Effortless Development: Hot Reloading in React with react-hot-loader

As we delve into the intricate world of React development, we encounter a common inconvenience – the need to manually refresh our browsers every time a code change is made. While this may seem like a minor hiccup, it disrupts the development flow. Fear not, for there’s a simple solution: introducing react-hot-loader. This tool revolutionizes the development experience, allowing us to witness real-time changes without the hassle of constant browser refreshes.

Installing react-hot-loader:
To embark on this journey of seamless development, let’s begin by installing react-hot-loader. Open your terminal in the project directory and run:

npm install --save-dev react-hot-loader

This quick installation paves the way for a more fluid development process.

Implementing Hot Reloading:
Now, let’s integrate react-hot-loader it into our React app. Open the app.js file and follow these simple steps. At the top, import the hot function from react-hot-loader:

import { hot } from 'react-hot-loader';

Then, modify the export statement at the bottom of the file:

export default hot(module)(App);

This elegant addition ensures that any changes made to our app reflect instantly without needing manual browser refresh.

Streamlining the Development Workflow:
To further enhance our workflow, let’s create an npm script for running the development server effortlessly. Open your package.json file and add the following script:

"scripts": {
  "dev": "npx webpack-dev-server --mode development",

Now, running npm run dev in the terminal initiates the webpack dev server, building and serving our app dynamically.

Understanding the Magic Behind the Scenes:
While the webpack dev server is running, you may notice the absence of the expected dist folder. This is by design – webpack dev server holds the dist folder in memory, serving it dynamically and discarding it upon shutdown.

Building the React App: 
We can create a build script for scenarios where you want to generate the 

 folder physically. Update the scripts section in package.json:

"scripts": {
  "build": "npx webpack --mode development",

Executing npm run build compiles our React app, producing the dist folder with all the transpiled code.

With react-hot-loader seamlessly integrated into our React development environment, the days of manual browser refreshes are behind us. Real-time updates and a streamlined workflow empower us to focus on what truly matters – crafting exceptional React applications. Embrace the efficiency, embrace the future of React development!