ASK SDK Migration Guide

This guide provides detailed instructions on how to use the Alexa Skills Kit (ASK) SDK v1 adapter with ASK SDK v2 for Node.js to migrate existing skills developed with ASK SDK v1 for Node.js ('alexa-sdk') to the v2 SDK ('ask-sdk').

Backwards compatibility

The ASK SDK v1 adapter simplifies migrating v1 Alexa skills to the SDK v2 by offering backwards compatibility for ASK SDK v1 interfaces. With the v1 adapter, request handlers written in v1 and v2 coding styles can run side by side. This allows you to extend existing Alexa skills with v2-style request handlers, but also update existing handlers at your own pace. For new skills, make sure to start with the ASK SDK v2 for Node.js to take advantage of the v2 features.


  • A NPM project with a dependency on the standard ASK SDK module installed as described in the Setting up the ASK SDK v2 for Node.js section. The ASK SDK v1 adapter has a peer dependency of the standard ASK SDK v2 for Node.js distribution ('ask-sdk').
  • A suitable Node.js development environment. The ASK SDK v2 for Node.js requires Node.js version 4.3.2 or later.

Migration steps

Add the ASK SDK v1 adapter to your project

From within your NPM project, run the following command to install the ASK SDK v1 Adapter module:

npm install --save ask-sdk-v1adapter

Update the import statement

To port skill code that uses ASK SDK v1 for Node.js, import from the ask-sdk-v1adapter package instead of the alexa-sdk package. The adapter handles the internal logic translation and creates Skill instance using ASK SDK v2 for Node.js.

In your code, change this:

const Alexa = require('alexa-sdk');

To this:

const Alexa = require('ask-sdk-v1adapter');

The rest of your skill code can remain the same:

exports.handler = function(event, context, callback) {
  const alexa = Alexa.handler(event, context, callback);
  alexa.appId = APP_ID // APP_ID is your skill id which can be found in the Amazon developer console where you create the skill.

Adding v2 request handlers

The ASK SDK v1 adapter allows v1 and v2 request handlers to run side-by-side. However, we recommend using v2 request handlers when extending your Alexa skill as it provides full access to ASK SDK v2 for Node.js features.

The v2 request handlers are accessed after v1 request handlers, and only if there is no v1 handler that can handle the request. Therefore, when you replace a v1 handler with a v2 handler, make sure to remove the code for the v1 handler. Also, it's important to remove the Unhandled function from your v1 handler when you add v2 handlers. Otherwise, all events are captured by the Unhandled function before they reach the v2 handlers.

When you add a v2 handler, register the new handler with the registerV2Handlers function in the entry point for your skill.

The following code sample shows how to add a v2 request handler that can handle the AMAZON.HelpIntent to the v1 hello world sample skill. In this example, the original v1 AMAZON.HelpIntent handler has been removed from the handlers constant and passed to the registerV2Handlers function:

'use strict';
const Alexa = require('ask-sdk-v1adapter');

exports.handler = function(event, context, callback) {
  const alexa = Alexa.handler(event, context);
  alexa.registerV2Handlers(HelpIntentHandler); // New API functions for registering v2 request handlers

const handlers = {
  'LaunchRequest': function () {
  'HelloWorldIntent': function () {
  'SayHello': function () {
    this.response.speak('Hello World!');
  'AMAZON.CancelIntent': function () {
  'AMAZON.StopIntent': function () {
    this.response.speak('See you later!');

// HelpIntentHandler re-written following v2 request handler interface
const HelpIntentHandler = {
  canHandle({requestEnvelope}) {
    return requestEnvelope.request.type === 'IntentRequest'
    && === 'AMAZON.HelpIntent';
    const speechOutput = 'This is the Hello World Sample Skill. ';
    const reprompt = 'Say hello, to hear me speak.';
    return responseBuilder

Sample code

The following sample code demonstrates a basic Alexa skill in Node.js:

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Last updated: Apr 02, 2024