window.location change fails AJAX call

I've got a click tracking AJAX function (calls a WebMethod on an .aspx page), and I need to call it when the user clicks through to a link.

Unfortunately, I'm using window.location = "newUrl" to change the page, which seems to make the AJAX call fail. Is there a way around this?

I do not need to get any information back from the AJAX call, I just need to make sure the WebMethod is called.

I'm aware that I could just redirect on the success() or failure() calls, but then I would have to wait for the clickTracking() method to run, which takes ~ 1s. That is not acceptable by the agreement in the project spec, and so is not a viable solution.



Instead of using AJAX, why don't you just send the user to an ASPX page that records the click and then sends the location header to redirect to the new url? For instance, on link click, the following would occur:

window.location = "/redirect.aspx?track=true&url=" + encodeURIComponent(newUrl);

redirect.aspx would then handle both the tracking and the redirecting to the new URL. That's pretty much the only way you can do it without waiting for an AJAX request to complete before sending the user on their way.

See also: Redirecting Users to Another Page (MSDN)

It's probably worth noting that you see this method every day on many sites. Most commonly, they are found in ads. An AdSense ad link looks like this:

ish, anyway (I knocked it down a bit). When you click it, you land at, which redirects you to the end site after tracking the click.


I just need to make sure the WebMethod is called.

If the above is really important, you can do the following:

function onLinkClicked() {
        url: 'WebMethod.aspx',
        success: function(data) {
            window.location = "newUrl";

There will be some latency from when the page will redirect. This may or may not be acceptable, depending on your application and on the average latency from your users to your host.


Further to the new comment below, unfortunately the window.location change will interrupt your AJAX request.

For internal links: You may want to track your links as soon as the users land on the new page, instead of when they click on the hyperlink.

For external links: I would use a server side redirect method, as Andy E suggested in another answer.


Use an <iframe> wrapper to wrap your pages. Then, when you have an AJAX request, pass the request up to the wrapper and navigate on the <iframe>. Doing this will give you the ability to have a perfectly asynchronous request while still maintaining app responsiveness.

Granted, you're also not changing the address bar and effectively killing your SEO, but that's the tradeoff for having a bad architecture. The fact that your click tracking function takes about a second is simply appalling. Perhaps you should start it on an asynchronous thread on the server and just serve the data to the client with a separate thread (System.Threading). That would alleviate the problems you're experiencing.

Otherwise, you can have asynchronous, reliable, or "not hacked together". Pick any two.


My bad, you can also run your AJAX request as a popup:,'ajax','height=0,width=0');

It's still not a good idea, but it'll work.


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