JavaScript : Submit a form with reactjs

14 Jul 2015

When ever I read about reactjs, I heard that “Its needs a different thinking”. I understood that statement When I worked on a simple form with loading indicator in reactjs. In usual case I used to add loading class in beforeSend and remove it when $.ajax is done/fail.

But I came to reactjs, first I tried to do the same, but later I understood it should go to state. Here below the code for simple reactjs form. I used loading state to to render loading indicator.

App.Users.Add = React.createClass({
  getInitialState: function () {
    return {username: "", email: "", password: "", loading: false, errors: {}}
  _create: function () {
    return $.ajax({
      url: '/api/users',
      type: 'POST',
      data: {
        username: this.state.username,
        password: this.state.password,
      beforeSend: function () {
        this.setState({loading: true});
  _onSubmit: function (e) {
    var errors = this._validate();
    if(Object.keys(errors).length != 0) {
        errors: errors
    var xhr = this._create();
  hideLoading: function () {
    this.setState({loading: false});
  _onSuccess: function (data) {
    // show success message
  _onError: function (data) {
    var message = "Failed to create the user";
    var res = data.responseJSON;
    if(res.message) {
      message = data.responseJSON.message;
    if(res.errors) {
        errors: res.errors
  _onChange: function (e) {
    var state = {};
    state[] =  $.trim(;
  _validate: function () {
    var errors = {}
    if(this.state.username == "") {
      errors.username = "Username is required";
    if( == "") { = "Email is required";
    if(this.state.password == "") {
      errors.password = "Password is required";
    return errors;
  _formGroupClass: function (field) {
    var className = "form-group ";
    if(field) {
      className += " has-error"
    return className;
  render: function() {
    return (
      <div className="form-container">
        <form ref='user_form' onSubmit={this._onSubmit}>
          <div className={this._formGroupClass(this.state.errors.username)}>
            <label className="control-label" for="username">Username </label>
            <input name="username" ref="username" type="text" className="form-control" id="username" placeholder="Username" onChange={this._onChange} />
            <span className="help-block">{this.state.errors.username}</span>
          <div className={this._formGroupClass(}>
            <label className="control-label" for="email">Email address</label>
            <input name="email" ref="email" type="email" className="form-control" id="email" placeholder="Email" onChange={this._onChange} />
            <span className="help-block">{}</span>
          <div className={this._formGroupClass(this.state.errors.password)}>
            <label className="control-label" for="password">Password</label>
            <input name="password" ref="password" type="password" className="form-control" id="password" placeholder="Password" onChange={this._onChange} />
            <span className="help-block">{this.state.errors.password}</span>
          <button type="submit" className="btn btn-default" disabled={this.state.loading}>
            <App.Loading loading={this.state.loading} />

So in the above component, I save the value entered in the text boxes into the state and validate which submiting the form. Once I validation is success then I initialte an ajax request. In the beforeSend of I set the loading state to true and whether its fail or success I set the loading state to false. So when the loading state is true it will render the loading component with fontawesome CSS classes.

I extracted the loading component to reuse as much as I can.

App.Loading = React.createClass({
  render: function () {
    if(!this.props.loading) {
      return <span></span>;
    return <span className='fa-spinner fa-spin'></span>

Now I can render this App.Users.Add component anywhere.

React.render(<App.Users.Add />, document.getElementById('container'));

I store all the validation errors in the state as well. So when ever the error occurs the reactjs will take care of rending it.

If you find my work helpful, You can buy me a coffee.