javascript appending to query string

I would like to append an associative array to a URL's query string. For whatever reason, there is no native javascript method to accomplish this task. This needs to be done manually or using a common web framework such as jQuery.

The first step is to serialize the associative array into a query string,

native javascript

With plain-old-javascript, you can do something like this,

var queryVars = {'foo':'bar', 'spam':'eggs', 'tracker':'yes' };

var queryStringParts = new Array();
for(var key in queryVars) {
  queryStringParts.push(key + '=' + queryVars[key]);
}
var queryString = queryStringParts.join('&');

The value of queryString will be

foo=bar&spam=eggs&tracker=yes

jQuery

Since version 1.2 jQuery has supported the jQuery.param() function to serialize any array or object into a URL query string. The above example becomes,

var queryVars = {'foo':'bar', 'spam':'eggs', 'tracker':'yes' };

var queryString = jQuery.param(queryVars);

node.js

My favorite approach is the node.js querystring.stringify() function, I like this as it is easiest to remember,

var queryVars = {'foo':'bar', 'spam':'eggs', 'tracker':'yes' };

var queryString = querystring.stringify(queryVars);

Appending ? or &

In most cases you don't want to assume an input url does not already contain a query string, in fact, this would be a rather bad assumption. To get this to work you'll want to append your new query string to any existing query string using the & character, otherwise use the ? character. Here is an example,

function appendQueryString(url, queryVars) {
    var firstSeperator = (url.indexOf('?')==-1 ? '?' : '&');
    var queryStringParts = new Array();
    for(var key in queryVars) {
        queryStringParts.push(key + '=' + queryVars[key]);
    }
    var queryString = queryStringParts.join('&');
    return url + firstSeperator + queryString;
}

var url = "something.html?q=test";
var queryVars = {'foo':'bar', 'spam':'eggs', 'tracker':'yes' };

var new_url = appendQueryString(url, queryVars);

The value of new_url will be

something.html?q=test&foo=bar&spam=eggs&tracker=yes
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