The GET method, used in HTML forms, retrieves data from a server by appending form data to the URL. This is useful for bookmarking or sharing form states.


The GET method is an HTTP method utilized by web browsers to retrieve data from a server. In HTML forms, the GET method is specified through the method attribute of the form element. Upon form submission using the GET method, the form data is serialized into a URL-encoded string, which is then appended to the action URL in the browser's address bar.

This serialization process uses the application/x-www-form-urlencoded media type. This media type encodes the form data as name-value pairs, with each pair separated by an ampersand (&), and spaces replaced with a plus sign (+). To illustrate, if a form with two text input fields named field1 and field2 is submitted, the serialized form data would appear as: field1=value1&field2=value2.

It's worth noting that the GET method is idempotent, implying that multiple identical requests should yield the same effect as a single request. Consequently, the GET method is suitable for safe actions such as searching or retrieving data, but not for actions that alter data on the server.

Consider the following example of an HTML form utilizing the GET method:

<form action="/search" method="get">
  <label for="query">Search:</label>
  <input type="text" id="query" name="query" />
  <input type="submit" value="Submit" />

Upon submission of this form, the browser initiates a GET request to the /search URL, with the form data serialized and appended to the URL. The server then processes this request and returns a response.

However, the GET method has certain limitations. Since the form data is incorporated into the URL, there's a restriction on the volume of data that can be sent. Additionally, given that the data is visible in the URL, it's not suitable for transmitting sensitive information. In such scenarios, the POST method is a more appropriate choice.

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