Get React Component Data by DOM Node

By  on  

Retrieving a React component's DOM node is fairly simple from within the component itself, but what if you want to work backward:  retrieve a component's instance by DOM node?  This is a task that the old Dojo Toolkit's Dijit framework allowed with the dijit.byId method, so it made me think if you could do the same with React.  It turns out you can retrieve a component instance by DOM node!

The following function allows you to get a React component instance by DOM node:

function findReactElement(node) {
    for (var key in node) {
        if (key.startsWith("__reactInternalInstance$")) {
            return node[key]._debugOwner.stateNode;
        }
    }
    return null;
}

If the node is a React component root, you'll see a load of amazing information, like its props, state, context, refs, list of methods, and more:

React Element State

Modifying props/state and calling render methods don't appear to actually do anything, so manipulation doesn't look possible from the outside, but it is useful to be able to get the component instance based on DOM node if for nothing other than inspection.  Nice!

Recent Features

  • By
    Create a CSS Cube

    CSS cubes really showcase what CSS has become over the years, evolving from simple color and dimension directives to a language capable of creating deep, creative visuals.  Add animation and you've got something really neat.  Unfortunately each CSS cube tutorial I've read is a bit...

  • By
    5 HTML5 APIs You Didn’t Know Existed

    When you say or read "HTML5", you half expect exotic dancers and unicorns to walk into the room to the tune of "I'm Sexy and I Know It."  Can you blame us though?  We watched the fundamental APIs stagnate for so long that a basic feature...

Incredible Demos

Discussion

  1. Hristo

    This is not a good practice in my opinion. What if React change these properties in the next versions? In general this approach seems counter-OOP, it’s like stirring in the gut…

Wrap your code in <pre class="{language}"></pre> tags, link to a GitHub gist, JSFiddle fiddle, or CodePen pen to embed!