widget for Contao Open Source CMS backend forms

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0.8.3 2024-01-02 14:15 UTC


The jsonWidget can be used in DCA files to create a text field that contains a JSON string. While saving it will be checked if that the string is valid JSON. The widget displays the JSON string with JSON_PRETTY_PRINT so that checking/finding errors is easier for the user.

The yamlWidget is mostly the same, except that it uses the YAML format.

Example: extending Members


$GLOBALS['TL_DCA']['tl_member']['fields']['json_data'] = [
   'inputType' => 'jsonWidget',
   'label'     => &$GLOBALS['TL_LANG']['tl_member']['json_data'],
   'eval'      => ['tl_class' => 'long', 'decodeEntities' => true], 
   'sql'       => "blob NULL",
 // Add json_data to $GLOBALS['TL_DCA']['tl_member']['palettes']['default'] 
 // where ever you like

Other valid options in eval are the same as for textareas (as WidgetJSON extends TextArea), except that setting rte will be ignored because the editors provided do not make sense here.

How to use the JSON data?

Extend tl_member as in the above example. Then create an ExtendedMemberModel that extends Contao's MemberModel. In the magic methodd __set() and _get you can intercept the "fields" stored in json_data. The Fiedsch\JsonWidgetBundle\JsonGetterSetterTrait takes care of that:

// models/ExtendedMemberModel.php
namespace Contao;

use Fiedsch\JsonWidgetBundle\Traits\JsonGetterSetterTrait;

class ExtendedMemberModel extends MemberModel
    // let __set() and __get() take care of the JSON or YAML data (both at the same time will not work!)
    use JsonGetterSetterTrait;
    // or (see above!)
    use YamlGetterSetterTrait;

    * The column name we selected for the `jsonWidget` in the example above
    * @var string
    protected static $strJsonColumn = 'my_json_data_column';
      * Same thing for the `yamlWidget`
      * @var string
    protected static $strYamlColumn = 'my_yaml_data_column';

// config/config.php
$GLOBALS['TL_MODELS']['tl_member'] = 'Contao\ExtendedMemberModel';

Using the Model

$member = \ExtendedMemberModel::findById(42);

// access fields columns created by contao's default DCA
printf("read member %s %s\n", $member->firstname, $member->lastname);

// access a field stored in our JSON data column
printf("transparently accessing a field from the JSON data ... '%s'\n", $member->whatever);

// set values and store in database
$member->a_key_for_a_scalar_value = "fourtytwo";
$member->key_for_an_array = ['an','array','containing','some','strings'];
$member->save(); // Note that saving will lose comments in your YAML-data 
                 // as Symfony\Component\Yaml\Yaml will not save them 

YAML-Syntax Highlighting with ACE


'eval' => [ /* ... , */ 'rte'=>'ace|yaml'],

in your field's DCA definitions.

Quick and dirty way: add desired CSS-Rules like e.g.

.ace_comment {
  color: red !important;

to your be_ace.html5 (which you create it if you do not yet have a custom version). OR: use a custom backend style and add the CSS rules there.

Set JSON (or JAML) Data

If you want to set all the JSON (or YAML) data at once you cannot use

# In this example we assume $strJsonColumn = 'json_data';
$data = [ 'foo' => 1, 'bar' => 'baz ];
$model->json_data = $data; # will throw an exception

To do this you have to use

$data = [ 'foo' => 1, 'bar' => 'baz ];
$model->setJsonColumnData(array $data);
# or
# $model->setYamlColumnData(array $data);

Note that this way previously set JSON (or YAML) data is overwritten.

Also note that the behaviour of setJsonColumnData([]) (when setting an empty data array) changed in version 0.5.0. Previously it created [] where it now creates {} in the respective database column.

In version 0.7.0 we slightly changed this again to achieve the original goal: The storage of empty arrays as object ({}) is only enforced on the top level of the data. In lower levels, empty arrays will be stored as arrays ([]) not as "empty" objects ({}): compare { "foo": [] } (versions >= 0.7.0) to { "foo": {} } (versions >=0.5.0 and <0.7.0).