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Remotipart: Rails jQuery File Uploads

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Remotipart is a Ruby on Rails gem enabling AJAX file uploads with jQuery in Rails 3 and Rails 4 remote forms. This gem augments the native Rails jQuery remote form functionality enabling asynchronous file uploads with little to no modification to your application.


The jquery-rails gem is included in Rails 3 and Rails 4 by default, and installs {jQuery}[] and the {Rails jQuery UJS driver (jquery-ujs)}[]


Your app should be using jquery-rails gem v2.3.0 or above.

If you’re using an old version of the jquery-rails gem, make sure you have a supported jquery-ujs (rails.js or jquery_ujs.js) version from VERSION_COMPATIBILITY.


Install the Remotipart gem

  • Add this line to your GEMFILE (use the appropriate version from the compatibilty chart if needed)

gem 'remotipart', '~> 1.2'
  • And run

bundle install

Rails 3.1 and Rails 4


The necessary js files will automatically be added to the asset pipeline, so add the following to app/assets/javascripts/application.js (right after //= require jquery_ujs):

//= require jquery.remotipart

Rails 3.0


Run the Remotipart install generator to add jquery.iframe-transport.js and jquery.remotipart.js to public/javascripts/

rails g remotipart:install

The necessary js files will be added to your app’s javascript :defaults, so make sure the following is in your application layout:

<%= javascript_include_tag :defaults %>


  • For multipart / forms with file inputs, set your form_for to remote as you would for a normal ajax form:

    :remote => true
  • When Javascript is enabled in the user’s browser, the form, including the file, will be submitted asynchronously to your controller with:

    :format => 'js'
  • If you need to determine if a particular request was made via a remotipart-enabled form…

    • from your Rails controller or view:

      if remotipart_submitted?
    • from your javascript:

      $(form).bind("ajax:success", function(){
        if ( $(this).data('remotipartSubmitted') )
  • If you want to be notified when the upload is complete (which can be either success or error)

    • from your javascript:

      $(form).on("ajax:remotipartComplete", function(e, data){
        console.log(e, data)



<%= form_for @sample, :html => { :multipart => true }, :remote => true do |f| %>
  <div class="field">
    <%= f.label :file %>
    <%= f.file_field :file %>
  <div class="actions">
    <%= f.submit %>
<% end %>


def create
  respond_to do |format|


// Display a Javascript alert
<% if remotipart_submitted? %>
  alert('submitted via remotipart')
<% else %>
  alert('submitted via native jquery-ujs')
<% end %>

The content type requested from the application can be overridden via the data-type HTML5 attribute:


<%= form_for @sample, :html => { :multipart => true }, :remote => true, :data => { :type => :html } do |f| %>
  <div class="field">
    <%= f.label :file %>
    <%= f.file_field :file %>
  <div class="actions">
    <%= f.submit %>
<% end %>

In this case, the application should serve HTML using a create.html.erb template instead of JavaScript.

Note on Patches/Pull Requests

If you have a general improvement, optimization, or refactoring, please {read this first}[].

  • Fork the project.

  • Make your feature addition or bug fix.

  • Add tests for it. This is important so I don’t break it in a future version unintentionally.

  • Commit, do not mess with rakefile, version, or history. (if you want to have your own version, that is fine but bump version in a commit by itself I can ignore when I pull)

  • Send me a pull request. Bonus points for topic branches.


Because of the nature of AJAX file uploads and certain browser restrictions, we could not simply create unit tests (using qunit or jasmine) to test the file upload functionality of remotipart (since the browsers running those test suites won’t allow us to set the target of a file upload input using javascript). So, instead we created a demo Rails app using remotipart with all remotipart functionality tested using RSpec and Capybara.

To run tests:

Clone the remotipart branch of the demo app

git clone -b remotipart git://

Install the dependencies

bundle install

Run the tests

bundle exec rspec spec/

If you need to test your own changes to remotipart, just update the Gemfile with your own fork/branch of remotipart:

gem 'remotipart', :git => 'git://', :branch => 'MY_BRANCH'

Special Thanks

Thank you to Greg Leppert for writing the original version of this gem and providing inspiration for the gem in its current incarnation.

Thank you to Adam Kerr for helping move over to the simpler jQuery 1.6-compatible iframe-transport.js and for helping write the rack middleware, making remotipart even easier to use in Rails.

Copyright © 2013 Steve Schwartz, Greg Leppert. See LICENSE for details.


Rails jQuery file uploads via standard Rails "remote: true" forms.









  • Ruby 87.8%
  • HTML 5.9%
  • JavaScript 4.1%
  • CSS 2.2%