Fastest method of clearing all children from a DOM element

JavaScript performance comparison

Revision 95 of this test case created by Drew Noakes

Info

There are several methods for removing all child elements from a DOM node. Which is the fastest?

Preparation code

<div id='box'></div>
<script>
Benchmark.prototype.setup = function() {
    var box = document.getElementById('box');
    box.innerHTML = 'sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>s f</b>s df<p>df gsdfg sf g<b>';
   
    function clearChildren(element)
    {
      if (element.children.length === 0)
        return;
   
      if (element.children[0].remove) {
        while (box.children.length)
          box.children[0].remove();
      } else {
        while (element.firstChild)
          element.removeChild(element.firstChild);
      }
    }
};
</script>

Preparation code output

Test runner

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Testing in unknown unknown
Test Ops/sec
removeChild(box.firstChild)
while (box.firstChild) {
  box.removeChild(box.firstChild);
}
pending…
innerHTML = ''
box.innerHTML = '';
pending…
removeChild(box.lastChild)
while (box.lastChild) {
  box.removeChild(box.lastChild);
}
pending…
children[0].remove()
while (box.children.length) {
  box.children[0].remove();
}
pending…
children[box.children.length - 1].remove()
while (box.children.length) {
  box.children[box.children.length - 1].remove();
}
pending…
Function
clearChildren(box);
pending…

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Revisions

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