Quick start

Before you can build an application with Aurelia, you need to meet a couple of prerequisites.


Aurelia was designed to make building web applications and rich UI's easy. Living by the mantra of; Simple, Powerful and Unobtrusive, you have everything you need right out of the box to start building feature-rich web applications.

This section aims to give you a brief technical overview of how Aurelia works, but it is not intended to be a tutorial or reference. If you are looking for a nice gentle introduction to Aurelia that will only take a few minutes of your time the Hello World tutorial is a great place to start.

Core concepts

The core concepts of Aurelia are simple; HTML, CSS and Javascript. While Aurelia does introduce its own templating language you will need to become familiar with, it is enhanced HTML, so the syntax and concepts will feel familiar to you already.

View models and views

Underpinning Aurelia is the view-model and view convention. Out-of-the-box, Aurelia assumes that your components are made up of both a view model (.js or .ts file) as well as an accompanying view with a .html file extension.

If you have worked with .NET or other frameworks that use similar concepts, the view-model and view paradigm will be familiar with you. The view-model contains the business logic and data, the view is responsible for displaying it.

Like all concepts in Aurelia, these are default conventions and can be changed as needed.

Dependency injection

Much like other fully-featured Javascript frameworks and once again, .NET, Aurelia features a robust dependency injection system that allows you to manage your in-app dependencies. You will learn about the benefits of dependency injection in other parts of the documentation, but it plays a fundamental part in Aurelia.

Install node.js

To create new Aurelia applications using the Aurelia CLI via Makes, you will need to ensure you have Node.js installed. The latest version of Node is always recommended and preferable. While Node can be installed through different methods, the easiest is to obtain a distributable from the Node.js website.

Create an app

Aurelia does not require you to install any global Node packages, instead of using the Makes scaffolding tool, new Aurelia applications can be generated by running the following command.

npx makes aurelia

You will then be presented with the Aurelia CLI screen which will first ask for a project name, then guide you through some options. The fastest way to get started is by choosing either the ESNext or TypeScript default options (1 and 2).

We highly recommend choosing TypeScript for any new Aurelia applications. With TypeScript you get the benefits of intellisense and type safety.

Run the app

Once the CLI process is finished and you have installed the dependencies for your new app, run npm start in the project directory, a browser window will open up with the new Aurelia application you just generated running.

Ready to dive deeper?

Take a look at our beginner-friendly obligatory hello world introduction to Aurelia here. And if you want to dive even deeper (perhaps you've dabbled in Aurelia before) we have a fantastic selection of tutorials here.

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