A reactive table designed for Meteor

License: Other

Language: JavaScript

Reactive Table

A reactive table for Meteor, using Blaze.

Table of Contents

Quick Start

Install reactive table:

meteor add aslagle:reactive-table

This package adds a template called reactiveTable. Create and subscribe to a collection, and pass it to the template:

{{> reactiveTable collection=myCollection}}

When the whole collection should be in the table, it's best to pass in the Meteor collection object (returned by new Meteor.Collection()). You can also pass in the cursor returned by collection.find() to show a subset of the collection, or a plain array to show data that's not in a Meteor collection.

If you're new to Meteor, note that global variables aren't available from templates. You can add template helpers to access them:

    myCollection: function () {
        return myCollection;


The reactiveTable helper accepts additional arguments that can be used to configure the table.

{{> reactiveTable collection=collection showNavigation='never' rowsPerPage=5}}


  • showFilter: Boolean. Whether to display the filter box above the table. Default true, unless using custom filters.
  • filters: Array. An array of custom filter ids to use with this table. Default [].
  • rowsPerPage: Number. The desired number of rows per page. May also be a ReactiveVar, see accessing and controlling table state. Defaults to 10.
  • showNavigation: 'always', 'never' or 'auto'. The latter shows the navigation footer only if the collection has more rows than rowsPerPage.
  • showRowCount: Boolean. If the navigation footer is visible, display the total number of rows in the collection. When filtering, the value changes to the total number of rows in the filtered collection. Default false.
  • showNavigationRowsPerPage: Boolean. If the navigation footer is visible, display rows per page control. Default 'true'.
  • fields: Object. Controls the columns; see below.
  • showColumnToggles: Boolean. Adds a 'Columns' button to the top right that allows the user to toggle which columns are displayed. (Note: there aren't translations for this button yet - please add one if you're using it.) Add hidden to fields to hide them unless toggled on, see below. Add hideToggle to a field to exclude it from the toggle list. Default false.
  • useFontAwesome: Boolean. Whether to use Font Awesome for icons. Requires the fortawesome:fontawesome package to be installed. Default true if fortawesome:fontawesome is installed, else false.
  • enableRegex: Boolean. Whether to use filter text as a regular expression instead of a regular search term. When true, users won't be able to filter by special characters without escaping them. Default false. (Note: Setting this option on the client won't affect server-side filtering - see Server-side pagination and filtering)
  • ready: ReactiveVar(Boolean). When using ReactiveTable.publish on the server, pass in a ReactiveVar for ready on the client and it will be updated to true or false so you can check if the subscription is ready.
  • noDataTmpl: Template. Template to render in place of the table when the collection is empty or filtered to 0 rows. Default none (renders table header with no rows).
  • multiColumnSort: Boolean. Whether to enable sorting with multiple columns based on the order the user clicks them. Default: true.
  • class: String. Classes to add to the table element in addition to 'reactive-table'. Default: 'table table-striped table-hover col-sm-12'.
  • id: String. Unique id to add to the table element. Default: generated with _.uniqueId.
  • rowClass: String or function returning a class name. The row element will be passed as first parameter.

rowClass examples

As a function

rowClass: function(item) {
  var qnt = item.qnt;
  switch (qnt) {
    case 0:
      return 'danger';
    case 1:
    case 2:
      return 'warning';
      return ''

as a string

rowClass: 'danger',

Settings Object

Settings can also be grouped into a single object to pass to the table:

{{> reactiveTable settings=settings}}

Define the settings in a helper for the template that calls reactiveTable:

    settings: function () {
        return {
            collection: collection,
            rowsPerPage: 10,
            showFilter: true,
            fields: ['name', 'location', 'year']

You can continue to pass some settings as named arguments while grouping the others into the settings object:

{{> reactiveTable collection=collection fields=fields settings=settings}}


Add bootstrap or bootstrap-3 to style the table, or add your own css. The generated table will have the class 'reactive-table'. To use Font Awesome for icons, also add the fortawesome:fontawesome package. You can also use the argument class to define table styling:

{{> reactiveTable class="table table-bordered table-hover" collection=myCollection}}

Setting columns

To specify columns, add a fields key to the settings object.

Fields can simply be an array of field names (attributes in the collection).

{ fields: ['name', 'location', 'year'] }

Setting column headers

To set labels for the column headers, use an array of field elements, each with a key (the attribute in the collection) and a label (to display in the table header).

{ fields: [
    { key: 'name', label: 'Name' },
    { key: 'location', label: 'Location' },
    { key: 'year', label: 'Year' }
] }

The label can be a string or a function or a Blaze Template:

{ fields: [
    { key: 'name', label: function () { return new Spacebars.SafeString('<i>Name</i>'); } }
    { key: 'ageRange', label: Template.ageRangeColumnLabel, labelData: {ageFrom: 18, ageTo: 50}}
] }

where the template is defined as:

<template name="ageRangeColumnLabel">
  <span>Age {{ageFrom}} to {{ageTo}}</span>

The labelData element is used to set the data context of the label template.

Column Header CSS Class

To set the css class for table header <th>, use the optional headerClass key. This attribute can be a String or a Function.

{ fields: [
  { key: 'name', label: 'Name' , headerClass: 'col-md-4'},  // as String
  { key: 'location', label: 'Location',
    headerClass: function () {
     var css = 'col-md2';
     '/*do some logic here */
     return css;}  // as Function
  { key: 'year', label: 'Year' }
] }

Cell CSS Class

To set the css class for the table cells in a column, add the cellClass key to the field settings. This attribute can be a String or a Function. The function arguments will be the value for this key, and the full row object.

{ fields: [
  { key: 'name', label: 'Name' , cellClass: 'col-md-4'},  // as String
  { key: 'location', label: 'Location',
    cellClass: function (value, object) {
     var css = 'col-md2';
     '/*do some logic here */
     return css;}  // as Function
  { key: 'year', label: 'Year' }
] }


You can specify a template to use to render cells in a column, by adding tmpl to the field options.

{ fields: [
    { key: 'name', label: 'Name', tmpl: Template.nameTmpl },
    { key: 'location', label: 'Location', tmpl: Template.locationTmpl }
] }

The template's context will be the full object, so it will have access to all fields.

Virtual columns

You can also compute a function on the attribute's value to display in the table, by adding fn to the field.

{ fields: [
        key: 'resources',
        label: 'Number of Resources',
        fn: function (value, object, key) { return value.length; }
] }

If the key exists in the record, it will be passed to fn in value. Otherwise, value will be null.

The object argument contains the full object, so you can compute a value using multiple fields.

The key argument contains the key of the field. This allows you to get the reference point of where the value comes from in case fields are generated dynamically.

By default for client-side collections, fields that use fn will be sorted by the result of this function. If you want to sort by the field's original value instead (for example, if you are making a date human-readable), set sortByValue to true on the field object.

For server-side collections, sorting is always by value.

Be aware that it is impossible at the moment to filter on virtual fields.

In case of a need for a more sophisticated algorithm, use sortFn. This function behaves similarly to fn but does not affect the visible cell value.


You can use HTML in a virtual column by creating a Spacebars SafeString:

fn: function (value) {
    return new Spacebars.SafeString("<a href="+Routes.route['view'].path({_id:value})+">View</a>");

When adding user-generated fields to the HTML, ensure that they have been properly escaped to prevent cross-site scripting vulnerabilities.

Default sorting

All columns are sortable by default, but sorting can be disabled by setting sortable to false:

{ key: 'year', label: 'Year', sortable: false }

Default sort order and direction can be controlled by adding sortOrder and sortDirection to fields:

{ fields: [
    { key: 'year', label: 'Year', sortOrder: 0, sortDirection: 'descending' },
    { key: 'name',  label: 'Name', sortOrder: 1, sortDirection: 'ascending'}
] }

sortDirection will accept any truthy value for ascending order, and 'desc', 'descending' or -1 for descending order.

sortOrder will give fields with lower sortOrder higher priority in sorting, so the field with the lowest sortOrder will be the primary sort.

Nested objects and arrays

For elements of nested objects and arrays, use mongo's syntax in the key:

{'key': 'emails.0.address', label: 'Email Address'}

Hidden columns

To hide a column, add hidden to the field. It can be a boolean or a function.

{ key: 'location', label: 'Location', hidden: true }
{ key: 'location', label: 'Location', hidden: function () { return true; } }

If the showColumnToggles setting is true, hidden columns will be available in a dropdown and can be enabled by the user.

Dynamic columns

If you need to be able to add new columns to an existing table (e.g. in a reactive computation), you must explicitly set a unique-valued fieldId attribute on each and every field definition:

{ fields: [
        fieldId: 'month',
        key: 'postingDate',
        label: 'Posting Month',
        fn: function (value) { return value.month; }
        fieldId: 'year',
        key: 'postingDate',
        label: 'Posting Year',
        fn: function (value) { return value.year; }
] }

Having unique fieldId values ensures that default column visibility, visibility toggling and currently sorted column work correctly when adding new columns:

  tmpl.autorun(function() {
    if (Session.equals('showPostingDay', true)) {
        fieldId: 'day',
        key: 'postingDate',
        label: 'Posting Day',
        fn: function (value) { return; }

where tmpl.fields could be a template instance reactive variable used in a helper to provide a reactive table's settings.

Reactive Table will print an error to the console if at least one field has a 'fieldId' attribute and: 1. One or more other fields do NOT have a fieldId attribute, or 2. There are duplicate (or null) fieldId values.

Using events

Make the event selector be tr, and you'll have your row object in this:{
  'click .reactive-table tbody tr': function (event) {
    // set the blog post we'll display details and news for
    var post = this;
    Session.set('post', post);

If you want single elements inside a row to become clickable, you still have to target tr. Otherwise this won't refer to the corresponding object of your targeted row. With this in mind, you have to specify a target inside your 'click .reactive-table tbody tr' eventlistener:{
  'click .reactive-table tbody tr': function (event) {
    var post = this;
    // checks if the actual clicked element has the class `delete`
    if ( == "delete") {

Accessing and controlling table state

The table's pagination and column visibility can be controlled by ReactiveVars. When the value changes, the table will automatically update, and when the user changes the state of the table, the value of the variable will be changed.

These main table settings can be ReactiveVars:

  • currentPage (will contain the 0-indexed page the table is displaying)
  • rowsPerPage

In addition, columns can contain an isVisible ReactiveVar, which will contain a boolean that determines whether the column is displayed. The sortOrder and sortDirection column options can also be ReactiveVars (sortDirection should be 1 or -1) if using a ReactiveVar.

For example, to save the user's current page to the Session and restore it from the Session, set up a ReactiveVar in the template containing your reactiveTable:

Template.myTemplate.onCreated(function () {
  var currentPage = new ReactiveVar(Session.get('current-page') || 0);
  this.currentPage = currentPage;
  this.autorun(function () {
    Session.set('current-page', currentPage.get());

  tableSettings: function () {
    return {currentPage: Template.instance().currentPage};

Server-side Pagination and Filtering BETA

Use ReactiveTable.publish on the server to make a collection available to reactive-table without subscribing to the full collection.


  • name: The name of the publication
  • collection: A function that returns the collection to publish (or just a collection, if it's insecure).
  • selector: (Optional) A function that returns mongo selector that will limit the results published (or just the selector).
  • settings: (Optional) A object with settings on server side's publish function. (Details below)

Inside the functions, this is the publish handler object as in Meteor.publish, so this.userId is available.

Note: Although ReactiveTable.publish uses Meteor.publish, it publishes the rows to a special collection that's only accessible inside the reactive-table package. If you want to use your collection directly you'll have to publish it separately as well.

On the client, use the publication name as the collection argument to the reactiveTable template.

{{> reactiveTable collection="name"}}

Items = new Meteor.Collection('items');

if (Meteor.isServer) {
  // Insecure: entire collection will be available to all clients
  ReactiveTable.publish("insecure-items", Items);

  // Publish only a subset of items with "show" set to true
  ReactiveTable.publish("some-items", Items, {"show": true});

  // Publish only to logged in users
  ReactiveTable.publish("all-items", function () {
    if (this.userId) {
      return Items;
    } else {
      return [];

  // Publish only the current user's items
  ReactiveTable.publish("user-items", Items, function () {
    return {"userId": this.userId};

Other table settings should work normally, except that all fields will be sorted by value, even if using fn. The fields setting is required when using a server-side collection.

Server-side Settings

The following options are available in the settings argument to ReactiveTable.publish:

  • fields (Mongo Field Specifier) A set of fields to exclude or include from results and filtering, e.g. {fields: {name: 1, email: 1}} or {fields: {password: 0}}
  • enableRegex (Boolean - default= false): Whether to use filter text as a regular expression instead of a regular search term. When true, users will be able to enter regular expressions to filter the table, but your application may be vulnerable to a ReDoS attack. Also, when true, users won't be able to use special characters in filter text without escaping them.
  • disablePageCountReactivity (Boolean - default= false): Whether to disable reactive updates of the displayed page count. Setting this to true will improve performance and is a good idea if you don't need the page count to automatically update.
  • disableRowReactivity (Boolean - default= false): Whether to disable reactive updates of the displayed rows (which rows are displayed and their contents). Setting both this and disablePageCountReactivity to true will disable all reactivity.

Regex Examples: A user filters with "me + you"

        {"show": true}
        {"enableRegex": false});

will provide you search results, while

        {"show": true}
        {"enableRegex": true});

will crash on the server, since "me + you" is not a valid regex ("me \+ you" would be correct).

Default is to disable regex and automatically escape the term, since most users wont 'speak' regex and just type in a search term.

Custom Filters

reactive-table allows you to add multiple filters, anywhere on the page, and link them to a table instead of using the default filter box.

Multiple filters outside a table

To create a filter, use the reactiveTableFilter template:

{{> reactiveTableFilter id="myFilter" label="Filter" }}

Use the id of the filter in the filters argument in your reactiveTable settings.

  fields: [...]
  filters: ['myFilter']

reactiveTableFilter accepts the following arguments:

  • id: String. A unique id for the filter, used to link the filter to tables. Also used as the HTML id attribute.
  • class: String. HTML class attribute to apply to the element containing the filter. Default: input-group.
  • label: String. Label to display with the filter box.
  • fields: Array. Optional array of field keys that this filter should apply to, eg ["firstName", "lastName"]. Default: [], which will use all fields in the table. Note that you can't use can't use arrays directly in Spacebars templates - you'll need to write a template helper that returns the array.

By default, the filters are combined with $and, but you can set the operator to $or with the filterOperator setting. Add it to the main reactiveTable settings for client-side collections, or the server-side settings when using server-side filtering and pagination.

Creating your own filter

For even more customization, you can create your own ReactiveTable.Filter:

var filter = new ReactiveTable.Filter(filterId, fields);

new ReactiveTable.Filter accepts these arguments:

  • id: String. A unique id for the filter, used to link the filter to tables.
  • fields: Array. Optional array of field keys that this filter should apply to, eg ["firstName", "lastName"]. Default: [], which will use all fields in the table.

Once created, you can use the filter id in the reactiveTable filters, and call filter.get() and filter.set() to modify the filter. set can accept either a string or a mongo selector (eg {"$gt": 5}).

To clear the filter, set it to an empty string: filter.set(""). For convenience, there is also a ReactiveTable.clearFilters function that will clear a list of filter ids:

ReactiveTable.clearFilters(['filter1', 'filter2', 'filter3']);

Here's an example of a custom template using ReactiveTable.Filter:

<template name="greaterThanFilter">
    <div class="input-group">
      <span class="input-group-addon">
        <span>Score Greater Than </span>
      <input class="form-control greater-than-filter-input" type="text"/>

Template.greaterThanFilter.created = function () {
  this.filter = new ReactiveTable.Filter('greater-than-filter', ['score']);
   "keyup .greater-than-filter-input, input .greater-than-filter-input": function (event, template) {
      var input = parseInt($(, 10);
      if (!_.isNaN(input)) {
        template.filter.set({'$gt': input});
      } else {

Nested Tables

You can use filters to set up tables within tables – in essence, doing client-side reactive joins. A practical example would be showing a list of users, and then having a “Purchases” column where you then show that user's purchases.

The first step would be specifying the tmpl option for the user's Purchases column:

fields: [
  {key: 'purchases', label: "Purchases", tmpl: Template.userPurchases}

You will then need to define the userPurchases template, which we're including for each row of the main Users table:

<template name="userPurchases">
  {{> reactiveTable settings=settings}}

Along with its template helper:

Template.userPurchases.onCreated(function () {
  var user =;
  this.filter = new ReactiveTable.Filter("userPurchasesFilter_"+user._id, ["userId"]);

  settings: function() {
    var user = this;
    return {
      collection: "user-purchases",
      filters: ["userPurchasesFilter_"+user._id],
      field: [...]

For each iteration of the userPurchases template, we're defining a new filter based on the current user's _id, and using it to generate a new table containing that user's purchases.

And finally, the server-side publication:

ReactiveTable.publish("user-purchases", function () {
    return Purchases;
  } else {
    return [];

Note that the filter will automatically be passed on to the publication and be applied to the collection it returns.


Internationalization support is provided using anti:i18n.

Add anti:i18n to your project:

meteor add anti:i18n

To set your language to French:


We currently have translations (except the 'Columns' button) for:

  • Brazilian Portuguese (pt-br)
  • Bulgarian (bg)
  • Chinese simplified (zh)
  • Chinese traditional (zh-tw)
  • Croatian (hr)
  • Czech (cs)
  • Danish (da)
  • Dutch (nl)
  • Finnish (fi)
  • French (fr)
  • German (de)
  • Greek (gr)
  • Hebrew (he)
  • Icelandic (is)
  • Italian (it)
  • Macedonian (mk)
  • Norwegian (no)
  • Persian (fa)
  • Polish (pl)
  • Russian (ru)
  • Slovak (sk)
  • Spanish (es)
  • Swedish (sv)
  • Turkish (tr)
  • Ukrainian (ua)

For other languages or the 'Columns' button, contribute a translation to reactive_table_i18n.js.

Project Statistics

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Amy Slagle Jonathan Goley Dan Dascalescu Daniele Sudhanshu Roberto Ferro Anthony Hinsinger Brylie Christopher Oxley Paolo Scanferla Richard Smith Chris Hitchcott François Fournier Bogi Yasin Uslu Christopher Kaster sturmer-eha Clarence Liu Simon Fridlund Serkan Durusoy Waiski

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