FAQ: Learn Node.js - Create an HTTP Server

This community-built FAQ covers the “Create an HTTP Server” exercise from the lesson “Learn Node.js”.

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This exercise can be found in the following Codecademy content:

Learn Node.js

FAQs on the exercise Create an HTTP Server

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In the exercise, there is a line of code:

const PORT = process.env.PORT || 4001;

I have learned on my own about the short-circuit evaluation. So I know this line of code means that (1) check if process.env.PORT is truthy; (2) if so, assign process.env.PORT as a value of the variable POST; (3) if falsy, then assign 4001.

What I don’t understand is process.env.PORT. We don’t learn this property of the process object. The Node.js documentation (https://nodejs.org/api/process.html#process_process_env) doesn’t mention it either. Is this a property that is initially empty, but once the server gets started, it takes the value of 4001?