Directory for shared partials in Rails

Directory for shared partials in Rails

Which directory should contain shared partials in a Rails app?

Rejected option: app/views/layouts directory

I’ve seen this:

app/views/layouts/application.html.erb
app/views/layouts/_flashes.html.erb
app/views/layouts/_footer.html.erb
app/views/layouts/_header.html.erb
app/views/layouts/_javascript.html.erb
app/views/layouts/_navigation.html.erb

However, the layout directory should contain… layouts.

app/views/layouts/application.html.erb

Rejected option: app/views/shared directory

I’ve seen this:

app/views/shared/_flashes.html.erb
app/views/shared/_footer.html.erb
app/views/shared/_header.html.erb
app/views/shared/_javascript.html.erb
app/views/shared/_navigation.html.erb

That was the recommendation in the classic, Agile Web Development with Rails.

Also, when you extracted a partial from a layout in rails.vim using :Rextract, it would automatically place the extracted partial into the shared directory.

Current solution: app/views/application directory

This is our current standard:

app/views/application/_flashes.html.erb
app/views/application/_footer.html.erb
app/views/application/_header.html.erb
app/views/application/_javascript.html.erb
app/views/application/_navigation.html.erb

The main reason is a subtle, but functional difference: template inheritance.

Also, invoking the partials is slightly shorter with this approach. Instead of:

render 'shared/navigation'

This is possible from every view:

render 'navigation'

We have formalized this convention in Suspenders

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Dan Croak Developer