A very polite lock file utility, which endeavors to not litter, and to wait patiently for others.


var lockFile = require('lockfile')

// opts is optional, and defaults to {}
lockFile.lock('some-file.lock', opts, function (er) {
  // if the er happens, then it failed to acquire a lock.
  // if there was not an error, then the file was created,
  // and won't be deleted until we unlock it.

  // do my stuff, free of interruptions
  // then, some time later, do:
  lockFile.unlock('some-file.lock', function (er) {
    // er means that an error happened, and is probably bad.


Sync methods return the value/throw the error, others don't. Standard node fs stuff.

All known locks are removed when the process exits. Of course, it's possible for certain types of failures to cause this to fail, but a best effort is made to not be a litterbug.

lockFile.lock(path, [opts], cb)

Acquire a file lock on the specified path

lockFile.lockSync(path, [opts])

Acquire a file lock on the specified path

lockFile.unlock(path, cb)

Close and unlink the lockfile.


Close and unlink the lockfile.

lockFile.check(path, [opts], cb)

Check if the lockfile is locked and not stale.

Returns boolean.

lockFile.checkSync(path, [opts], cb)

Check if the lockfile is locked and not stale.

Callback is called with cb(error, isLocked).



A number of milliseconds to wait for locks to expire before giving up. Only used by lockFile.lock. Relies on fs.watch. If the lock is not cleared by the time the wait expires, then it returns with the original error.


A number of milliseconds before locks are considered to have expired.


Used by lock and lockSync. Retry n number of times before giving up.


Used by lock. Wait n milliseconds before retrying.