Fetch Records from PHP in ReactJS with DataTables

Fetch Records from PHP in ReactJS with DataTables

1. Introduction

When working with PHP and ReactJS, it is often necessary to fetch records from a PHP backend and display them in a ReactJS application. DataTables is a popular JavaScript library that provides advanced features for handling and displaying tabular data. In this article, we will explore how to fetch records from PHP in ReactJS and integrate them with DataTables for efficient data rendering, sorting, pagination, and search functionality.

2. Understanding PHP and ReactJS

Before we dive into the implementation details, let’s briefly understand PHP and ReactJS.
PHP is a server-side scripting language widely used for web development. It provides powerful features for interacting with databases, making it an ideal choice for fetching records from a backend server.
ReactJS, on the other hand, is a JavaScript library maintained by Facebook. It allows developers to build dynamic user interfaces using reusable components. ReactJS efficiently updates and renders components, making it an excellent choice for building interactive web applications.

3. Setting up the Project Environment

To begin, make sure you have PHP, ReactJS, and DataTables installed in your development environment. Here are the steps to set up the project environment:
Install PHP and set up a local server environment like XAMPP or WAMP.
Create a new ReactJS project using Create React App. Open your terminal and run the following command:
npx create-react-app my-app
Navigate to the project directory:
cd my-app
Install the required dependencies for DataTables:
npm install datatables.net jquery
This installs the DataTables library and its dependency, jQuery.

4. Fetching Records from PHP in ReactJS

Using Axios for HTTP Requests
Axios is a popular JavaScript library for making HTTP requests. We will use Axios to fetch data from the PHP backend in our ReactJS application.
To install Axios, run the following command:
npm install axios
Creating a React Component for DataTables
In ReactJS, we can create a reusable component to display the fetched records using DataTables. Let’s create a new component called “DataTable” to encapsulate the DataTables functionality.
Create a new file named “DataTable.js” in your ReactJS project’s “src” directory and add the following code:
import React, { useEffect, useRef } from ‘react’;
import $ from ‘jquery’;
import ‘datatables.net’;
const DataTable = ({ data }) => {
  const tableRef = useRef();
  useEffect(() => {
    const $table = $(tableRef.current);
  }, []);
  return (
    <table ref={tableRef}>
        {data.map((record) => (
          <tr key={record.id}>
export default DataTable;

Fetching Records from PHP Endpoint

Next, we need to fetch the records from the PHP backend using Axios. In your ReactJS component where you want to display the DataTable, import Axios and DataTable components, and update the component code as follows:
import React, { useEffect, useState } from ‘react’;
import axios from ‘axios’;
import DataTable from ‘./DataTable’;
const RecordsComponent = () => {
  const [data, setData] = useState([]);
  useEffect(() => {
      .then((response) => {
      .catch((error) => {
  }, []);
  return (
      <DataTable data={data} />
export default RecordsComponent;
Make sure to replace the /api/fetch-records.php endpoint with the actual PHP script URL that fetches the records from the database.

Rendering the DataTables Component
Finally, render the RecordsComponent in your main ReactJS component.
Open the src/App.js file and replace its content with the following code:
import React from ‘react’;
import RecordsComponent from ‘./RecordsComponent’;
function App() {
  return (
    <div className=”App”>
      <RecordsComponent />
export default App;
Now, when you run your ReactJS application, it will fetch the records from the PHP backend and display them using DataTables.

5. Enhancing DataTables with Sorting, Pagination, and Search

DataTables provides several advanced features for sorting, pagination, and search functionality. To enhance our DataTable component with these features, we need to pass additional configuration options to the DataTables initialization.
Modify the useEffect hook in the DataTable component as follows:
useEffect(() => {
  const $table = $(tableRef.current);
    paging: true,
    searching: true,
    ordering: true,
}, []);
This will enable sorting, pagination, and search functionality in the DataTable.

6. Conclusion

In this article, we learned how to fetch records from PHP in ReactJS and integrate them with DataTables for efficient data rendering, sorting, pagination, and search functionality. We set up the project environment, used Axios for HTTP requests, created a DataTable component, fetched records from a PHP endpoint, and rendered the DataTable component in ReactJS.
By leveraging the power of PHP, ReactJS, and DataTables, you can build dynamic and feature-rich web applications that effectively display and interact with tabular data.

7. FAQs

Q1: Can I use a different library instead of DataTables for displaying tabular data in ReactJS?
Yes, there are other libraries available for displaying tabular data in ReactJS, such as React Table, React DataGrid, and Material-UI’s Data Grid. You can explore these libraries and choose the one that best fits your project requirements.
Q2: How can I handle CRUD operations (Create, Read, Update, Delete) with the fetched records?
To handle CRUD operations, you would need to implement additional functionality in both the PHP backend and the ReactJS frontend. You can create PHP endpoints for handling create, update, and delete operations, and update your ReactJS components to send HTTP requests to these endpoints.
Q3: How can I style the DataTable component?
You can style the DataTable component by applying CSS to the table and its elements. DataTables provides various CSS classes that you can target to customize the appearance of the table, headers, rows, and cells.
Q4: Can I fetch records from a different database system instead of MySQL?
Yes, you can fetch records from different database systems by modifying the PHP backend code accordingly. PHP supports various database extensions and drivers, such as MySQLi, PostgreSQL, SQLite, and more. You would need to update the database connection and SQL queries in the PHP script based on the specific database system you are using.
Q5: How can I handle errors or display loading indicators during the data fetching process?
To handle errors and display loading indicators, you can update the ReactJS component to manage the component state accordingly. For example, you can show a loading spinner while waiting for the data to be fetched, and handle any errors that occur during the HTTP request using try-catch blocks or Axios error handling mechanisms.

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