How To Setup Intellisense in VSCode for React.js

I’ve been getting back into React.js development and was missing the rich developer experience visual studio gives you with things like intellisense.

I thought I had something working as Ctrl+Space opened intellisense with a sensible suggestion, but this turned out to be the IDE using what I’d typed earlier to make an educated guess. Clever, but I was hoping for more.

No Intellisense
No Intellisense

Dead Ends

Unfortunately I couldn’t find a simple “how to” guide and the stuff I did get from various github issues and stackoverflow didn’t really help.

After several dead ends and lots of hair pulling I eventually got intellisense working using these steps.

How To Setup Intellisense in VSCode for React.js

Step 1 – Create a jsconfig.json file

With a project folder open, look in the bottom right and you should see a lightbulb:

VSCode Lightbulb
VSCode Lightbulb

Click the lightbulb, and you should get a popup at the top of the IDE asking if you want to create a jsconfig.json file

Create JSConfig.json
Create JSConfig.json

Click “Create jsconfig.json” and vscode should do the rest.

Step 2 – Install Typings

The Typescript Definition Manager typings should be installed globally with

This will allow you to install typescript definition files which is what we’ll do next.

Step 3 – Install React Typescript Definitions

In the folder of the project enter the following commands:

> typings install dt~react --global

You should end up with a new “typings” folder with the following contents:

│   index.d.ts

Step 4 – Install typescript

You can install typescript globally, but I prefer to put it in each project with the following command

Which vscode detects automatically, so there’s nothing else to it.

Step 5 – Confirm it Works

Now you should be able to see some intellisense for react.js.

VSCode With Intellisense
VSCode With Intellisense


While attempting to get this working I found some what appears to be old and obsolete advice.

  • I haven’t created a CODETSJS or VSCODETSJS environment variable
  • There are also a couple places mentioning ‘tsd’, but that has been superseded by typings.
  • I don’t have (Salsa) in the bottom right of the IDE. In a different setup I had the version number of typescript, but that doesn’t appear to be essential.

In all honestly, I don’t really know what I’m doing, but it appears to work. Hopefully it will work for you too, but please let me know if it doesn’t in a comment below or on twitter.

Scrum Master Tip – Team Consensus

In Scrum Master Tip – Many Voices I listed a few things to try if your team meetings are dominated by one person and you want to hear from the others in the team.

On a similar note, I’ve found the following tips useful to Team consensus on decisions.

Issue to Avoid

Failing to get buy-in from the whole team on important decisions.

Why is it a problem?

If someone doesn’t agree with a decision, they are unlikely to follow it. At worse, they will become unmotivated and disruptive and slowly drag the team around them down.

I try to save these alternative techniques for the important decisions and fall back on the simple consent check of “does everyone agree?…ok then, decision made” for day to day things.

Potential Solutions

With all of these solutions, there’s a risk that the more timid members of your team are copying the dominant person, so keep an eye out and if need be, split the group up.

Roman Voting

After 3, everyone gives a thumbs up or thumbs down. other.

Vote with your feet

Imagine there is a line along one wall where one end is agree and the other is disagree and ask the team to stand along the wall depending how strongly .

Consensus Check

Use planning poker cards where a higher number is more agreement.