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NgModules

Motivation

Angular applications begin from the root NgModule. Angular manages an application’s dependencies through its module system comprised of NgModules. Alongside plain JavaScript modules, NgModules ensure code modularity and encapsulation.

Modules also provide a top-most level of organizing code. Each NgModule sections off its own chunk of code as the root. This module provides top-to-bottom encapsulation for its code. The entire block of code can then export to any other module. In this sense, NgModules act like gatekeepers to their own code blocks.

Angular’s documented utilities come from NgModules authored by Angular. No utility is available unless the NgModule that declares it gets included into the root. These utilities must also export from their host module so that importers can use them. This form of encapsulation empowers the developer to produce his or her own NgModules within the same file-system.

Plus, it makes sense to know why the Angular CLI (command-line interface) imports BrowserModule from @angular/core. This happens whenever a new app generates using the CLI command: ng new [name-of-app].

Understanding the point of the implementation may suffice in most cases. However, understanding how the implementation wires itself to the root is even better. It all happens automatically by importing BrowserModule into the root.

Angular modularity

Angular libraries are NgModules, such as FormsModule, HttpClientModule, and RouterModule. Many third-party libraries are available as NgModules such as Material Design, Ionic, and AngularFire2.

NgModules consolidate components, directives, and pipes into cohesive blocks of functionality, each focused on a feature area, application business domain, workflow, or common collection of utilities.

Modules can also add services to the application. Such services might be internally developed, like something you'd develop yourself or come from outside sources, such as the Angular router and HTTP client.

Modules can be loaded eagerly when the application starts or lazy loaded asynchronously by the router.

NgModule metadata does the following:

  • Declares which components, directives, and pipes belong to the module.
  • Makes some of those components, directives, and pipes public so that other module's component templates can use them.
  • Imports other modules with the components, directives, and pipes that components in the current module need.
  • Provides services that the other application components can use.

Every Angular app has at least one module, the root module. You bootstrap that module to launch the application.

The root module is all you need in a simple application with a few components. As the app grows, you refactor the root module into feature modules that represent collections of related functionalities. You then import these modules into the root module.

NgModule Decorator

Angular defines its modules by decorating a generic class. The @NgModule decorator indicates the class’ modular purpose to Angular. An NgModule class consolidates root dependencies accessible/instantiable from the module’s scope. ‘Scope’ meaning anything originating from the module’s metadata.

The basic NgModule

The Angular CLI generates the following basic app module when creating a new app.

app.module.ts

TypeScript Code:

// imports
import { BrowserModule } from '@angular/platform-browser';
import { NgModule } from '@angular/core';
import { FormsModule } from '@angular/forms';
import { HttpClientModule } from '@angular/common/http';

import { AppComponent } from './app.component';
import { ItemDirective } from './item.directive';


// @NgModule decorator with its metadata
@NgModule({
  declarations: [
    AppComponent,
    ItemDirective
  ],
  imports: [
    BrowserModule,
    FormsModule,
    HttpClientModule
  ],
  providers: [],
  bootstrap: [AppComponent]
})
export class AppModule { }

Live Demo:

It is just a code snippet explaining a particular concept and may not have any output

See the Pen basicNgModule by w3resource (@w3resource) on CodePen.


At the top are the import statements. The next section is where you configure the @NgModule by stating what components and directives belong to it (declarations) as well as which other modules it uses (imports).


Previous: Bootstrapping
Next: Angular Module Vs JsModule



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