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POST from an <A> tag

Posted by: admin November 30, 2017 Leave a comment


Is it possible to do a POST from just an <a> tag? I know anchor tags are usually just for GETs, and I know I can use javascript to do this (like in JavaScript post request like a form submit) but to me that seems a little messy. Is there a way to do this with straight HTML?


There is no way to POST an a element using only HTML.

As can be seen from this DTD fragment (HTML 4.01 spec):

<!ELEMENT A - - (%inline;)* -(A)       -- anchor -->
  %attrs;                              -- %coreattrs, %i18n, %events --
  charset     %Charset;      #IMPLIED  -- char encoding of linked resource --
  type        %ContentType;  #IMPLIED  -- advisory content type --
  name        CDATA          #IMPLIED  -- named link end --
  href        %URI;          #IMPLIED  -- URI for linked resource --
  hreflang    %LanguageCode; #IMPLIED  -- language code --
  rel         %LinkTypes;    #IMPLIED  -- forward link types --
  rev         %LinkTypes;    #IMPLIED  -- reverse link types --
  accesskey   %Character;    #IMPLIED  -- accessibility key character --
  shape       %Shape;        rect      -- for use with client-side image maps --
  coords      %Coords;       #IMPLIED  -- for use with client-side image maps --
  tabindex    NUMBER         #IMPLIED  -- position in tabbing order --
  onfocus     %Script;       #IMPLIED  -- the element got the focus --
  onblur      %Script;       #IMPLIED  -- the element lost the focus --

There is no attribute that controls whether to use POST or GET with an a element.

You have to script it, if you want to abuse the semantics.


Not really, no. You can, however, do something like this:

<form action="theUrl" method="POST">

<input type="hidden" name="param1" value="val" />
<input type="hidden" name="param2" value="val2" />

<a href="#" onclick="this.parentNode.submit()">Go to that link!</a>


You should find a better way, though. This one does not degrade gracefully.


You can use CSS to make an <input type="submit"> look like a hyperlink.


Simple answer: no. You need to use javascript to do this kind of thing; since when you do a POST what you’re doing is sending the data in the HTTP request. With get you’re just sending it as part of the string (thus you can do it through the href value).


No clearly not without a javascript submit().


No there’s no way to do this without the use of scripting. Although you can use CSS to style a standard Submit button to look and act more like an tag.


The 2 ways I think about are with JavaScript (as you said) or through server-scription.

You’d basically send the GET request (with the A) to some server file, which would change the GET vars to POST and then re-submit instantly (redirect location). But that would mess the referer stats I think.