I have HTML code like this :

<a class="btn btn-default" href="#" id="addTxt">Add Text</a>
<div id="nF">
    <div class="form-inline">
        <div class="input-group">
            <div class="input-group-addon"><i class="fa fa-text-width"></i>
            <input class="form-control" id="project_components_attributes_32943600_name" name="project[components_attributes][32943600][name]" type="text">
            <span class="input-group-btn">
              <input id="project_components_attributes_32943600__destroy" name="project[components_attributes][32943600][_destroy]" type="hidden" value="false">
              <a class="btn btn-default" data-selector="removeField" href="#">
                <i class="fa fa-remove"></i>

If I click link "Add Text", It will clone div with class form-inline and append to div#nF and then replacing all attribute of input tag in form-inline (id and name) with new value from new date and time.

For Illustration :

id => project_components_attributes_32943600_name => replace "32943600" with new value

name => project[components_attributes][32943600][_destroy] => replace "32943600" with new value

And this javascript :

        var time = new Date().getTime();
        var $target = $('#nF').find('div.form-inline:first');
           var tID = $(this).attr("id").split(/_/);
           var re = new RegExp(tID[3],"g");
           var newID = $(this).attr('id').replace(re, time);
           var newName = $(this).attr('name').replace(re, time);
           $(this).attr('id', newID);
           $(this).attr('name', newName);

Live Demo : http://jsfiddle.net/gjj8mzya/

Is there any way to clone element and replace attributes?


1 Answer 1


The current code does essentially this:

  1. Clone the dirtied first item and append to the end
  2. Modify the dirtied first item to make it clean again

It would be better to use a clean prototype / template from which you can easily create clean new instances. Then the operations can become:

  1. Move the dirtied first item to the end
  2. Recreate the first item from the clean template

The first approach is not so good, because:

  • Cloning is always a suspicious operation. For example, you have to make sure that:
    • all fields correctly copied
    • no references accidentally leaked
    • deep objects correctly deep-copied: although this is not a concern in this specific example, but I'm adding it anyway as a reminder of general concerns about the concept of cloning
  • Reseting an object to a clean state is always a suspicious operation. For example, you have to make sure that:
    • all fields are correctly reset: often duplicating the same logic that must exist (explicitly or implicitly) in the initializer / constructor

The new approach doesn't have any of these tricky issues. It's conceptually much cleaner, with much fewer hidden traps and bugs waiting to happen.


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