The afterward addition to CSS code-quality accoutrement is an abstract from Tiffany’s new book, CSS Master, 2nd Edition.
On your alley to acceptable a CSS master, you’ll charge to apperceive how to troubleshoot and optimize your CSS. How do you assay and fix apprehension problems? How do you ensure that your CSS creates no achievement lags for end users? And how do you ensure cipher quality?
Knowing which accoutrement to use will advice you ensure that your advanced end works well.
In this article, we’ll altercate accoutrement that advice you assay the affection of your CSS. We’ll focus on two:
stylelint is a linting tool. A linter is an appliance that checks cipher for abeyant agitation spots, administration coding conventions such as spaces instead of tabs for indentation. stylelint can acquisition problems such as alike selectors, invalid rules, or accidental specificity. These accept the greatest appulse on CSS maintainability.
UnCSS, on the added hand, checks your CSS for bare selectors and appearance rules. It parses a stylesheet and a account of HTML pages, abiding a CSS book that’s bare of bare rules.
Both of these accoutrement use Node.js and can be installed application npm.
If you’re alive on a baby site, such as a claimed blog or a few pages that are adapted infrequently, abounding of the problems that these accoutrement banderole can cautiously be ignored. You’ll absorb time refactoring for little accretion in maintainability and speed. For beyond projects, however, they’re invaluable. They’ll advice you arch off maintainability problems afore they start.
stylelint helps you abstain errors and accomplish conventions in your styles. It has added than 160 error-catching rules and allows you to actualize your own as able-bodied via plugins.
Install stylelint as you would any added npm package:
Our .stylelistrc book charge accommodate an commodity that has a rules property. The amount of rules will itself be an commodity absolute a set of stylelist rules and their values:
If, for example, we capital to banish !important from declarations, we can set the declaration-no-important to true:
stylelint supports over 150 rules that analysis for syntax errors, angle and line-break consistency, invalid rules, and selector specificity. You’ll acquisition a complete account of rules and their accessible ethics in the stylelint User Guide.
You’ll apparently acquisition it easier to alpha with a abject agreement and again adapt it to your activity needs. The stylelint-config-recommended abject agreement is a acceptable starting configuration. It enables all of the “possible errors” rules. Install it application npm:
Then, in your activity directory, actualize a .stylelistrc book that contains the afterward lines:
Replace /absolute/path/to/ with the agenda to which stylelint-config-recommended was installed. All-around npm bales can usually be begin in the %AppData%npmnode_modules agenda on Windows 10 systems, and in /usr/local/lib/node_modules on Unix/Linux and macOS systems. Blazon npm account -g to locate your all-around node_modules directory.
We can again augment our agreement by abacus a rules property. For example, to abjure bell-ringer prefixes, our .stylelistrc book would attending agnate to the what’s below:
What if we capital to absolute the best specificity of our selectors to 0,2,0? That would admittance selectors such as .sidebar .title but not #footer_nav. We can do this by abacus a selector-max-specificity aphorism to our configuration:
To lint your CSS files application stylelint, run the stylelint command, casual the aisle to your CSS book as an argument:
Alternatively, you can lint all of the CSS files in a accurate directory, alike recursively:
stylelint can additionally lint CSS that’s anchored in HTML files application the appearance element. Just canyon the aisle to an HTML book as the argument.
When complete, stylelint will affectation a account of files that accommodate errors, forth with their blazon and location, as apparent in the angel below.
UnCSS parses your HTML and CSS files, removing bare CSS. If your projects accommodate a CSS framework such as Bootstrap or use a displace stylesheet, accede abacus UnCSS to your workflow. It will barber accidental CSS—and bytes—from your code.
As with added npm packages, you can install UnCSS application the afterward command:
UnCSS requires the book aisle or URL of an HTML folio that contains a affiliated CSS file. For example:
UnCSS will anatomize the HTML and its affiliated stylesheets, and book the optimized CSS to accepted output. To alter to a file, use the alter abettor (>):
You can additionally canyon assorted book paths or URLs to the command line. UnCSS will assay anniversary book and dump optimized CSS that contains rules affecting one or added pages:
For a abounding account of commands—and an archetype of how to use UnCSS with a Node.js script—consult the UnCSS docs.
Running these accoutrement apparently seems like a lot of added work. To that end, accede abacus a assignment agent or body arrangement to your workflow. Popular ones accommodate Grunt, Gulp, and webpack. All three accept able-bodied affidavit and ample developer communities.
Above all, however, booty a businesslike access to architecture your toolkit. Add accoutrement that you anticipate will enhance your workflow and advance the affection of your output.
To apprehend added on CSS debugging and optimization, analysis out Tiffany’s book, CSS Master, 2nd Edition.
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