Jacob Paris
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Autosave form inputs on change or blur with Remix's useFetcher (not useSubmit)

In the past, it was common for users to explicitly press a save button regularly as they used an application, like Adobe Photoshop or Microsoft Word.

If they forgot to save, or the program crashed, or they overwrote their save file, they would lose hours of work or more.

But as the world moved toward cloud-based applications, autosave became the norm, and users have come to expect that if they make a change, it will be remembered.

In this guide, we'll show you how to use Remix's useFetcher hook to autosave form inputs on change or blur, and show a loading state while saving.

The useSubmit hook is canceled on navigation but useFetcher isn't

The natural choice for submitting a form programmatically is the useSubmit hook, but it's not a good choice for auto-saving forms.

Remix uses a global navigation state, so if you click a link to one page and then before it loads, you click a link to a different page, the request for the first page will be cancelled.

Unfortunately, useSubmit also uses the same navigation state. If you use useSubmit to submit a form, and then navigate to a different page before it completes, the form submission will be cancelled.

That might make sense for a form that you explicitly submit, but for an input that is expected to save automatically, you don't want the save to fail just because the user clicked a link too quickly.

Every useFetcher hook gets its own state, so you can use it to make a request that will not be cancelled if the user navigates away.

If you use one useFetcher hook for all of the inputs in a form, the saves will be auto-cancelled and replaced with the latest save request if there are more changes before one has completed.

And that's great, because it means that if the user makes a bunch of changes, the last one will be the one that is saved.

Implementing a fetcher.Form with the useFetcher hook

Instead of using the regular Remix <Form /> component, use one returned by the fetcher at fetcher.Form.

Add an onBlur handler to the form that calls fetcher.submit with the form element and { replace: true } as the second argument.

export default function Example() {
const fetcher = useFetcher()
return (
onBlur={(e) =>
fetcher.submit(e.currentTarget, { replace: true })
<Input />
<Input />
<Input />
className={`rounded px-4 py-2 text-sm text-white hover:bg-indigo-500 focus:ring-2 focus:ring-indigo-600 focus:ring-offset-2 ${
fetcher.state === "submitting"
? "bg-indigo-400"
: "bg-indigo-600 hover:bg-indigo-500"
{fetcher.state === "submitting"
? "Saving…"
: "Save"}
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Hi, I'm Jacob

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