The Backend

Setup a loopback project

  1. Login to your cloud-box over ssh.
    • Create it if you haven't done so already.
    • This will be a robust environment for learning.
  2. Let's setup a loopback project on the [cloud-box]:
     $ cd ~/workspace/loopback-zero-to-hero
     $ slc loopback
     ? What's the name of your application? loopback-zero-to-hero
     ? Enter name of the directory to contain the project: loopback-zero-to-hero
    
    It will just a short while to finish.

What just happened?

  • A minimal set of files was placed in the loopback-zero-to-hero directory to facilitate your project development. And npm install was auto run as part of project setup.

  • Let's take the time to understand our directory structure:

      $ cd ~/workspace/loopback-zero-to-hero
      $ tree -L 1                               
      .
      ├── client
      ├── node_modules
      ├── package.json
      ├── README.md
      └── server
    
  • The client folder is meant to house the source code for your project's frontend/UI. If you look at it right now, it has nothing but a README file:

      $ cd ~/workspace/loopback-zero-to-hero
      $ tree -L 1 client
      client
      └── README.md
    

    for all intents and purposes, it can simply be considered empty.

  • The node_modules folder contains dependencies which were installed based on what's listed in the package.json file. If you are unfamiliar with this concept, you will need to brush up on the basics of NodeJS and the purpose of package.json file.

  • The server folder contains the bulk of your server-side logic which is where LoopBack shines! Take a peek:

      $ cd ~/workspace/loopback-zero-to-hero
      $ tree -L 2 server
      server
      ├── boot
      │   ├── authentication.js
      │   ├── explorer.js
      │   ├── rest-api.js
      │   └── root.js
      ├── config.json
      ├── datasources.json
      ├── middleware.json
      ├── model-config.json
      └── server.js
    
    • boot folder contains js files which will be run (alphabetically by default) when loopback starts
    • some configuration files that will be easier to understand if we explain them in sections that follow
    • server.js file is the entry-point for launching loopback. Just like any NodeJS application, you can run it with node path/to/file.js:
      $ node server/server.js
      Browse your REST API at http://0.0.0.0:3000/explorer
      Web server listening at: http://0.0.0.0:3000/
      
      press ctrl+c to exit.

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