Minification update: using yuglify

In the previous post we described how to use YUI Compressor to minify your CSS and JavaScript when deploying your application using Unfold. The next day, Andrew Wooldridge pointed me to a blog post called State of YUI Compressor.

YUI Compressor will be going through a deprecation process as the YUI team moves to using a custom-wrapped UglifyJS for JavaScript compression and a more fully updated and maintained version of CSSMin for CSS compression. This will allow YUI to move beyond the limitations of the current YUI Compressor as well as take advantage of the current state of the art in compression.

The new compression utilities are wrapped into a single node package called yuglify and new issues can be filed against this project on GitHub.

So, let's convert the minify task we wrote to use yuglify instead of the soon to be deprecated YUI Compressor.

The steps

  1. We added the yui-compressor.jar to a tools folder in our scm. We can now remove that, we will depend on yuglify being available on the PATH
  2. yuglify is a node.js package, so to install it on our system we need to install node.js. Note that it needs to be available on the target machine of our deployment because that's where the minification will happen. (unless you're using the local build option, more on that later)
  3. Open a command prompt and install yuglify through npm

    npm install -g yuglify

  4. Now we can alter the task to use yuglify:

task minify {
    # Invoke-Script, so this gets executed on the target
    Invoke-Script {
        # Define a function, that can minify a folder that's under web
        function Minify($folder, $type) {
            Write-Host "Minifying folder $folder" -Fore Green

            If(-not $type) {
                $type = $folder

            # get all files inside the web folder and minify them
            Foreach($file in (Get-ChildItem "$($config.releasepath)\web\$folder")) {
                Write-Host "Minifying $file"
                # Wrap inside psake exec function so the build 
                # fails if this operation fails
                Exec {
                    # get the file's content and pass it to yuglify
                    Get-Content $file.FullName `
                    | yuglify --terminal --type $type `
                              --output $file.FullName

        # Now call the function for each folder we want to minimize
        Minify "js"
        Minify "css"

Set-AfterTask release minify

That's it

We're now ready for the future, using yuglify instead of the deprecated YUI Compressor.

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