Where does npm install packages?

Can someone tell me where can I find the Node.js modules, which I installed using npm?

Global libraries

You can run npm list -g to see which global libraries are installed and where they're located. Use npm list -g | head -1 for truncated output showing just the path. If you want to display only main packages not its sub-packages which installs along with it - you can use - npm list --depth=0 which will show all packages and for getting only globally installed packages, just add -g i.e. npm list -g --depth=0.

On Unix systems they are normally placed in /usr/local/lib/node or /usr/local/lib/node_modules when installed globally. If you set the NODE_PATH environment variable to this path, the modules can be found by node.

Windows XP - %USERPROFILE%\AppData\npm\node_modules
Windows 7, 8 and 10 - %USERPROFILE%\AppData\Roaming\npm\node_modules

Non-global libraries

Non-global libraries are installed the node_modules sub folder in the folder you are currently in.

You can run npm list to see the installed non-global libraries for your current location.

When installing use -g option to install globally

npm install -g pm2 - pm2 will be installed globally. It will then typically be found in /usr/local/lib/node_modules (Use npm root -g to check where.)

npm install pm2 - pm2 will be installed locally. It will then typically be found in the local directory in /node_modules

The command npm root will tell you the effective installation directory of your npm packages.

If your current working directory is a node package or a sub-directory of a node package, npm root will tell you the local installation directory. npm root -g will show the global installation root regardless of current working directory.

See the documentation.

Use the npm root -g command for find out your global npm path.


$ npm root -g

For globally-installed modules:

The other answers give you platform-specific responses, but a generic one is this:

When you install global module with npm install -g something, npm looks up a config variable prefix to know where to install the module.

You can get that value by running npm config get prefix

To display all the global modules available in that folder use npm ls -g --depth 0 (depth 0 to not display their dependencies).

If you want to change the global modules path, use npm config edit and put prefix = /my/npm/global/modules/prefix in the file or use npm config set prefix /my/npm/global/modules/prefix.

When you use some tools like nodist, they change the platform-default installation path of global npm modules.

On windows I used npm list -g to find it out. By default my (global) packages were being installed to C:\Users\[Username]\AppData\Roaming\npm.

If you are looking for the executable that npm installed, maybe because you would like to put it in your PATH, you can simply do

npm bin


npm bin -g

In earlier versions of NPM modules were always placed in /usr/local/lib/node or wherever you specified the npm root within the .npmrc file. However, in NPM 1.0+ modules are installed in two places. You can have modules installed local to your application in /.node_modules or you can have them installed globally which will use the above.

More information can be found at https://github.com/isaacs/npm/blob/master/doc/install.md

Not direct answer but may help ....

The npm also has a cache folder, which can be found by running npm config get cache (%AppData%/npm-cache on Windows).

The npm modules are first downloaded here and then copied to npm global folder (%AppData%/Roaming/npm on Windows) or project specific folder (your-project/node_modules).

So if you want to track npm packages, and some how, the list of all downloaded npm packages (if the npm cache is not cleaned) have a look at this folder. The folder structure is as {cache}/{name}/{version}

This may help also https://docs.npmjs.com/cli/cache

If module was installed with global (-g) flag, you can get parent location by running following command

npm get prefix


npm ls -g --depth=0

which will print location along with list of installed modules

Cheers :-)

The easiest way would be to do

npm list -g

to list the package and view their installed location.

I had installed npm via chololatey, so the location is


C:\MyProgramData\ is chocolatey repo location.

To get a compact list without dependencies simply use

npm list -g --depth 0

You can find globally installed modules by the command

npm list -g

It will provide you the location where node.js modules have been installed.


If you install node.js modules locally in a folder, you can type the following command to see the location.

npm list

From the docs:

In npm 1.0, there are two ways to install things:

  • globally —- This drops modules in {prefix}/lib/node_modules, and puts executable files in {prefix}/bin, where {prefix} is usually something like /usr/local. It also installs man pages in {prefix}/share/man, if they’re supplied.

  • locally —- This installs your package in the current working directory. Node modules go in ./node_modules, executables go in ./node_modules/.bin/, and man pages aren’t installed at all.

You can get your {prefix} with npm config get prefix. (Useful when you installed node with nvm).

From the docs:

Packages are dropped into the node_modules folder under the prefix. When installing locally, this means that you can require("packagename") to load its main module, or require("packagename/lib/path/to/sub/module") to load other modules.

Global installs on Unix systems go to {prefix}/lib/node_modules. Global installs on Windows go to {prefix}/node_modules (that is, no lib folder.)

Scoped packages are installed the same way, except they are grouped together in a sub-folder of the relevant node_modules folder with the name of that scope prefix by the @ symbol, e.g. npm install @myorg/package would place the package in {prefix}/node_modules/@myorg/package. See scope for more details.

If you wish to require() a package, then install it locally.

You can get your {prefix} with npm config get prefix. (Useful when you installed node with nvm).

Read about locally.
Read about globally.

As the other answers say, the best way is to do

npm list -g

However, if you have a large number of npm packages installed, the output of this command could be very long and a big pain to scroll up (sometimes it's not even possible to scroll that far back).

In this case, pipe the out to the more program, like this

npm list -g | more

In Ubuntu 14.04 they are installed at


Expanding upon other answers -

npm list -g

will show you the location of globally installed packages.

If you want to output that list to a file that you can then easily search in your text editor:

npm list -g > ~/Desktop/npmfiles.txt

I was beginning to going mad searching the real configuration, so here is the all list of configuration files on linux:

  • /etc/npmrc
  • /home/youruser/.npmrc
  • /root/.npmrc

on windows: - c/Program\ Files/nodejs/node_modules/npm/npmrc

Then in the file the prefix is configured:


The prefix is defaulted to /usr in linux, to ${APPDATA}\npm in windows

The node modules are under $prefix tree, and the path should contain $prefix/bin

There may be a problem :

  • When you install globally, you use "sudo su" then the /root/.npmrc may be used!
  • When you use locally without sudo: for your user its the /home/youruser/.npmrc.
  • When your path doesn't represent your prefix
  • When you use npm set -g prefix /usr it sets the /etc/npmrc global, but doesn't override the local

Here is all the informations that were missing to find what is configured where. Hope I have been exhaustive.

Windows 10: When I ran npm prefix -g, I noticed that the install location was inside of the git shell's path that I used to install. Even when that location was added to the path, the command from the globally installed package would not be recognized. Fixed by:

  1. running npm config edit
  2. changing the prefix to 'C:\Users\username\AppData\Roaming\npm'
  3. adding that path to the system path variable
  4. reinstalling the package with -g.

Btw, npm will look for node_modules in parent folders (up to very root) if can not find in local.

If you're trying to access your global dir from code, you can backtrack from process.execPath. For example, to find wsproxy, which is in {NODE_GLOBAL_DIR}/bin/wsproxy, you can just:

path.join(path.dirname(process.execPath), 'wsproxy')

There's also how the npm cli works @ ec9fcc1/lib/npm.js#L254 with:

path.resolve(process.execPath, '..', '..')

See also ec9fcc1/lib/install.js#L521:

var globalPackage = path.resolve(npm.globalPrefix,
                                 'lib', 'node_modules', moduleName(pkg))

Where globalPrefix has a default set in ec9fcc1/lib/config/defaults.js#L92-L105 of:

if (process.env.PREFIX) {
    globalPrefix = process.env.PREFIX
} else if (process.platform === 'win32') {
    // c:\node\node.exe --> prefix=c:\node\
    globalPrefix = path.dirname(process.execPath)
} else {
    // /usr/local/bin/node --> prefix=/usr/local
    globalPrefix = path.dirname(path.dirname(process.execPath))

    // destdir only is respected on Unix
    if (process.env.DESTDIR) {
        globalPrefix = path.join(process.env.DESTDIR, globalPrefix)

If you have Visual Studio installed, you will find it comes with its own copy of node separate from the one that is on the path when you installed node yourself - Mine is in C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Visual Studio\2019\Community\MSBuild\Microsoft\VisualStudio\NodeJs.

If you run the npm command from inside this directory you will find out which node modules are installed inside visual studio.

Windows 7, 8 and 10 - %USERPROFILE%\AppData\Roaming\npm\node_modules.

Note : If you are somewhere in folder type cd .. until you are in C: directory. Then, type cd %USERPROFILE%\AppData\Roaming\npm\node_modules. And, magically %USERPROFILE% will change into Users\YourUserProfile\. I just wanted to clarify on ideas referred by Decko in first response. npm list -g will list all the bits you got globally installed. If you need to find your project related npm package then cd 'your angular project xyz', then run npm list. It will show list of modules in npm package. It will also give you list of dependencies missing, and you may require to effectively run that project.