How do I achieve equal height divs (positioned side by side) with HTML / CSS ?

I have two divs inside of a container. One on the left, one on the right, side by side. How am I able to make each one be of equal height, even though they have different content.

For example, the right div has a lot of content, and is double the height of the left div, how do I make the left div stretch to the same height of the right div?

Is there some JavaScript (jQuery) code to accomplish this?

Answers:

Answer

you can get it working with js:

<script>
    $(document).ready(function() {
        var height = Math.max($("#left").height(), $("#right").height());
        $("#left").height(height);
        $("#right").height(height);
    });
</script>
Answer

I've seen many attempts to do this, though none met my OCD needs. You might need to dedicate a second to get your head around this, though it is better than using JavaScript.

Known downsides:

  • Does not support multiple element rows in case of a container with dynamic width.
  • Does not work in IE6.

The base:

base layout

  • red is (auxiliary) container that you would use to set margin to the content.
  • green is position: relative; overflow: hidden and (optionally, if you want columns to be centered) text-align: center; font-size: 0; line-height: 0;
  • blue display: block; float: left; or (optionally, if you want columns to be centered) display: inline-block; vertical-align: top;

So far nothing out of ordinary. Whatever content that blue element has, you need to add an absolutely positioned element (yellow; note that the z-index of this element must be lower than the actual content of the blue box) with this element and set top: 0; bottom: 0; (don't set left or right position).

base with absolute

All your elements now have equal height. For most of the layouts, this is already sufficient. My scenario required to have dynamic content followed by a static content, where static content must be on the same line.

enter image description here

To achieve this, you need to add padding-bottom (dark green) eq to the fixed height content to the blue elements.

enter image description here

Then within the yellow elements create another absolutely positioned (left: 0; bottom: 0;) element (dark blue).

enter image description here

Supposedly, if these boxes (yellow) had to be active hyperlinks and you had any style that you wanted to apply to the original blue boxes, you'd use adjacent sibling selector:

yellow:hover + blue {}

Here is a the code and demo:

HTML:

<div id="products">
    <ul>
        <li class="product a">
            <a href="">
                <p class="name">Ordinary product description.</p>
                <div class="icon-product"></div>
            </a>
            <p class="name">Ordinary product description.</p>
        </li>
        <li class="product b">
            <a href="">
                <p class="name">That lenghty product description or whatever else that does not allow you have fixed height for these elements.</p>
                <div class="icon-product"></div>
            </a>
            <p class="name">That lenghty product description or whatever else that does not allow you have fixed height for these elements.</p>
        </li>
        <li class="product c">
            <a href="">
                <p class="name">Another ordinary product description.</p>
                <div class="icon-product"></div>
            </a>
            <p class="name">Another ordinary product description.</p>
        </li>
    </ul>
</div>

SCSS/LESS:

#products { 
    ul { position: relative; overflow: hidden; text-align: center; font-size: 0; line-height: 0;  padding: 0; margin: 0;
        li { display: inline-block; vertical-align: top; width: 130px; padding: 0 0 130px 0; margin: 0; }
    }

    li {
        a { display: block; position: absolute; width: 130px; background: rgba(255,0,0,.5); z-index: 3; top: 0; bottom: 0;
            .icon-product { background: #ccc; width: 90px; height: 90px; position: absolute; left: 20px; bottom: 20px; }
            .name { opacity: 1; }
        }

        .name { position: relative; margin: 20px 10px 0; font-size: 14px; line-height: 18px; opacity: 0; }

        a:hover {
            background: #ddd; text-decoration: none;

            .icon-product { background: #333; }
        }
    }
}

Note, that the demo is using a workaround that involves data-duplication to fix z-index. Alternatively, you could use pointer-events: none and whatever solution for IE.

Answer

here is very simple solution with a short css display:table

<div id="main" class="_dt-no-rows">
  <div id="aside" contenteditable="true">
    Aside
    <br>
    Here's the aside content
  </div>
  <div id="content" contenteditable="true">
    Content
    <br>
    geht's pellentesque wurscht elementum semper tellus s'guelt Pfourtz !. gal hopla
    <br>
    TIP : Just clic on this block to add/remove some text
  </div>
</div>

here is css

#main {
 display: table;
 width: 100%;
}
#aside, #content {
  display: table-cell;
  padding: 5px;
}
#aside {
  background: none repeat scroll 0 0 #333333;
  width: 250px;
}
#content {
background: none repeat scroll 0 0 #E69B00;
}

its look like this

enter image description here

Answer

Well, I don't do a ton of jQuery, but in the CSS/Javascript world I would just use the object model and write a statement as follows:

if(leftDiv.style.height > rightDive.style.height)
   rightDiv.style.height = leftDiv.style.height;
else
   leftDiv.style.height = rightDiv.style.height)
Answer

Use this in jquery document ready function. Considering there are two divs having ids "left" and "right."

var heightR = $("#right").height();
var heightL = $("#left").height();

if(heightL > heightR){
    $("#right").css({ height: heightL});
} else {
    $("#left").css({ height: heightR});
}
Answer

Although many disagree with using javascript for this type of thing, here is a method that I used to acheive this using javascript alone:

var rightHeight = document.getElementById('right').clientHeight;
var leftHeight = document.getElementById('left').clientHeight;
if (leftHeight > rightHeight) {
document.getElementById('right').style.height=leftHeight+'px';
} else {
document.getElementById('left').style.height=rightHeight+'px';
}

With "left" and "right" being the id's of the two div tags.

Answer

I agree with initial answer but the JS solution with equal_heights() method does not work in some situations, imagine you have products next to each other. If you were to apply it only to the parent container yes they will be same height but the product name sections might differ if one does not fit to two line, this is where i would suggest using below

https://jsfiddle.net/0hdtLfy5/3/

function make_children_same_height(element_parent, child_elements) {
    for (i = 0; i < child_elements.length; i++) {
    var tallest = 0;
    var an_element = child_elements[i];
    $(element_parent).children(an_element).each(function() {
      // using outer height since that includes the border and padding
      if(tallest < $(this).outerHeight() ){
        tallest = $(this).outerHeight();
      }
    });

    tallest = tallest+1; // some weird shit going on with half a pixel or something in FF and IE9, no time to figure out now, sowwy, hence adding 1 px
    $(element_parent).children(an_element).each(function() {
        $(this).css('min-height',tallest+'px');
    });
  }
}
Answer

You could use jQuery, but there are better ways to do this.

This sort of question comes up a lot and there are generally 3 answers...

1. Use CSS

This is the 'best' way to do it, as it is the most semantically pure approach (without resorting to JS, which has its own problems). The best way is to use the display: table-cell and related values. You could also try using the faux background technique (which you can do with CSS3 gradients).

2. Use Tables

This seems to work great, but at the expense of having an unsemantic layout. You'll also cause a stir with purists. I have all but avoided using tables, and you should too.

3. Use jQuery / JavaScript

This benefits in having the most semantic markup, except with JS disabled, you will not get the effect you desire.

Answer

Here's a way to do it with pure CSS, however, as you'll notice in the example (which works in IE 7 and Firefox), borders can be difficult - but they aren't impossible, so it all depends what you want to do. This example assumes a rather common CSS structure of body > wrapper > content container > column 1 and column 2.

The key is the bottom margin and its canceling padding.

<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml1/DTD/xhtml1-transitional.dtd">
<html xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml">
<head>
<meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=utf-8" />
<title>Equal Height Columns</title>
<style type="text/css">
<!--
* { padding: 0; margin: 0; }
#wrapper { margin: 10px auto; width: 600px; }
#wrapper #main_container { width: 590px; padding: 10px 0px 10px 10px; background: #CCC; overflow: hidden; border-bottom: 10px solid #CCC; }
#wrapper #main_container div { float: left; width: 263px; background: #999; padding: 10px; margin-right: 10px; border: 1px solid #000; margin-bottom: -1000px; padding-bottom: 1000px; }
#wrapper #main_container #right_column { background: #FFF; }
-->
</style>
</head>

<body>
<div id="wrapper">
    <div id="main_container">
        <div id="left_column">
            <p>I have two divs inside of a container. One on the left, one on the right, side by side. How am I able to make each one be of equal height, even though they have different content.</p>
        </div><!-- LEFT COLUMN -->
        <div id="right_column">
          <p>I have two divs inside of a container. One on the left, one on the right, side by side. How am I able to make each one be of equal height, even though they have different content.</p>
          <p>&nbsp;</p>
          <p>For example, the right div has a lot of content, and is double the height of the left div, how do I make the left div stretch to the same height of the right div?</p>
          <p>&nbsp;</p>
          <p>Is there some JavaScript (jQuery) code to accomplish this?</p>
        </div><!-- RIGHT COLUMN -->
    </div><!-- MAIN CONTAINER -->
</div><!-- WRAPPER -->
</body>
</html>

This is what it looks like:

enter image description here

Answer

There's also a jQuery plugin called equalHeights that I've used with some success.

I'm not sure if the one I'm using is the one from the filament group mentioned above, or if it's this one that was the first google result... Either way a jquery plugin is probably the easiest, most flexible way to go.

Answer

This is what I use in plain javascript:

Seems long, but is very uncomplicated!

function equalizeHeights(elements){
    //elements as array of elements (obtain like this: [document.getElementById("domElementId"),document.getElementById("anotherDomElementId")]

    var heights = [];
    for (var i=0;i<elements.length;i++){
        heights.push(getElementHeight(elements[i],true));
    }

    var maxHeight =  heights[biggestElementIndex(heights)];

    for (var i=0;i<elements.length;i++){
        setElementHeight(elements[i],maxHeight,true);
    }
}

function getElementHeight(element, isTotalHeight){
    // isTotalHeight triggers offsetHeight
    //The offsetHeight property is similar to the clientHeight property, but it returns the height including the padding, scrollBar and the border.
    //http://stackoverflow.com/questions/15615552/get-div-height-with-plain-javascript
    {
        isTotalHeight = typeof isTotalHeight !== 'undefined' ? isTotalHeight : true;
    }

    if (isTotalHeight){
        return  element.offsetHeight;
    }else{
        return element.clientHeight;
    }
}

 function setElementHeight(element,pixelHeight, setAsMinimumHeight){

    //setAsMinimumHeight: is set, we define the minimum height, so it can still become higher if things change...
    {
        setAsMinimumHeight = typeof setAsMinimumHeight !== 'undefined' ? setAsMinimumHeight : false;
    }
    var heightStr = "" + pixelHeight + "px";
    if (setAsMinimumHeight){
        element.style.minHeight = heightStr; // pixels
    }else{
        element.style.height = heightStr; // pixels
    }
}

 function biggestElementIndex(arr){
    //http://stackoverflow.com/questions/11301438/return-index-of-greatest-value-in-an-array
    var max = arr[0];
    var maxIndex = 0;

    for (var i = 1; i < arr.length; i++) {
        if (arr[i] > max) {
            maxIndex = i;
            max = arr[i];
        }
    }
    return maxIndex;
}

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