Using Constraints and Advanced Generic Types in TypeScript

TypeScript provides a powerful mechanism called generics that allows us to write code without specifying the exact type of certain values. This enables us to create more flexible and reusable components. In addition to basic generic types, TypeScript also supports constraints and advanced generic types, which further enhance the capabilities of the language. In this article, we will explore how to use constraints and advanced generic types in TypeScript.


Constraints allow us to limit the types that can be used with a generic type parameter. By applying constraints, we can ensure that a particular type or a set of types is used with the generic type parameter.

To add a constraint to a generic type, we can use the extends keyword followed by the desired type. For example, consider the following code snippet:

function merge<T extends object, U extends object>(obj1: T, obj2: U): T & U {
  return Object.assign({}, obj1, obj2);

const mergedObject = merge({ name: 'John' }, { age: 30 });

In the above example, we have added constraints to ensure that the type parameters T and U can only be objects. This allows us to safely use the Object.assign method to merge the two objects obj1 and obj2. The return type T & U indicates that the merged object will have all the properties of both T and U.

Constraints are particularly useful when working with generic functions or classes that rely on specific properties or methods of a given type. By applying constraints, we can prevent potential runtime errors and provide better type checking.

Advanced Generic Types

Apart from basic generic types, TypeScript offers advanced generic types that can be used to solve more complex problems. The following are some commonly used advanced generic types:


The Partial<T> type allows us to create a new type based on an existing type T, but with all properties set as optional. This is useful when we want to create partially filled objects.

interface Person {
  name: string;
  age: number;
  address: string;

function updatePerson(person: Partial<Person>): void {
  // Update the person object

const partialPerson: Partial<Person> = {
  name: 'John'

In the above example, the Partial<Person> type is used to define the partialPerson object. Here, all properties of the Person type are marked as optional, allowing us to create an incomplete object that can be passed to the updatePerson function.


The Readonly<T> type makes all properties of the given type T read-only. This means that the properties cannot be modified once the object is created.

interface Config {
  readonly apiUrl: string;
  readonly apiKey: string;

function fetchData(config: Readonly<Config>): void {
  // Fetch data using the provided config

const readOnlyConfig: Readonly<Config> = {
  apiUrl: '',
  apiKey: '123456'

In the above example, the Readonly<Config> type is used to define the readOnlyConfig object. This ensures that the properties apiUrl and apiKey cannot be modified after the object is created, adding an extra layer of immutability and safety to our codebase.


The Pick<T, K> type allows us to create a new type by selecting specific properties K from an existing type T. This can be useful when we want to create a type with a subset of properties based on our needs.

interface Book {
  title: string;
  author: string;
  pages: number;
  genre: string;

type BookSummary = Pick<Book, 'title' | 'author'>;

function getBookSummary(book: BookSummary): void {
  // Process the book summary

const book: BookSummary = {
  title: 'The Great Gatsby',
  author: 'F. Scott Fitzgerald'

In the above example, the Pick<Book, 'title' | 'author'> type is used to define the BookSummary type, which only includes the title and author properties from the Book type. This allows us to create a book object with a limited set of properties that can be passed to the getBookSummary function.


Constraints and advanced generic types are powerful tools that can help us write more flexible and reusable code in TypeScript. Constraints allow us to restrict the types that can be used with a generic type parameter, while advanced generic types provide additional functionality to solve complex problems. By leveraging these features, we can enhance type safety, improve code readability, and build more robust applications with TypeScript.

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