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This post deals with 2-way binding of data to a CascadingDropDown. It assumes that the CascadingDropDown is already configured to return data to the list.
I had my DropDownList and CascadingDropDown pairs within a FormView and it is bound to a SqlDataSource.
< asp : Label ID ="Label1" runat ="server" Text ="Mfr" />
< asp : DropDownList ID ="ddlMfrs" runat ="server" />
< cc1 : CascadingDropDown ID ="cddMfr" runat ="server" TargetControlID ="ddlMfrs" Category ="MfrID" PromptText ="Select a manufacturer" ServicePath ="MfrService.asmx" ServiceMethod ="GetMfrs" ContextKey ="M" SelectedValue ='<%# BIND("MfrID") %>'>
</ cc1 : CascadingDropDown >
When the data is being bound (i.e. Selecting) there is no problem. If the MfrID value is a 3 then it selects the item from the drop down list with a 3 like it should. The issue occurred when the data was being updated back to the database. The error I received was that the input was not in the correct format.
When I checked the NewValues of MfrID in FormView ItemUpdating I saw that the value wasn’t a 3 but rather 3:::MfrName. The error makes sense now since the sproc was looking for an integer for its MfrID parameter.
Since this was my only page using the CascadingDropDown I dealt with the error on in its code behind. I added the following to the FormView’s ItemUpdating:
Protected Sub fv1_ItemUpdating(ByVal sender AsObject, ByVal e As System.Web.UI.WebControls.FormViewUpdateEventArgs) Handles fv1.ItemUpdating
        Dim strTemp AsString
        Dim strKey AsString
        ForEach strKey In e.NewValues.Keys
            strTemp = e.NewValues(strKey).ToString
            If strTemp.Contains(":::") Then
                e.NewValues(strKey) = CleanBindValue(strTemp)
End Sub
And this is the CleanBindValue function that gets called:
Private Function CleanBindValue(ByVal DirtyValue AsString) AsString
        'CascadingDropDown returns BIND values as value:::text
        'and needs to be cleaned prior to database update
        Dim strSplit() AsString
        strSplit = DirtyValue.Split(":::")
        Return strSplit(0).ToString
End Function
Now the CleanBindValue function returns just the integer and the updates proceeds normally.

C# Code for the above two functions:

protectedvoid FormView1_ItemUpdating(object sender, FormViewUpdateEventArgs e)


        string strTemp;

        foreach (string strKey in e.NewValues.Keys)

            strTemp = (string)e.NewValues[strKey];

            if (strTemp.Contains(":::"))


                e.NewValues[strKey] = CleanBindValue(strTemp);


    privatestring CleanBindValue(string DirtyValue)


        string[] strSplit;

        string strDelimiter = ":::";

        char[] chDelimiter = strDelimiter.ToCharArray();

        strSplit = DirtyValue.Split(chDelimiter);

        return strSplit[0];


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Posted on Wednesday, October 1, 2008 9:08 AM ASP.Net , Ajax | Back to top

Comments on this post: 2-Way Binding with CascadingDropDown

# re: 2-Way Binding with CascadingDropDown
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Do you have the code in C# I get a bit anoyed sometimes with VB.


Left by Javier on Nov 27, 2008 12:47 PM

# re: 2-Way Binding with CascadingDropDown
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Left by HUSSEIN on Feb 07, 2009 9:36 AM

# re: 2-Way Binding with CascadingDropDown
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It's quirky, but this saved my butt. The only issue I had was a boolean value in my EditTemplate.

protected void DetailsView1_ItemUpdating(object sender, DetailsViewUpdateEventArgs e) {
var strTemp = string.Empty;

foreach (var strKey in e.NewValues.Keys) {
if (!(e.NewValues[strKey] is string))
//skip anything we can't cast to a string

strTemp = (string)e.NewValues[strKey];

if (strTemp.Contains(":::"))
e.NewValues[strKey] = cleanBindValue(strTemp);

private object cleanBindValue(string DirtyValue) {
var delim = ":::".ToCharArray();

return DirtyValue.Split(delim)[0];
Left by Lennox McKenzie on Aug 25, 2009 7:48 AM

# re: 2-Way Binding with CascadingDropDown
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I realize this is kinda old, but I had to thank you for this. Saved me ton of headache!!!!! Thank you, thank you, thank you. I ended up creating a custom control inheriting from CascadingDropDown and adding a bindable property, clean up the selected value there and setting the property on load.

using System;
using System.ComponentModel;
using System.Web.UI;
using AjaxControlToolkit;

namespace CustomServerControls {
[ToolboxData("<{0}:SmartCascadingDropDown runat=server></{0}:smartCascadingDropDown>")]
public class SmartCascadingDropDown : CascadingDropDown {

private char[] _seperator = ":::".ToCharArray();

private string _DropDownSelectedValue;

public string DropDownSelectedValue {
get {
return _DropDownSelectedValue;
set {
_DropDownSelectedValue = value;

protected override void OnLoad(EventArgs e) {

_DropDownSelectedValue = cleanUpValue(base.SelectedValue);

private string cleanUpValue(string inputString) {
var outputString = inputString.Split(_seperator)[0];

return outputString;

Left by Agony on Sep 04, 2009 6:54 AM

# re: 2-Way Binding with CascadingDropDown
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Forgot to add, set properties for control as:

SelectedValue='<%# Eval("FieldID") >'
DropDownSelectedValue='<%# Bind("FieldID") %>'

I'm sure I could have overriden SelectedValue, but I prefer not to risk breaking any existing functionality so I can use the derived CascadingDropDown like a normal one if I need to.
Left by Agony on Sep 04, 2009 7:01 AM

# re: 2-Way Binding with CascadingDropDown
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man tengo un error me sale esto
Colección modificada; puede que no se ejecute la operación de enumeración.
a que se debera? tengo 2 cascading dropdown
Left by mich on Oct 03, 2014 1:26 PM

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