Redirect To Next Action in Rails

Here’s a simple way of redirecting to a different page depending on the previous page in Rails.

Lets say you want to redirect to a different action depending on where the user publishes an article.

In your view, set the :next_action parameter in the link_to helper.

<%# admin/articles/show.html.erb %>
<%= link_to 'Publish', publish_article_path(:next_action => article_path(@article)) %>

<%# admin/articles/index.html.erb %>
<%= link_to 'Publish', publish_article_path(:next_action => articles_path) %>

In the controller you can check whether the :next_action parameter exists, or fall back to a default.

# ArticlesController#publish
def publish
  # ...
  redirect_to params.fetch(:next_action, articles_path)

The fetch method will take the value of params[:next_action] if it exists, otherwise will fall back to the second argument.

You can carry the parameter through multiple actions (e.g. cart --> log in --> checkout) through hidden fields in forms

<%# sessions/new.html.erb %>
<%= f.hidden_field :next_action, params[:next_action] %>

or in the submit action of a form.

<%# sessions/new.html.erb %>
<%= form_for :model, :url => model_path(@model, :next_action => custom_action_path) do |f| %>