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Best JavaScript Free and Open Source Data Grid Libraries and Widgets

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Read Time: 6 min

Tables are great for displaying a lot of information in a small space. For example, you might need to display data such as the marks of thousands of students in an exam along with other details, or the prices, ratings and available stock for an eCommerce store.

Data grids are basically tables that also offer some extended functionality like filtering, sorting and searching through the data. Implementing all this functionality on your own is going to take a lot of time. Luckily, there are many free and open-source JavaScript-based data grid libraries out there that you can use in your projec.

In this article, I will give you a brief overview of five such libraries. Let's get started.

AG Grid

AG Grid calls itself the best JavaScript library for creating data tables and for good reason. Major highlights of the library include its excellent performance, no dependency on third party libraries and smooth integration with all the major JavaScript frameworks such as Angular, React and VueJS. This goes without saying but you can also use the library with plain JavaScript as well.

AG Grid LibraryAG Grid LibraryAG Grid Library

Some useful features of the library include the ability to resize, reorder and pin columns. You also get support for pagination, sorting and row selection. Keyboard navigation and accessibility support has also be implemented in the library.

Besides customizing the appearance of the grid with multiple themes, you can also customize cell content and do in-place cell editing. Data from the grid can be exported to CSV format with the free version of the library.

This library also has an enterprise version which offers some additional features such as lazy loading of records and server-side operations on the data. You also get support for tree view and hierarchical data. You can additionally export your data to Excel and get Excel-like pivoting tables.

The extensive documentation will help you get started easily and create data grids with the framework of your choice.

Handsontable

The Handsontable JavaScript library allows you to create data grids that look and feel like spreadsheets. You get all the features of data grids with a UI similar to spreadsheets.

Handsontable LibraryHandsontable LibraryHandsontable Library

You don't need to rely on any particular framework or library to use Handsontable, it works quite well with plain JavaScript. Prefer use a framework? You can do that as well because the library supports React, Vue and Angular.

You get some useful features like freezing, moving and resizing rows or columns of the data grid. Filtering, validating and exporting data to a file is also possible with its API. You can also perform multi-column sorting, non-contiguous selection as well as cell merge operations. The library also allows you to undo or redo your operations.

There are a lot of plugins available to add extra functionality to your grid. This includes things like auto-fill with drag-down and copy-down functionality. You can even perform Excel-like calculations by integrating HyperFormula which is a powerful calculation engine developed by the Handsontable team.

You should check out the demo of the library and see if it has all the features that you need.

ParamQuery Grid

The jQuery based ParamQuery grid library is a really good and open source library that you can use to integrate data grids in your website. The library is very efficient at what it does and can easily handle over 100,000 records.

ParamQuery GridParamQuery GridParamQuery Grid

Although it has been developed as a jQuery plugin, the library can easily be used with frameworks such as Angular, React, Knockout, and VueJS. You can also integrate it in your website with vanilla JavaScript.

You can also copy and paste data to and from Excel. Features such as auto-fill and state management make working with data grids a breeze. The library comes with the undo and redo functionality along with your edit history. It also supports inline editing with support for batch, row and multi-line editing.

Data migration is not an issue because you will be able to export your data to a variety of formats such as Excel, HTML, JSON and CSV. You can also import data from various sources and formats such as HTML, arrays, XML and JSON to populate the data grids.

Virtual scrolling and rendering enables you to have support for seemingly infinite rows and columns. You can also make your data grids pretty with the help of different themes. The library also offer internationalization features.

There are many more features in the library that I haven't listed here. You should definitely check out the project homepage to learn more.

SlickGrid

SlickGrid is yet another free and open-source grid library built upon jQuery and jQuery UI. The original developer of the library worked on the project for some time but then a fork of the library became active.

Newer versions of the library have dropped jQueryUI as being a requirement and use a modern touch friendly library called SortableJS. You will still be able to use jQueryUI but it is now optional instead of being a requirement.

You can expect the library to have extremely fast rendering speed as well as adaptive virtual scrolling that can handle over a hundred thousand rows while still being responsive.

You can easily resize, reorder, show or hide the columns in the grid. The library also support force-fitting and auto-sizing of the columns. New rows can also be easily created and existing ones easily edited. The multi-field editor in the library comes with undo/redo support.

The library also supports background post-rendering to give a more refreshing look to your data grid. You should take a look at the examples posted in the repository wiki to see the full extent of its capabilities.

TanStack Table

The TanStack Table library is a modern and up-to-date library for creating powerful tables and data grids. This is actually a headless library so it won't ship with components, markup or styles.

TanStack Table LibraryTanStack Table LibraryTanStack Table Library

Being headless has its own advantages and disadvantages. The library will be lightweight and portable with you having full control over the markup and style of the data grids. However, it will also require more work from your end to be fully functional.

This library also comes with adapters for different libraries, tools and frameworks such as React, Vue and Svelte. Therefore, you might also see it being referred React Table, Vue Table and Svelte Table. All of them are powered by the same library behind the scenes.

You get a lot of cool and useful features with the library such as multi-column and multi-directional sorting, row selection and expansion, column visibility, ordering, pinning and resizing. It also offers column and global filters with support for grouping and aggregation of data.

Be sure to check out all the TanStack Table examples they have posted on their website.

Final Thoughts

Implementing data grids all by yourself is going to be a lot of work. In this post, I have listed some of the most popular, free and open-source JavaScript grid libraries that you can start using right away. You can also make your own modifications to the source code of these projects to better fit your needs.

There are a lot of other open-source grid libraries that you can find on GitHub. If the libraries listed here don't offer what you are looking for, maybe try searching for some alternatives on GitHub. Some examples include framework specific solutions such as React Datasheet and Angular UI Grid.

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