1. Setting up the Angular Application

  2. Layerfile

  3. Setting up the Layerfile

  4. Adding the Layerfile

  5. Video Tutorial

  6. Project Source Code

Setting up the Angular Application

(You can skip this section if you already have an Angular app running.)

To build your Angular application, ensure you have both node and npm installed. You can verify with the following commands: node --version npm --version. If installed correctly these will both give you a number as an output.

Next, install the Angular CLI with npm install -g @angular/cli;

After installed, go to a folder and run the following command ng new webappio-angular-example. This will create a new Angular app in the folder ‘webappio-angular-example’. When running this command, you’ll be prompted to use Angular routing (we selected yes), and select a stylesheet (we selected SCSS).

Once your app is finished installing, go into your directory with the command cd webappio-angular-example, and run the command ng serve -o --poll=2000. This will open the angular application on your computer on your localhost. You can now go in and change the title of the page or make another change to your Angular application to see the changes in effect.

Summary of Steps:

  1. node --version
  2. npm --version
  3. npm install -g @angular/cli
  4. ng new webappio-angular-example
  5. cd webappio-angular-example
  6. ng serve -o --poll=2000


Listed below is an example Layerfile for webapp.io which you can use to setup a basic Angular application. We’ll breakdown this Layerfile in the section below for a set of detailed explanation on what each one of the instructions do.

# Set the image
FROM vm/ubuntu:18.04

# Install nodejs and npm
RUN curl -sL https://deb.nodesource.com/setup_14.x | sudo -E bash -
RUN sudo apt-get install -y nodejs
RUN sudo npm install npm@latest -g

# Install angular
RUN npm install -g @angular/cli

# Get files from repository
COPY . .

# Install project dependencies
RUN npm install

# Run angular app
RUN BACKGROUND ng serve --host --disable-host-check

# Show website on preview environment at port 4200
EXPOSE WEBSITE http://localhost:4200

Setting up the Layerfile

If you haven’t already, please sign up to webapp.io, and install webapp.io onto your repository.

First let’s breakdown each instruction in our Layerfile.

1: Set the Image

FROM vm/ubuntu:18.04

The FROM instruction tells webapp.io what base to use to run tests from. There can only be one FROM line, and in this case we’re using the ubuntu:18.04 virtual machine image.

If you’re familiar with AWS Ec2 Instances, this is similar to creating a virtual machine from the ubuntu 18.04 image.

2. Install NodeJS and NPM

RUN curl -sL https://deb.nodesource.com/setup_14.x | sudo -E bash -

RUN sudo apt-get install -y nodejs

RUN sudo npm install npm@latest -g

The RUN instruction will run the given script, and fails the Layerfile if the script fails. In this case, we’re using the RUN command to install the dependencies we need to build and run the Angular application.

In this case we’re using the RUN instruction to download Node JS and npm.

3. Install Angular

RUN npm install -g @angular/cli

Similar to the previous step, we use the RUN command but this time we’re using it to install Angular. This was the same step you ran when setting up Angular locally.

4. Get Repository Files

COPY . .

The COPY instruction moves files from your repository to the virtual machine. The Layerfile will pick up on the files in the repository that you are making the commit for, and will copy those files into the virtual machine so you can run you project.

5. Install Dependencies

RUN npm install

Similar to the RUN commands above, this will execute the given script npm install, which will install the dependencies for the Angular app.

6. Start the Angular App

RUN BACKGROUND ng serve --host --disable-host-check

The RUN BACKGROUND instruction is the RUN instruction with the BACKGROUND flag. This tells webapp.io to continue to the next step in the Layerfile instead of waiting for the given script to run. The reason why we do this is that ng serve will essentially block the terminal while the Angular app is running. We want to continue to the next step so that’s why we use RUN BACKGROUND here.

7. Expose Angular App on the Virtual Machine

EXPOSE WEBSITE http://localhost:4200

The EXPOSE WEBSITE instruction creates a link to view the virtual machine at a specific port. We use EXPOSE WEBSITE to expose the virtual machine on port 4200 which is where the Angular application runs after running ng serve. We use EXPOSE WEBSITE here so we can get a link to our Angular app to share with stakeholders involved in our projects.

Adding the Layerfile

The last step in this process is to add the Layerfile to your repository. Simply create a file called Layerfile (no file extension) in the root of your Angular application. If you haven’t already, install webapp.io onto your repository containing your Angular app. Once done, simply create a commit and push your Angular app to the repository with the new Layerfile. Webapp.io will pick up on the Layerfile and build your Angular application according to the steps in your Layerfile.

Video Tutorial

Check out our Angular video tutorial before for a step-by-step breakdown on how to set up webapp.io with preview environments for an Angular application:

View Project Source Code