A minimalist JavaScript library for reorderable drag-and-drop lists

Nov 13, 2018
A minimalist JavaScript library for reorderable drag-and-drop lists


Sortable is a minimalist JavaScript library for reorderable drag-and-drop lists.

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Sortable — is a JavaScript library for reorderable drag-and-drop lists on modern browsers and touch devices. No jQuery. Supports Meteor, AngularJS, React, Polymer, Knockout and any CSS library, e.g. Bootstrap.


  • Supports touch devices and modern browsers (including IE9)
  • Can drag from one list to another or within the same list
  • CSS animation when moving items
  • Supports drag handles and selectable text (better than voidberg's html5sortable)
  • Smart auto-scrolling
  • Built using native HTML5 drag and drop API
  • Supports
  • Supports any CSS library, e.g. Bootstrap
  • Simple API
  • CDN
  • No jQuery (but there is support)



Via npm

$ npm install sortablejs --save

Via bower:

$ bower install --save sortablejs


<ul id="items"> <li>item 1</li> <li>item 2</li> <li>item 3</li> </ul>
var el = document.getElementById('items'); var sortable = Sortable.create(el);

You can use any element for the list and its elements, not just ul/li. Here is an example with divs.


var sortable = new Sortable(el, { group: "name", // or { name: "...", pull: [true, false, clone], put: [true, false, array] } sort: true, // sorting inside list delay: 0, // time in milliseconds to define when the sorting should start touchStartThreshold: 0, // px, how many pixels the point should move before cancelling a delayed drag event disabled: false, // Disables the sortable if set to true. store: null, // @see Store animation: 150, // ms, animation speed moving items when sorting, `0` — without animation handle: ".my-handle", // Drag handle selector within list items filter: ".ignore-elements", // Selectors that do not lead to dragging (String or Function) preventOnFilter: true, // Call `event.preventDefault()` when triggered `filter` draggable: ".item", // Specifies which items inside the element should be draggable ghostClass: "sortable-ghost", // Class name for the drop placeholder chosenClass: "sortable-chosen", // Class name for the chosen item dragClass: "sortable-drag", // Class name for the dragging item dataIdAttr: 'data-id', forceFallback: false, // ignore the HTML5 DnD behaviour and force the fallback to kick in fallbackClass: "sortable-fallback", // Class name for the cloned DOM Element when using forceFallback fallbackOnBody: false, // Appends the cloned DOM Element into the Document's Body fallbackTolerance: 0, // Specify in pixels how far the mouse should move before it's considered as a drag. scroll: true, // or HTMLElement scrollFn: function(offsetX, offsetY, originalEvent, touchEvt, hoverTargetEl) { ... }, // if you have custom scrollbar scrollFn may be used for autoscrolling scrollSensitivity: 30, // px, how near the mouse must be to an edge to start scrolling. scrollSpeed: 10, // px setData: function (/** DataTransfer */dataTransfer, /** HTMLElement*/dragEl) { dataTransfer.setData('Text', dragEl.textContent); // `dataTransfer` object of HTML5 DragEvent }, // Element is chosen onChoose: function (/**Event*/evt) { evt.oldIndex; // element index within parent }, // Element dragging started onStart: function (/**Event*/evt) { evt.oldIndex; // element index within parent }, // Element dragging ended onEnd: function (/**Event*/evt) { var itemEl = evt.item; // dragged HTMLElement evt.to; // target list evt.from; // previous list evt.oldIndex; // element's old index within old parent evt.newIndex; // element's new index within new parent }, // Element is dropped into the list from another list onAdd: function (/**Event*/evt) { // same properties as onEnd }, // Changed sorting within list onUpdate: function (/**Event*/evt) { // same properties as onEnd }, // Called by any change to the list (add / update / remove) onSort: function (/**Event*/evt) { // same properties as onEnd }, // Element is removed from the list into another list onRemove: function (/**Event*/evt) { // same properties as onEnd }, // Attempt to drag a filtered element onFilter: function (/**Event*/evt) { var itemEl = evt.item; // HTMLElement receiving the `mousedown|tapstart` event. }, // Event when you move an item in the list or between lists onMove: function (/**Event*/evt, /**Event*/originalEvent) { // Example: http://jsbin.com/tuyafe/1/edit?js,output evt.dragged; // dragged HTMLElement evt.draggedRect; // TextRectangle {left, top, right и bottom} evt.related; // HTMLElement on which have guided evt.relatedRect; // TextRectangle originalEvent.clientY; // mouse position // return false; — for cancel }, // Called when creating a clone of element onClone: function (/**Event*/evt) { var origEl = evt.item; var cloneEl = evt.clone; } });

group option

To drag elements from one list into another, both lists must have the same group value.
You can also define whether lists can give away, give and keep a copy (clone), and receive elements.

  • name: String — group name
  • pull: true|false|'clone'|function — ability to move from the list. clone — copy the item, rather than move.
  • put: true|false|["foo", "bar"]|function — whether elements can be added from other lists, or an array of group names from which elements can be taken.
  • revertClone: boolean — revert cloned element to initial position after moving to a another list.


sort option

Sorting inside list.

Demo: http://jsbin.com/videzob/edit?html,js,output

delay option

Time in milliseconds to define when the sorting should start.

Demo: http://jsbin.com/xizeh/edit?html,js,output

touchStartThreshold option

This option is similar to fallbackTolerance option.

When the delay option is set, some phones with very sensitive touch displays like the Samsung Galaxy S8 will fire
unwanted touchmove events even when your finger is not moving, resulting in the sort not triggering.

This option sets the minimum pointer movement that must occur before the delayed sorting is cancelled.

Values between 3 to 5 are good.

disabled options

Disables the sortable if set to true.

Demo: http://jsbin.com/xiloqu/edit?html,js,output

var sortable = Sortable.create(list); document.getElementById("switcher").onclick = function () { var state = sortable.option("disabled"); // get sortable.option("disabled", !state); // set };

handle option

To make list items draggable, Sortable disables text selection by the user.
That's not always desirable. To allow text selection, define a drag handler,
which is an area of every list element that allows it to be dragged around.

Demo: http://jsbin.com/newize/edit?html,js,output

Sortable.create(el, { handle: ".my-handle" });
<ul> <li><span class="my-handle">::</span> list item text one <li><span class="my-handle">::</span> list item text two </ul>
.my-handle { cursor: move; cursor: -webkit-grabbing; }

filter option

Sortable.create(list, { filter: ".js-remove, .js-edit", onFilter: function (evt) { var item = evt.item, ctrl = evt.target; if (Sortable.utils.is(ctrl, ".js-remove")) { // Click on remove button item.parentNode.removeChild(item); // remove sortable item } else if (Sortable.utils.is(ctrl, ".js-edit")) { // Click on edit link // ... } } })

ghostClass option

Class name for the drop placeholder (default sortable-ghost).

Demo: http://jsbin.com/hunifu/4/edit?css,js,output

.ghost { opacity: 0.4; }
Sortable.create(list, { ghostClass: "ghost" });

chosenClass option

Class name for the chosen item (default sortable-chosen).

Demo: http://jsbin.com/hunifu/3/edit?html,css,js,output

.chosen { color: #fff; background-color: #c00; }
Sortable.create(list, { delay: 500, chosenClass: "chosen" });

forceFallback option

If set to true, the Fallback for non HTML5 Browser will be used, even if we are using an HTML5 Browser.
This gives us the possibility to test the behaviour for older Browsers even in newer Browser, or make the Drag 'n Drop feel more consistent between Desktop , Mobile and old Browsers.

On top of that, the Fallback always generates a copy of that DOM Element and appends the class fallbackClass defined in the options. This behaviour controls the look of this 'dragged' Element.

Demo: http://jsbin.com/yacuqib/edit?html,css,js,output

fallbackTolerance option

Emulates the native drag threshold. Specify in pixels how far the mouse should move before it's considered as a drag.
Useful if the items are also clickable like in a list of links.

When the user clicks inside a sortable element, it's not uncommon for your hand to move a little between the time you press and the time you release.
Dragging only starts if you move the pointer past a certain tolerance, so that you don't accidentally start dragging every time you click.

3 to 5 are probably good values.

scroll option

If set to true, the page (or sortable-area) scrolls when coming to an edge.


scrollFn option

Defines function that will be used for autoscrolling. el.scrollTop/el.scrollLeft is used by default.
Useful when you have custom scrollbar with dedicated scroll function.

scrollSensitivity option

Defines how near the mouse must be to an edge to start scrolling.

scrollSpeed option

The speed at which the window should scroll once the mouse pointer gets within the scrollSensitivity distance.

Event object (demo)

  • to:HTMLElement — list, in which moved element.
  • from:HTMLElement — previous list
  • item:HTMLElement — dragged element
  • clone:HTMLElement
  • oldIndex:Number|undefined — old index within parent
  • newIndex:Number|undefined — new index within parent

move event object

  • to:HTMLElement
  • from:HTMLElement
  • dragged:HTMLElement
  • draggedRect:TextRectangle
  • related:HTMLElement — element on which have guided
  • relatedRect:TextRectangle


option(name:String[, value:*]):*

Get or set the option.

closest(el:String[, selector:HTMLElement]):HTMLElement|null

For each element in the set, get the first element that matches the selector by testing the element itself and traversing up through its ancestors in the DOM tree.


Serializes the sortable's item data-id's (dataIdAttr option) into an array of string.


Sorts the elements according to the array.

var order = sortable.toArray(); sortable.sort(order.reverse()); // apply

Save the current sorting (see store)


Removes the sortable functionality completely.


Saving and restoring of the sort.

<ul> <li data-id="1">order</li> <li data-id="2">save</li> <li data-id="3">restore</li> </ul>
Sortable.create(el, { group: "localStorage-example", store: { /** * Get the order of elements. Called once during initialization. * @param {Sortable} sortable * @returns {Array} */ get: function (sortable) { var order = localStorage.getItem(sortable.options.group.name); return order ? order.split('|') : []; }, /** * Save the order of elements. Called onEnd (when the item is dropped). * @param {Sortable} sortable */ set: function (sortable) { var order = sortable.toArray(); localStorage.setItem(sortable.options.group.name, order.join('|')); } } })


Demo: http://jsbin.com/qumuwe/edit?html,js,output

<!-- Latest compiled and minified CSS --> <link rel="stylesheet" href="https://maxcdn.bootstrapcdn.com/bootstrap/3.3.1/css/bootstrap.min.css"/> <!-- Latest Sortable --> <script src="http://rubaxa.github.io/Sortable/Sortable.js"></script> <!-- Simple List --> <ul id="simpleList" class="list-group"> <li class="list-group-item">This is <a href="http://rubaxa.github.io/Sortable/">Sortable</a></li> <li class="list-group-item">It works with Bootstrap...</li> <li class="list-group-item">...out of the box.</li> <li class="list-group-item">It has support for touch devices.</li> <li class="list-group-item">Just drag some elements around.</li> </ul> <script> // Simple list Sortable.create(simpleList, { /* options */ }); </script>

Static methods & properties

Sortable.create(el:HTMLElement[, options:Object]):Sortable

Create new instance.


Link to the active instance.

  • on(el:HTMLElement, event:String, fn:Function) — attach an event handler function
  • off(el:HTMLElement, event:String, fn:Function) — remove an event handler
  • css(el:HTMLElement):Object — get the values of all the CSS properties
  • css(el:HTMLElement, prop:String):Mixed — get the value of style properties
  • css(el:HTMLElement, prop:String, value:String) — set one CSS properties
  • css(el:HTMLElement, props:Object) — set more CSS properties
  • find(ctx:HTMLElement, tagName:String[, iterator:Function]):Array — get elements by tag name
  • bind(ctx:Mixed, fn:Function):Function — Takes a function and returns a new one that will always have a particular context
  • is(el:HTMLElement, selector:String):Boolean — check the current matched set of elements against a selector
  • closest(el:HTMLElement, selector:String[, ctx:HTMLElement]):HTMLElement|Null — for each element in the set, get the first element that matches the selector by testing the element itself and traversing up through its ancestors in the DOM tree
  • clone(el:HTMLElement):HTMLElement — create a deep copy of the set of matched elements
  • toggleClass(el:HTMLElement, name:String, state:Boolean) — add or remove one classes from each element


<!-- jsDelivr :: Sortable (https://www.jsdelivr.com/package/npm/sortablejs) --> <script src="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/[email protected]/Sortable.min.js"></script> <!-- jsDelivr :: Sortable :: Latest (https://www.jsdelivr.com/package/npm/sortablejs) --> <script src="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/[email protected]/Sortable.min.js"></script>

jQuery compatibility

To assemble plugin for jQuery, perform the following steps:

cd Sortable npm install grunt jquery

Now you can use jquery.fn.sortable.js:

(or jquery.fn.sortable.min.js if you run grunt jquery:min)

$("#list").sortable({ /* options */ }); // init $("#list").sortable("widget"); // get Sortable instance $("#list").sortable("destroy"); // destroy Sortable instance $("#list").sortable("{method-name}"); // call an instance method $("#list").sortable("{method-name}", "foo", "bar"); // call an instance method with parameters

And grunt jquery:mySortableFuncjquery.fn.mySortableFunc.js