Functions Stop Working After Refactoring Code – JavaScript – SitePoint

Using my original code I was able to drag two small DIVs (test1 and test2) by placing the mouse cursor over the DIVs, holding down the mouse, and moving the mouse as can be seen in the Original_Code.

I refactored this code to make it more readable by taking the mousemove and mouseup functions out of the callback function of the mousedown eventlistener and placed them elsewhere as can be seen in the Refactored_Code. Eventually I will put them in an external file. The problem now is that after the dragging has stopped and the mouseup event was triggered, the mousemove eventlistener doesn’t seem to be removed by the mouseup callback function and stop the DIVs from moving

The mouseup event listener is an anonymous function so there is no way that it can be passed to the removeEventListener function.
removeEventListener only works on named functions.

Hi Dennis,
Thanks for your reply. Is there a work around for this?

First bind the event listeners to the element that is being moved and then use named functions for the listeners.

let tgt = document.getElementById('test1');
tgt.addEventListener("mousemove", mouseMove, false);
tgt.addEventListener("mouse, mouseUp, false); function mouseMove(e) { // code here }
function mouseUp(e) { // code here } 

Of course draggable and resizing are out of scope so they will need to be defined where the event listeners can access them.

Hi Dennis,
Thanks for your reply. Your code below does not allow the passing of the arguments “e” and “draggable” to the callback functions.

tgt.addEventListener(“mousemove”, C, false);
tgt.addEventListener(“mouse, mouseUp, false);

My current code allows those arguments to be passed to the callbacks. The mousemove function works but the removeEvenLlistener does not.

You said at the start:

Trying to work backwards from something that is broken to something that works, can be a complicated process due to many assumptions that are being made.

Instead of going backwards, I’m going to start with working code (always a bonus) and attempt to use more proper techniques to achieve the desired outcome instead.

Extracting the mousemove() function out of the mousedown event listener, there is trouble where it says: Uncaught ReferenceError: draggable is not defined

What’s happening is that the mousedown function wants to update draggable, and the mousemove wants to use that draggable info. When multiple functions want to access the same variable, you define the variable at a higher common parent location, so that one function can update it, and the other function can access it.

In this case I’ve defined draggable in the same place as mainBox and handles. (yes I renamed MainBox to the more appropriate mainBox too).

document.addEventListener('DOMContentLoaded', function() { var mainBox = document.querySelector("#MainBox"); var handles = document.querySelectorAll(".handle"); var draggable;

That way we can update draggable from the mousedown() function:

 mainBox.addEventListener("mousedown", function(ev) { var isResizing = false; draggable =;

and we can access the draggable variable from the mousemove() function.

 function mousemove(e) { const draggableRect = draggable.getBoundingClientRect(); const parentRect = mainBox.getBoundingClientRect();

Here is the updated code

Hi Paul,
Thanks for your response. I think that you have not answered the question I had fully. In your updated code you only extracted the mousemove function but not the mouseup function. I would like to extract the mouseup function as well.

Also I think that the extracted mousemove function in my refactoredCode was not the problem because it does work and I was able to move my DIVs around. The problem lies in the extracted mouseup function, for some reason when this function is invoked it fails to remove the mousemove event listener.

One step at a time :slight_smile:

The mouseup, mousedown, and mousemove functions have been extracted in this updated code.
No other changes of significance needed to occur.

Suggestion: When a dragged item runs up against a wall, such as against the left wall, it would be less distracting if instead of freezing in place, that dragged item moved up and down along the wall to the same vertical position as the mouse.

Thanks again for your help. I think the reason your updated code works is because you placed the extracted mousemove and mouseup functions in front of the line

BlockquotemainBox.addEventListener(“mousedown”, function(ev)

This means the mousemove and mouseup functions are defined before they are used. To be honest I never thought that it would cause problems since Javascript allows the use of functions before defining them.

You can only remove named event listeners. There is no identifier for the removeEventListener to identify the event listener.

Look at the above link for event listener adding and removing.
For example a click event handler

element.addEventListener('click', elClick, false); function elClick(ev) {
// code here
let tgt =; // tgt is the element which was clicked
} document.removeEventListener('click', elClick);

The event handler is supplied with an event object which contains information of the event.
Event objects have common as well as properties that are unique to the event type.
The tgt variable is the element which was clicked which in your case could be the div element or any child text node.
If you are serious about coding in js you really need a good understanding of event listeners.

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