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Real-Time Web Applications with Vue.js and WebSockets

Building Real-Time Web Applications with Vue.js and WebSockets

In today’s fast-paced digital world, real-time web applications are becoming increasingly popular. Whether you’re building a chat application, a live dashboard, or a collaborative editing tool, real-time updates are a must. Vue.js, a progressive JavaScript framework, coupled with WebSockets, can be a powerful combination to create responsive and dynamic web applications. In this blog post, we’ll explore how to build real-time web applications using Vue.js and WebSockets.

What are WebSockets?

WebSockets are a communication protocol that provides full-duplex communication channels over a single TCP connection. Unlike traditional HTTP requests, WebSockets allow for continuous, bidirectional data exchange between a client (usually a web browser) and a server. This makes WebSockets an excellent choice for building real-time applications where instant updates are crucial.

Setting up the Environment

Before we dive into building a real-time application, we need to set up our development environment. Make sure you have Node.js installed, as well as a text editor or integrated development environment (IDE) of your choice.
To get started, we’ll create a new Vue.js project using the Vue CLI:
vue create real-time-app
Follow the prompts to configure your project. For this example, we’ll choose the default settings.
Next, navigate to your project folder and install the necessary WebSocket library:
cd real-time-app
npm install vue-native-websocket

Creating a WebSocket Server

For this demonstration, we’ll use Node.js and the popular WebSocket library, ws, to create a WebSocket server. First, create a new file called server.js in your project’s root directory.
// server.js
const WebSocket = require('ws');
const server = new WebSocket.Server({ port: 8080 });

server.on('connection', (socket) => {
  console.log('Client connected');
  socket.on('message', (message) => {
    console.log(`Received: ${message}`);
    // Broadcast the message to all connected clients
    server.clients.forEach((client) => {
      if (client !== socket && client.readyState === WebSocket.OPEN) {
  socket.on('close', () => {
    console.log('Client disconnected');

This code sets up a WebSocket server that listens on port 8080 and handles incoming connections. It also broadcasts messages received from one client to all connected clients.

Integrating WebSocket into Vue.js

Now that we have our WebSocket server in place, let’s integrate it into our Vue.js application. Open src/main.js and add the following code:
// src/main.js
import Vue from 'vue'
import App from './App.vue'
import VueNativeSock from 'vue-native-websocket';

Vue.config.productionTip = false

Vue.use(VueNativeSock, 'ws://localhost:8080', {
  reconnection: true,
  reconnectionAttempts: 5,
  reconnectionDelay: 3000,

new Vue({
  render: h => h(App),

Here, we import the vue-native-websocket package and configure it to connect to our WebSocket server running on ws://localhost:8080.

Building a Real-Time Component

Now, let’s create a simple Vue component that allows users to send and receive real-time messages. Create a new file called RealTimeChat.vue in the src/components directory:
<!-- src/components/RealTimeChat.vue -->
    <h1>Real-Time Chat</h1>
      <div v-for="message in messages" :key="">
        {{ message }}
    <input v-model="inputMessage" @keyup.enter="sendMessage" placeholder="Type your message">

export default {
  data() {
    return {
      messages: [],
      inputMessage: '',
  methods: {
    sendMessage() {
      this.messages.push(`You: ${this.inputMessage}`);
      this.inputMessage = '';
In this component, we have an input field for users to type messages, and a list of messages displayed on the screen. When a user sends a message, it’s sent over the WebSocket connection, and the message is added to the list of messages for display.

Using the Real-Time Component

To use the RealTimeChat component in your application, open src/App.vue and replace its content with:

<!-- src/App.vue -->
  <div id="app">
    <RealTimeChat />

import RealTimeChat from './components/RealTimeChat.vue';

export default {
  name: 'App',
  components: {

#app {
  font-family: Avenir, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif;
  -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased;
  -moz-osx-font-smoothing: grayscale;
  text-align: center;
  color: #2c3e50;
  margin-top: 60px;

Testing the Real-Time Chat Application

Now that we’ve set up our Vue.js application with WebSocket integration, it’s time to test it. Start your Vue.js development server:
npm run serve

Open your web browser and visit [http://localhost:8080.](http://localhost:8080/%60.) You should see the Real-Time Chat component, allowing you to send and receive messages in real-time. Open multiple browser tabs or devices to see how messages are synchronized across clients.


In this blog post, we’ve explored how to build a real-time web application using Vue.js and WebSockets. We created a WebSocket server with Node.js and ws, integrated it into our Vue.js application using vue-native-websocket, and built a real-time chat component. This is just the beginning—real-time web applications can be extended to support a wide range of use cases, from live notifications to collaborative editing. The combination of Vue.js and WebSockets provides a powerful foundation for creating dynamic and interactive web experiences. Happy coding!
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