fix => contribute