Introduction


In this post we are going to create a MVC CRUD application with the help of Knockout JS. We will be using SQL  database and Visual Studio for our development. If you are new to MVC, I strongly recommend you to read post about MVC here. Now let's begin.

Download source code


MVC CRUD Actions Using Knockout JS

Introduction about Knockout JS


According to Knockout JS documentation Knockout is a JavaScript library that helps you to create rich, responsive display and editor user interfaces with a clean underlying data model. Any time you have sections of UI that update dynamically (e.g., changing depending on the user’s actions or when an external data source changes), KO can help you implement it more simply and maintainable.

It has benefits as,

  • Pure JavaScript library - works with any server or client-side technology
  • Can be added on top of your existing web application without requiring major architectural changes
  • Compact - around 13kb after gzipping
  • Works on any mainstream browser (IE 6+, Firefox 2+, Chrome, Safari, Edge, others)
  • Comprehensive suite of specifications (developed BDD-style) means its correct functioning can easily be verified on new browsers and platforms.

Create an Empty MVC application


To get started we will create an empty MVC application as follows.

Creating database and Entity Data Model

Here I am creating a database with name "TrialDB", you can always create a DB by running the query given below.

USE [master]
 
GO
 
/****** Object:  Database [TrialDB]    Script Date: 20-11-2016 03:54:53 PM ******/
 
CREATE DATABASE [TrialDB]
 
 CONTAINMENT = NONE
 
 ON  PRIMARY
 
( NAME = N'TrialDB', FILENAME = N'C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL13.SQLEXPRESS\MSSQL\DATA\TrialDB.mdf' , SIZE = 8192KB , MAXSIZE = UNLIMITED, FILEGROWTH = 65536KB )
 
 LOG ON
 
( NAME = N'TrialDB_log', FILENAME = N'C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL13.SQLEXPRESS\MSSQL\DATA\TrialDB_log.ldf' , SIZE = 8192KB , MAXSIZE = 2048GB , FILEGROWTH = 65536KB )
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET COMPATIBILITY_LEVEL = 130
 
GO
 
IF (1 = FULLTEXTSERVICEPROPERTY('IsFullTextInstalled'))
 
begin
 
EXEC [TrialDB].[dbo].[sp_fulltext_database] @action = 'enable'
 
end
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET ANSI_NULL_DEFAULT OFF
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET ANSI_NULLS OFF
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET ANSI_PADDING OFF
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET ANSI_WARNINGS OFF
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET ARITHABORT OFF
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET AUTO_CLOSE OFF
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET AUTO_SHRINK OFF
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET AUTO_UPDATE_STATISTICS ON
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET CURSOR_CLOSE_ON_COMMIT OFF
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET CURSOR_DEFAULT  GLOBAL
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET CONCAT_NULL_YIELDS_NULL OFF
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET NUMERIC_ROUNDABORT OFF
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET QUOTED_IDENTIFIER OFF
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET RECURSIVE_TRIGGERS OFF
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET  DISABLE_BROKER
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET AUTO_UPDATE_STATISTICS_ASYNC OFF
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET DATE_CORRELATION_OPTIMIZATION OFF
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET TRUSTWORTHY OFF
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET ALLOW_SNAPSHOT_ISOLATION OFF
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET PARAMETERIZATION SIMPLE
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET READ_COMMITTED_SNAPSHOT OFF
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET HONOR_BROKER_PRIORITY OFF
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET RECOVERY SIMPLE
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET  MULTI_USER
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET PAGE_VERIFY CHECKSUM
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET DB_CHAINING OFF
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET FILESTREAM( NON_TRANSACTED_ACCESS = OFF )
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET TARGET_RECOVERY_TIME = 60 SECONDS
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET DELAYED_DURABILITY = DISABLED
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET QUERY_STORE = OFF
 
GO
 
USE [TrialDB]
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE SCOPED CONFIGURATION SET MAXDOP = 0;
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE SCOPED CONFIGURATION FOR SECONDARY SET MAXDOP = PRIMARY;
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE SCOPED CONFIGURATION SET LEGACY_CARDINALITY_ESTIMATION = OFF;
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE SCOPED CONFIGURATION FOR SECONDARY SET LEGACY_CARDINALITY_ESTIMATION = PRIMARY;
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE SCOPED CONFIGURATION SET PARAMETER_SNIFFING = ON;
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE SCOPED CONFIGURATION FOR SECONDARY SET PARAMETER_SNIFFING = PRIMARY;
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE SCOPED CONFIGURATION SET QUERY_OPTIMIZER_HOTFIXES = OFF;
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE SCOPED CONFIGURATION FOR SECONDARY SET QUERY_OPTIMIZER_HOTFIXES = PRIMARY;
 
GO
 
ALTER DATABASE [TrialDB] SET  READ_WRITE
 
GO

Create a table


To create a table, you can run the query below.

USE [TrialDB]
 
GO
 
/****** Object:  Table [dbo].[Course]    Script Date: 20-11-2016 03:57:30 PM ******/
 
SET ANSI_NULLS ON
 
GO
 
SET QUOTED_IDENTIFIER ON
 
GO
 
CREATE TABLE [dbo].[Course](
 
               [CourseID] [int] NOT NULL,
 
               [CourseName] [nvarchar](50) NOT NULL,
 
               [CourseDescription] [nvarchar](100) NULL,
 
 CONSTRAINT [PK_Course] PRIMARY KEY CLUSTERED
 
(
 
               [CourseID] ASC
 
)WITH (PAD_INDEX = OFF, STATISTICS_NORECOMPUTE = OFF, IGNORE_DUP_KEY = OFF, ALLOW_ROW_LOCKS = ON, ALLOW_PAGE_LOCKS = ON) ON [PRIMARY]
 
) ON [PRIMARY]
 
GO

So our database is ready. Now we will create an Entity Data Model with the database we created.

Install Knockout JS


To install Knockout JS in your project, please right click on your project ad click on Manage Nuget Package and search for 'Knockout'.

Now let us start our coding as everything is set.

C - Create Operation


So we are going to see the create operation, as it comes first in CRUD. Let us set up our controller first. You can see the controller code for create operation here.

// GET: Home/Create
 
       public ActionResult Create()
 
       {
 
           return View();
 
       }
 
       // POST: Home/Create
 
       [HttpPost]
 
       public string Create(Course course)
 
       {
 
           if (!ModelState.IsValid) return "Model is invalid";
 
           _db.Courses.Add(course);
 
           _db.SaveChanges();
 
           return "Course is created";
 
       }

Here the first action calls the view for the create operation and the second operation insert the data to database. And _db is our entity.

private readonly TrialDBEntities _db = new TrialDBEntities();

Now let's go ahead and create view for Create operation.

@model MVCCRUDKnockout.Models.Course
 
@{
 
    ViewBag.Title = "Create";
 
}
 
<div class="form-horizontal">
 
    <h4>Course</h4>
 
    <hr>
 
    <div class="form-group">
 
        <label class="control-label col-md-2" for="CourseName">CourseName</label>
 
        <div class="col-md-10">
 
            <input class="form-control text-box single-line" id="CourseName" name="CourseName" type="text" value="" data-bind="value: CourseName">
 
        </div>
 
    </div>
 
    <div class="form-group">
 
        <label class="control-label col-md-2" for="CourseDescription">CourseDescription</label>
 
        <div class="col-md-10">
 
            <input class="form-control text-box single-line" id="CourseDescription" name="CourseDescription" type="text" value="" data-bind="value: CourseDescription">
 
        </div>
 
    </div>
 
    <div class="form-group">
 
        <div class="col-md-offset-2 col-md-10">
 
            <input type="button" data-bind="click: createCourse" value="Create" class="btn btn-default">
 
        </div>
 
    </div>
 
</div>
 
<div>
 
    @Html.ActionLink("Back to List", "Read")
 
</div>
 
<script src="~/Scripts/jquery-1.10.2.min.js"></script>
 
<script src="~/Scripts/knockout-3.4.0.js"></script>
 
<script src="~/Scripts/KOScripts/KOCreate.js"></script>

Did you notice that we are binding data to our input controls as data-bind="value: CourseName"? This value is related to the view model we are going to set, the interesting this is, the values in the model will get changed as you change the values in the input. You don't need to add any kind of codes for that operations.

At last we are binding a click event as follows right?

<input type="button" data-bind="click: createCourse" value="Create" class="btn btn-default">

This will call the function createCourse which we are going to specify in our view model. Now you may be thinking what is this view model? This knockout uses MVVM pattern and now let us read some basic information provided in http://knockoutjs.com/documentation/observables.html" target="_blank">Knockout JS documentation.

MVVM and View Models


Model-View-View Model (MVVM) is a design pattern for building user interfaces. It describes how you can keep a potentially sophisticated UI simple by splitting it into three parts:

A model: your application’s stored data. This data represents objects and operations in your business domain (e.g., bank accounts that can perform money transfers) and is independent of any UI. When using KO, you will usually make Ajax calls to some server-side code to read and write this stored model data.

A view model: a pure-code representation of the data and operations on a UI. For example, if you’re implementing a list editor, your view model would be an object holding a list of items, and exposing methods to add and remove items.

Note that this is not the UI itself: it doesn’t have any concept of buttons or display styles. It’s not the persisted data model either - it holds the unsaved data the user is working with. When using KO, your view models are pure JavaScript objects that hold no knowledge of HTML. Keeping the view model abstract in this way lets it stay simple, so you can manage more sophisticated behaviors without getting lost.

A view: a visible, interactive UI representing the state of the view model. It displays information from the view model, sends commands to the view model (e.g., when the user clicks buttons), and updates whenever the state of the view model changes.

When using KO, your view is simply your HTML document with declarative bindings to link it to the view model. Alternatively, you can use templates that generate HTML using data from your view model.

Now back to our Create operation, KOCreate.js is the file we are going to write our operation. Now please open that file and bind view model as follows.

$(function () {
 
    ko.applyBindings(modelCreate);
 
});

Now preceding is our view model and associated functions.

var modelCreate = {
 
    CourseName: ko.observable(),
 
    CourseDescription: ko.observable(),
 
    createCourse: function () {
 
        try {
 
            $.ajax({
 
                url: '/Home/Create',
 
                type: 'post',
 
                dataType: 'json',
 
                data: ko.toJSON(this), //Here the data will be converted to JSON
 
                contentType: 'application/json',
 
                success: successCallback,
 
                error: errorCallback
 
            });
 
        } catch (e) {
 
            window.location.href = '/Home/Read/';
 
        }
 
    }
 
};
 
function successCallback(data) {
 
    window.location.href = '/Home/Read/';
 
}
 
function errorCallback(err) {
 
    window.location.href = '/Home/Read/';
 
}

Here ko.observable() are special objects which can notify the changes and update the model accordingly. So if you need to update your UI automatically when the view model changes, you can use observable().Now please run your view and check whether it is working fine.

R - Read operation


As we have completed our Create operation, now it is time for Read. Please open your controller and write the actions as follows.

// GET: Home
 
        public ActionResult Read()
 
        {
 
            return View();
 
        }
 
        //GET All Courses
 
        public JsonResult ListCourses()
 
        {
 
            return Json(_db.Courses.ToList(), JsonRequestBehavior.AllowGet);
 
        }

You can create your Read view as preceding.

@{
 
    ViewBag.Title = "Read";
 
}
 
<h2>Index</h2>
 
<p>
 
    @Html.ActionLink("Create New", "Create")
 
</p>
 
<table class="table">
 
    <tr>
 
        <th>
 
            Course Name
 
        </th>
 
        <th>
 
            Course Description
 
        </th>
 
        <th></th>
 
    </tr>
 
    <tbody data-bind="foreach: Courses">
 
    <tr>
 
        <td data-bind="text: CourseName"></td>
 
        <td data-bind="text: CourseDescription"></td>
 
        <td>
 
            <a data-bind="attr: { 'href': '@Url.Action("Edit", "Home")/' + CourseID }" class="btn-link">Edit
 
            <a data-bind="attr: { 'href': '@Url.Action("Delete", "Home")/' + CourseID }" class="btn-link">Delete
 
        </td>
 
    </tr>
 
    </tbody>
 
</table>
 
<script src="~/Scripts/jquery-1.10.2.min.js"></script>
 
<script src="~/Scripts/knockout-3.4.0.js"></script>
 
<script src="~/Scripts/KOScripts/KORead.js"></script>

Here we are using data-bind="foreach: Courses" for looping through our model we are going to create now. So shall we do that? Please create a JS file with name KORead.js and add the following code.

$(function () {
 
    ko.applyBindings(modelView);
 
    modelView.viewCourses();
 
});
 
var modelView = {
 
    Courses: ko.observableArray([]),
 
    viewCourses: function () {
 
        var thisObj = this;
 
        try {
 
            $.ajax({
 
                url: '/Home/ListCourses',
 
                type: 'GET',
 
                dataType: 'json',
 
                contentType: 'application/json',
 
                success: function (data) {
 
                    thisObj.Courses(data); //Here we are assigning values to KO Observable array
 
                },
 
                error: function (err) {
 
                    alert(err.status + " : " + err.statusText);
 
                }
 
            });
 
        } catch (e) {
 
            window.location.href = '/Home/Read/';
 
        }
 
    }
 
};

Here goes the output.

Now it is time for Update operation. Are you ready?

U - Update operation


As we did for the above two operation, let us create some actions in our controller first.

// GET: Home/Edit/5
 
        public ActionResult Edit(int? id)
 
        {
 
            if (id == null)
 
                return new HttpStatusCodeResult(HttpStatusCode.BadRequest);
 
            var course = _db.Courses.Find(id);
 
            if (course == null)
 
                return HttpNotFound();
 
            var serializer = new JavaScriptSerializer();
 
            ViewBag.SelectedCourse = serializer.Serialize(course);
 
            return View();
 
        }
 
        // POST: Home/Update/5
 
        [HttpPost]
 
        public string Update(Course course)
 
        {
 
            if (!ModelState.IsValid) return "Invalid model";
 
            _db.Entry(course).State = EntityState.Modified;
 
            _db.SaveChanges();
 
            return "Updated successfully";
 
        }

Here the first action with parameter ID is called whenever a user click on Edit link from the table we created. And we are setting the queried data to ViewBag so that we can use it for our related operation. For now, we can create a view as follows.

@{
 
    ViewBag.Title = "Edit";
 
}
 
<h2>Edit</h2>
 
@using (Html.BeginForm())
 
{
 
    @Html.AntiForgeryToken()
 
    <div class="form-horizontal">
 
        <h4>Course</h4>
 
        <div class="form-group">
 
            <label class="control-label col-md-2" for="CourseName">CourseName</label>
 
            <div class="col-md-10">
 
                <input class="form-control text-box single-line" id="CourseName" name="CourseName" type="text" value="" data-bind="value: CourseName">
 
            </div>
 
        </div>
 
        <div class="form-group">
 
            <label class="control-label col-md-2" for="CourseDescription">CourseDescription</label>
 
            <div class="col-md-10">
 
                <input class="form-control text-box single-line" id="CourseDescription" name="CourseDescription" type="text" value="" data-bind="value: CourseDescription">
 
            </div>
 
        </div>
 
        <div class="form-group">
 
            <div class="col-md-offset-2 col-md-10">
 
                <input type="button" data-bind="click: updateCourse" value="Update" class="btn btn-default">
 
            </div>
 
        </div>
 
    </div>
 
}
 
<script type="text/javascript">
 
    var selectedCourse = '@Html.Raw(ViewBag.selectedCourse)';
 
</script>
 
<div>
 
    @Html.ActionLink("Back to List", "Read")
 
</div>
 
<script src="~/Scripts/jquery-1.10.2.min.js"></script>
 
<script src="~/Scripts/knockout-3.4.0.js"></script>
 
<script src="~/Scripts/KOScripts/KOUpdate.js"></script>

And create a JS with name KOUpdate.js and add the following code.

var parsedSelectedCourse = $.parseJSON(selectedCourse);
 
$(function () {
 
    ko.applyBindings(modelUpdate);
 
});
 
var modelUpdate = {
 
    CourseID: ko.observable(parsedSelectedCourse.CourseID),
 
    CourseName: ko.observable(parsedSelectedCourse.CourseName),
 
    CourseDescription: ko.observable(parsedSelectedCourse.CourseDescription),
 
    updateCourse: function () {
 
        try {
 
            $.ajax({
 
                url: '/Home/Update',
 
                type: 'POST',
 
                dataType: 'json',
 
                data: ko.toJSON(this),
 
                contentType: 'application/json',
 
                success: successCallback,
 
                error: errorCallback
 
            });
 
        } catch (e) {
 
            window.location.href = '/Home/Read/';
 
        }
 
    }
 
};
 
function successCallback(data) {
 
    window.location.href = '/Home/Read/';
 
}
 
function errorCallback(err) {
 
    window.location.href = '/Home/Read/';
 
}

Now, run your application and see the Edit/Update operation.

D - Delete operation


So our last operation, Delete. Let's edit our controller as follows.

// GET: Home/Delete/5
 
        public ActionResult Delete(int? id)
 
        {
 
            if (id == null)
 
                return new HttpStatusCodeResult(HttpStatusCode.BadRequest);
 
            var course = _db.Courses.Find(id);
 
            if (course == null)
 
                return HttpNotFound();
 
            var serializer = new JavaScriptSerializer();
 
            ViewBag.SelectedCourse = serializer.Serialize(course);
 
            return View();
 
        }
 
        // POST: Home/Delete/5
 
        [HttpPost, ActionName("Delete")]
 
        public string Delete(Course course)
 
        {
 
            if (course == null) return "Invalid data";
 
            var getCourse = _db.Courses.Find(course.CourseID);
 
            _db.Courses.Remove(getCourse);
 
            _db.SaveChanges();
 
            return "Deleted successfully";
 
        }

The code looks exactly same as our update operation, so no explanation. Still if you get any issues, please ask. Now let us create our view.

@model MVCCRUDKnockout.Models.Course
 
@{
 
    ViewBag.Title = "Delete";
 
}
 
<h2>Delete</h2>
 
<h3>Are you sure you want to delete this?</h3>
 
@using (Html.BeginForm())
 
{
 
    @Html.AntiForgeryToken()
 
    <div class="form-horizontal">
 
        <h4>Course</h4>
 
        <div class="form-group">
 
            <label class="control-label col-md-2" for="CourseName">CourseName</label>
 
            <div class="col-md-10">
 
                <input class="form-control text-box single-line" id="CourseName" name="CourseName" type="text" value="" data-bind="value: CourseName">
 
            </div>
 
        </div>
 
        <div class="form-group">
 
            <label class="control-label col-md-2" for="CourseDescription">CourseDescription</label>
 
            <div class="col-md-10">
 
                <input class="form-control text-box single-line" id="CourseDescription" name="CourseDescription" type="text" value="" data-bind="value: CourseDescription">
 
            </div>
 
        </div>
 
        <div class="form-group">
 
            <div class="col-md-offset-2 col-md-10">
 
                <input type="button" data-bind="click: deleteCourse" value="Delete" class="btn btn-default">
 
            </div>
 
        </div>
 
    </div>
 
}
 
<script type="text/javascript">
 
    var selectedCourse = '@Html.Raw(ViewBag.selectedCourse)';
 
</script>
 
<div>
 
    @Html.ActionLink("Back to List", "Read")
 
</div>
 
<script src="~/Scripts/jquery-1.10.2.min.js"></script>
 
<script src="~/Scripts/knockout-3.4.0.js"></script>
 
<script src="~/Scripts/KOScripts/KODelete.js"></script>

And you can always create our knockout codes as preceding.

var parsedSelectedCourse = $.parseJSON(selectedCourse);
 
$(function () {
 
    ko.applyBindings(modelDelete);
 
});
 
var modelDelete = {
 
    CourseID: ko.observable(parsedSelectedCourse.CourseID),
 
    CourseName: ko.observable(parsedSelectedCourse.CourseName),
 
    CourseDescription: ko.observable(parsedSelectedCourse.CourseDescription),
 
    deleteCourse: function () {
 
        try {
 
            $.ajax({
 
                url: '/Home/Delete',
 
                type: 'POST',
 
                dataType: 'json',
 
                data: ko.toJSON(this),
 
                contentType: 'application/json',
 
                success: successCallback,
 
                error: errorCallback
 
            });
 
        } catch (e) {
 
            window.location.href = '/Home/Read/';
 
        }
 
    }
 
};
 
function successCallback(data) {
 
    window.location.href = '/Home/Read/';
 
}
 
function errorCallback(err) {
 
    window.location.href = '/Home/Read/';
 
}

If everything goes fine, you will get a page as follows.

That's all for today. You can always download the source code attached to see the complete code and application. Happy coding!.

References


See also


Conclusion


Did we miss anything that you may think which is needed? Could you find this post as useful? Please share us your valuable suggestions and feedback.

Your turn. What do you think?


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