ColdFusion Includes (cfinclude)

If you've used other scripting environments such as ASP or even .shtml files, you would be familiar with the concept of "includes".

An "include" is a file that is embedded, or "included" within another file. This can be very useful when you want multiple ColdFusion templates to share the same block of code. A typical example might be your website's header and footer. If your website has a consistent header and footer on every page, you could use an include file for each of these.

ColdFusion provides the cfinclude tag for specifying included files.

Tag Syntax

You'll notice that the cfinclude tag doesn't have a closing tag - it just accepts an attribute value (the included filename).

<cfinclude template="included_filename">

Code Example

A common use of ColdFusion includes is to output a consistent header and footer throughout each page of a website. In this example, we're going to create a basic ColdFusion template which uses the cfinclude tag to include two other files.

File 1: index.cfm

<cfinclude template="header.cfm">

<p>Welcome to my website on ColdFusion cfinclude usage!</p>

<cfinclude template="footer.cfm">

File 2: header.cfm

<h1>This is the header</h1>

File 3: footer.cfm

<h1>This is the footer</h1>

Once you've created all of the above files, open index.cfm in your browser. The page should contain the contents of header.cfm at the top, and footer.cfm at the bottom.

Now create a fourth ColdFusion template as follows and open it in your browser.

File 4: about.cfm

<cfinclude template="header.cfm">

<p>Who are we? We are ColdFusion cfinclude enthusiasts of course!</p>

<cfinclude template="footer.cfm">

Because this template includes the same header and footer file, you will see the same header and footer when displayed in a browser.