A few comments:
1) I didn't realize you could just add the values of fields to a URL; I
thought I had to get my program to fill in the values of the text boxes,
drop-down lists etc, and then simulate a click on the correct button. I
should spend more time in this forum.
2) I've had occasion to automate access to the occasional web page that
didn't assign names to the fields I wanted, so getElementById wasn't
avaailable. (In fact, at least one made a point of assigning random names
with each new invocation; I suppose they wanted to prevent the black hats
from ruining their site with undesirable automated attacks. Thus I've
developed some methods of getting at some fields (once I've identified them)
by other means than ...ById or ...ByName. In fact I've had to do it often
enough that I've written a Class and methods for the purpose, though of
course I'm still tweaking it. If you've had to do this once, it's a
lead-pipe cinch you'll want to do it again and again; I think you may as well
make up your mind to write your own class to save you time.
3) One of the ways of getting at fields without a name or ID is to navigate
down the ChildNode tree. But finding an element in the tree, so that you'll
know where to navigate to, is MUCH harder than finding it in the raw HTML
code - more useful, sometime, but harder. I eventually surrendered to
inevitability and wrote a method for my class that maps an entire HTML
document tree - wrote it in VBA/Excel, that being my need at the moment, but
the concept shouldn't be hard to transfer to VBS and text output.
I mention all this partly to solicit comments and partly with an eye to
exchanging useful code relating to this problem.
--- Al Dunbar wrote:
Most web pages are designed to present the human user an interface with
visual clues that make it intuitively obvious how to interact with the page
using keyboard and mouse via common controls and navigation standards. You
could develop two pages that looked and operated exactly the same, but using
completely different HTML coding underneath, so I suspect that James'
statement that "You will need to look at the source code of the page" is
right on the money. Not only that, but you might find that internal changes
in the page you are accessing might eventually break your external code.
I wonder if a standard will eventually arise (a document object model
approach, perhaps) that will make web pages more navigable by external
script. This could, of course, result in fewer ads being seen, so perhaps
there are forces working against this approach.
--- "James Whitlow" <jwhitlow.60372693@xxxxxx> wrote:
> You will need to look at the source code of the page to determine that.
> In the example you posted, I right clicked, selected 'View Source' and
> searched for 'Booking Date:' & then 'Date:' under that. I searched up for
> 'action' to find the post URL. I then looked at the names of the input
> fields.... The date field is named 'Date' & the Report radio buttons are
> named 'report'. Just take the Post URL, add a question mark and then the
> field names followed by an equal sign and the value you wish to pass.
> Separate the fields with ampersands. In this case, I added
> '?Date=082208&report=D' to the end of the Post URL.
> I am not sure of a way to get the field names other than digging
> through the HTML source code. There are probably others in the group that
> can offer you a better way to do this. Firefox 2.x used to provide the
> fields names in 'View Page Info', but Firefox 3.x does not.
> If you have trouble with the above, just advise the field names you are
> looking for and either myself of someone else from the group can probably
> help you determine them.
> "LuisE" <legonzales@xxxxxx> wrote:
>> ...what should I change if I need to use different fields of the form?