deferred.promise( [target ] )Returns: Promise

Description: Return a Deferred's Promise object.

The deferred.promise() method allows an asynchronous function to prevent other code from interfering with the progress or status of its internal request. The Promise exposes only the Deferred methods needed to attach additional handlers or determine the state (then, done, fail, always, pipe, progress, state and promise), but not ones that change the state (resolve, reject, notify, resolveWith, rejectWith, and notifyWith).

If target is provided, deferred.promise() will attach the methods onto it and then return this object rather than create a new one. This can be useful to attach the Promise behavior to an object that already exists.

If you are creating a Deferred, keep a reference to the Deferred so that it can be resolved or rejected at some point. Return only the Promise object via deferred.promise() so other code can register callbacks or inspect the current state.

For more information, see the documentation for Deferred object.


Create a Deferred and set two timer-based functions to either resolve or reject the Deferred after a random interval. Whichever one fires first "wins" and will call one of the callbacks. The second timeout has no effect since the Deferred is already complete (in a resolved or rejected state) from the first timeout action. Also set a timer-based progress notification function, and call a progress handler that adds "working..." to the document body.

function asyncEvent() {
  var dfd = jQuery.Deferred();
  // Resolve after a random interval
  setTimeout(function() {
    dfd.resolve( "hurray" );
  }, Math.floor( 400 + Math.random() * 2000 ) );
  // Reject after a random interval
  setTimeout(function() {
    dfd.reject( "sorry" );
  }, Math.floor( 400 + Math.random() * 2000 ) );
  // Show a "working..." message every half-second
  setTimeout(function working() {
    if ( dfd.state() === "pending" ) {
      dfd.notify( "working... " );
      setTimeout( working, 500 );
  }, 1 );
  // Return the Promise so caller can't change the Deferred
  return dfd.promise();
// Attach a done, fail, and progress handler for the asyncEvent
$.when( asyncEvent() ).then(
  function( status ) {
    alert( status + ", things are going well" );
  function( status ) {
    alert( status + ", you fail this time" );
  function( status ) {
    $( "body" ).append( status );

Use the target argument to promote an existing object to a Promise:

// Existing object
var obj = {
    hello: function( name ) {
      alert( "Hello " + name );
  // Create a Deferred
  defer = $.Deferred();
// Set object as a promise
defer.promise( obj );
// Resolve the deferred
defer.resolve( "John" );
// Use the object as a Promise
obj.done(function( name ) {
  obj.hello( name ); // Will alert "Hello John"
}).hello( "Karl" ); // Will alert "Hello Karl"

© The jQuery Foundation and other contributors
Licensed under the MIT License.