Deploy Node.js Lambda functions with .zip file archives - AWS Lambda

Deploy Node.js Lambda functions with .zip file archives

Your AWS Lambda function’s code comprises a .js or .mjs file containing your function’s handler code, together with any additional packages and modules your code depends on. To deploy this function code to Lambda, you use a deployment package. This package may either be a .zip file archive or a container image. For more information about using container images with Node.js, see Deploy Node.js Lambda functions with container images.

To create your deployment package as .zip file archive, you can use your command-line tool’s built-in .zip file archive utility, or any other .zip file utility such as 7zip. The examples shown in the following sections assume you’re using a command-line zip tool in a Linux or MacOS environment. To use the same commands in Windows, you can install the Windows Subsystem for Linux to get a Windows-integrated version of Ubuntu and Bash.

Note that Lambda uses POSIX file permissions, so you may need to set permissions for the deployment package folder before you create the .zip file archive.

Runtime dependencies in Node.js

For Lambda functions that use the Node.js runtime, a dependency can be any Node.js module. The Node.js runtime includes a number of common libraries, as well as a version of the AWS SDK for JavaScript. The nodejs16.x Lambda runtime includes version 2.x of the SDK. Runtime versions nodejs18.x and later include version 3 of the SDK. To use version 2 of the SDK with runtime versions nodejs18.x and later, add the SDK to your .zip file deployment package. If your chosen runtime includes the version of the SDK you are using, you don't need to include the SDK library in your .zip file.

Lambda periodically updates the SDK libraries in the Node.js runtime to include the latest features and security upgrades. Lambda also applies security patches and updates to the other libraries included in the runtime. To have full control of the dependencies in your package, you can add your preferred version of any runtime-included dependency to your deployment package. For example, if you want to use a particular version of the SDK for JavaScript, you can include it in your .zip file as a dependency. For more information on adding runtime-included dependencies to your .zip file, see Dependency search path and runtime-included libraries.

Under the AWS shared responsibility model, you are responsible for the management of any dependencies in your functions' deployment packages. This includes applying updates and security patches. To update dependencies in your function's deployment package, first create a new .zip file and then upload it to Lambda. See Creating a .zip deployment package with dependencies and Creating and updating Node.js Lambda functions using .zip files for more information.

Creating a .zip deployment package with no dependencies

If your function code has no dependencies except for libraries included in the Lambda runtime, your .zip file contains only the index.js or index.mjs file with your function’s handler code. Use your preferred zip utility to create a .zip file with your index.js or index.mjs file at the root. If the file containing your handler code isn't at the root of your .zip file, Lambda won’t be able to run your code.

To learn how to deploy your .zip file to create a new Lambda function or update an existing one, see Creating and updating Node.js Lambda functions using .zip files.

Creating a .zip deployment package with dependencies

If your function code depends on packages or modules that aren't included in the Lambda Node.js runtime, you can either add these dependencies to your .zip file with your function code or use a Lambda layer. The instructions in this section show you how to include your dependencies in your .zip deployment package. For instructions on how to include your dependencies in a layer, see Creating a Node.js layer for your dependencies.

The following example CLI commands create a .zip file named my_deployment_package.zip containing the index.js or index.mjs file with your function's handler code and its dependencies. In the example, you install dependencies using the npm package manager.

To create the deployment package
  1. Navigate to the project directory containing your index.js or index.mjs source code file. In this example, the directory is named my_function.

    cd my_function
  2. Install your function's required libraries in the node_modules directory using the npm install command. In this example you install the AWS X-Ray SDK for Node.js.

    npm install aws-xray-sdk

    This creates a folder structure similar to the following:

    ~/my_function ├── index.mjs └── node_modules ├── async ├── async-listener ├── atomic-batcher ├── aws-sdk ├── aws-xray-sdk ├── aws-xray-sdk-core

    You can also add custom modules that you create yourself to your deployment package. Create a directory under node_modules with the name of your module and save your custom written packages there.

  3. Create a .zip file that contains the contents of your project folder at the root. Use the r (recursive) option to ensure that zip compresses the subfolders.

    zip -r my_deployment_package.zip .

Creating a Node.js layer for your dependencies

The instructions in this section show you how to include your dependencies in a layer. For instructions on how to include your dependencies in your deployment package, see Creating a .zip deployment package with dependencies.

When you add a layer to a function, Lambda loads the layer content into the /opt directory of that execution environment. For each Lambda runtime, the PATH variable already includes specific folder paths within the /opt directory. To ensure that your layer content gets picked up by the PATH variable, include the content in the following folder paths:

  • nodejs/node_modules

  • nodejs/node16/node_modules (NODE_PATH)

  • nodejs/node18/node_modules (NODE_PATH)

  • nodejs/node20/node_modules (NODE_PATH)

For example, your layer .zip file structure might look like the following:

xray-sdk.zip └ nodejs/node_modules/aws-xray-sdk

In addition, Lambda automatically detects any libraries in the /opt/lib directory, and any binaries in the /opt/bin directory. To ensure that Lambda properly finds your layer content, you can also create a layer with the following structure:

custom-layer.zip └ lib | lib_1 | lib_2 └ bin | bin_1 | bin_2

After you package your layer, see Creating and deleting layers in Lambda and Adding layers to functions to complete your layer setup.

Dependency search path and runtime-included libraries

The Node.js runtime includes a number of common libraries, as well as a version of the AWS SDK for JavaScript. If you want to use a different version of a runtime-included library, you can do this by bundling it with your function or by adding it as a dependency in your deployment package. For example, you can use a different version of the SDK by adding it to your .zip deployment package. You can also include it in a Lambda layer for your function.

When you use an import or require statement in your code, the Node.js runtime searches the directories in the NODE_PATH path until it finds the module. By default, the first location the runtime searches is the directory into which your .zip deployment package is decompressed and mounted (/var/task). If you include a version of a runtime-included library in your deployment package, this version will take precedence over the version included in the runtime. Dependencies in your deployment package also have precedence over dependencies in layers.

When you add a dependency to a layer, Lambda extracts this to /opt/nodejs/nodexx/node_modules where nodexx represents the version of the runtime you are using. In the search path, this directory has precedence over the directory containing the runtime-included libraries (/var/lang/lib/node_modules). Libraries in function layers therefore have precedence over versions included in the runtime.

You can see the full search path for your Lambda function by adding the following line of code.

console.log(process.env.NODE_PATH)

You can also add dependencies in a separate folder inside your .zip package. For example, you might add a custom module to a folder in your .zip package called common. When your .zip package is decompressed and mounted, this folder is placed inside the /var/task directory. To use a dependency from a folder in your .zip deployment package in your code, use an import { } from or const { } = require() statement, depending on whether you are using CJS or ESM module resolution. For example:

import { myModule } from './common'

If you bundle your code with esbuild, rollup, or similar, the dependencies used by your function are bundled together in one or more files. We recommend using this method to vend dependencies whenever possible. Compared to adding dependencies to your deployment package, bundling your code results in improved performance due to the reduction in I/O operations.

Creating and updating Node.js Lambda functions using .zip files

Once you have created your .zip deployment package, you can use it to create a new Lambda function or update an existing one. You can deploy your .zip package using the Lambda console, the AWS Command Line Interface, and the Lambda API. You can also create and update Lambda functions using AWS Serverless Application Model (AWS SAM) and AWS CloudFormation.

The maximum size for a .zip deployment package for Lambda is 250 MB (unzipped). Note that this limit applies to the combined size of all the files you upload, including any Lambda layers.

The Lambda runtime needs permission to read the files in your deployment package. In Linux permissions octal notation, Lambda needs 644 permissions for non-executable files (rw-r--r--) and 755 permissions (rwxr-xr-x) for directories and executable files.

In Linux and MacOS, use the chmod command to change file permissions on files and directories in your deployment package. For example, to give an executable file the correct permissions, run the following command.

chmod 755 <filepath>

To change file permissions in Windows, see Set, View, Change, or Remove Permissions on an Object in the Microsoft Windows documentation.

Creating and updating functions with .zip files using the console

To create a new function, you must first create the function in the console, then upload your .zip archive. To update an existing function, open the page for your function, then follow the same procedure to add your updated .zip file.

If your .zip file is less than 50MB, you can create or update a function by uploading the file directly from your local machine. For .zip files greater than 50MB, you must upload your package to an Amazon S3 bucket first. For instructions on how to upload a file to an Amazon S3 bucket using the AWS Management Console, see Getting started with Amazon S3. To upload files using the AWS CLI, see Move objects in the AWS CLI User Guide.

Note

You cannot change the deployment package type (.zip or container image) for an existing function. For example, you cannot convert a container image function to use a .zip file archive. You must create a new function.

To create a new function (console)
  1. Open the Functions page of the Lambda console and choose Create Function.

  2. Choose Author from scratch.

  3. Under Basic information, do the following:

    1. For Function name, enter the name for your function.

    2. For Runtime, select the runtime you want to use.

    3. (Optional) For Architecture, choose the instruction set architecture for your function. The default architecture is x86_64. Ensure that the .zip deployment package for your function is compatible with the instruction set architecture you select.

  4. (Optional) Under Permissions, expand Change default execution role. You can create a new Execution role or use an existing one.

  5. Choose Create function. Lambda creates a basic 'Hello world' function using your chosen runtime.

To upload a .zip archive from your local machine (console)
  1. In the Functions page of the Lambda console, choose the function you want to upload the .zip file for.

  2. Select the Code tab.

  3. In the Code source pane, choose Upload from.

  4. Choose .zip file.

  5. To upload the .zip file, do the following:

    1. Select Upload, then select your .zip file in the file chooser.

    2. Choose Open.

    3. Choose Save.

To upload a .zip archive from an Amazon S3 bucket (console)
  1. In the Functions page of the Lambda console, choose the function you want to upload a new .zip file for.

  2. Select the Code tab.

  3. In the Code source pane, choose Upload from.

  4. Choose Amazon S3 location.

  5. Paste the Amazon S3 link URL of your .zip file and choose Save.

Updating .zip file functions using the console code editor

For some functions with .zip deployment packages, you can use the Lambda console’s built-in code editor to update your function code directly. To use this feature, your function must meet the following criteria:

  • Your function must use one of the interpreted language runtimes (Python, Node.js, or Ruby)

  • Your function’s deployment package must be smaller than 3MB.

Function code for functions with container image deployment packages cannot be edited directly in the console.

To update function code using the console code editor
  1. Open the Functions page of the Lambda console and select your function.

  2. Select the Code tab.

  3. In the Code source pane, select your source code file and edit it in the integrated code editor.

  4. When you have finished editing your code, choose Deploy to save your changes and update your function.

Creating and updating functions with .zip files using the AWS CLI

You can can use the AWS CLI to create a new function or to update an existing one using a .zip file. Use the create-function and update-function-code commands to deploy your .zip package. If your .zip file is smaller than 50MB, you can upload the .zip package from a file location on your local build machine. For larger files, you must upload your .zip package from an Amazon S3 bucket. For instructions on how to upload a file to an Amazon S3 bucket using the AWS CLI, see Move objects in the AWS CLI User Guide.

Note

If you upload your .zip file from an Amazon S3 bucket using the AWS CLI, the bucket must be located in the same AWS Region as your function.

To create a new function using a .zip file with the AWS CLI, you must specify the following:

  • The name of your function (--function-name)

  • Your function’s runtime (--runtime)

  • The Amazon Resource Name (ARN) of your function’s execution role (--role)

  • The name of the handler method in your function code (--handler)

You must also specify the location of your .zip file. If your .zip file is located in a folder on your local build machine, use the --zip-file option to specify the file path, as shown in the following example command.

aws lambda create-function --function-name myFunction \ --runtime nodejs20.x --handler index.handler \ --role arn:aws:iam::111122223333:role/service-role/my-lambda-role \ --zip-file fileb://myFunction.zip

To specify the location of .zip file in an Amazon S3 bucket, use the --code option as shown in the following example command. You only need to use the S3ObjectVersion parameter for versioned objects.

aws lambda create-function --function-name myFunction \ --runtime nodejs20.x --handler index.handler \ --role arn:aws:iam::111122223333:role/service-role/my-lambda-role \ --code S3Bucket=myBucketName,S3Key=myFileName.zip,S3ObjectVersion=myObjectVersion

To update an existing function using the CLI, you specify the the name of your function using the --function-name parameter. You must also specify the location of the .zip file you want to use to update your function code. If your .zip file is located in a folder on your local build machine, use the --zip-file option to specify the file path, as shown in the following example command.

aws lambda update-function-code --function-name myFunction \ --zip-file fileb://myFunction.zip

To specify the location of .zip file in an Amazon S3 bucket, use the --s3-bucket and --s3-key options as shown in the following example command. You only need to use the --s3-object-version parameter for versioned objects.

aws lambda update-function-code --function-name myFunction \ --s3-bucket myBucketName --s3-key myFileName.zip --s3-object-version myObject Version

Creating and updating functions with .zip files using the Lambda API

To create and update functions using a .zip file archive, use the following API operations:

Creating and updating functions with .zip files using AWS SAM

The AWS Serverless Application Model (AWS SAM) is a toolkit that helps streamline the process of building and running serverless applications on AWS. You define the resources for your application in a YAML or JSON template and use the AWS SAM command line interface (AWS SAM CLI) to build, package, and deploy your applications. When you build a Lambda function from an AWS SAM template, AWS SAM automatically creates a .zip deployment package or container image with your function code and any dependencies you specify. To learn more about using AWS SAM to build and deploy Lambda functions, see Getting started with AWS SAM in the AWS Serverless Application Model Developer Guide.

You can also use AWS SAM to create a Lambda function using an existing .zip file archive. To create a Lambda function using AWS SAM, you can save your .zip file in an Amazon S3 bucket or in a local folder on your build machine. For instructions on how to upload a file to an Amazon S3 bucket using the AWS CLI, see Move objects in the AWS CLI User Guide.

In your AWS SAM template, the AWS::Serverless::Function resource specifies your Lambda function. In this resource, set the following properties to create a function using a .zip file archive:

  • PackageType - set to Zip

  • CodeUri - set to the function code's Amazon S3 URI, path to local folder, or FunctionCode object

  • Runtime - Set to your chosen runtime

With AWS SAM, if your .zip file is larger than 50MB, you don’t need to upload it to an Amazon S3 bucket first. AWS SAM can upload .zip packages up to the maximum allowed size of 250MB (unzipped) from a location on your local build machine.

To learn more about deploying functions using .zip file in AWS SAM, see AWS::Serverless::Function in the AWS SAM Developer Guide.

Creating and updating functions with .zip files using AWS CloudFormation

You can use AWS CloudFormation to create a Lambda function using a .zip file archive. To create a Lambda function from a .zip file, you must first upload your file to an Amazon S3 bucket. For instructions on how to upload a file to an Amazon S3 bucket using the AWS CLI, see Move objects in the AWS CLI User Guide.

In your AWS CloudFormation template, the AWS::Lambda::Function resource specifies your Lambda function. In this resource, set the following properties to create a function using a .zip file archive:

  • PackageType - Set to Zip

  • Code - Enter the Amazon S3 bucket name and the .zip file name in the S3Bucket and S3Key fields

  • Runtime - Set to your chosen runtime

The .zip file that AWS CloudFormation generates cannot exceed 4MB. To learn more about deploying functions using .zip file in AWS CloudFormation, see AWS::Lambda::Function in the AWS CloudFormation User Guide.