LESS - Command Line Usage


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Using the command line, we can compile the .less file to .css.

Installing lessc for Use Globally

The following command is used to install lessc with npm(node package manager) to make the lessc available globally.

npm install less -g

You can also add a specific version after the package name. For example npm install less@1.6.2 -g

Installing for Node Development

The following command is used to install the latest version of lessc in your project folder.

npm i less -save-dev

It is also added to the devDependencies in your project package.json.

Beta releases of lessc

It is tagged as beta when the lessc structure is published to npm Here, the new functionality is developed periodically. less -v is used to get the current version.

Installing an unpublished development version of lessc

The commit - ish is to be specified, when we proceed to install an unpublished version of lessc and the instructions need to be followed for identifying a git URL as a dependency. This will ensure that you are using the correct version of leesc for your project.

Server-Side and Command Line Usage

bin/lessc includes binary in the repository. It works with Windows, OS X and nodejs on *nix.

Command Line Usage

Input is read from stdin when source is set to dash or hyphen(-).

lessc [option option = parameter ...]  [destination]

For instance, we can compile .less to .css by using the following command −

lessc stylesheet.less stylesheet.css

We can compile .less to .css by and minify the result using the following command.

lessc -x stylesheet.less stylesheet.css

Options

Following table lists out options used in command line usage −

Sr.No. Options & Description Command
1

Help

Help message is displayed with the options available.

lessc -help
lessc -h
2

Include Paths

It includes the available paths to the library. These paths can be referenced simply and relatively in the Less files. The paths in windows are separated by colon(:) or semicolon(;).

lessc --include-path = PATH1;PATH2
3

Makefile

It generates a makefile import dependencies list to stdout as output.

lessc -M
lessc --depends
4

No Color

It disables colorized output.

lessc --no-color
5

No IE Compatibility

It disables IE compatibility checks.

lessc --no-ie-compat
6

Disable Javascript

It disables the javascript in less files.

lessc --no-js
7

Lint

It checks the syntax and reports error without any output.

lessc --lint
lessc -l
8

Silent

It forcibly stops the display of error messages.

lessc --silent
lessc -s
9

Strict Imports

It force evaluates imports.

lessc --strict-imports
10

Allow Imports from Insecure HTTPS Hosts

It imports from the insecure HTTPS hosts.

lessc --insecure
11

Version

It displays the version number and exits.

lessc -version
lessc -v
12

Compress

It helps in removing the whitespaces and compress the output.

lessc -x
lessc --compress
13

Source Map Output Filename

It generates the sourcemap in less. If sourcemap option is defined without filename then it will use the extension map with the Less file name as source.

lessc --source-map
lessc -source-map = file.map
14

Source Map Rootpath

Rootpath is specified and should be added to Less file paths inside the sourcemap and also to the map file which is specified in your output css.

lessc --source-map-rootpath = dev-files/
15

Source Map Basepath

A path is specified which has to be removed from the output paths. Basepath is opposite of the rootpath option.

lessc --source-map-basepath = less-files/
16

Source Map Less Inline

All the Less files should be included in the sourcemap.

lessc --source-map-less-inline
17

Source Map Map Inline

It specifies that in the output css the map file should be inline.

lessc --source-map-map-inline
18

Source Map URL

A URL is allowed to override the points in the map file in the css.

lessc --source-map-url = ../my-map.json
19

Rootpath

It sets paths for URL rewriting in relative imports and urls.

lessc -rp=resources/
lessc --rootpath=resources/
20

Relative URLs

In imported files, the URL are re-written so that the URL is always relative to the base file.

lessc -ru
lessc --relative-urls
21

Strict Math

It processes all Math function in your css. By default, it's off.

lessc -sm = on
lessc --strict-math = on
22

Strict Units

It allows mixed units.

lessc -su = on
lessc --strict-units = on
23

Global Variable

A variable is defined which can be referenced by the file.

lessc --global-var = "background = green"

24

Modify Variable

This is unlike global variable option; it moves the declaration at the end of your less file.

lessc --modify-var = "background = green"
25

URL Arguments

To move on to every URL, an argument is allowed to specify.

lessc --url-args = "arg736357"
26

Line Numbers

Inline source-mapping is generated.

lessc --line-numbers = comments
lessc --line-numbers = mediaquery
lessc --line-numbers = all
27

Plugin

It loads the plugin.

lessc --clean-css
lessc --plugin = clean-css = "advanced"


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