How to make an ASP.NET Table row highlight and become clickable

For those people who like to output their data to an asp:Table, highlighting the entire row and making it clickable can make it obvious to the user that some action is expected from them. This emulates the behaviour that can be found in some desktop applications. All that's needed for this is a bit of javascript, and the use of AddAttributes() for the table rows.

You will also need to get round the limitation of the fact that the <a> tag is not allowed around a table row, so here are the two javascript functions that perform the magic:

    
function highlight(tableRow, active)
{
if (active)
{
tableRow.style.backgroundColor = '#cfc';
}
else
{
tableRow.style.backgroundColor = '#fff';
}
}

function link(Url)
{
document.location.href = Url;
}

And here's the method that adds the javascript to each row of the table as it is rendered:

string connstring = "Provider=Microsoft.Jet.OLEDB.4.0;Data Source=";
connstring += Server.MapPath("App_Data/NWind.mdb");
string query = "SELECT [CustomerID], [CompanyName], [ContactName], [Address], [City]";
query += " FROM [Customers]";
OleDbConnection conn = new OleDbConnection(connstring);
OleDbDataAdapter da = new OleDbDataAdapter(query, conn);
DataSet ds = new DataSet();
da.Fill(ds, "Employees");
foreach (DataRow dr in ds.Tables[0].Rows)
  {
    TableRow trow = new TableRow();
    foreach (DataColumn dc in ds.Tables[0].Columns)
    {
      TableCell tcell = new TableCell();
      tcell.Controls.Add(new LiteralControl(dr[dc.ColumnName].ToString()));
      trow.Cells.Add(tcell);
  
      trow.Attributes["onmouseover"] = "highlight(this, true);";
      trow.Attributes["onmouseout"] = "highlight(this, false);";
      trow.Attributes["onclick"] = "link('edit.aspx?id=" + dr[0].ToString() + "');";
      HttpResponse myHttpResponse = Response;
      HtmlTextWriter myHtmlTextWriter = new HtmlTextWriter(myHttpResponse.Output);
      trow.Attributes.AddAttributes(myHtmlTextWriter);
      Table1.Rows.Add(trow); 
    }
  }
conn.Close();

Date Posted:
Last Updated:
Posted by:
Total Views to date: 85458

4 Comments

- James Piette

I recently implemented similar functionality on a site I'm building using ASP MVC. I was able to do this using CSS and jquery. I also was using an AJAX call to have a table in a left division post the data to the rightDiv (division with id="divRight".

After including jquery, put this script on the top of the page.
<script type="text/javascript">
function linkfunc(url) {
$(divRight).load(url);
}

Then declare the <tr> tag as follows. (replace the stuff in [] to match your controller call.)
tr class="highlight" onclick="linkfunc('<%= Url.Action("[controlleraction]", "[controllername]", new{/*id=model.id*/})%>');">

To have highlighting work, declare this in the .css file
.highlight:hover
{
background-color:yellow
}

- Mike

@James

Since I wrote this article over 3 years ago, I have been using jQuery too.

- Mindaugas Matulis

There is a much easier way to do this without javascript. Just when you create Table Row items you can simply change colore on attribute name like in previous example:

trow.Attributes["onmouseover"] = "this.bgColor = '#DCEAF3'";
trow.Attributes["onmouseout"] = "this.bgColor = '#FFFFFF'";

- Mike

@Mindaugas Matulis

Thanks, but you are still using Javascript.

This article is very old. I'd recommend managing this via jQuery or similar these days anyway.

Recent Comments

sandeep 8/28/2015 7:03 AM
In response to 7 C# 6.0 Features That Every ASP.NET Developer Should Know About
very good article, i like it........keep writing such quality article in future. thx Mike....

Hassan, MVC Learner 8/28/2015 6:37 AM
In response to Get The Drop On ASP.NET MVC DropDownLists
Great Help, simple, great and patiently explained article !...

Anvesh 8/28/2015 12:39 AM
In response to ASP.NET MVC DropDownLists - Multiple Selection and Enum Support
what if we are taking postback values from FormCollections instead of an array int[] category. How...

Ben 8/27/2015 10:50 PM
In response to Simple File Download Protection with ASP.NET
Is it possible to setup your project to publish files to outside of your root directory? I would to...

Fred 8/26/2015 12:50 AM
In response to WebMatrix Opens Wrong Version Of Visual Studio
I enjoyed many of your tutorials but the problem is none of the tutorials are combined like most be....

Muhammad Ashikuzzaman 8/25/2015 2:48 PM
In response to Managing Checkboxes And Radios In ASP.NET Razor Web Pages
That's a very good tips for razor...

Sergey 8/25/2015 8:32 AM
In response to More Flexible Routing For ASP.NET Web Pages
Hi. How I can set up my site to get urldata from link for default page? site.com/default/1-...

Tony Gray 8/25/2015 6:27 AM
In response to Adding Validation
Hi Mike, Really helpful article and series. Thanks. Small typo in 4th paragraph you have so...

amanda n 8/25/2015 12:38 AM
In response to Solving the Operation Must Use An Updateable Query error
Thank you very much. I'm a uni student and while solving coding problems is usually enjoyable and me...

salman 8/23/2015 9:25 AM
In response to How To Send Email In ASP.NET MVC
thanks ......