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How to create refs?

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There are two approaches

  1. This is a recently added approach. Refs are created using React.createRef() method and attached to React elements via the ref attribute. In order to use refs throughout the component, just assign the ref to the instance property within constructor.
class MyComponent extends React.Component {
  constructor(props) {
    super(props)
    this.myRef = React.createRef()
  }
  render() {
    return <div ref={this.myRef} />
  }
}
  1. You can also use ref callbacks approach regardless of React version. For example, the search bar component's input element accessed as follows,
class SearchBar extends Component {
   constructor(props) {
      super(props);
      this.txtSearch = null;
      this.state = { term: '' };
      this.setInputSearchRef = e => {
         this.txtSearch = e;
      }
   }
   onInputChange(event) {
      this.setState({ term: this.txtSearch.value });
   }
   render() {
      return (
         <input
            value={this.state.term}
            onChange={this.onInputChange.bind(this)}
            ref={this.setInputSearchRef} />
      );
   }
}

You can also use refs in function components using closuresNote: You can also use inline ref callbacks even though it is not a recommended approach

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