Server-Side Rendering

Server-side rendering allows you to pre-render the initial state of your React components server-side. This speeds up initial page loads as users do not need to wait for all the JavaScript to load before seeing the web page.

To use server-side rendering in your application, follow the following steps:

1 - Modify App_Start\ReactConfig.cs (for ASP.NET MVC 4 or 5) or Startup.cs (for ASP.NET Core) to reference your components:

namespace MyApp
{
    public static class ReactConfig
    {
        public static void Configure()
        {
            ReactSiteConfiguration.Configuration = new ReactSiteConfiguration()
                .AddScript("~/Scripts/HelloWorld.jsx");
        }
    }
}

This tells ReactJS.NET to load all the relevant JavaScript files server-side. The JavaScript files of all the components you want to load and all their dependencies should be included here.

2 - In your ASP.NET MVC view, call Html.React to render a component server-side, passing it the name of the component, and any required props.

@Html.React("HelloWorld", new
{
    name = "Daniel"
})

3 - Call Html.ReactInitJavaScript at the bottom of the page (just above the </body>) to render initialisation scripts. Note that this does not load the JavaScript files for your components, it only renders the initialisation code.

<!-- Load all your scripts normally before calling ReactInitJavaScript -->
<!-- Assumes minification/combination is configured as per previous section -->
<script src="https://cdnjs.cloudflare.com/ajax/libs/react/15.3.2/react.js"></script>
<script src="https://cdnjs.cloudflare.com/ajax/libs/react/15.3.2/react-dom.js"></script>
@Scripts.Render("~/bundles/main")
@Html.ReactInitJavaScript()

4 - Hit the page and admire the server-rendered beauty:

<div id="react1">
    <div data-reactid=".2aubxk2hwsu" data-react-checksum="-1025167618">
        <span data-reactid=".2aubxk2hwsu.0">Hello </span>
        <span data-reactid=".2aubxk2hwsu.1">Daniel</span>
    </div>
</div>

<script src="https://cdnjs.cloudflare.com/ajax/libs/react/15.3.2/react.js"></script>
<script src="https://cdnjs.cloudflare.com/ajax/libs/react/15.3.2/react-dom.js"></script>
<script src="/Scripts/HelloWorld.js"></script>
<script>ReactDOM.render(HelloWorld({"name":"Daniel"}), document.getElementById("react1"));</script>

The server-rendered HTML will automatically be reused by React client-side, meaning your initial render will be super fast.

If you encounter any errors with the JavaScript, you may want to temporarily disable server-side rendering in order to debug your components in your browser. You can do this by calling DisableServerSideRendering() in your ReactJS.NET config.

For a more in-depth example, take a look at the included sample application (React.Samples.Mvc4).

5 - Server-side only rendering

If there is no need to have a React application client side and you just want to use the server side rendering but without the React specific data attributes, call Html.React and pass serverOnly parameter as true.

@Html.React("HelloWorld", new
{
    name = "Daniel"
}, serverOnly: true)

And the HTML will look like the one following which is a lot cleaner. In this case there is no need to load the React script or call the Html.ReactInitJavaScript() method.

<div id="react1">
    <div>
        <span>Hello </span>
        <span>Daniel</span>
    </div>
</div>

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