Prepping Visual Studio 2015 for Aurelia & ECMAScript 2015 (ES6)

I’ve reviewed a number of posts for Aurelia but I’ve found nothing (or have overlooked) explicit direction that outlines the steps for getting started with Aurelia on VS2015 so that’s what I’ll being going over as my first post. I’m just learning Aurelia myself so as I learn more and better understand the tools, ECMAScript 2015 and Aurelia I’ll likely return to this blog and make adjustments or corrections. Later, I plan to share my experiences as I learn more about both Aurelia and ECMAScript 2015 among many other topics. The initial pieces can be used with any IDE or text editor but ultimately, I’ll be developing Aurelia from VS2015.

Once we get to the point of verifying that Aurelia is working with a Hello World page, we’ll later dissect what’s going on under-the-hood. This post is primarily meant to get up and running.

Install git

We’ll first start out by installing git as it will be used later by a package manager so that we can use modules of ES6 and transpile to ES5 for browsers that do not support ECMAScript 2015.

First head over to and obtain the client for your environment. For me, it’s the 64bit version as my developing from a Surface Pro 3.


Step through the wizard for the options that may work ideal for you. I’ve accepted the default settings as I can always come back later and reconfigure as I learn more about ideal setups.


You can verify the install of git by simply just providing the command


Install NodeJS

As the title section states, let’s install NodeJS ( as this will be used to get npm to install various libraries and tools to support our development needs in upcoming posts.


Again, as I install I accept the defaults. Life of  nodejs noob.


Once complete, I can then open up a command prompt to confirm that NodeJs is working.Step0.3_VerifyNodeJsInstall

I also want to confirm that npm is available.Step0.4_JSPMInstall

Install JSPM

With npm now working, we can now install JSPM ( As I hinted earlier, JSPM will be used to deliver ES6 modules and transpile to ES5 for browsers that do not support ECMAScript 2015. More importantly, jspm will be used to install Aurelia libraries we’ll be needing for development. To install jspm, you’ll want to execute the command:

The -g is to ensure that jspm is installed as a global reference.


Now with JSPM installed we’ll want to create a VS2015 project and initialize JSPM for the specific project where we’ll then be install Aurelia libraries.

Create an empty ASP.NET project.

Here are some quick screen shots of creating a new ASP.NET 5 project if you’ve not done so before.





With the project and folder structure in place we can now initialize JSPM for the project. As you can see, we currently have nothing under the wwwroot folder. We’ll first need to traverse to the src\MyFrontEnd folder in the folder structure that the project has created. npm and jspm will use the source folder to manage and update libraries need for the project in a config file that’s created after we provide the command

The init will then step through a series of questions of which most will be default be there are a couple that need an explicit path as highlighted in the screen shot. To accept the defaults all you’ll need to do is use the Enter key. Note the red arrow for wwwroot.


We’ll now install the aurelia-framework via jspm


Followed by the


We’ll now create three files under wwwroot to verify Aurelia works:

  • index.html
  • app.html
  • app.js


in index.html add the following:

in app.html add the following:

and in app.js add:

You should now be able to run our new app in the browser by right clicking and viewing the index.html file in the browser!


I welcome feedback, suggestions, corrections and perspectives.

Again, this post is was not a deep dive but rather a quick how to so that you can start building Aurelia applications. There’s likely edits to follow :)