HTMLDialogElement.showModal()

This is an experimental technology
Check the Browser compatibility table carefully before using this in production.

The showModal() method of the HTMLDialogElement interface displays the dialog as a modal, over the top of any other dialogs that might be present. It displays into the top layer, along with a ::backdrop pseudo-element. Interaction outside the dialog is blocked and the content outside it is rendered inert.

Syntax

dialogInstance.showModal();

Parameters

None.

Return value

Void.

Exceptions

If the dialog is already open (i.e. if the open attribute is already set on the <dialog> element), an InvalidStateError is thrown.

Examples

The following example shows a simple button that, when clicked, opens a <dialog> containing a form via the showModal() method. From there you can click the Cancel button to close the dialog (via the HTMLDialogElement.close() method), or submit the form via the submit button.

  <!-- Simple pop-up dialog box, containing a form -->
  <dialog id="favDialog">
    <form method="dialog">
      <section>
        <p><label for="favAnimal">Favorite animal:</label>
        <select id="favAnimal" name="favAnimal">
          <option></option>
          <option>Brine shrimp</option>
          <option>Red panda</option>
          <option>Spider monkey</option>
        </select></p>
      </section>
      <menu>
        <button id="cancel" type="reset">Cancel</button>
        <button type="submit">Confirm</button>
      </menu>
    </form>
  </dialog>

  <menu>
    <button id="updateDetails">Update details</button>
  </menu>

  <script>
    (function() {
      var updateButton = document.getElementById('updateDetails');
      var cancelButton = document.getElementById('cancel');
      var dialog = document.getElementById('favDialog');
      dialog.returnValue = 'favAnimal';

      function openCheck(dialog) {
        if(dialog.open) {
          console.log('Dialog open');
        } else {
          console.log('Dialog closed');
        }
      }

      // Update button opens a modal dialog
      updateButton.addEventListener('click', function() {
        dialog.showModal();
        openCheck(dialog);
      });

      // Form cancel button closes the dialog box
      cancelButton.addEventListener('click', function() {
        dialog.close('animalNotChosen');
        openCheck(dialog);
      });

    })();
  </script>

Note: You can find this example on GitHub as htmldialogelement-basic (see it live also).

Specifications

Specification Status Comment
HTML Living Standard
The definition of 'showModal()' in that specification.
Living Standard  
HTML 5.1
The definition of 'showModal()' in that specification.
Recommendation  

Browser compatibility

FeatureChromeEdgeFirefoxInternet ExplorerOperaSafari
Basic support37 Yes531 2 No Yes No
FeatureAndroid webviewChrome for AndroidEdge mobileFirefox for AndroidOpera AndroidiOS SafariSamsung Internet
Basic support No No ?531 2 No No No

1. See bug 840640.

2. From version 53: this feature is behind the dom.dialog_element.enabled preference (needs to be set to true). To change preferences in Firefox, visit about:config.

See also

  • The HTML element implementing this interface: <dialog>.

Document Tags and Contributors

Contributors to this page: fscholz, chrisdavidmills, ntim
Last updated by: fscholz,