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Load markdown via endpoint in SvelteKit

5 min read

I had this idea whilst working on a SvelteKit project to see if I could use the Marked package in place of MDSveX.

So the idea was that I only need the markdown rendered so I thought why not just load the .md file into a Svelte page and render the content out with the Svelte {@html} directive.

Tl;Dr: Code over on GitHub

So it’s a bit of a roundabout way to do it to be honest! First up, Marked and loading Markdown files from the filesystem won’t work client side so it’s not a case of whacking in the import into the Svelte page <script> tags and calling it a day.

I’ll need to read the Markdown file from the filesystem and then pass that into Marked to create the HTML output.

Scaffold a new SvelteKit project

I’ll go through the process now. So, spin up a new SvelteKit project with the pnpm create command:

pnpm create svelte load-markdown-vai-endpoint

I’ll be picking the skeleton project, TypeScript and yes to all the other options.

Then I’ll want to install the Marked package:

cd load-markdown-via-endpoint
pnpm i -D marked
# pnpm will also install all the other dependencies

Create markdown file

So, first up I’ll want some copy to render out. I’ll create a copy folder then create a Markdown file in there:

mkdir -p src/lib/copy
# the -p flag will create a parent if it doesn't exist
touch src/lib/copy/intro.md

Then I’ll add some copy to the Markdown file:

# Hello world

Some text

## Heading 2

Some more text

1. List item 1
1. List item 2
1. List item 3

- List item 1
- List item 2
- List item 3

Aight! Now I can make the endpoint to load the Markdown file and pass it into Marked.

Create endpoint

I’ll create a new folder in src/routes called parse-markdown and then create a new +server.ts file in there:

mkdir src/routes/parse-markdown
touch src/routes/parse-markdown/+server.ts

Ok, so I have my +server.ts file where I want to make a GET so I can fetch that data from the client.

Once I have the endpoint working I’ll do the fetch of the data from the endpoint in a +page.ts file (client side) once I’ve validated the endpoint works.

In the +server.ts file I’ll use the node readFile method for getting the Markdown file, then import the Marked package.

Create a function to read the imported file and then return the data as a Promise.

I can then create a markdown variable and assign the data from the getMarkdown function to it.

Then I’ll pass the markdown variable into the marked function to give me the HTML output.

Finally, I’ll return the HTML output as a Response object, note the headers content type as text/html.

import { readFile } from 'fs'
import { marked } from 'marked'
import type { RequestHandler } from './$types'

export const GET: RequestHandler = async () => {
  const getMarkdown = () => {
    return new Promise((resolve, reject) => {
      readFile(`src/lib/copy/intro.md`, 'utf8', (err, data) => {
        if (err) {
          reject(err)
        }
        resolve(data)
      })
    })
  }

  let markdown = (await getMarkdown()) as string
  let html = marked(markdown)

  return new Response(html, {
    headers: {
      'content-type': 'text/html',
    },
  })
}

Sweet! So now that I have an endpoint that should return HTML. I can visit the endpoint in the browser (http://localhost:5173/parse-markdown) and see the HTML output.

Add query string

So, that Markdown file is a fixed file name, which isn’t much use, so what I’ll do is pass the filename I want to load to the endpoint. I’ll do that by adding a file query string to the endpoint.

So now, in the URL bar I’ll add in a query parameter:

http://localhost:5173/parse-markdown?file=intro

Then in the +server.ts file I’ll destructure out the url and use the url.searchParams to .get the file parameter and use that for the file path.

Visiting the endpoint with the query string should load the same content now. I’m passing the file name this time to load the same file in the query parameter.

import { readFile } from 'fs'
import { marked } from 'marked'
import type { RequestHandler } from './$types'

export const GET: RequestHandler = async ({ url }) => {
  let file = url.searchParams.get('file')

  const getMarkdown = () => {
    return new Promise((resolve, reject) => {
      readFile(`src/lib/copy/${file}.md`, 'utf8', (err, data) => {
        if (err) {
          reject(err)
        }
        resolve(data)
      })
    })
  }

  let markdown = (await getMarkdown()) as string
  let html = marked(markdown)

  return new Response(html, {
    headers: {
      'content-type': 'text/html',
    },
  })
}

That’s the endpoint sorted. Now I can fetch the data from the endpoint to the client.

Fetch data from endpoint

I’ll create a new +page.ts file in the routes folder, and add a load function, this will run before the +page.svelte file is rendered.

I’ll create the file:

touch src/routes/+page.ts

In the +page.ts file I’ll create the load function then do a fetch from the endpoint passing in the file query parameter.

I’ll create a html variable and return that as the data from the load function.

import type { PageLoad } from './$types'

export const load: PageLoad = async ({ fetch }) => {
  const res = await fetch(`parse-markdown?file=intro`)
  const html = await res.text()
  return { html }
}

The data (data.html in this case) will now be available to the +page.svelte file.

Render HTML

So in the +page.svelte file I’ll import the data and then render out the HTML using the Svelte @html directive.

<script lang="ts">
  import type { PageData } from './$types';

  export let data: PageData;
</script>

<div class="prose">
  {@html data.html}
</div>

Conclusion

Like I said at the start, a real roundabout way to load Markdown into a Svelte page. But it works and it’s a good way to learn about SvelteKit and the way data loading works in SvelteKit.

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