Making Asynchronous Requests to Servers using AJAX

Asynchronous JavaScript and XML (AJAX) is a powerful technique that allows web applications to communicate with servers in the background without reloading the entire page. This enables developers to create more responsive and interactive web experiences for users.

In this article, we will explore how to make asynchronous requests to servers using AJAX.

What is AJAX?

AJAX is not a programming language but a combination of existing technologies, namely JavaScript, XML, and the XMLHttpRequest object. It provides a way to send and receive data from a server asynchronously without interfering with the current page.

The XMLHttpRequest Object

The XMLHttpRequest object is the key to making AJAX requests. It provides methods and properties to send HTTP requests to a server and handle the response. To create a new XMLHttpRequest object, you can use the following syntax:

var xhttp = new XMLHttpRequest();

Sending an AJAX Request

To send an AJAX request, you need to use the open() method to specify the type of request (GET, POST, etc.) and the URL of the server. The request is then sent using the send() method.'GET', '', true);

In the example above, we are sending a GET request to The third argument of the open() method specifies whether the request should be asynchronous (true) or synchronous (false).

Handling the Response

After sending the request, you need to define a callback function to handle the response when it arrives. This function is executed when the readyState property of the XMLHttpRequest changes. Typically, the callback function will check if the request has been completed successfully and process the response accordingly.

xhttp.onreadystatechange = function() {
  if (this.readyState === 4 && this.status === 200) {
    // Request completed successfully
    var response = JSON.parse(this.responseText);
    // Process the response data

In the example above, we check if the readyState is 4 (request finished and response is ready) and if the status is 200 (HTTP OK). If both conditions are met, we parse the response as JSON and process the data.

Dealing with Asynchronicity

One of the main advantages of AJAX is its ability to perform asynchronous requests. This means that the web page does not have to wait for the server response before continuing to execute other tasks. As a result, the user interface remains responsive.

However, it's important to remember that the callback function executes asynchronously. So if you need to perform any operations that depend on the response data, they should be placed inside the callback function or called from there.

Error Handling

When making AJAX requests, it's crucial to handle errors gracefully. The XMLHttpRequest object provides the onerror event handler, which fires when an error occurs during the request.

xhttp.onerror = function() {
  // Handle the error

Inside the onerror event handler, you can notify the user about the error or implement any necessary error recovery logic.


AJAX is a fundamental technique for creating web applications that can communicate with servers asynchronously. By leveraging the power of JavaScript and the XMLHttpRequest object, developers can make HTTP requests in the background and update parts of a web page dynamically.

In this article, we covered the basics of making asynchronous requests to servers using AJAX. Remember to handle the response in a callback function, deal with asynchronicity, and handle errors effectively to create user-friendly web applications.

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