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Turn a Bootstrap Dropdown into Multi-Select Button using jQuery

The dropdown-checkboxes plug-in

The jQuery dropdown-checkboxes plug-in will turn a Bootstrap select dropdown into the multi-select input button where options are available with checkboxes.

This is a compact dropdown/button and a user may select one or more options by ticking the checkboxes. The selected checkbox/option values are stored in a hidden input field.

Developer’s page Download plug-in

Install the dropdown-checkboxes plug-in?

After downloading the plug-in, place its CSS file along with jQuery and Bootstrap CSS in the <head> section:

 <script src=”//ajax.googleapis.com/ajax/libs/jquery/1.11.2/jquery.min.js”></script>

<link rel=”stylesheet” href=”//maxcdn.bootstrapcdn.com/bootstrap/3.3.2/css/bootstrap.min.css”>

<link rel=”stylesheet” href=”css/dropdownCheckboxes/dropdownCheckboxes.min.css”>

(Size-wise, it is only useful if you already using the jQuery and Bootstrap in your project)

The markup:

Use the markup for the button and checkboxes as shown in the demo code below.

Initialize the plug-in


A demo of creating button dropdown

See the demo by clicking the link or image below. You can see a button with pre-selected values (jQuery, JavaScript, CSS). Press it and open the dropdown. There, you can see various options with checkboxes. The selected values are shown on top:

jQuery bootstrap dropdown buttonThe markup starts with the button tag followed by checkboxes with labels:

Copy/paste the above code in your editor.

How to retrieve selected data?

After the selection are made and data is saved in the form where this plug-in is used, the selected values can be retrieved as follows.

  • In the markup, the data-name attribute is used in the top div wrapper. After the plug-in is initiated, a hidden input field with the name of that data-name’s value is created.
  • As the values are saved after ticking the checkboxes in button dropdown, the value of the hidden input field is set to a JSON array.

Learn more about this plug-in by visiting the developer’s page.

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