Build Process - Legacy

  • Available in Vanilla 2.4.2
  • Deprecated as of Vanilla: 2.5

This build process is deprecated and only exists to support legacy addons. New projects should use the built in build process. If you are able to consider migrating projects off the the legacy process to the built-in. If the build tool is not capable of replacing your addon’s built process, consider filing an issue on this project’s github repo.

This build process is primarily meant to be a wrapper around a projects existing process in order give it similar interface to the built in processes. This build process is not a magic bullet. It will not fix an existing build process that is already broken.


Unlike the built in build process, this process requires additional setup for every project.

For most projects the following steps will suffice:

  1. Navigate to the project directory.
  2. Follow the project’s setup instructions.
  3. Verify that the existing process works.
  4. If it works, try running vanilla build or vanilla build --watch.


  • The legacy process requires whatever tooling the addon requires. This could be node, yarn/npm, or ruby.
  • The legacy process may require other global node dependancies such as gulp, grunt, or bower.
  • The legacy process may require installation of ruby gems or node modules before building.

How it works

This build process will attempt to find the tasks build and watch tasks by:

  1. Checking if the package.json contains of the the following items in its scripts: build, watch
  2. Then checking and running any of the following if they exist. You can have multiple of these
    • gulp default, gulp build, or gulp watch tasks.
    • grunt default, grunt build, or grunt watch tasks
    • If a Gemfile exists, try to build ruby-sass with Compass using compass compile or compass watch

This legacy build process will also create an empty bower_components if a bower.json file exists and the folder does not. This is to prevent certain build process from crashing even if you have no bower components.

This process will not install your node_modules or bower_components for you. You are responsible for those yourself and they can normally be handled by running yarn install.

Having Issues?

If there are major issues with a legacy build process consider converting it to use the built in build process.

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