Furkan Başaran Furkan Başaran - 1 year ago 121
AngularJS Question

How can I handle browser tab close event in Angular? Only close, not refresh

My goal, remove user cookies when browser tab closed.

Is it possible? Can I handle browser tab close event without refresh case?

If I use

events, function triggered when user refresh page, I don't want this, I want just run when closed tab.

How can I do this in Angular?

Answer Source

This is, tragically, not a simple problem to solve. But it can be done. The answer below is amalgamated from many different SO answers.

Simple Part: Knowning that the window is being destroyed. You can use the onunload event handle to detect this.

Tricky Part:

Detecting if it's a refresh, link follow or the desired window close event. Removing link follows and form submissions is easy enough:

var inFormOrLink;
$('a').live('click', function() { inFormOrLink = true; });
$('form').bind('submit', function() { inFormOrLink = true; });

$(window).bind('beforeunload', function(eventObject) {
    var returnValue = undefined;
    if (! inFormOrLink) {
        returnValue = "Do you really want to close?";
    eventObject.returnValue = returnValue;
    return returnValue;

Poor-man's Solution

Checking event.clientY or event.clientX to determine what was clicked to fire the event.

function doUnload(){
 if (window.event.clientX < 0 && window.event.clientY < 0){
   alert("Window closed");
   alert("Window refreshed");

Y-Axis doesn't work cause it's negative for clicks on reload or tab/window close buttons, and positive when keyboard shortcuts are used to reload (e.g. F5, Ctrl-R, ...) and window closing (e.g. Alt-F4). X-Axis is not useful since different browsers have differing button placements. However, if you're limited, then running the event coordinates thru a series of if-elses might be your best bet. Beware that this is certainly not reliable.

Involved Solution

(Taken from Julien Kronegg) Using HTML5's local storage and client/server AJAX communication. Caveat: This approach is limited to the browsers which support HTML5 local storage.

On your page, add an onunload to the window to the following handler

function myUnload(event) {
    if (window.localStorage) {
        // flag the page as being unloading
        window.localStorage['myUnloadEventFlag']=new Date().getTime();

    // notify the server that we want to disconnect the user in a few seconds (I used 5 seconds)
    askServerToDisconnectUserInAFewSeconds(); // synchronous AJAX call

Then add a onloadon the body to the following handler

function myLoad(event) {
    if (window.localStorage) {
        var t0 = Number(window.localStorage['myUnloadEventFlag']);
        if (isNaN(t0)) t0=0;
        var t1=new Date().getTime();
        var duration=t1-t0;
        if (duration<10*1000) {
            // less than 10 seconds since the previous Unload event => it's a browser reload (so cancel the disconnection request)
            askServerToCancelDisconnectionRequest(); // asynchronous AJAX call
        } else {
            // last unload event was for a tab/window close => do whatever

On the server, collect the disconnection requests in a list and set a timer thread which inspects the list at regular intervals (I used every 20 seconds). Once a disconnection request timeout (i.e. the 5 seconds are gone), disconnect the user from the server. If a disconnection request cancelation is received in the meantime, the corresponding disconnection request is removed from the list, so that the user will not be disconnected.

This approach is also applicable if you want to differentiate between tab/window close event and followed links or submitted form. You just need to put the two event handlers on every page which contains links and forms and on every link/form landing page.

Closing Comments (pun intended):

Since you want to remove cookies when the window is closed, I'm assuming it's to prevent them from being used in a future session. If that's a correct assumption, the approach described above will work well. You keep the invalidated cookie on the server (once client is disconnected), when the client creates a new session, the JS will send the cookie over by default, at which point you know it's from an older session, delete it and optionally provide a new one to be set on the client.