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6.1.8.  < a4j:jsFunction > available since 3.0.0

The <a4j:jsFunction> component allows to perform Ajax requests directly from JavaScript code, invoke server-side data and return it in a JSON format to use in a client JavaScript calls.

Table 6.15. a4j : jsFunction attributes

Attribute Name Description
actionMethodBinding pointing at the application action to be invoked, if this UIComponent is activated by you, during the Apply Request Values or Invoke Application phase of the request processing lifecycle, depending on the value of the immediate property
actionListenerMethodBinding pointing at method accepting an ActionEvent with return type void
ajaxSingleLimits JSF tree processing (decoding, conversion, validation and model updating) only to a component that sends the request. Boolean
binding JSF: The attribute takes a value-binding expression for a component property of a backing bean
bypassUpdatesIf "true", after process validations phase it skips updates of model beans on a force render response. It can be used for validating components input
dataSerialized (on default with JSON) data passed on the client by a developer on AJAX request. It's accessible via "" syntax
eventsQueueName of requests queue to avoid send next request before complete other from same event. Can be used to reduce number of requests of frequently events (key press, mouse move etc.)
focusID of an element to set focus after request is completed on client side
id JSF: Every component may have a unique id that is automatically created if omitted
ignoreDupResponsesAttribute allows to ignore an Ajax Response produced by a request if the newest 'similar' request is in a queue already. ignoreDupResponses="true" does not cancel the request while it is processed on the server, but just allows to avoid unnecessary updates on the client side if the response isn't actual now
immediateTrue means, that the default ActionListener should be executed immediately (i.e. during Apply Request Values phase of the request processing lifecycle), rather than waiting until the Invoke Application phase
limitToListIf "true", then of all AJAX-rendered on the page components only those will be updated, which ID's are passed to the "reRender" attribute of the describable component. "false"-the default value-means that all components with ajaxRendered="true" will be updated.
nameName of generated JavaScript function definition
onbeforedomupdateThe client-side script method to be called before DOM is updated
oncompleteThe client-side script method to be called after the request is completed
processId['s] (in format of call UIComponent.findComponent()) of components, processed at the phases 2-5 in case of AjaxRequest caused by this component. Can be single id, comma-separated list of Id's, or EL Expression with array or Collection
rendered JSF: If "false", this component is not rendered
requestDelayAttribute defines the time (in ms.) that the request will be wait in the queue before it is ready to send. When the delay time is over, the request will be sent to the server or removed if the newest 'similar' request is in a queue already
reRenderId['s] (in format of call UIComponent.findComponent()) of components, rendered in case of AjaxRequest caused by this component. Can be single id, comma-separated list of Id's, or EL Expression with array or Collection
similarityGroupingIdIf there are any component requests with identical IDs then these requests will be grouped.
statusID (in format of call UIComponent.findComponent()) of Request status component
timeoutResponse waiting time on a particular request. If a response is not received during this time, the request is aborted

Table 6.16. Component identification parameters


To create the simpliest example of the component on the page use the following syntax:


      <!--There is some script named "myScript" that uses parameters which will be taken from server-->
      <a4j:jsFunction data="#{bean.someProperty}" name="callScript" oncomplete="myScript(data.subProperty1, data.subProperty2)"/>

The script "myScript" is called after bean.someProperty data is returned from server (e.g. It'll be object with two subproperties).


import org.ajax4jsf.component.html.HtmlajaxFunction;

HtmlajaxFunction myFunction = new HtmlajaxFunction();

As the component uses Ajax request to get data from server it has all common Ajax Action attributes. Hence, "action" and "actionListener" can be invoked, and reRendering some parts of the page fired after calling function.

When using the <a4j:jsFunction> it's possible to initiate the Ajax request from the JavaScript and perform partial update of a page and/or invoke the JavaScript function with data returned by Ajax response.

<body onload="callScript()">
            <a4j:jsFunction name="callScript" data="#{bean.someProperty1}" reRender="someComponent" oncomplete="myScript(data.subProperty1, data.subProperty2)">
                  <a4j:actionparam name="param_name" assignTo="#{bean.someProperty2}"/>

The <a4j:jsFunction> allows to use <a4j:actionparam> or pure <f:param> for passing any number of parameters of the JavaScript function into Ajax request. <a4j:jsFunction> is similar to <a4j:commandButton> , but it could be activated from the JavaScript code. It allows to invoke some server-side functionality and use the returned data in the JavaScript function invoked from "oncomplete" attribute. Hence it's possible to use <a4j:jsFunction> instead of <a4j:commandButton> . You can put it anywhere, just don't forget to use <h:form> and </h:form> around it.

Information about the "process" attribute usage you can find "Decide what to process" guide section.

Vizit the jsFunction page at RichFaces LiveDemo for component usage and sources for the given examples.

Useful articles:

  • "JsFunctionJson" article in the RichFaces Cookbook describes how to use "a4j:jsFunction" to call the jsonTest backing bean that generates some random data in a JSON String;