How to create a super basic search form in Ruby on Rails

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How to create a super basic search form in Ruby on Rails

TL; DR: Seriously, this form implementation is incredibly simple


How to create a super basic search form in Ruby on Rails.

The following picture is a snapshot of an example.


Let's consider a Product model with a title attribute.

Search form

<%= form_tag('/products', method: 'get', local: true) do %>
  <%= text_field_tag(:search) %>
  <%= submit_tag("Search") %>
<% end %>

form_tag is a helper method provided by Rails for creating HTML forms.

'/products' is the URL or path to which the form will be submitted. The '/products url is due to the index route.

local: true is an optional parameter that specifies whether the form should be processed locally (within the same controller) or sent to a different controller for processing. In this case, local: true indicates that the form will be processed by the same controller.

Search method

Add a search method to the desired model.

# app/models/product.rb
  if search 
      where(["title LIKE ?","%#{search}%"])

The purpose of this code is to perform a search operation on the model's associated table based on the provided search query.

If search does not have a value (i.e., it is nil or false), it executes the code block inside the else statement. The keyword all is an ActiveRecord query method that retrieves all records from the associated table.

Search class method call

Add the search method inside the controller.

# app/controllers/products_controller.rb
  def index
    @products =[:search])  

    respond_to do |format|
      format.html # index.html.erb
      format.json { render json: @products }
  end[:search]) calls the search class method on the Product model, passing params[:search] as an argument. It performs a search operation based on the provided search query.

params[:search] retrieves the value of the search parameter from the request parameters. It represents the search query entered by the user.

Test it

Solution notes

This solution does not adhere to solid design principles and may not be suitable for large-scale projects, as it lacks a focus on reusability.

When working with Rails forms, it is recommended to follow best practices for enterprise projects, such as utilizing form objects, query objects, and adopting filterable approaches using solid principles.


In conclusion, this article has demonstrated how to create a super basic search form in Ruby on Rails.

By following the step-by-step guide, you have learned the essential components and techniques needed to implement a basic search functionality in your Rails application.

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Final thoughts

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