The Many Ways to Remove a Composer Package

Turns out there’s a few different mechanisms to remove a package from your composer project. It’s important to understand what each method does and what its side effects are.

composer remove my/package This removes the package from the filesystem, removes it from composer.json and executes an update on all of the rest of the packages as part of it’s dependency reconciliation. This might not be what you want.

composer remove my/package --no-update This only removes the package from your composer.json file. It does not execute an update, so that’s good. But, it also leaves the package on the local filesystem. This can be confusing - especially with IDE autocompletion - because you’ll have different local files than the next install.

Remove the line from composer.json yourself and then execute composer update my/package. This will remove the package from the filesystem but will not execute an update on the rest of the packages. You’ve already removed it from composer.json yourself so you’re set.

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