Monorepo structure for Django & React Applications

Setting up React to work with Django

Posted on Sun 20 August 2017

Hello! Today I will guide you through setting up React application with Django! Let's get started!

First thing is where I place my javascript application? Should it be in another repository? Or maybe Django should use webpack to render js?

I decided to use pattern called monorepo. What does it mean? It means that you will have your Django application in one folder and React application in another folder under the same repository.

What are benefits of such approach? Deployment is a little bit easier as you deploy whole repository, not different services. You can write integrations tests more easily. Everything will be governed by docker-compose. Downsides? To release the only backend you will have to release also frontend part.

So how will my folder structure look like?

├── compose
│   ├── django
│   └── ui
├── film_api
│   ├── config
│   ├── film_database
│   └── requirements
└── film_ui
    ├── public
    └── src

So in film_api, I keep all my backend service. In film_ui lays React code from create-react-app.

How do I setup this everything? I use docker-compose:

    context: .
    dockerfile: ./compose/ui/Dockerfile
    - ./film_ui/:/app
    - /app/node_modules
    command: yarn start
    - "3000:3000"

The interesting setting here is volume /app/node_modules which allow docker to see node_modules from a host machine. I also use Dockerfile:

FROM node:8

COPY ./film_ui/package.json /app
COPY ./film_ui/yarn.lock /app

RUN yarn install

ADD ./film_ui/ /app

Thanks to such configuration I have live reloading and docker see changes that I made in the code base. This part was based on Lessons from Building a Node App in Docker.

That's all! I got my application ready to connect it to GraphQL so I will be displaying real data from the database instead of hard coded ones.

What's your approach to the structure of python with javascript application? Let me know in comments!

Other blog posts in this series:

Repo with code can be found on github.

Cover image from Unsplash under CC0.

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