In a portal environment, using Ajax to refresh the page is more problematic than in a simple Web application because of the fact that multiple portlets are on a page. You must also handle issues such as navigational state in the portal environment.
The Single Portlet Refresh feature, introduced in WebSphere Portal Version 6.0.1, enables you to use Ajax inside of portlets to refresh portlet content. In particular, it provides a method which you can use to create URLs that address a single portlet window only. Submitting such a "single portlet refresh URL" will cause the portal server to only invoke the rendering of the addressed portlet window (as implied by the name "Single Portlet Refresh"). Consequently, the response will only contain the markup produced by the portlet; that is, it will not contain the markup generated by the theme or skin or other artifacts.
You can use the Single Portlet Refresh in use cases such as:
- Refreshing only a specific part of the portlet’s markup using an asynchronous render request.
- Updating portlet preferences using an asynchronous (action) request.