Sass-lint had its documentation updated in September 2019 to state that the project was no longer being maintained. While it may have a stable release, if there will be no new bugfixes or improvements this feels like a step towards the project's deprecation.

Sass-lint is a great development tool in the front end web development space for anyone using Sass. I'm interested if there are any popular alternatives that might be a likely successor to Sass-lint.

The features of Sass-lint that are critical for my purposes are:

  • Supports sass and scss syntax
  • Has a CLI that can integrate with CI workflows
  • Has an easy JSON configuration syntax, and the tool will look upward through parent directories to find configs
  • The config allows for nuanced enabling, disabling, or tweaking of rules, in a manner similar to other popular linters like ESLint and TSLint
  • Also like other popular linters, has a syntax for enabling, disabling or tweaking of rules directly in source code using specially formed comments
  • Wide editor integration-- Sublime Text is the most important for myself, but as I frequently work on teams where several editors are being used by different devs, it is important that we can all use a shared config to drive a linter that can be run on all our different editors.
  • Cross-OS compatibility-- similar to the above, for my own purposes I need it to run on MacOS & Ubuntu, but because I frequently collaborate with Windows users it would be good if they could leverage the same tool chain.
  • Free (or with a free tier)-- it would be difficult for me to make a case for adoption of a tool that drives a large cost per developer. That said, if the cost of an alternative was relatively low it might be feasible.

Up until now Sass-lint had generally met my needs, but if it is no longer being maintained I am concerned that bugs will not be getting resolved and new features will languish. For instance, ESLint has a --fix flag that it can be run with that will automatically fix certain issues-- Sass-lint lacks such a feature. There are a few issues open requesting the feature. There are 226 open issues in all on the project which now have no chance of being resolved or answered.

So, if I were to call out the ways in which Sass-lint is failing to meet my needs that I would require in an alternative:

  • Is still under active development/maintenance
  • Is popular or growing-- ideally on the way to becoming a well-established project that will increase its chance of wide adoption
  • Ideally it would leverage the same rule name and configurations as Sass-lint, or possibly alias the Sass-lint rules for easier adoption
  • Built/runs in NodeJS is nice but not a requirement

The front end web dev ecosystem is kind of strange-- ideally one moves with the trend and doesn't end up stuck on some "also-ran" tool that never saw wide adoption. Looking around I don't see anyone making note that this popular package is no longer supported, and I am wondering if I am behind the trend or ahead of it here.


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