Hey there, fellow horror fan & coder here.
I believe what you’re asking is whether you can access a fully-functional bash session on your board. If so, then the answer is absolutely. The prebuilt images are pre-loaded with a headless, minimal version of Ubuntu (thus it uses the
apt package manager).
If the microSD card is inserted and the board jumper closest to the USB HOST port is set to “SD”, then simply connect the board to your computer (via the microUSB “PROG UART” port), power on the board, & access the embedded shell via either Putty or a terminal emulator like Screen or Minicom. The board should become visible to your computer as a
/dev/ttyUSB* descriptor if on Linux, a
/dev/tty.usbserial-* device if on Mac, or a COM port if on Windows.
The easiest way to make a serial connection to the embedded bash shell IMO is using the command
screen /dev/ttyUSB1 115200,cs8. Obviously, if your board has a network connection, then SSH is the preferred method. Default username & password to access the board are both ‘xilinx’.
Once connected to the Internet, you can use
apt to install & run node.js. Hope this helps to answer your question.