_filter vs _action

This brief post will explain the difference between *_action functions and *_filter functions.

Published on:July 18, 2014

If you are coming to Rails 4 from earlier versions of Rails, you may have noticed the new _action methods floating around. Seeing these for the first time may have left you scratching your head a bit and asking "aren't these the same as the _filter functions in previous versions of Rails?" The answer is a resounding YES. For Rails 4.x, the rails team decided to rename the functions to better describe what they are doing. Don't worry, the old functions still work. However it is recommended that you use the new syntax going forward, as the _filter functions may be deprecated in the future. Below shows a list of the old and new functions.

Old Function New Function
before_filter before_action
after_filter after_action
around_filter around_action
append_after_filter append_after_action
append_around_filter append_around_action
prepend_around_filter prepend_around_action
append_before_filter append_before_action
skip_before_filter skip_before_action
skip_around_filter skip_around_action
skip_after_filter skip_after_action
skip_filter skip_action_callback

That's it, thanks for reading!