Edit Table Plugin

Edit TWiki tables in place, using edit fields and drop down boxes, without having to edit the complete topic.

Simply add an [ Edit table ] button to an existing table by writing %EDITTABLE{}% directly above the table. This can be added to tables that are formatted with TablePlugin: add the EDITTABLE variable just above or below the TABLE tag. It can also be used without any TABLE tag.

Customize entry fields by specifying the format: use a text field, a drop down box, a date field, radio buttons or checkboxes.

Multiple tables per topic are editable, but only one at a time can be edited.

Per Table Settings

Add a %EDITTABLE{...}% variable just before an existing table to make it editable, or add the variable anywhere in a topic to start a new table.

  • Supported attributes:                        
    Attribute Comment Default
    header Specify the header format of a new table like " Food Drink ". Useful to start a table with only a button (no header)
    format The format of one column when editing the table. A cell can be a text input field, or any of these edit field types:

    � Text input field (1 line):
    text, <size>, <initial value> =

    � Textarea input field:
    textarea, <rows>x<columns>, <initial value> =

    � Drop down box:
    select, <size>, <option 1>, <option 2>, etc* =
      * only one item can be selected

    � Radio buttons:
    radio, <size*>, <option 1>, <option 2>, etc =
      * size indicates the number of buttons per line in edit mode

    � Checkboxes:
    checkbox, <size*>, <option 1>, <option 2>, etc =
      * size indicates the number of checkboxes per line in edit mode

    � Fixed label:
    label, 0, <label text> =

    � Row number:
    row, <offset> =

    � Date:
    date, <size>, <initial value>, <DHTML date format> = (see Date Field Type) "text, 16"
    for all cells
    changerows Rows can be added and removed if "on"
    Rows can be added but not removed if "add"
    Rows cannot be added or removed if "off"
    plugin setting
    quietsave Quiet Save button is shown if "on", hidden if "off" QUIETSAVE
    plugin setting
    include Other topic defining the EDITTABLE parameters. The first %EDITTABLE% in the topic is used. This is useful if you have many topics with the same table format and you want to update the format in one place. (none)
    helptopic Topic name containing help text shown below the table when editing a table. The %STARTINCLUDE% and %STOPINCLUDE% variables can be used in the topic to specify what is shown. (no help text)
    headerislabel Table header cells are read-only (labels) if "on"; header cells can be edited if "off" or "0" "on"
    editbutton Set edit button text, e.g. "Edit this table"; set button image with alt text, e.g. "Edit table, %PUBURL%/%TWIKIWEB%/TWikiDocGraphics/edittopic.gif"; hide edit button at the end of the table with "hide" (Note: Button is automatically hidden if an edit button is present in a cell) EDITBUTTON
    plugin setting
    javascriptinterface Use javascript to directly move and delete row without page refresh. Enable with "on", disable with "off". JAVASCRIPTINTERFACE
    plugin setting

Using TWiki Variables in the Format Parameter

By default, variables in <initial value> (of text input field) and <label text> (of fixed label) get expanded when a new row is added. This can be used for example to add a timestamp to a label. You can escape characters with format tokens if you do not want that.

Any TWiki variable inside a table cell will be preserved. For instance, %TOPIC% will not get expanded to the current topic name.

The format tokens are the same as with FormattedSearch:

Escape: Expands To:
$n or $n() New line. Use $n() if followed by alphanumeric character, e.g. write Foo$n()Bar instead of Foo$nBar
$nop or $nop() Is a "no operation".
$quot Double quote (")
$percnt Percent sign (%)
$dollar Dollar sign ($)

Date Field Type

Edit Table Calendar Example

The date field type allows one to choose a date with a popup calendar. Popup calendar works with all modern browsers. The date picker button is inactive if the browser cannot support the popup calendar or if javascript is disabled.

Per Cell Settings

An individual edit field type can be defined for each table cell. Place an %EDITCELL{ "type, ..." }% variable at the end of the cell content. This is useful to override the per column %EDITTABLE{ format="..." }% settings, or to create tables with key/value rows. All edit field types of the format="..." parameter are supported. For example, to define a text field, type: | cell content %EDITCELL{ "text, 20" }% |

It is also possible to place the edit button inside a cell instead of default location below the table. Type | %EDITCELL{ "editbutton, 1, Edit this table" }% | to show a button, or | %EDITCELL{ "editbutton, 1, Edit table, Image-URL" }% | to show a button image with alternate text.

Note: The %EDITCELL{ }%=variable cannot be used by itself; place an =%EDITTABLE{ }%=variable at the beginning of a table where you want to use =%EDITCELL{ }% variables.

Table Buttons

  • In page view mode:
    • - turn the table into edit mode
  • In edit mode:
    • - save your changes
    • - save your changes without alerting subscribed WebNotify users
    • - add row to the table (if enabled)
    • - remove last row from the table (if enabled)
    • - cancel without saving and release edit lock
    • - Move a row by clicking this button next to the row to be moved, then at a destination.
    • - Deletes the row next to this button.


Line before table: %EDITTABLE{ format="| row, -1 | text, 20, init | select, 1, one, two, three, four | radio, 3,:-),:-I,:-( | label, 0, %SERVERTIME{"$day $mon $year $hour:$min"}% |" changerows="on" }%

Nr Text field Drop down Mood Timestamp
1 hello table one smile 26 Jun 2002 12:30
2   two frown 27 Jun 2002 12:40

Note: Please do not save this example table! Use TWiki:Sandbox.EditTablePluginTesting if you want to try out this Plugin

If this plugin is installed you will see an [ Edit table ] button above; if you were to click on it (please don't, use TWiki:Sandbox.EditTablePluginTesting for testing) you get this form:

Nr Text field Drop down Mood Timestamp
1 smile indifferent frown 26 Jun 2002 12:30
2 smile indifferent frown 27 Jun 2002 12:40

The following example shows a simple table with key/value rows. The default edit field type for the value column is a text field. This is overloaded by a selector for the Gender, and a date picker for the DOB. This is typically used by TWiki applications where new topics with tables are created based on a template topic.

You type: You get: Table in edit mode:
%EDITTABLE{ format="| label | text, 40 |" changerows="off" }%
| Name: | John Smith |
| Gender: | M %EDITCELL{select, 1, , F, M}% |
| DOB: | 1999/12/31 %EDITCELL{date, 10}% |
| City: | New York |
EDITCELL Example in view mode EDITCELL Example in edit mode

Plugin Settings

Plugin settings are stored as preferences variables. To reference a plugin setting write %<plugin>_<setting>%, for example, %EDITTABLEPLUGIN_SHORTDESCRIPTION%

  • One line description, shown in the TextFormattingRules topic:
    • Set SHORTDESCRIPTION = Edit TWiki tables using edit fields, date pickers and drop down boxes

  • Set DEBUG to 1 to get debug messages in data/debug.txt. Default: 0
    • Set DEBUG = 0

  • Set JAVASCRIPTINTERFACE to 1 to be able to directly move and delete row without page refresh. Can be overridden with parameter javascriptinterface.

  • Default for change rows flag: on, off, add
    • Set CHANGEROWS = on

  • Default flag for quiet save option: on to show the Quiet Save button, off to hide
    • Set QUIETSAVE = on

  • Default edit button: Specify button text, or specify alternate text, image URL. Note: Texts inside %MAKETEXT{}% are translated into other languages.
    • #Set EDIT_BUTTON = Edit table
    • Set EDIT_BUTTON = Edit this table, edittable.gif
    • Set SAVE_BUTTON = Save table
    • Set QUIET_SAVE_BUTTON = Quiet save
    • Set ADD_ROW_BUTTON = Add row
    • Set DELETE_LAST_ROW_BUTTON = Delete last row
    • Set CANCEL_BUTTON = Cancel

  • Default help texts
    • Set INCLUDED_TOPIC_DOES_NOT_EXIST = Warning: 'include' topic does not exist!

Note: The Plugin uses base settings like date format, language and style from the JSCalendarContrib.

Limitations and Known Issues

  • This Plugin does not support TWiki table formatting like Multi-span cells (e.g. | ... ||) and cell justification (e.g. |  centered  |   right |)
  • There is a performance issue when editing a large table, say, with more then 50 rows
  • You cannot put two %EDITTABLE{}% statements on the same line in the source
  • You can include %-vars now in select values, by quoting them with <nop>, as in %<nop>X% for %X%, say for instance:

Installation Instructions

  • Download the ZIP file from the Plugin web (see below)
  • Unzip EditTablePlugin.zip in your ($TWIKI_ROOT) directory.
  • Alternatively,
    • Manually resolve the dependencies listed below. None
  • The Plugin depends on the viewauth script to authenticate the user. As described in TWikiAccessControl, copy the view script to viewauth (or better, create a symbolic link) and add viewauth to the list of authenticated scripts in the .htaccess file.
  • (Dakar) Visit configure in your TWiki installation, and enable the plugin in the {Plugins} section.
  • Test if the Plugin is correctly installed:
    • Check above example if there is an [ Edit table ] button below the table in above example
    • Click on [ Edit table ], make changes and save the table


  • The Edit Table Plugin is released under the GPL

Plugin Info

Plugin Author: TWiki:Main/PeterThoeny
Copyright: © 2002-2008, TWiki:Main.PeterThoeny (TWIKI.NET) and TWiki Contributors
License: GPL (GNU General Public License)
Plugin Version: 4.8.4 (03 Aug 2008)
Change History:  
03 Aug 2008: 4.8.4 TWiki 4.2.1 release version
19 Jul 2008: 4.8.3 Bugfix release
20 Mar 2008: 4.8: Arthur Clemens: Code refactoring; disabled table sort when editing; removed usage of $percnt to prevent variable expansion (is now done automatically); made Javascript interface aware of headers and footers, and of changerows="off"; improved feedback on row move.
25 Dec 2007: 4.7.1: Arthur Clemens: Added warning if include parameter topic does not exist.
22 Dec 2007: 4.7: Arthur Clemens: Changed handling of escaped variables. To escape TWiki variable, use formatting tokens such as $percnt.
16 Dec 2007: 4.6: Kenneth Lavrsen: The plugin prevents TablePlugin from initsorting the table being edited. This is done by temporarily appending the attribute disableallsort="on" to the TABLE tag of a table being edited. Additionally all header sorting is disabled while editing a table by setting a hidden formfield sort to "off". Disabling sorting while editing is needed now that the EditTablePlugin supports moving rows up and down.
01 Dec 2007: 4.3: Arthur Clemens: added support for TablePlugin headerrows and footerrows; updated edit button
16 Oct 2007: 4.2: Arthur Clemens: refactoring, bug fixes.
07 Oct 2007: 15182: PTh: Added VarEDITTABLE to have it listed in TWikiVariables
15 Mar 2007: Arthur Clemens: Fixed eating of double newlines; icons for javascript buttons and interface improvements. By default the javascript interface is turned off, set JAVASCRIPTINTERFACE to use it in edit mode.
05 Mar 2007: Byron Darrah: Added ability to dynamically move and delete rows.
12 Oct 2006: Item2982 Use default date format from JSCalendarContrib
02 Oct 2006: Item2884 Check also for access permission in meta data; proper fix to not warn if oneself has a lock on topic
30 Aug 2006: Item2829 Remove whitespace from select, radio and checkbox items; restored topic lock if $TWiki::Plugins::VERSION < 1.1
29 Jul 2006: Item2684 - Quietly ignore topic edit locks on table edit
21 Jan 2006: TWiki:Main.CrawfordCurrie ported to TWiki-4.0.0, changed to use JSCalendarContrib
16 Sep 2004: Added radio buttons and checkbox controls; escaped " " pipe symbol found in input fields to preserve tables
01 Aug 2004: Fixed bug where edittable did not work if at the end of a topic
07 Apr 2004: Fixed bug where two tables got updated when you edit and save a table included into a topic containing other edit tables
02 Mar 2004: Default for %EDITCELL{editbutton}% is EDITBUTTON preference
27 Feb 2004: Added QUIETSAVE setting and quietsave parameter; image for Edit button
18 Feb 2004: Doc fixes; allow edit button anywhere in a cell not just at the end of a cell
17 Feb 2004: Added per cell definition of edit field types with %EDITCELL{}% variable; added headerislabel and editbutton parameters
20 Dec 2003: Fixed bug where calendar did not work after adding a row (TWiki:Main/PaulineCheung); added all language files of Mishoo DHTML calendar 0.9.5
16 Oct 2003: small typo fixed (garbled if ---+ header on top)
15 Oct 2003: new date field type with javascript calendar - CN
14 Oct 2003: docfix: the documentation page was an old one - CN
13 Oct 2003: bugfix: %-vars in select were resetted to first on add/del row - CN
18 Sep 2003: incompatibility: changed default of changerows to on; support for %-vars, Quiet save for saving without notification; all other fixes in Dev topic integrated - CN
08 Nov 2002: Prevent variable expansion in label text; added escape characters
27 Jun 2002: New helptopic parameter
26 Jun 2002: Support for variables in included EDITTABLE parameters; fixed problem with HTML in cells
21 May 2002: Added fixed label format; new changerows="add" parameter
27 Apr 2002: Fixed bug where text after a double quote in a cell disappeared
18 Apr 2002: Fixed bug where table was breaking when pasting multiple lines into an edit field using Netscape on Unix
08 Apr 2002: Check for change permission and edit lock of topic
05 Apr 2002: Initial version
Dependencies: None
Perl Version: 5.0
TWiki:Plugins/Benchmark: GoodStyle 98%, FormattedSearch 98%, EditTablePlugin 95%
Plugin Home: http://TWiki.org/cgi-bin/view/Plugins/EditTablePlugin
Feedback: http://TWiki.org/cgi-bin/view/Plugins/EditTablePluginDev
Appraisal: http://TWiki.org/cgi-bin/view/Plugins/EditTablePluginAppraisal

Related Topics: VarEDITTABLE, TWikiPreferences, TWikiPlugins

Topic revision: r15 - 07 Oct 2007 - 05:04:39 - TWikiContributor

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