Dependent fields

When working with complex forms, you often have fields whose state is dependent upon the input values of other fields in the form. For example you might have a select list of options, the options for which depend upon the value selected for another select list.

The dependent() method is available in Editor to make this type of complex interaction trivial. You simply attach the dependent() method to a field that you want to trigger an update the form when its value changes. You then have the option of defining a local callback or an Ajax call that will return an object that will reconfigure the form. You have the options of showing, hiding, enabling and disabling fields. You can also update labels, options, values, information messages and error messages! See the dependent() documentation for full details.

This example shows dependent() attached to a simple select field that is used to show and hide additional fields in the table (a simple and complex view). This is just a very simple example to show how easy it is to get started with dependent().

Name Position Office Extn. Start date Salary
Name Position Office Extn. Start date Salary
  • Javascript
  • HTML
  • CSS
  • Ajax
  • Server-side script
  • Comments

The Javascript shown below is used to initialise the table shown in this example:

var editor; // use a global for the submit and return data rendering in the examples $(document).ready(function() { editor = new $.fn.dataTable.Editor( { ajax: "../php/staff.php", table: "#example", fields: [ { label: "First name:", name: "first_name" }, { label: "Last name:", name: "last_name" }, { label: "Show options:", name: "options", type: "select", options: [ "Simple", "All" ], def: "Simple" }, { label: "Position:", name: "position" }, { label: "Office:", name: "office" }, { label: "Extension:", name: "extn" }, { label: "Start date:", name: "start_date", type: "datetime" }, { label: "Salary:", name: "salary" } ] } ); editor.dependent( 'options', function ( val ) { return val === 'Simple' ? { hide: ['position', 'office', 'extn', 'start_date', 'salary'] } : { show: ['position', 'office', 'extn', 'start_date', 'salary'] }; } ); $('#example').DataTable( { dom: "Bfrtip", ajax: "../php/staff.php", columns: [ { data: null, render: function ( data, type, row ) { // Combine the first and last names into a single table field return data.first_name+' '+data.last_name; } }, { data: "position" }, { data: "office" }, { data: "extn" }, { data: "start_date" }, { data: "salary", render: $.fn.dataTable.render.number( ',', '.', 0, '$' ) } ], select: true, buttons: [ { extend: "create", editor: editor }, { extend: "edit", editor: editor }, { extend: "remove", editor: editor } ] } ); } );

In addition to the above code, the following Javascript library files are loaded for use in this example:

The HTML shown below is the raw HTML table element, before it has been enhanced by DataTables:

This example uses a little bit of additional CSS beyond what is loaded from the library files (below), in order to correctly display the table. The additional CSS used is shown below:

The following CSS library files are loaded for use in this example to provide the styling of the table:

This table loads data by Ajax. The latest data that has been loaded is shown below. This data will update automatically as any additional data is loaded.

The script used to perform the server-side processing for this table is shown below. Please note that this is just an example script using PHP. Server-side processing scripts can be written in any language, using the protocol described in the DataTables documentation.

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