MERN Stack in minutes

MERN Stack in minutes

A set of tools and frameworks used to create a software product is known as the technology Stack. MERN is one of the widely used technological Stack in the software development world. In particular, MERN Stack uses MongoDB, NodeJS, ExpressJS, and React JS to create web applications.

However, when it comes to Parse then you can find integrated MongoDB, NodeJS, Express JS, and React JS SDK in one single framework. So we can ensure that you are going to create a big hit in terms of software products using the MERN Stack in minutes. Let’s take a look at the following details to get a better understanding of how Parse/Back4App can make your life easier.

What is MERN Stack?

MERN Stack is one of the most popular technology stacks which can help you to develop an amazing create, read, update, and delete (CRUD) application from initial. Basically, the MERN stack is a set of frameworks/technologies used for web development which consists of MongoDB, React JS, Express JS, and Node JS as working components. However, here we have details of each component which is an important part of your application development process while using MERN stack.

Knowing these details will let you have a glimpse of how things will go in actuality. So here we go:


MongoDB is one of the most amazing NoSQL-document-oriented databases. A document can be defined using a complex data structure using, for example, the key-value format (JSON). In other words, you can store data using JSON-like documents.

Each document is an independent unit which makes it easier to scale the database by distributing the data across multiple servers.

Express JS

Express JS is a framework that has layered on the Node JS top and can be used to create the backend of the website with the help of Node JS structures and functions. However, as Node JS is meant to run JavaScript on a machine but not to develop websites, while, express JS is meant to create websites.

React JS

React JS is a Javascript library for building fast & interactive user interfaces. It was developed by the Facebook engineering team in 2009 and became the most popular library to build amazing user interfaces.

The heart of a React application is the component. Each component is an independent, isolated, and reusable piece of the user interface. You can compose components to build a beautiful UI.

Every React Application has at least 1 component: the root component. This component represents the entire application and contains all the other components inside it. So every React app is a tree of components.

Node JS

Is an open-source runtime environment for executing Javascript code outside of the browser. We often use Node JS to build back-end services exposed using APIs. NodeJS is ideal for building highly scalable, data-intensive, and real time applications.

What is special about NodeJS? Node is easy to get started and can be used for building from prototypes to super fast/highly scalable services. NodeJS is widely used today for companies like Paypal, Uber, NetFlix, Walmart, and so on.

What is Parse?

Parse is the most popular open-source Backend as a Service framework that can help you to develop the whole application backend. It has the ability to help enterprises and developers to speed up their backend development.

Not only this, but it will also help you to optimize your resource and time utilization required to develop an application from start to end. A community of well-engaged developers is supporting this platform and working hard to evolving this platform since 2016.

It can work as a great tool to develop applications quickly and affordably in the best possible way. Most amazingly, this solution has the ability to let you focus on the core functionalities of your product without even reinventing the wheel. As you can get a better opportunity to create amazing applications without even hiring a full-fledged backend developers’ team.

Parse has 3 main modules: Parse Server, Parse Dashboard, and Parse SDKs. Parse Server is the application layer that makes all the heavy work of managing the database, cloud functions, messaging, auth. The dashboard is a visual interface to control what Parse Server is doing as long as to control all your application backend. The SDKs are what make front end developers happy by giving them an amazing experience to interact with the backend structure.

Parse and the MERN Stack

Parse is a great platform that is based on all the essential technological stacks required to create amazing Web and Mobile applications within no time. MERN stack can also help you to develop incredible web applications. Have a look at the following essential parse features to get a better idea about the things.

Parse has MongoDB as a default database

Parse is using MongoDB as its default database to store application data. MongoDB is a database that is falling in the category of document-oriented and NoSQL databases. It offers a more in-lined database document structure to know hoe developers have constructed objects and classes in the respective programming language. MongoDB is effective to use because it supports ad-hoc queries, indexing, replica sets, and load balancing.

Parse has been built using Node JS

You can host parse on any Node JS cloud. Node JS is an effective and efficient runtime environment for JavaScript which can offer you everything required to execute an application program written in JavaScript. Furthermore, Node Js now contains the capability of doing various other things too. However, it is using a non-blocking I/O model which is event-driven too. This approach is making it efficient and lightweight. The package ecosystem of Node JS is the largest open-source libraries ecosystem in the world which makes it a more flexible option to consider.

Parse is built using Express JS

Express JS is one of the basic components in Parse too. This is an effective framework of web applications for Node JS. This framework has been released as an open-source and free to use software which has been designed effectively for the development of APIs and web applications. Various of its features are available in the form of plugins which can be used whenever or wherever needed in the best possible way. However, Express JS is an effective component of MERN stack, works together with the React JS frontend framework and MongoDB database software.

How to build a React application with Parse?

Parse is an application development platform that is being used to create web and mobile application solutions. The project which is based on the web is using React Js as frontend technology.

React JS is an efficient, declarative and flexible library for JavaScript to build highly creative and attractive user interfaces. It can help the developers to compose complex user-interfaces from isolated and small pieces of code which are known as components. However, here we will have a look at the simple steps on getting started to build a react application using Parse:


Download a Project Template

Download the template at our GitHub repository, and unzip files in your project folder. You can do that using the following command line:

  $ curl -LOk && unzip 

Navigate to the extracted folder and install the dependencies using the following command line:

$ cd react-quickstart-example-master && npm install

Open the project template

  1. Open Visual Studio Code.
  2. Click on Open folder.
  3. Navigate to the project folder and click on OK.
  4. Wait for Visual Studio to open.

Set up your App’s credentials

Update your strings values to set up the app’s credentials. Parse Javascript SDK uses these settings to connect to the Back4App servers. In order to do that, follow these steps:

  1. Open your home javascript file: .../src/app.js
  2. Go to your App Dashboard at Back4App Website.
  3. Navigate to app’s settings: Click on Server Settings > Core Settings block > SETTINGS.
  4. Return to your app.js file and paste your App Id and JavaScript Key.
  5. Finally, let’s add a new component to save the device installation to our database.
Save the device installation to your database.

Testing your Web App

Run your app on your browser.

$ npm run start

Wait until a new tab opens on your browser.

Build app
Saving the Object

Now go to your Back4App account and navigate to your App’s Dashboard. Open the Installation table and then check if the object has been saved.

Installation at Back4App Dashboard
Back4App’s table

Final Words

As we can see Parse/Back4App is an option to build a Web App using the MERN Stack in minutes. It is a great choice to implement this stack because it comes with all the components already configured and your development work can be resumed to create the REACT JS web application. You can focus on what matters to your final customer instead of wasting time configuring servers and deploying frameworks.

Did you like this Mern Stack blog? Feel free to leave your comments.

Do you have Mern Stack project ideias? Talk to one of our Mern Stack development partners here.

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