ReadOnly ASP.NET TextBox at RunTime using jQuery

Posted by: Suprotim Agarwal , on 6/28/2010, in Category jQuery and ASP.NET
Views: 101037
Abstract: In this short and simple article, we will see how to check a condition and make a TextBox readonly at runtime using jQuery.
In this short and simple article, we will see how to check a condition and make a TextBox readonly at runtime using jQuery.
This article is a chapter from my EBook called 51 Recipes with jQuery and ASP.NET Controls. The chapter has been modified a little to publish it as an article.
Note that for demonstration purposes, I have included jQuery code in the same page. Ideally, these resources should be created in separate folders for maintainability. The code shown below has been tested on IE7, IE8, Firefox 3, Chrome 2 and Safari 4.
Let us quickly jump to the solution to check if the TextBox has some value in it and make it read-only.
<html xmlns="">
<head id="Head1" runat="server">
    <title>Make TextBoxes ReadOnly at RunTime</title>
    <script type="text/javascript"
    <script type="text/javascript">
        $(function ()
            $('input:text[value!=]').each(function ()
                $(this).attr('readonly', true);
    <form id="form1" runat="server">
    <div class="bigDiv">
        <h2>Make TextBoxes ReadOnly at RunTime</h2><br />
        <asp:TextBox ID="tb1" runat="server" Text="ReadOnlyText"/><br />
        <asp:TextBox ID="tb2" runat="server" Text=""/><br />
        <asp:TextBox ID="tb3" runat="server" Text=""/><br />
        <asp:TextBox ID="tb4" runat="server" Text="ReadOnlyText" />
        <br /><br />
        Tip: 1st and 4th TextBoxes have been made read-only
        and cannot be edited
This is a very common requirement that most developers face on a daily basis. While editing a form, textboxes that have text in it, should be made read-only. The code shown in the example filters the textboxes that have values in it (tb1 and tb4) and applies the ‘readonly’ attribute to them.
$('input:text[value!=]').each(function() {
     $(this).attr('readonly', true);
When the document loads, the user is able to enter text in the second and third textboxes, but not in the first and fourth, since they are now read-only. It is that simple!
See a Live Demo
I hope you found this article useful and I thank you for viewing it. This article was taken from my EBook called 51 Tips, Tricks and Recipes with jQuery and ASP.NET Controls which contains similar recipes that you can use in your applications

This article has been editorially reviewed by Suprotim Agarwal.

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Suprotim Agarwal, MCSD, MCAD, MCDBA, MCSE, is the founder of DotNetCurry, DNC Magazine for Developers, SQLServerCurry and DevCurry. He has also authored a couple of books 51 Recipes using jQuery with ASP.NET Controls and The Absolutely Awesome jQuery CookBook.

Suprotim has received the prestigious Microsoft MVP award for Sixteen consecutive years. In a professional capacity, he is the CEO of A2Z Knowledge Visuals Pvt Ltd, a digital group that offers Digital Marketing and Branding services to businesses, both in a start-up and enterprise environment.

Get in touch with him on Twitter @suprotimagarwal or at LinkedIn

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Feedback - Leave us some adulation, criticism and everything in between!
Comment posted by Albas on Monday, June 28, 2010 11:01 AM
Thank you for this tip can we also add css and do the same code in different way?
Comment posted by Rasel on Saturday, September 4, 2010 2:32 AM
When I entered text in Editable TextBox, PostBack event marked all the textbox as readOnly. How can I solve this problem?
Comment posted by Suprotim Agarwal on Saturday, September 4, 2010 4:35 AM
Rasel: That's exactly what this example shows you - While editing, mark all textboxes as readonly that have values in it. What is your requirement?
Comment posted by Deepika Gupta on Thursday, September 23, 2010 6:00 PM
perfect code !..worked for me ...thanks a lot
Comment posted by sg on Monday, May 16, 2011 5:08 AM