1.0.6 • Public • Published

CKEditor Placeholder Elements Plugin

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This is a CKEditor plugin that adds support for predefined placeholder elements.

What's it good for?

Well, in case you want the user to be able to use placeholders from a predefined collection, there you go... actually it's pretty much for my own specific use, but if it fits your needs, have fun with it.


This plugins requires CKEditor 4.3+ and the following plugins:

How to use?


You can either

  • use npm (and copy the files into ckeditor/plugins/placeholder_elements/)

    $ npm i @ndm2/ckeditor-placeholder-elements
  • Bower

    $ bower install ndm2-ckeditor-placeholder-elements
  • clone or download and unpack the repository into ckeditor/plugins/placeholder_elements/

    $ git clone --depth=1 https://github.com/ndm2/ckeditor-placeholder-elements ./ckeditor/plugins/placeholder_elements/
  • or use Composer (optionally in combination with a custom directory installer like for example mnsami/composer-installer-plugin)

    $ composer require ndm2/ckeditor-placeholder-elements

If you can't install the plugin directly in the CKEditor plugin folder, use CKEDITOR.plugins.addExternal() to point the editor to the directory where you've placed the plugin.


Include the name of the plugin in the ckeditor extraPlugins option:

config.extraPlugins = 'placeholder_elements';

By default the UI element is appended to the insert toolbar. In case you want to place it manually, use PlaceholderElements as the identifier.

The following options are available for configuration:

config.placeholder_elements = {
	// The CSS applied to the placeholder elements.
		'.cke_placeholder_element { background: #ffff00; }' +
		'a .cke_placeholder_element { text-decoration: underline }',

	// Defines whether the placeholders should be draggable.
	draggable: false,

	 * A list of placeholders, defined as objects with `label` and `value`
	 * properties, where the label is being displayed in the menu, and value
	 * is used as the placeholder text.
	 * Note that delimiters are added automatically, so the value should be
	 * defined without!
	 * [
	 *     {label: 'Placeholder 1', value: 'PLACEHOLDER_1'},
	 *     {label: 'Placeholder 2', value: 'PLACEHOLDER_2'},
	 *     {label: 'Placeholder 3', value: 'PLACEHOLDER_3'},
	 *     // ...
	 * ]
	 * When using the `combo` UI type, it's also possible to define groups
	 * using the `group` and `placeholders` keys, where `group` defines the
	 * title of group that is displayed in the menu, and `placeholders` is an
	 * array that holds the groups placeholders.
	 * Note that grouping is only a visual thing, placeholder values must still
	 * be unique!
	 * [
	 *     {
	 *         group: 'Group 1',
	 *         placeholders: [
	 *             {label: 'Placeholder 1', value: 'PLACEHOLDER_1'},
	 *             {label: 'Placeholder 2', value: 'PLACEHOLDER_2'}
	 *         ]
	 *     },
	 *     {
	 *         group: 'Group 2',
	 *         placeholders: [
	 *             {label: 'Placeholder 3', value: 'PLACEHOLDER_4'},
	 *             {label: 'Placeholder 4', value: 'PLACEHOLDER_5'}
	 *         ]
	 *     },
	 *     // ...
	 * ]
	placeholders: [],

	// Defines the delimiter that indicates the start of a placeholder
	startDelimiter: '{',

	// Defines the delimiter that indicates the end of a placeholder
	endDelimiter: '}',

	 * Defines the type of UI element that holds the placeholders. Either
	 * `button` or `combo`.
	uiType: 'button'

Modifying the list of placeholders at runtime

The available placeholders can be modified at runtime using the instance of the PlaceholdersCollection class associated with the corresponding plugin instance.

Changes made to this collection are automatically being applied to the editor UI and content.

var editorIdentifier = 'editor1'; // in most cases this is the ID or
                                  // name of the DOM element replaced
                                  // by the editor
var editor = CKEDITOR.instances[editorIdentifier];
var plugin = editor.plugins.placeholder_elements.instances[editor.id];

/** @type {PlaceholdersCollection} */
var placeholders = plugin.placeholders;

Add a new placeholder

var placeholder = {label: 'Foo', value: 'FOO'};

Add a new placeholder to an existing group (or append a new group in case it doesn't exist yet)

var placeholder = {label: 'Foo', value: 'FOO', group: 'Bar'};

Remove the third placeholder


Modify an existing placeholder

var placeholder = placeholders.getAt(2);
placeholder.label = 'New Label';
placeholders.replaceAt(2, placeholder);

For more check out the PlaceholdersCollection class source.

Note that applying multiple consecutive changes can lead to flickering, due to the nature of change events causing UI and content updates. Make use of the PlaceholdersCollection.batchChanges() method to avoid this, changes made from the callback passed to this method will cause only a single change event to be fired afterwards.

	this.replaceAt(2, {label: 'Foo', value: 'FOO'});
	this.add({label: 'Bar', value: 'BAR'});


Please use the issue tracker to report problems.


Licensed under The MIT License.

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npm i @ndm2/ckeditor-placeholder-elements

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