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Ben Nadel
On User Experience (UX) Design, JavaScript, ColdFusion, Node.js, Life, and Love.

Ask Ben: Getting The Start And End Dates Of The Previous Week In ColdFusion

By Ben Nadel on

Hi Ben, Please how do I get beginning of previous week to the end of previous week. I'm working on something that needs last week's date to run today. Thank you.

I do now and will always love working with dates in ColdFusion. The fact that you can seamlessly switch from standard dates to numeric dates and do all kind of fast math on them makes them just a pleasure to work with. Not to mention the fact that date math is generally faster that using methods like DateDiff() and DateAdd(). Anyway, getting to the question above, let's not get distracted by the fact that we are dealing with the "previous" week. What we need to think of is the simple fact that we need to get the start and end dates of week given a date within it. Once we see that, then, as I have demonstrated before, this is simply a matter of a little math:

	Get today's date; but then subtract 7 days from it so that
	we have "this" day of last week. The Fix() method simply
	removes the time stamp (and converts date to numeric date).
<cfset dtLastWeek = (Fix( Now() ) - 7) />

	Now that we have a day in last week, we can easily grab the
	start and end of the week.
<cfset objLastWeek = StructNew() />

<!--- Get start of week. --->
<cfset objLastWeek.Start = DateFormat(
	dtLastWeek - DayOfWeek( dtLastWeek ) + 1
	) />

<!--- Get end of week by adding to start date. --->
<cfset objLastWeek.End = DateFormat( objLastWeek.Start + 6 ) />

<!--- Output the week delimiters. --->
		Start: #objLastWeek.Start#<br />
		End: #objLastWeek.End#

The reason that we have to use DateFormat() for the dates when calculating them is that a byproduct of date math is the fact that it turns standard dates into numeric dates; these are date/time stamps represented as floating point values where the integer is the day and the fraction is the time. You can certainly leave the dates in numeric format, but I find that this can confuse people (and will fail calls to IsDate()). By passing the values through the DateFormat() as an intermediary handler, it converts the numeric dates back into standard dates.

Running the above code, we get:

Start: 26-Oct-08
End: 01-Nov-08

I hope that helps.

Reader Comments

Is it possible to display all the days in the current week beginning on a Monday. For example:

Monday 5/18/2009
Tuesday 5/19/2009
Wednesday 5/20/2009
Thursday 5/21/2009
Friday 5/22/2009
Saturday 5/23/2009
Sunday 5/24/2009


This was exactly what I was looking for, but didn't know exactly how to approach it. You've saved me a bunch of time! Cheers