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Electron
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Electron vs MEAN: What are the differences?

Developers describe Electron as "Build cross platform desktop apps with web technologies. Formerly known as Atom Shell, made by GitHub". With Electron, creating a desktop application for your company or idea is easy. Initially developed for GitHub's Atom editor, Electron has since been used to create applications by companies like Microsoft, Facebook, Slack, and Docker. The Electron framework lets you write cross-platform desktop applications using JavaScript, HTML and CSS. It is based on io.js and Chromium and is used in the Atom editor. On the other hand, MEAN is detailed as "A Simple, Scalable and Easy starting point for full stack javascript web development". MEAN (Mongo, Express, Angular, Node) is a boilerplate that provides a nice starting point for MongoDB, Node.js, Express, and AngularJS based applications. It is designed to give you a quick and organized way to start developing MEAN based web apps with useful modules like Mongoose and Passport pre-bundled and configured.

Electron and MEAN are primarily classified as "Cross-Platform Desktop Development" and "Frameworks (Full Stack)" tools respectively.

"Easy to make rich cross platform desktop applications" is the primary reason why developers consider Electron over the competitors, whereas "Javascript" was stated as the key factor in picking MEAN.

Electron and MEAN are both open source tools. Electron with 74.9K GitHub stars and 9.8K forks on GitHub appears to be more popular than MEAN with 11.8K GitHub stars and 3.57K GitHub forks.

Slack, Intuit, and InVisionApp are some of the popular companies that use Electron, whereas MEAN is used by Vungle, Adsia, and rspective. Electron has a broader approval, being mentioned in 221 company stacks & 374 developers stacks; compared to MEAN, which is listed in 37 company stacks and 24 developer stacks.

What is Electron?

With Electron, creating a desktop application for your company or idea is easy. Initially developed for GitHub's Atom editor, Electron has since been used to create applications by companies like Microsoft, Facebook, Slack, and Docker. The Electron framework lets you write cross-platform desktop applications using JavaScript, HTML and CSS. It is based on io.js and Chromium and is used in the Atom editor.

What is MEAN?

MEAN (Mongo, Express, Angular, Node) is a boilerplate that provides a nice starting point for MongoDB, Node.js, Express, and AngularJS based applications. It is designed to give you a quick and organized way to start developing MEAN based web apps with useful modules like Mongoose and Passport pre-bundled and configured.
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    What are some alternatives to Electron and MEAN?
    Photon
    The fastest way to build beautiful Electron apps using simple HTML and CSS. Underneath it all is Electron. Originally built for GitHub's Atom text editor, Electron is the easiest way to build cross-platform desktop applications.
    React Native Desktop
    Build OS X desktop apps using React Native.
    React Native
    React Native enables you to build world-class application experiences on native platforms using a consistent developer experience based on JavaScript and React. The focus of React Native is on developer efficiency across all the platforms you care about - learn once, write anywhere. Facebook uses React Native in multiple production apps and will continue investing in React Native.
    Element
    Element is a Vue 2.0 based component library for developers, designers and product managers, with a set of design resources.
    JavaFX
    It is a set of graphics and media packages that enables developers to design, create, test, debug, and deploy rich client applications that operate consistently across diverse platforms.
    See all alternatives
    Decisions about Electron and MEAN
    StackShare Editors
    StackShare Editors
    Chromium
    Chromium
    MacGap
    MacGap
    ES6
    ES6
    Electron
    Electron
    React
    React
    Node.js
    Node.js

    The Slack desktop app was originally written us the MacGap framework, which used Apple鈥檚 WebView to host web content inside of a native app frame. As this approach continued to present product limitations, Slack decided to migrate the desktop app to Electron. Electron is a platform that combines the rendering engine from Chromium and the Node.js runtime and module system. The desktop app is written as a modern ES6 + async/await React application.

    For the desktop app, Slack takes a hybrid approach, wherein some of the assets ship as part of the app, but most of their assets and code are loaded remotely.

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    StackShare Editors
    StackShare Editors
    Chromium
    Chromium
    MacGap
    MacGap
    ES6
    ES6
    Electron
    Electron
    TypeScript
    TypeScript
    React
    React
    Node.js
    Node.js

    Slack's new desktop application was launched for macOS. It was built using Electron for a faster, frameless look with a host of background improvements for a superior Slack experience. Instead of adopting a complete-in-box approach taken by other apps, Slack prefers a hybrid approach where some of the assets are loaded as part of the app, while others are made available remotely. Slack's original desktop app was written using the MacGap v1 framework using WebView to host web content within the native app frame. But it was difficult to upgrade with new features only available to Apple's WKWebView and moving to this view called for a total application rewrite.

    Electron brings together Chromium's rendering engine with the Node.js runtime and module system. The new desktop app is now based on an ES6 + async/await React application is currently being moved gradually to TypeScript. Electron functions on Chromium's multi-process model, with each Slack team signed into a separate process and memory space. It also helps prevent remote content to directly access desktop features using a feature called WebView Element which creates a fresh Chromium renderer process and assigns rendering of content for its hosting renderer. Additional security can be ensured by preventing Node.js modules from leaking into the API surface and watching out for APIs with file paths. Communication between processes on Electron is carried out via electron-remote, a pared-down, zippy version of Electron's remote module, which makes implementing the web apps UI much easier.

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    Interest over time
    Reviews of Electron and MEAN
    Avatar of AlmogBaku
    Cofounder & CTO at Rimoto
    Review ofMEANMEAN

    I found mean.io just smooth, fun, orginized and just work out-of-the-box.

    How developers use Electron and MEAN
    Avatar of datapile
    datapile uses MEANMEAN

    MongoDB is a solid NoSQL store. Angular.js is being vetted as a potential front-end framework for the website (though it may ultimately not be used for the non-app site). Everything is running on node.js and hosted via an Express.js web server (though we are looking into Koa.js as it is the official successor to Express.js)

    Avatar of Chris Saylor
    Chris Saylor uses ElectronElectron

    Our application began as an HTML5 browser game, however we decided to leverage certain native parts of desktop applications by wrapping our client code into Electron. This also allowed us to not have to worry about compatibility across all the various browsers.

    Avatar of Christian Bryant
    Christian Bryant uses MEANMEAN

    FULL STACK ( preferred if;at all possible! ). Any "NEW" project (all me) I am tasked with I try to sketch it out with MEAN in mind first and then will tweak or stray from the 'plan' when necessary

    Avatar of HyVive
    HyVive uses ElectronElectron

    Our Web Applications are served on our Desktops by Electron. This allows us to have native apps running on our Workstations without having too many Browser Tabs open at the same time.

    Avatar of PawByte
    PawByte uses ElectronElectron

    Electron is the current preferred method to convert games made in the Game Pencil Editor for desktop support.

    Avatar of Metrix Financial Reporting Solutions UG
    Metrix Financial Reporting Solutions UG uses ElectronElectron

    Implement a web-service using your favorite tools but sell a desktop application for oblivious windows users.

    Avatar of Ralic Lo
    Ralic Lo uses ElectronElectron

    Used Electron to package single page web application as a desktop application.

    Avatar of Khalid Garner
    Khalid Garner uses MEANMEAN

    Mongo for nosql, express server angular front end and node packages

    Avatar of clonn
    clonn uses MEANMEAN

    light weight

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