#angular #mdbook #component #samples #applications #live #block

bin+lib mdbook-angular

mdbook renderer to run angular code samples

16 releases

new 0.3.4 Jul 7, 2024
0.3.3 Jul 4, 2024
0.3.2 Feb 19, 2024
0.3.0 Dec 7, 2023
0.0.3 Jul 27, 2023

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A renderer for mdbook that turns angular code samples into running angular applications.


Install the mdbook-angular binary in your PATH and enable the renderer in your book.toml by adding an output.angular section.

There are two ways to include live code samples in your book. The first option is to add angular to a typescript or javascript code block, e.g.

// live angular sample here

The second option is to add a special {{#angular}} tag in your page that points towards a component

{{#angular ./path/to/file.ts#NameOfExportedComponentClass}}

<!-- or -->

{{#angular ./path/to/file.ts}}

Inline code blocks

When using a code block with ```ts,angular, the code block has to contain a single exported class that's a valid standalone component. If the component doesn't define a selector, one will be added.

The code block will be written to a typescript (or javascript) file inside the working directory of the plugin, so any relative imports in the code block will not work correctly.

Flags can be added to the code block in the language tag, e.g. ```ts,angular,hide,playground.

The {{#angular}} tag

The {{#angular}} tag comes in two flavours: you either point towards a file, or specifically towards an export in a file.

The format of the tag is

{{#angular <file>[#<exportName>][ flag]*}}

Some examples:

{{#angular ./example.ts}}
{{#angular ./example.ts hide playground}}
{{#angular ./example.ts#ExampleOneComponent no-playground}}

If an export name is present in the tag, the file should export a standalone component with that name. This component must have a selector, and that selector is expected to be unique on the page.

If no export name is present in the tag, the file should export a single standalone component. If that component doesn't have a selector, one will be added.

If the hide flag is not set, a code block will be added at the location of the {{#angular}} tag. What is shown in the code block depends on whether the name of an exported component was passed or not. If an export name is passed, only that class and any decorators or surrounding comments will be shown. If no export name is passed, the entire file will be shown.

Live examples

All components used in the angular code blocks or imported via the {{#angular}} tag will be shown live on the page. Every component will be bootstrapped as a separate angular application via bootstrapApplication.

If the no-insert flag is not present, the live application will be added below the code block and above the playground. If the insert flag is set, the application will not be added to the page. Instead, you will be responsible for placing the application's element somewhere on the page. Note angular limits you to a single instance of the component, so placing the element on the page multiple times will not work.


Components running as live examples can define inputs and actions. If a component has at least one input or action, a playground will be added below the live example unless disabled via flag or configuration.


Inputs are defined via Angular's @Input() decorator. The following limitations apply:

  • Input renaming is not supported
  • The input type must be limited to
    • Text (string)
    • Numbers
    • Booleans
    • Enums with string values

If the input has a default value, the type will be inferred when possible.

You can configure the input's type and default value in the playground by adding an explicit @input to a comment above the @Input() property. Immediately following the @input must be a valid JSON object with key "type" and optional key "default".

The following two properties will both be detected as a "string" input with a default value "Bram".

// explicit:

 * Author of this document
 * @input {"type": "string", "default": "Bram"}

// or inferred

 * Author of this document
author = "Bram";

You can combine the two methods, e.g. in the following property the type will be set to the enum "morning" or "evening" and the default value will be "evening":

 * The current time of day
 * @input {"type": {"enum": ["morning", "evening"]}}
timeOfDay = "evening";

The "type" property passed in the @input JSON object supports the following values:

  • "string"
  • "number"
  • "boolean"
  • an object with a single key "enum" pointing towards an array of strings.


Actions are methods on the component class that are annotated with @action in a comment block above the method.

 * Reset the counter
 * @action
reset() {


The following flags can be passed on every angular code block:

  • hide: Don't show the code, but do include the running angular application and possibly the playground
  • playground / no-playground: Show or don't show a playground for the current application, regardless of whether the configuration allows playgrounds. The playground flag won't show a playground if the component doesn't warrant a playground.
  • collapsed / uncollapsed: Hide or don't hide the source code (i.e. the code block itself) in a collapsed element that can be opened via click.
  • no-insert: Do not automatically insert the live application on the page. This allows you to write the element linked to the angular component once (and no more than once) on the page at a location of your choosing.


You can configure the following settings:


# Option defined by mdbook itself:

# Executable to run, e.g. if mdbook-angular is not on your PATH
command = "/path/to/mdbook-angular"

# Options changing mdbook-angular behaviour:

# Path to a directory used by mdbook-angular as temporary folder,
# relative to the book.toml file
workdir = "mdbook_angular"

# Which builder to use
# There are three to choose from:
# - "experimental" (default) requires at least `@angular-devkit/build-angular`
#   version 16.2.0. This builder builds the code for all chapters in a single go.
# - "slow" works on angular ≥ 14.0.0, but it is a lot slower as it builds every
#   chapter as a separate angular application
# - "background" (not available on Windows) runs the "experimental" builder in a
#   background process, which allows it to watch and rebuild instead of running
#   an entire new build every time a change is made.
builder = "experimental"

# Whether code blocks should be collapsed by default
# This can be overridden per code block by adding either the collapsed or
# uncollapsed flag.
# Note this only takes effect on code blocks tagged with "angular", it doesn't
# affect other code blocks.
collapsed = false

# Whether to allow playgrounds, i.e. to add inputs and actions to the page
# allowing your readers to interact with the running code blocks.
# This can be overridden per code block by adding either the playground or
# no-playground flag
playgrounds = true

# Options related to the angular build:

# Path to a tsconfig file to use for the build, relative to the book.toml file.
tsconfig = # empty by default

# Language to use for inline styles
inline-style-language = "css"

# Whether to create an optimized angular build or not
optimize = false

# Which polyfills to load, if zone.js is not in the list then it will be loaded
# as first polyfill
# This is a list of strings, all of which must be bare identifiers. Relative
# imports won't work.
polyfills = []

None of these settings are required, the default values are shown in the code above.


This project requires mdbook and angular to be installed

yarn install
cargo install mdbook

Build the project

cargo build

Then run the following command inside the test-book folder

yarn exec mdbook serve

# if you've got @angular/cli installed globally, you can also run
mdbook serve
# directly

and point your browser towards http://localhost:3000


This project is licensed under the European Union Public License v. 1.2 or later. The full license text can be found in LICENSE.md, on the SPDX website, or in any EU member language at the website of the European Commission.


~491K SLoC