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Fixed header in ASP.NET DataGrid

, 20 Apr 2005
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How to get a fixed header row in an ASP.NET DataGrid?

Introduction

A very common design request is to create a DataGrid list, that can contain many rows (e.g. account contacts list), that has a fixed maximum height and a scrollbar when there are more rows than can fit into the allotted space. This is easily done by putting the DataGrid within a DIV tag:

<DIV style="OVERFLOW: auto; HEIGHT: 
120px">
<asp:DataGrid ...
</DIV>

Then the next design request made by customers is to have a scrolling body with fixed column headers so that, users don't have to remember which column contains what. Such a fixed header that stays put and never scroll out of view can be made using a style like this:

<style type="text/css">
<!--
.DataGridFixedHeader {background-color: white; position:relative; top:expression(this.offsetParent.scrollTop);}
-->
</style>

The background color is needed to hide the data rows as they scroll under the header row. Make sure that the style is on a single line, the expression might not work when the style definition uses multiple lines.

Apply the new header style to the DataGrid using the HeaderStyle element:

<asp:DataGrid id="dgContacts" runat="server" ... >
...
<HeaderStyle CssClass="ms-formlabel DataGridFixedHeader"></HeaderStyle>
...

Note how can you apply multiple classes within the CssClass attribute to combine several styles to achieve reuse in your web pages or to combine them with styles that are not your own (such as SharePoint styles).

There are several other suggestions out there on how to achieve a fixed header row, such as having a separate table above the DataGrid, but this suffers from alignment and column width problems, for e.g., when a table cell contains non-breaking content. It also creates more work when changing the columns of the DataGrid. The style solution in this article, however, is as simple as it gets.

Supported Browsers

This solution is based on CSS expressions, and works with MSIE 5.x and 6.x. It is pure client-side and should not interfere with server-side code (except for adding the style), but it might behave strange if you have other positioning stuff in your page.

License

This article has no explicit license attached to it but may contain usage terms in the article text or the download files themselves. If in doubt please contact the author via the discussion board below.

A list of licenses authors might use can be found here

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About the Author

KjellSJ
Web Developer
Norway Norway
My blog: kjellsj.blogspot.com
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Comments and Discussions

 
QuestionCan I also alter the color of Visited Link in the datagrid header? Pin
smcirish, 22-Apr-08 9:09
membersmcirish22-Apr-08 9:09 
AnswerRe: Can I also alter the color of Visited Link in the datagrid header? Pin
nsimeonov, 5-Dec-08 15:55
membernsimeonov5-Dec-08 15:55 
GeneralFixed Grid Header with Scrollable Data Pin
aswini, 9-Apr-08 2:22
memberaswini9-Apr-08 2:22 
Generaldont see border in head datagrid Pin
RoxanaAFG, 10-Oct-07 10:09
memberRoxanaAFG10-Oct-07 10:09 
GeneralRe: dont see border in head datagrid Pin
MarkShoe, 12-Oct-07 6:35
memberMarkShoe12-Oct-07 6:35 
GeneralRe: dont see border in head datagrid Pin
jigscool_22, 25-Feb-08 11:44
memberjigscool_2225-Feb-08 11:44 
GeneralRe: dont see border in head datagrid Pin
hasitha123, 20-Mar-08 0:04
memberhasitha12320-Mar-08 0:04 
GeneralRe: dont see border in head datagrid Pin
TheSoundofCylons, 3-Jun-08 4:23
memberTheSoundofCylons3-Jun-08 4:23 
GeneralRe: dont see border in head datagrid Pin
rterry, 3-Nov-09 8:27
memberrterry3-Nov-09 8:27 
GeneralRe: dont see border in head datagrid Pin
TheSoundofCylons, 3-Nov-09 9:11
memberTheSoundofCylons3-Nov-09 9:11 
GeneralDIV + Fixed Header Not working Pin
sbadriprasad, 21-Sep-07 22:13
membersbadriprasad21-Sep-07 22:13 
QuestionHow to get Vertical Scroll bar only Pin
smcirish, 21-Aug-07 8:59
membersmcirish21-Aug-07 8:59 
AnswerRe: How to get Vertical Scroll bar only Pin
Member 4469234, 13-Jan-11 10:32
memberMember 446923413-Jan-11 10:32 
GeneralFixed Header and Fixed Pager(or Footer) as well Pin
ahmedelbatal, 22-Jul-07 4:43
memberahmedelbatal22-Jul-07 4:43 
Generalexpression not working on Mozila Pin
smruti_ranjan, 19-Apr-07 0:52
membersmruti_ranjan19-Apr-07 0:52 
GeneralEditing items that you must scroll to see Pin
evshell18, 13-Apr-07 6:37
memberevshell1813-Apr-07 6:37 
GeneralRe: Editing items that you must scroll to see Pin
evshell18, 16-Apr-07 6:02
memberevshell1816-Apr-07 6:02 
GeneralRe: Editing items that you must scroll to see Pin
qtran0203, 31-May-07 9:23
memberqtran020331-May-07 9:23 
Generaldon't use top: expression Pin
Shiggity, 30-Mar-07 9:49
memberShiggity30-Mar-07 9:49 
GeneralRe: don't use top: expression Pin
Debo_Net, 9-Sep-07 21:41
memberDebo_Net9-Sep-07 21:41 
GeneralWatch Positioning Pin
johnsaxton@yahoo.com, 15-Nov-06 4:03
memberjohnsaxton@yahoo.com15-Nov-06 4:03 
This is a great tip. Too bad MSFT didn't see fit to provide a property for the DNF 2.x gridview control to control the headers.

I found one thing that can easily break this tip. If you happen to move controls around on the form you MIGHT end up with an position:absolute tag in the <asp:Gridview... /> definition. Just remove it and non-scrolling headers will return.





Regards,
John Saxton
MCAD, Security+
GeneralDatagrid Header Pin
nour123, 10-Nov-06 1:24
membernour12310-Nov-06 1:24 
AnswerRe: Datagrid Header Pin
smcirish, 21-Aug-07 9:06
membersmcirish21-Aug-07 9:06 
Generalcheckbox in gridview Pin
Ronjon Kumar Ghosh, 17-Sep-06 0:01
memberRonjon Kumar Ghosh17-Sep-06 0:01 
Questionfixed header gridview Pin
Sultan Khan, 16-Sep-06 23:38
memberSultan Khan16-Sep-06 23:38 

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