Object getElementsByTagName IE7 Bug

So here’s a fun bug to keep you entertained this weekend. Personally, this is the first purely-JavaScript bug that I’ve seen in IE7 (More due to the lack of anything changing than the quality of the code.)

When accessing the .all or .getElementsByTagName("*") properties on the DOM representation of an <object> element, the resulting NodeSet will always be empty.

Proof of Concept:

  <param name="name" value="value"/>
  <param name="name2" value="value2"/>
  <param name="name3" value="value3"/>


var obj = document.getElementsByTagName("object")[0];
// => <object/>
// => []
// => []
// => [ <param/>, <param/>, <param/> ]
// => <param/>

Andrea has done some fantastic work in tracking this bug down and providing a fix for it.

So far, my quick-and-dirty kludge is just to replace “*” with “param” and hope that the user is actually using an object to hold params, and not some other crazy combination.

Which reminds me – has anyone ever seen an example of an <object> element containing non-param elements on a real, live, web page – somewhere in the wild? The HTML spec says that the <object> element can contain any HTML, but that sounds a little bit too crazy for my tastes.

Posted: January 20th, 2007

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