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    Document.execCommand()

     

    Summary

    When an HTML document has been switched to designMode, the document object exposes the execCommand method which allows one to run commands to manipulate the contents of the editable region. Most commands affect the document's selection (bold, italics, etc), while others insert new elements (adding a link) or affect an entire line (indenting). When using contentEditable, calling execCommand will affect the currently active editable element.

    Syntax

    execCommand(aCommandName, aShowDefaultUI, aValueArgument)
    

    Parameters

    aCommandName
    A DOMString representing the name of the command
    aShowDefaultUI
    A Boolean indicating whether the default user interface should be shown. This is not implemented in Mozilla.
    aValueArgument
    A DOMString representing some commands (such as insertimage) require an extra value argument (the image's url). Pass an argument of null if no argument is needed.

    Commands

    backColor
    Changes the document background color. In styleWithCss mode, it affects the background color of the containing block instead. This requires a color value string to be passed in as a value argument. (Internet Explorer uses this to set text background color.)
    bold
    Toggles bold on/off for the selection or at the insertion point. (Internet Explorer uses the STRONG tag instead of B.)
    contentReadOnly
    Makes the content document either read-only or editable. This requires a boolean true/false to be passed in as a value argument. (Not supported by Internet Explorer.)
    copy
    Copies the current selection to the clipboard. Clipboard capability must be enabled in the user.js preference file. See
    createLink
    Creates an anchor link from the selection, only if there is a selection. This requires the HREF URI string to be passed in as a value argument. The URI must contain at least a single character, which may be a white space. (Internet Explorer will create a link with a null URI value.)
    cut
    Cuts the current selection and copies it to the clipboard. Clipboard capability must be enabled in the user.js preference file. See
    decreaseFontSize
    Adds a SMALL tag around the selection or at the insertion point. (Not supported by Internet Explorer.)
    delete
    Deletes the current selection.
    enableInlineTableEditing
    Enables or disables the table row and column insertion and deletion controls. (Not supported by Internet Explorer.)
    enableObjectResizing
    Enables or disables the resize handles on images and other resizable objects. (Not supported by Internet Explorer.)
    fontName
    Changes the font name for the selection or at the insertion point. This requires a font name string ("Arial" for example) to be passed in as a value argument.
    fontSize
    Changes the font size for the selection or at the insertion point. This requires an HTML font size (1-7) to be passed in as a value argument.
    foreColor
    Changes a font color for the selection or at the insertion point. This requires a color value string to be passed in as a value argument.
    formatBlock
    Adds an HTML block-style tag around the line containing the current selection, replacing the block element containing the line if one exists (in Firefox, BLOCKQUOTE is the exception - it will wrap any containing block element). Requires a tag-name string to be passed in as a value argument. Virtually all block style tags can be used (eg. "H1", "P", "DL", "BLOCKQUOTE"). (Internet Explorer supports only heading tags H1 - H6, ADDRESS, and PRE, which must also include the tag delimiters < >, such as "<H1>".)
    forwardDelete
    Deletes the character ahead of the cursor's position.  It is the same as hitting the delete key.
    heading
    Adds a heading tag around a selection or insertion point line. Requires the tag-name string to be passed in as a value argument (i.e. "H1", "H6"). (Not supported by Internet Explorer and Safari.)
    hiliteColor
    Changes the background color for the selection or at the insertion point. Requires a color value string to be passed in as a value argument. UseCSS must be turned on for this to function. (Not supported by Internet Explorer.)
    increaseFontSize
    Adds a BIG tag around the selection or at the insertion point. (Not supported by Internet Explorer.)
    indent
    Indents the line containing the selection or insertion point. In Firefox, if the selection spans multiple lines at different levels of indentation, only the least indented lines in the selection will be indented.
    insertBrOnReturn
    Controls whether the Enter key inserts a br tag or splits the current block element into two. (Not supported by Internet Explorer.)
    insertHorizontalRule
    Inserts a horizontal rule at the insertion point (deletes selection).
    insertHTML
    Inserts an HTML string at the insertion point (deletes selection). Requires a valid HTML string to be passed in as a value argument. (Not supported by Internet Explorer.)
    insertImage
    Inserts an image at the insertion point (deletes selection). Requires the image SRC URI string to be passed in as a value argument. The URI must contain at least a single character, which may be a white space. (Internet Explorer will create a link with a null URI value.)
    insertOrderedList
    Creates a numbered ordered list for the selection or at the insertion point.
    insertUnorderedList
    Creates a bulleted unordered list for the selection or at the insertion point.
    insertParagraph
    Inserts a paragraph around the selection or the current line. (Internet Explorer inserts a paragraph at the insertion point and deletes the selection.)
    insertText
    Inserts the given plain text at the insertion point (deletes selection).
    italic
    Toggles italics on/off for the selection or at the insertion point. (Internet Explorer uses the EM tag instead of I.)
    justifyCenter
    Centers the selection or insertion point.
    justifyFull
    Justifies the selection or insertion point.
    justifyLeft
    Justifies the selection or insertion point to the left.
    justifyRight
    Right-justifies the selection or the insertion point.
    outdent
    Outdents the line containing the selection or insertion point.
    paste
    Pastes the clipboard contents at the insertion point (replaces current selection). Clipboard capability must be enabled in the user.js preference file. See
    redo
    Redoes the previous undo command.
    removeFormat
    Removes all formatting from the current selection.
    selectAll
    Selects all of the content of the editable region.
    strikeThrough
    Toggles strikethrough on/off for the selection or at the insertion point.
    subscript
    Toggles subscript on/off for the selection or at the insertion point.
    superscript
    Toggles superscript on/off for the selection or at the insertion point.
    underline
    Toggles underline on/off for the selection or at the insertion point.
    undo
    Undoes the last executed command.
    unlink
    Removes the anchor tag from a selected anchor link.
    useCSS
    Toggles the use of HTML tags or CSS for the generated markup. Requires a boolean true/false as a value argument. NOTE: This argument is logically backwards (i.e. use false to use CSS, true to use HTML). (Not supported by Internet Explorer.) This has been deprecated; use the styleWithCSS command instead.
    styleWithCSS
    Replaces the useCSS command; argument works as expected, i.e. true modifies/generates style attributes in markup, false generates formatting elements.

    Example

    (This article is currently incomplete and lacks an example.)

    Browser compatibility

    Feature Chrome Firefox (Gecko) Internet Explorer Opera Safari
    Basic support (Yes) (Yes) ? ? (Yes)
    insertBrOnReturn Not supported (Yes) Not supported Not supported Not supported
    Feature Android Chrome for Android Firefox Mobile (Gecko) IE Mobile Opera Mobile Safari Mobile
    Basic support ? ? (Yes) ? ? ?

    See Scribe's "Browser Inconsistencies" documentation for a list of many browser bugs related to document.execCommand.

    Specification

    Specification Status Comment
    HTML Editing APIs
    The definition of 'execCommand' in that specification.
    Editor's Draft  

    See also

    Document Tags and Contributors

    Last updated by: Victoriayhk,
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