In Firebase when using push () How to extract the unique identifier


I'm attempting to add/remove entries from a Firebase database. I want to list them in a table to be added/modified/removed (front end) but I need a way to uniquely identify each entry in order to modify/remove. Firebase adds a unique identifier by default when using push(), but I didn't see anything referencing how to select this unique identifier in the API documentation. Can this even be done? Should I be using set() instead so I'm creating the unique ID?

I've put this quick example together using their tutorial:

<div id='messagesDiv'></div>
<input type='text' class="td-field" id='nameInput' placeholder='Name'>
<input type='text' class="td-field" id='messageInput' placeholder='Message'>
<input type='text' class="td-field" id='categoryInput' placeholder='Category'>
<input type='text' class="td-field" id='enabledInput' placeholder='Enabled'>
<input type='text' class="td-field" id='approvedInput' placeholder='Approved'>
<input type='Button' class="td-field" id='Submit' Value="Revove" onclick="msgRef.remove()">

var myDataRef = new Firebase('');

  $('.td-field').keypress(function (e) {
    if (e.keyCode == 13) {
      var name     = $('#nameInput').val();
      var text     = $('#messageInput').val();
      var category = $('#categoryInput').val();
      var enabled  = $('#enabledInput').val();
      var approved = $('#approvedInput').val();
      myDataRef.push({name: name, text: text, category: category, enabled: enabled, approved: approved });
  myDataRef.on('child_added', function(snapshot) {
    var message = snapshot.val();
    displayChatMessage(, message.text, message.category, message.enabled, message.approved);
  function displayChatMessage(name, text, category, enabled, approved, ) {
    $('<div/>').text(text).prepend($('<em/>').text(name+' : '+category +' : '+enabled +' : '+approved+ ' : ' )).appendTo($('#messagesDiv'));
    $('#messagesDiv')[0].scrollTop = $('#messagesDiv')[0].scrollHeight;

Now lets assume I have three rows of data:

fred : 1 : 1 : 1 : test message 1
fred : 1 : 1 : 1 : test message 2
fred : 1 : 1 : 1 : test message 3

How do I go about uniquely identifying row 2?

in the Firebase Database they look like this:

        approved: "1"
        category: "1"
        enabled: "1"
        name: "Fred"
        text: "test message 1"
        approved: "1"
        category: "1"
        enabled: "1"
        name: "Fred"
        text: "test message 2"
        approved: "1"
        category: "1"
        enabled: "1"
        name: "Fred"
        text: "test message 3"

To get the "name" of any snapshot (in this case, the ID created by push()) just call name() like this:

var name =;

If you want to get the name that has been auto-generated by push(), you can just call name() on the returned reference, like so:

var newRef = myDataRef.push(...);
var newID =;

NOTE: has been deprecated. See other answers.