Serverless Plugin Include Dependencies

This is a Serverless plugin that should make your deployed functions smaller.


Note: This plugin no longer excludes the aws-sdk to stay in line with AWS best practices (bring your own SDK)

This is a Serverless plugin that should make your deployed functions smaller.

It does this by enabling you to add your node_modules folder to the exclude list, then it individually adds each module that your handler depends on.

If you use this plugin, you should disable the built-in Serverless option for excluding development dependencies, which is slower anyway:

  excludeDevDependencies: false

Also consider using serverless-plugin-common-excludes for even greater package size reduction, and serverless-plugin-package-size to add guards against your deployed functions so that they do not exceed a size limit that you set.


First install the plugin via NPM.

npm install serverless-plugin-include-dependencies --save-dev

Then include the plugin within your serverless.yml config.

  - serverless-plugin-include-dependencies

Usage Example


service: sample

    - node_modules/** # no need to add this yourself, this plugin does it for you

  - serverless-plugin-include-dependencies

      - 'src/lib/**' # (optional) always include these globs and their dependencies

    handler: src/handler/foo.handler
    handler: src/handler/bar.handler

For even smaller function packages, you can also set:

  individually: true

But be warned: Smaller individual functions can still mean a larger overall deployment. (10 functions that are 3 MB each is more net data tranfer and storage than 1 function that is 6 MB)

Dependency caching (Experimental)

When building a shared bundle for several functions, execution time can be reduced by enabling dependency caching. Caching is disabled by default and can be enabled using the enableCaching option:

    enableCaching: true

New In 2.0 - Exclusion Support

Rather than including module folders (e.g. node_modules/foo/**, it now includes a list of actual files (e.g. node_modules/foo/package.json, node_modules/foo/index.js) and uses the serverless package exclude to filter these files. Excludes must start with node_modules to be considered by this plugin.

The following examples would filter files of your module dependencies:

  • node_modules/**/README.*
  • node_modules/**/test/**

These would not:

  • **/*.txt

Even though normal matching libraries would match these rules, this library ignores them so that there's no chance of local excludes conflicting with node_modules excludes.

Unless you know exactly where dependencies will be installed (e.g. several things could depend on aws-sdk) you probably want a rule more like node_modules/**/aws-sdk/** (which will exclude all instances of aws-sdk) and not node_modules/aws-sdk/** (which would only exclude a top-level aws-sdk)