Getting the base URL for an ASP.NET Core MVC web application in your static JavaScript files

Published on Tuesday, December 11, 2018

In this post I want to show a simple way for getting the base URL for an ASP.NET Core MVC web application in your static JavaScript files.

What is the actual problem

I was writing a web application that had more than just a few lines of JavaScript that could be directly embedded into the cshtml. But I found my self in the situation that I had to reference static content from my JavaScript files. This is no problem as long as you are not hosting the app in a subfolder. While developing the app on your localhost everything might work great, but during production you might get random 404 errors.

Solution for Views

Inside razor views this is simple and nothing new to use the UrlHelper class. For example to get the proper URL for an image we would type Url.Content("~/images/logo.png"). This would automatically generate the proper URL no matter if the application is hosted in a subfolder or not.

Solution for JavaScript files

There actually turns out to be a HTML Element for exactly this purpose - the <base> HTML Element.

So my solution looks like this, inside your _Layout.json:

<!DOCTYPE html>
    <meta charset="utf-8" />
    <base href='@Url.AbsoluteContent("~/")'>
    <title>@ViewBag.Title - ASP.NET Core Web Application</title>
    <!-- ... -->

The AbsoluteContent is an extension method that I added to my application to get the full URL and not only the path.

Then inside of the JavaScript you can access the base URL by calling:

var baseUrl = document.baseURI;


  1. Insert a <base> element with a href attribute into the the <head> section.
  2. Get that attribute value from the script

In my opinion this is a clean and simple solution.

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