React Express

There are two common ways to set up a React development environment: create-react-app and webpack.
Both options are based on npm, the node.js package manager. We'll cover npm separately, if you're not familiar with it.
If you'd rather skip environment setup for now, feel free to jump ahead to the Modern JavaScript or React API sections. This site uses an embedded React editor so you don't need a local environment to go through the examples.
Create React App
Facebook provides a command-line utility called create-react-app which automatically sets up a new React project with a sensible default project structure and feature set. This is the best way to get started as a beginner.
You'll likely outgrow this option pretty quickly as you get a better grasp of React and want to customize your stack. Fortunately, create-react-app offers an eject option to export your app, so you're not locked in.
We'll walk through this in the next section, Quick Start.
Webpack bundles your client-side code (JavaScript, css, etc) into a single JavaScript file. Webpack is the most common way to bundle a React app during development and for production. If you want more flexibility and power than create-react-app, you should learn how to use Webpack and the Babel plugin (for compiling your ES2015/JSX code for browser compatibility).

The following sections will cover the tools you need to build a React app either using create-react-app or from scratch using Webpack.