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conditional render attribute -- how to achieve this behavior?

1011675May 29 2013 — edited May 29 2013

the easiest way to explain the behavior i want is the following:

sometimes, i want:

<h:commandButton id="myButton" action="#{myBean.doSomething}">
<f:ajax render="displayArea"/>

and other times i want (render nothing):

<h:commandButton id="myButton" action="#{myBean.doSomething}">
<f:ajax render=""/>

so basically, i have an area on my page that i want to render intelligently based on clicking a button. when clicking the button, if doSomething() is successful i want to re-render the "displayArea" div, however, if the result of doSomething() is unsuccessful, i do not want anything to happen to the "displayArea" div (that is, i want it to be left completely alone and untouched -- still retaining the contents from the previous successful render).

essentially, i want to re-render an area only when it suits me. i do not even want to re-render that area with the same contents as the last successful action because that area is scrollable and doing so would lose the user's scrolling position by re-rendering it, even if only re-rendering the same contents.

is there any way to achieve this specific type of "conditional render attribute" behavior?

thanks in advance for any suggestoins!
This post has been answered by Mriem-Oracle on May 29 2013
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Locked due to inactivity on Jun 26 2013
Added on May 29 2013