I have used to use Windows Update and Visual Studio Extensions and Updates feature. Now the problem is that keeping your Node.js environment up-to-date is not possible using those tools.
There are couple package managers available for Windows, but there are no “native” for example PowerShell command that could be executed. I don’t like to use a tool for just single task.
You can see Node.js version number when you start Node.Js Command Prompt
So far the easiest way to update your Node.js to download installer from Node.js web site from https://nodejs.org/en/download/. Note that there are two versions available LTS and Current. LTS stands for Long Term Support. Now I’m currently running the latest version of Node.js so I don’t need to update it.
If you select LTS (it’s selected by default), you can see that Current version is v.4.4.7 with npm version 2.15.8.
If you select Current, you can see that Current version number has changed to v.6.3.1 with npm version 3.10.3.
If I have the latest version of Node.js, it doesn’t mean that I have the latest version of NPM. I found really excellent script that will update NPM for you with couple commands. https://www.npmjs.com/package/npm-windows-upgrade. It will show the current version of the NPM installed to your system. It also installs “any” NPM version you want so you can downgrade if the latest version would turn out to be buggy.
Open PowerShell as Administrator
Set-ExecutionPolicy Unrestricted -Scope CurrentUser -Force
npm install --global --production npm-windows-upgrade
Now we can close PowerShell and start Node.js Command Prompt to verify that installation was successful.
Possible error messages
You can get few error message while executing npm-windows-upgrade.
The first one “Scripts cannot executed on this system.” comes if you haven’t changed execution policy.
The another one “NPM cannot be upgraded without administrative rights. To run PowerShell as Administrator, right-click PowerShell and select ‘Run as Administrator’.” comes if you try to execute npm-windows-upgrade with non-administrative mode.