How to get the last modified time of the file synchronously using Node.js?

Published April 19, 2021

To get the last modified time of a file synchronously, you can use the statSync() method from the fs (filesystem) module and then use the mtime property from the returned stats object in Node.js.

Let's say we have a file called myFile.txt in which you want to get the last modified time. Here you can use the fs.statSync() method and pass:

  • the path to the file as an argument.
  • the method returns a stats object where we can use the property called mtime to get the last modified time.

The mtime property returns a valid Date object in JavaScript

It can be done like this,

// require fs module
const fs = require("fs");

// get last modified time using fs.statSync() method
const stats = fs.statSync("./myFile.txt");

// get modified time of the file
const modifiedTime = stats.mtime;

console.log("File last modified at: ", modifiedTime); // File last modified at:  2021-04-30T23:53:07.633Z

See the above code live in repl.it.

If you want to see the Date in a more human-readable way you can use the Date object methods. Let's use the toUTCString() method like this,

// require fs module
const fs = require("fs");

// get last modified time using fs.statSync() method
const stats = fs.statSync("./myFile.txt");

// get modified time of the file
const modifiedTime = stats.mtime;

console.log("File last modified at: ", modifiedTime.toUTCString()); // File last modified at: Fri, 30 Apr 2021 23:53:07 GMT

That's it! 😀

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