30/06/2020
React
Libaries
Developer

# 9 🔥 React Libraries That Will Simplify a Developer’s Life

The sole purpose of a library is to make the life of a developer easier. Libraries have everything you are looking for so there is no need to reinvent the wheel at all. Additionally, libraries can be effortlessly maintained and updated since they are actively managed by a large group of people. In this article I have gathered some of the best React libraries that I believe will help you expedite the process.

# 1. Redux

With more than 53.5k stars on Github, Redux (opens new window) is one of the most popular libraries for state management in React applications. Redux maintains the state of an entire application in a single immutable state tree (object), which can’t be changed directly. When something changes, a new object is created and returned. It is very easy to test Redux apps since the functions used to change the state are pure functions. In my view, the best feature is that Redux eliminates the hassle to pass props to every child component. It is based on Flux architecture. Redux by nature is synchronous and can be effectively used along with libraries React-Redux and Redux-Thunk. Something to note is that it is just 2kB in size and it’s perfect for state management in medium to large applications. It has 1,742 closed issues and only 30 open issues as of the article published date.

# 2. React Router

React Router (opens new window) is the routing library which helps with navigation in the React app and is based on the concept of declarative routing. React Router keeps your UI in sync with the URL. It has a simple API with powerful features like lazy code loading, dynamic route matching, and location transition handling built right in. It comes with many features like matching route URL with component, handling unknown routes, redirection of web pages and programmatically changing routes. React Router has more than 40k stars on GitHub. With 5,452 closed issues and only 40 open issues, it is evident that the library is generously supported by a huge community with constant development of new features. It is definitely a must have library for all your routing requirements!

# 3. React Select

React Select (opens new window), as it’s website suggests, is a flexible and beautiful Select Input control for Reactjs with multiselect, autocomplete, async and creatable support. It has so many features like selecting multiple dropdown options, customizing the styles, getting the dropdown data via API call while the user is typing and creating tags dynamically if not already present in the dropdown options. It allows you to modify the search function used inside the library so that you can provide your own search function. You can also utilize other diverse features like pre-selecting or grouping options if required. I have used React Select in almost all of my projects and trust me, it’s a breeze to work with. With more than 20k stars on GitHub, this library has one of the best demos which covers all use cases. Don’t forget to check it out.

# 4. React-Virtualized

React-Virtualized (opens new window) is primarily used to efficiently render large lists and tabular data. The library is highly customizable and has many built in methods to perform complex tasks like sorting, auto adjust height etc. It has multiple options like Grid, List, Masonry and Table. The styling is extendable in such a way that any complex table design can be achieved. It has more than 19k stars on GitHub. The only drawback is that the size of the library is on the higher side. So if that’s the problem, then you can check out React-Window as a possible lighter-weight alternative. However, I would suggest you compare the features of both libraries before using them, since React-window has less features as compared to React-Virtualized. I also tried the React-Bootstrap-Table but it had performance issues for records greater than 3k. In conclusion, React-Virtualized has a great performance as compared to others and is the best library I have come across to manage tabular data.

# 5. React Bootstrap

React Bootstrap (opens new window) is the React port for the most popular front-end framework Bootstrap. As per its website, React Bootstrap replaces the Bootstrap JavaScript. Each component has been built from scratch as a true React component, without unnecessary dependencies like jQuery. You can get all the UI components like forms, buttons, cards, etc. out of the box. The cherry on the cake is it helps boost your efficiency as you can get more work done by writing less code. React Bootstrap is highly suitable for dashboard/Admin panel projects. If you are not a fan of CSS and HTML then you can unquestionably use this in your project. The library has greatly evolved over the period of time and is constantly managed by a large community. It has more than 17k stars on GitHub, 2,624 closed issues and 82 open issues as of the article published date.

# 6. React DnD

According to its website, React DnD helps you build complex drag and drop interfaces while still keeping your components decoupled. Working with Drag and Drop can become cumbersome sometimes, so if you are looking for some pre-existing library then React DnD (opens new window) is to the rescue. It is a perfect fit for apps like Trello and Storify, where dragging transfers data between different parts of the application and the components change not only their appearance but also the application state in response to the drag and drop events. By default, React DnD uses the HTML5 drag and drop API under the hood, but you can customize it to use with any other backend API such as touch backend. It has 13k stars on GitHub and is actively maintained with 1,129 closed issues and 127 open issues as of the article published date.

# 7. React-Toastify

Providing feedback to users is one of the most important aspects of UI/UX. React-Toastify (opens new window) helps add toast notification to your app with complete ease. It has more than 5k stars on GitHub and is actively managed by many contributors. React-Toastify is not only easy to set up and configure but also has tons of features. Some of them include swipe to close, remove toast programmatically, RTL support, display the react component inside toast, progress bar, configure the position of toast etc. You just need to initialize it at entry point and then it is available globally. The possible use case would be a success or error message when the API call is complete. It can also be used to show validation errors or informative pop-ups.

# 8. React Datepicker

As the name suggests, it’s a library that can assist you with date and/or time for the project. There is no doubt that acquiring date or time from users and then manipulating it as per the project’s need can be troublesome and inconvenient. This is where React Datepicker (opens new window) comes in handy. It holds more than 4.9k stars on Github with 1,220 closed issues and 154 open issues. React Datepicker has ample of pre-built functions and props like custom date format, date range, time only, time format, min date, max date, local and so much more. It also has custom classes to style the Datepicker for project specific design. Personally, my favorite feature in this library is that they have plentiful examples covering a wide range of functionality that are fundamental in a real project. Don’t forget to check them out!

# 9. React Chartjs

React Chartjs is the wrapper for the famous Chartjs (opens new window) library. If you are already familiar with Chartjs then working with React Chartjs will be simple and painless. It has a variety of charts ranging from Line, Bar, Pie, Scatter charts, mixed charts and many more. It has a myriad of features, is fully customizable and ideal for small to medium applications. Additionally, it also allows all the features which are supported by Chartjs. If you want to be up and running with charts then this library is undeniably for you. It has more than 2.9k stars on GitHub, has 337 closed issues and 81 open issues as of the article published date.

# Conclusion

Libraries are essentially developed and open sourced to help other developers save time, prevent rewriting of code and help beginners get the work done quickly and accurately. So, choose the library that best suits your use case. If you are interested in learning more then do check out the source code of libraries provided on GitHub. It will certainly help you to grow as a developer and write better code.

👋 Hi ich bin's, Sascha