Project owner:Chris Barber

A simple "nano" version of the Lightbox.


The LightboxNano is a very lightweight lightbox which only displays a larger image. There is no support for a caption or description. The lightbox can be closed by clicking anywhere or pressing any key. It is not a dijit._Widget, but behaves similar to a dijit._Widget.

After the LightboxNano loads, it waits preloadDelay (default of 5000ms) before caching the larger image. When the user clicks the thumbnail image to launch the LightboxNano, hopefully the larger image will be downloaded and the animation will play smoothly. If the user clicks the thumbnail image before the larger version could be preloaded, a loading indicator is displayed prior to the animation beginning. Subsequent clicking of the larger image is instant since the larger image is already cached.

For being so small, it packs a handful of features:

  • Automatically resizes large images to fit in the browser window.
  • Preloads the larger image to make loading faster.
  • Keyboard accessible.
  • Instantly makes your website awesome.


First you need to require the LightboxNano module:


You will also need to include the relevant LightboxNano CSS:

@import "dojox/image/resources/LightboxNano.css";

The lightbox can then be configured with the following (optional) properties:

Parameter Type Description
href String URL to the large image to be shown in the lightbox.
duration int The delay in milliseconds of the LightboxNano open and close animation.
preloadDelay int The delay in milliseconds after the LightboxNano is created before preloading the larger image.

The LightboxNano is intended to be used on <a> and <img> tags. Upon creation, if the domNode is an <img> tag, then it is wrapped in an <a> tag. It will also add two <div> tags inside the <a> tag: one to display an enlarge icon and another to show a loading icon. To style the enlarge icon and the loading icon, you need to create some CSS that looks like the following:

a:hover .dojoxEnlarge {
    display: block !important;
.dojoxEnlarge {
    background: url(images/enlarge.png) no-repeat 0 0;
    top: -5px;
    left: -5px;
    margin: 0 !important;
    width: 16px;
    height: 16px;
 .dojoxLoading {
    background: #333 url(images/loading-dark.gif) no-repeat center center;
    border-radius: 5px;
    -moz-border-radius: 5px;
    -webkit-border-radius: 5px;
    border: 2px solid #000;
    height: 24px;
    opacity: 0.8;
    filter: alpha(opacity=80);
    padding: 6px;
    width: 24px;


Programmatic example

Create the LightboxNano on an <img> element:

require(["dojox/image/LightboxNano", "dojo/domReady!"], function(LightboxNano) {
    var lightbox = new LightboxNano({
        href: "{{baseUrl}}dojox/image/tests/images/chris3_lg.jpg"  // path to large image
    }, "myImg");
@import "{{baseUrl}}dojox/image/resources/Lightbox.css";
<img id="myImg" src="{{baseUrl}}dojox/image/tests/images/chris3_sm.jpg">

Create the LightboxNano on an <a> element:

require(["dojox/image/LightboxNano", "dojo/domReady!"], function(LightboxNano) {
    var lightbox = new LightboxNano({
       // note: you still need the href property. It's not read from the anchor tag attribute.
       href: "{{baseUrl}}dojox/image/tests/images/chris3_lg.jpg"  // path to large image
    }, "myLink");
@import "{{baseUrl}}dojox/image/resources/Lightbox.css";
<a id="myLink" href="{{baseUrl}}dojox/image/tests/images/chris3_lg.jpg">
    <img src="{{baseUrl}}dojox/image/tests/images/chris3_sm.jpg">

Declarative example

Standard way to declaratively create the LightboxNano

require(["dojo/parser", "dojox/image/LightboxNano"]);
@import "{{baseUrl}}dojox/image/resources/Lightbox.css";
<a data-dojo-type="dojox/image/LightboxNano" href="{{baseUrl}}dojox/image/tests/images/chris3_lg.jpg">
    <img src="{{baseUrl}}dojox/image/tests/images/chris3_sm.jpg">

Should you want to destroy LightboxNano, you'll need to use the data-dojo-id. You can view more info about using the data-dojo-id on data-dojo-id, dijit.byId() and dojo.byId().

require(["dojo/parser", "dojox/image/LightboxNano"]);
@import "{{baseUrl}}dojox/image/resources/Lightbox.css";
<a data-dojo-type="dojox/image/LightboxNano" data-dojo-id="myLightboxNano" href="{{baseUrl}}dojox/image/tests/images/chris3_lg.jpg">
    <img src="{{baseUrl}}dojox/image/tests/images/chris3_sm.jpg">
<button onclick="myLightboxNano.destroy();">Destroy the LightboxNano</button>

File Sizes

The LightboxNano is pretty small, but it relies on several other core Dojo components. If you do a custom Dojo build containing LightboxNano and the dojo/parser, the dojo.js file size is 96KB. If you enable HTTP compression on the web server, you can get that down to a nice 32KB.


  • The LightboxNano does not reposition itself when the browser window is resized or scrolled.
  • In IE6, drop-down select lists bleed through the LightboxNano layer. This can be fixed with an iframe shim. This was skipped to keep the size down and because we all want IE6 to just go away.

Future Improvements

There's always things that can be done to improve LightboxNano. Here's a couple of ideas. You're welcome to make suggestions in the comments.

  • Add support for displaying a caption.
  • Add support for dojox/embed to play Flash or QuickTime movies.