This is the first post in a short series on using the jqGrid jQuery plug-in with ASP.NET MVC. In this short introduction I will describe the plug-in, list some of its strengths and weaknesses, and explain why we selected it for our MVC applications. In the next few days, I will give detailed information about how to use the grid in your own applications.
jqGrid provides a nice-looking grid with built-in features such as sorting, editing, search, drill-down, tree lists, and more. It is based upon jQuery and integrates well with ASP.NET MVC. The grid is dual-licensed under both the GPL and MIT licenses (just like jQuery), so it can fit well into both commercial and open-source projects.
If you want to display tabular (grid) data with paging in an ASP.NET MVC application, there are essentially three choices:
As I said, we ended up choosing jqGrid. We were strongly influenced by the fact that we already use jQuery extensively in our application. There are several grid plug-ins available for jQuery. jqGrid has a number of advantages over the others I've seen, however:
The grid also has a few downsides:
After a good deal of experimentation with several grids, we decided to use jqGrid because it has considerably more features than every other grid we examined (when used in MVC application), and because we didn't find any of its limitations to be show stoppers.
The next post in this series is LINQ Extensions. There, I show an extension method for IQueryable<T> which returns data suitable for the grid, without having to know anything about the type T.
Response: jqGrid itself is still open source. You can get it here:
However, its authors are now selling non-open-source components to connect it with ASP.NET and ASP.NET MVC and PHP.
You can of course use the grid without these components.
Response: Can you elaborate on your question? I don't understand precisely what you want to do.