Why should I prefetch?

Because who doesn’t love a nice warm cache on a cold winter day?


If you’re using Turbolinks, feel free to jump ahead to How do I prefetch?

If you’re using Turbo, please read below about the current issues with Snapshot caching.

Warning: Turbo users
Turbo recently merged the ability to prefetch into the main branch. Mrujs will throw a warning if prefetching is not enabled. To use the latest version of Turbo add the following to your package.json.
    "dependencies": {
      "@hotwired/turbo": "https://github.com/hotwired/dev-builds/archive/@hotwired/turbo/latest.tar.gz"

How do I prefetch?

Prefetching in mrujs leverages Turbo(links) snapshot cache.

Prefetching expects two things, a string of HTML, and a url.

  url: "/how-tos",
  html: "<div>Hi</div>"
The snapshot cache expects new URL("/how-tos", document.baseURI) for the url. This is prefilled for you by mrujs. If you're prefetching a different location with a baseURI different from the current baseURI, make sure to pass in an instance of URL with the proper domain.

The above is kind of a contrived example. Lets look at how we would prefetch using an AJAX request.

Prefetching with fetch

All of the below can be run in the devTools console since this site uses mrujs! So feel free to open up the console and run the following commands!

To prefetch with fetch is fairly straightforward. We fetch the url, we parse the response, then we pass the response to the prefetch function. Lets look at an example:

const url = "/how-tos"
window.mrujs.fetch(url, { method: "get" })
  .then((response) => response.text())
  .then((html) => window.mrujs.navigationAdapter.prefetch({ url, html }))
  .catch((err) => console.error(err))

Inspecting the cache

Mrujs also exposes the cache of your currently selected navigationAdapter. (Turbo or Turbolinks)

To get the cache, we can do the following:


If you’re in a browser you should see a cache object pop up with keys, snapshots, and a few other functions.

The next thing we will be looking at is snapshotCache.has().

Preventing overfetching

Mrujs provides a nice wrapper around snapshotCache.has() called cacheContains("/url").

To check if we’ve already fetched a location we can do the following:

window.mrujs.navigationAdapter.cacheContains("/how-tos") // => true

This will return a boolean which will tell us if we’ve already fetched the given url.

So we can adapt the previous function we used to prefetch to now check if we’ve already prefetched the url.

const { navigationAdapter } = window.mrujs // Shortcut for the nav adapter.
const url = "/how-tos"

// If the url is not in the cache, go out and fetch it.
if (navigationAdapter.cacheContains(url) === false) {
  window.mrujs.fetch(url, { method: "get" })
    .then((response) => response.text())
    .then((html) => navigationAdapter.prefetch({ url, html }))
    .catch((err) => console.error(err))

And that wraps up how we can prefetch URLs using mrujs! Good luck and may you caches always be warm!