If you are looking for how to install Yarn on Windows operating system, you are in the right place. Yarn is a fast and safe package manager for JavaScript, and the process of installation on Windows is pretty straightforward.

The npm package manager for JavaScript tools and libraries has been used for a long time. However, it suffers from issues like security, performance, and consistency. The issues become exponential when you plan to use npm for a large and concurrency software development project.

However, you can bypass all these issues and still get access to the npm registry by using Yarn. Additionally, it is a future-ready package manager with robust features and simple commands. Continue reading as we show you how to install yarn packages on your Windows PC from scratch.          

What Is Yarn?


Google, Facebook, Tilde, and Exponent collaborated on a JavaScript package management tool that can replace npm. The result of the project is the Yarn package manager released as an open source tool in 2016.

Yarn is a novel package manager that eases off and modifies the existing workflow for maintaining and managing JavaScript packages on npm or other package managers. However, the Yarn tool will still support the npm registry to fetch pre-programmed JS libraries, tools, etc.

Find below the novel features of Yarn that make it an extraordinary tool for every developer:

  • It fetches and installs JS libraries, tools, packages, etc., faster.
  • Its core engine ensures integrity, reliability, and version control of installed packages.
  • A simple software development project can include thousands of dependencies. Yarn makes dependency management workflow effortless.
  • It supports mixing registries.
  • Yarn is compatible with Bower and npm workflows.
  • It offers installed module license restrictions.
  • Comes with a public JS API for consumption of API data via build tools.
  • Yarn also offers beautiful CLI outputs, minimal code lines, and a readable user interface.

This future-ready package manager has a somewhat similar or more straightforward process for DevOps package management. However, the Yarn tool is highly reliable, faster, and extremely secure when compared with Yarn alternatives.          

What Does Yarn Do?


Yarn simply solves common package management problems that npm suffers. The followings are some popular functionalities of Yarn: 

  • Yarn supports plugins. Users can use Yarn plugins, third-party plugins for Yarn, or write their own plugins.
  • The Constraints functionality enables developers to enforce rules and policies for manifest fields or dependencies across scoped workspaces.
  • Yarn lets a programmer use an offline cache on the local machine using a single file. 
  • The Plug’n’Play option lets users run Node.js projects minus the node_modules folder. The resultant Node.js application starts faster when compared with apps that contain the node_modules folder.
  • The Protocols functionality enables developers to define the protocol for package resolution. For instance, you will be using the patch protocol to create a patched version of the original package. Another example could be the git protocol to fetch public packages from any Git repository.
  • The Release Workflow option helps a software developer automatically upgrade relative packages distributed in several monorepos. For this, a programmer needs to upgrade the root packages and Release Workflow handles the rest.           
  • Yarn Workspaces is an intuitive functionality. It allows programmers to install dependencies all in one go from multiple package.json files in many subfolders of a single root package.json file.

The Yarn Workflow


Whenever you switch from one package manager to another, the main challenge is the change of workflow. Facebook’s goal was to create a package manager that will be easy to use while supporting the existing standard workflows from popular package repos like npm. Hence, Yarn did not make any drastic changes. Here is a snapshot of the basic workflow of Yarn:

  • Create or start a new app development project: yarn init.
  • Adding, removing, or updating various dependencies: yarn add [package], yarn upgrade [package], yarn remove [package].
  • Installing or reinstalling a code library or dependency: yarn install, yarn install --force, etc. 
  • Managing versions of packages being created, updated, patched, etc., using Gits.
  • Integrating with related tools continuously like AppVeyor, CirleCI, Codeship, Semaphore, Codefresh, etc.   

The Benefits of Yarn

  • Yarn’s core engine comes with powerful algorithms to allow faster installation of packages. When you fetch and install thousands of packages in your software project, Yarn installs them in parallel. On contrary, npm does this one by one. Hence, the project time frame increases drastically.
  • Yarn allows the developers to maintain several local cache files for multiple projects. Hence, using or updating numerous packages for multiple app development projects becomes easy and faster.
  • Tech giants like Facebook, Google, etc., support the Yarn community. Hence, you can find the latest patches, upgrades, and new releases frequently.
  • Yarn comes with a detailed migration guide if you are moving an existing JavaScript development project to Yarn.
  • Yarn guarantees baseline installation throughout all systems via the deterministic manner of installing operations and a lock file format.
  • Yarn ensures the integrity of all the imported packages by running checksums. 
  • Yarn avoids request waterfalls when getting packages from cloud sources. This process increases network efficiency.       

Prerequisites to Install Yarn on Windows


Installing developer runtimes and other tools has become effortless these days. Yarn’s installation process is no different. You can instantly start maintaining and managing JavaScript libraries and dependencies on your Windows computer using Yarn. You just need to type a few codes and make a few clicks.

Before you can learn how to install Yarn on Windows, you need to ensure whether the device is appropriately conditioned. For example, consider the followings: 

  • You will need .NET Framework 4.0 or later.
  • Administrative access to Windows Command Prompt.
  • Similarly, you will need admin access to PowerShell.
  • The latest Node.js version runtime is also mandatory to run Yarn.

If you are working on a Windows 10 or Windows 11 workstation logged in as an admin, then you have taken care of the first three prerequisites. However, learn more about the Node.js installation below: 

Checking for Node.js Installation on Your Windows Computer

#1. Click on the Search icon on your Windows 10 PC and type in CMD.

#2. You will see the Command Prompt app under the Best match section.

Opening CMD on Windows and running it as an admin

#3. Right-click on the Command Prompt link and then select Run as administrator.

#4. Command Prompt app will open with the following command line output:


#5. Now, type the following syntax and hit Enter.

node --version
The CLI output for code node --version

#6. If CLI output shows that 'node' is not recognized as an internal or external command, operable program, or batch file text, it means you need to install Node.js.

Installing Node.js on Your Windows PC

#1. Visit the Node.js portal to download the latest version of it. 


#2. Select any version to download below the Download for Windows.

#3. Double-click on the Node.js installation package.

#4. Click Next once the installer verifies the space requirement.

Accepting license of Nodejs

#5. Now, you must accept the end user license and click Next.

#6. Select Next again on the Destination Folder screen.

#7. Do not make any changes on the Custom Setup screen. Just click Next.

Installing Nodejs

#8. Select Next again on the Native Modules Tool, and then click Install.

#9. Once the installation is complete, click Finish.

Install Yarn on Windows Using the Yarn MSI Installer

Now, you are all set to install Yarn on Windows.

Get Yarn MSI Installer

#1. Visit the Yarn download portal.

#2. You must see the Click to expand/collapse text below the Alternatives header.

Getting Yarn MSI for install yarn on windows

#3. Click on the drop-down list arrow near the above message to expand Yarn installation alternatives.

#4. On the Operating system option, select Windows.

#5. Select Classic Stable on the Version option.

#6. Now, just click on Download Installer.

That is it! You should find the .msi installer of Yarn in the Downloads folder.

Running the Yarn MSI Installer

#1. Go to the Downloads folder on your Windows PC.

#2. Double-click on the Yarn installation package.

Starting the yarn install on windows

#3. You will see the Welcome to the Yarn Setup Wizard screen. Click Next.

#4. The Yarn installer will now show the End-User License Agreement screen.

#5. On the above screen, checkmark the I accept box and then select Next.

Verifying install yarn on windows destination folder

#6. You shall now see the Destination Folder where the Yarn installer is installing Yarn. You may keep that as is. Just select Next.

Final installation step for yarn

#7. Finally, you are at the Ready to Install screen. Simply click Install to allow the Yarn MSI installer to install Yarn on Windows.

The process is complete when you see the Completed the Yarn Setup Wizard. Just click Finish and you are all set.

Verifying the Yarn Installation on Your Windows PC

#1. Open the Command Prompt as an admin user.

#2. After the CLI output C:\Windows\system32> type yarn –version.

#3. You should see the following script as an output:

Verifying the yarn installation on windows

The above script means that you have successfully installed Yarn on Windows PC. The Yarn version that you have installed is 1.22.19.              

Install Yarn on Windows Using the Command Prompt App

Expert developers may not always like to install development runtimes or packages through an MSI installer. Hence, for seasoned developers like you, Yarn also offers command line interface installation. You can follow the steps here:

#1. Start the process on a Windows 11 or Windows 10 computer so that you do not need to install the latest .NET Framework, Command Prompt, PowerShell, etc., separately.

#2. Ensure that you have already installed Node.js on that PC. You can confirm that by trying the steps mentioned above in the “Checking for Node.js Installation” section.

#3. If you get a CLI output with the version number of Node.js, it means you already have Node.js.

#4. If you do not get any version information, you need to install Node.js. You can follow the steps mentioned earlier in the ‘Installing Node.js on Your Windows PC’ section.

#5. Your Node.js installation should have installed Corepack already. Just activate it using a Command Prompt. Execute the following command to enable this feature:

corepack enable
Enabling corepack on windows

#6. Once done, you can execute the following script on Command Prompt to install Yarn on Windows: 

npm install --global yarn
Installing yarn using CMD on windows

#7. The CLI output will be added 1 package, and audited 2 packages in 1s when the installation is successful.

You can check the Yarn version installed to confirm whether the installation was successful or not. That is it! 

Install Yarn on Windows Using Scoop


Another convenient way to install Yarn on Windows without running any installer is Scoop. It is a package installer for Windows. The tool works through the PowerShell app. Most expert developer use Scoop, so it is considered that you already have this on your Windows system.

If you do not have Scoop on your Windows PC, you can get it from GitHub by following the official installation guide. Access the Scoop Quick Start GitHub portal to install Scoop in a few minutes.

Once done, open the PowerShell app and run the following Scoop command to install Yarn:

scoop install yarn

Scoop will not continue with the installation if there is no Node.js runtime on your PC. It will suggest you install that. Here is the command to run:

scoop install nodejs    

Install Yarn on Windows Using Chocolatey

YouTube video

Seasoned devs regularly use Chocolatey for Windows package management. If you have it on your PC, then you can install Yarn using Chocolatey as well.

If you do not have this tool, you can visit Installing Chocolatey to get it. Once done installing Chocolatey, open the Command Prompt to run the following command which installs Yarn automatically:

choco install yarn

If you do not have Node.js runtime, Chocolatey will install that on its own.        

Final Words for Install Yarn on Windows

So far the article has discussed the basics of Yarn, like what it is, its benefits, purpose, and more. Additionally, you also have discovered several ways to install Yarn from scratch. 

If you are new to JavaScript-based development projects, you will benefit tremendously from the steps. You will cut short the guessing and Google searching part for how to install Yarn on Windows and start maintaining and managing JavaScript packages on Yarn.

Since you are interested in JavaScript development projects, you must check out the best JavaScript (JS) frameworks and JavaScript (JS) UI libraries.

Also, if you are a seasoned developer and more interested in large DevOps projects, you must take a look at the best package hosting repo as well.