One recurrent need is to provide some kind of rich user interface to edit content. However, depending on the final target the content can have different formats: text or richhtml.

4. Simple Formatter Widget

The Sonata\FormatterBundle\Form\Type\SimpleFormatterType widget has been implemented to allow developers to force the input formatter value:

use Sonata\FormatterBundle\Form\Type\SimpleFormatterType;

    ->add('comment', SimpleFormatterType::class, [
        'format' => 'text',

5. Advanced Formatter Widget

The Sonata\FormatterBundle\Form\Type\FormatterType widget has been implemented to allow end users to select the correct format for their need. And depending on the format, the textarea will change to match its requirements.

By default, the widget supports these types:

  • text with a standard textarea widget;
  • richhtml with CKEditor.

5.1. Preview

formatter with CKEditor

The formatter with CKEditor

5.2. How to use it ?

In order to make it work, let us take a real life example: “a post from a blog can have different input formats”. So, the post model requires the following fields:

  • a contentFormatter field: store the selected formatter;
  • a rawContent field: store the original content from the user;
  • a content field: store the transformed content display to the visitor.

Now, let us define a form to edit this post:

use Sonata\FormatterBundle\Form\Type\FormatterType;

    ->add('content', FormatterType::class, [
        'format_field'   => 'contentFormatter',
        'format_field_options' => [
            'choices' => [
                'text' => 'Text',
                'markdown' => 'Markdown',
            'empty_data' => 'markdown',
        'source_field' => 'rawContent',
        'source_field_options' => [
            'attr' => ['class' => 'span10', 'rows' => 20],
        'listener' => true,
        'target_field' => 'content',

The form type defines a contentFormatter with a select choice (sonata_formatter_type_selector). The available formatter choices are text and markdown here, with the markdown formatter preselected. The Sonata\FormatterBundle\Form\Type\FormatterType takes various options:

  • listener (optional, default is true);
  • format_field: the entity’s format field;
  • format_field_options: the format field options (optional);
  • source_field: the entity’s source field;
  • source_field_options: the source field options (optional);
  • target_field: the entity’s final field with the transformed data.

Additionally, the following options can be added to give CKEditor a context in order to select images directly from SonataMediaBundle, and to define a custom CKEditor toolbar configuration:

  • ckeditor_context: give CKEditor a context in order to customize routes used to browse and upload medias (see “Use CKEditor to select medias in SonataMediaBundle” chapter)
  • ckeditor_toolbar_icons : give CKEditor a custom toolbar configuration (optional)

Here is the default CKEditor custom toolbar configuration, you can tweak:

$ckeditor_toolbar_icons = [
    ['Bold', 'Italic', 'Underline',
        '-', 'Cut', 'Copy', 'Paste', 'PasteText', 'PasteFromWord',
        '-', 'Undo', 'Redo',
        '-', 'NumberedList', 'BulletedList', '-', 'Outdent', 'Indent',
        '-', 'Blockquote',
        '-', 'Image', 'Link', 'Unlink', 'Table'],
    ['Maximize', 'Source'],

If you stop here, the most interesting part will not be present. Let’s edit some configuration files.

5.3. Sonata Admin Integration

To use this feature with SonataAdmin, add or extend the following lines to your config:

# config/packages/sonata_admin.yaml

            - bundles/fosckeditor/ckeditor.js