Yii - Widgets


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A widget is a reusable client-side code, which contains HTML, CSS, and JS. This code includes minimal logic and is wrapped in a yii\base\Widget object. We can easily insert and apply this object in any view.

Step 1 − To see widgets in action, create an actionTestWidget function in the SiteController with the following code.

public function actionTestWidget() { 
   return $this->render('testwidget'); 
}

In the above example, we just returned a View called “testwidget”.

Step 2 − Now, inside the views/site folder, create a View file called testwidget.php.

<?php 
   use yii\bootstrap\Progress; 
?> 
<?= Progress::widget(['percent' => 60, 'label' => 'Progress 60%']) ?>

Step 3 − If you go to http://localhost:8080/index.php?r=site/test-widget, you will see the progress bar widget.

Progress Bar

Using Widgets

To use a widget in a View, you should call the yii\base\Widget::widget() function. This function takes a configuration array for initializing the widget. In the previous example, we inserted a progress bar with percent and labelled parameters of the configuration object.

Some widgets take a block of content. It should be enclosed between yii\base\Widget::begin() and yii\base\Widget::end() functions. For example, the following widget displays a contact form −

<?php $form = ActiveForm::begin(['id' => 'contact-form']); ?> 
   <?= $form->field($model, 'name') ?> 
   <?= $form->field($model, 'email') ?> 
   <?= $form->field($model, 'subject') ?> 
   <?= $form->field($model, 'body')->textArea(['rows' => 6]) ?> 
   <?= $form->field($model, 'verifyCode')->widget(Captcha::className(), [ 
      'template' =>
         '<div class="row">
            <div class = "col-lg-3">{image}</div>
            <div class = "col-lg-6">{input}</div>
         </div>', 
   ]) ?> 
   <div class = "form-group"> 
      <?= Html::submitButton('Submit', ['class' => 'btn btn-primary',
         'name' => 'contact-button']) ?> 
   </div> 
<?php ActiveForm::end(); ?> 

Creating Widgets

To create a widget, you should extend from yii\base\Widget. Then you should override the yii\base\Widget::init() and yii\base\Widget::run() functions. The run() function should return the rendering result. The init() function should normalize the widget properties.

Step 1 − Create a components folder in the project root. Inside that folder, create a file called FirstWidget.php with the following code.

<?php 
   namespace app\components; 
   use yii\base\Widget; 
   class FirstWidget extends Widget { 
      public $mes; 
      public function init() { 
         parent::init(); 
         if ($this->mes === null) { 
            $this->mes = 'First Widget'; 
         } 
      }  
      public function run() { 
         return "<h1>$this->mes</h1>"; 
      } 
   } 
?>

Step 2Modify the testwidget view in the following way.

<?php 
   use app\components\FirstWidget; 
?> 
<?= FirstWidget∷widget() ?>

Step 3 − Go to http://localhost:8080/index.php?r=site/test-widget. You will see the following.

First Widget

Step 4 − To enclose the content between the begin() and end() calls, you should modify the FirstWidget.php file.

<?php
   namespace app\components;
   use yii\base\Widget;
   class FirstWidget extends Widget {
      public function init() {
         parent::init();
         ob_start();
      }
      public function run() {
         $content = ob_get_clean();
         return "<h1>$content</h1>";
      }
   }
?> 

Step 5 − Now h1 tags will surround all the content. Notice that we use the ob_start() function to buffer the output. Modify the testwidget view as given in the following code.

<?php
   use app\components\FirstWidget;
?>
<?php FirstWidget::begin(); ?>
   First Widget in H1
<?php FirstWidget::end(); ?>

You will see the following output −

First Widget in H1

Important Points

Widgets should −

  • Be created following the MVC pattern. You should keep presentation layers in views and logic in widget classes.

  • Be designed to be self-contained. The end developer should be able to design it into a View.



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