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Rich Textarea for Django with CodeMirror and some enhancement

Project description


Django-CodeMirror is a Django application to embed the CodeMirror editor.

It was designed to be used in sveedocuments, so it is suited for a ReStructuredText environment but CodeMirror support a large range of syntax coloration modes (PHP, Python, Ruby, Java, HTML, etc..). It is essentialy a jQuery plugin on top of CodeMirror to add some features like :

  • A button bar with keyboard shortcuts to use some syntax element in your text;
  • A maximize mode to resize the editor at full browser size;
  • A preview mode;
  • A quicksave option;
  • Support translations with english and french allready shipped;
  • Compatibility with Django CSRF.

NOTE : Since the version 3.0, CodeMirror does not really support IE7 and so Django-CodeMirror too.


Your project will have to includes a copy of these Javascript libraries :

Optionnally, to use Assets bundles instead of plain assets, you can install django-assets.


The easiest method to install it, is with pip like this :

pip install djangocodemirror

Or installing it like you want from the Github repository.


In your settings file add the app to your installed apps :


And you will need to have a copy of CodeMirror in your statics directory (see Django staticfiles). The jQuery library must be called by your templates, Django-CodeMirror don’t do it for you.

Getting CodeMirror

CodeMirror is included as a git submodule, so you can install it from Github. Within the root of the Django-CodeMirror repository do this :

git submodule update --init

This is optionnal, if you want you can download it and install it yourself.

If you have used pip to install Django-CodeMirror, you don’t have to mind about this as CodeMirror is allready shipped in the PyPi package.



DjangoCodeMirror is the jQuery plugin on top of CodeMirror, it accepts all CodeMirror options and some additional :

This enable the maximize mode at true. It is enabled by default.
Help page link to put in button bar if filled. If the string is empty there will be no help button displayed. When clicked the link is opened in a new window.

When the string is not empty, it is used as the URL to send data in POST request where the view receiver should save the data. This is disabled by default. If the csrf option is enabled, it will be used in the request.

The default sended datas are :

  • nocache : a timestamp used to block some browser caching, this can be ignored;
  • content : the textarea content.

More datas can be sended with the quicksave_datas option.


Expect an object {...} whose variables will be sended as data in quicksave request.

Or it can be a string that determine a variable name to find the object in the global context. This is useful if you want to use a variable that can change and not a defined object at page load.


When the string is not empty, it is used as the URL to send data in POST request where the view receiver should render the content with a parser. The excepted response must return the HTML fragment rendered. This is disabled by default. If the csrf option is enabled, it will be used in the request.

The default sended datas are :

  • nocache : a timestamp used to block some browser caching, this can be ignored;
  • content : the textarea content.

Expect a string containing the function name which be used to modify a request to add it the needed token by Django CSRF. The token will be injected in the request headers. A ready to use function is allready shipped.

The function have two required arguments :

  • xhr : the jQuery XMLHTTPRequest to be modified;
  • settings : the settings object used with jQuery.ajax().

You should see the option beforeSend of jQuery.ajax() for more details, this is where the csrf function is really used.

At True it enable the display of current line and column in the bottom right of the editor. This option is enabled by default.
At True the usage of the tabulation key will not write a tabulation character and spaces will be writed in replacment. The number of spaces will be determined from the tabSize option (default to 4) from CodeMirror.
At True it display buttons Undo and Redo in the buttons bar. Enabled by default.
When the string is not empty, it is used as the cookie name where to search settings to overwrite the default ones (of Django-CodeMirror).
Only for your application settings, the plugin doesn’t know of this option. At True this will enable the search & replace feature of CodeMirror. This is enabled by default for DjangoCodeMirrorField and the demo settings.

A full example of these settings with the plugin :

    <textarea id="id_content" rows="10" cols="40" name="content"></textarea>
    <script language="JavaScript" type="text/javascript">
        my_datas = {'foo': 'bar'};
        $(document).ready(function() {
            id_content_codemirror_instance = $('#id_content').djangocodemirror({
                "mode": "rst",
                "csrf": "CSRFpass",
                "fullscreen": true,
                "help_link": "/help/",
                "quicksave_url": "/djangocodemirror-sample/quicksave/",
                "quicksave_datas": my_datas,
                "preview_url": "/djangocodemirror-sample/preview/",
                "display_cursor_position": true,
                "no_tab_char": true,
                "undo_buttons": true,
                "settings_cookie": "djancocodemirror_settings",
                "lineNumbers": true

The plugin use some additional libraries (allready shipped) :


If you directly use the plugin, you will have to load yourself all needed libaries, see Fields static files for a details of these.


Previous versions (<0.7.2) was automatically loading the Javascript init for the field. This is not the default behavior anymore. You should see the embed_settings widget attribute to enable this behavior. Else you will use the default behavior and manually load the needed Javascript using the given Template tags.


This is the widget to use in your form fields to apply them an instance of DjangoCodeMirror or CodeMirror. It is accessible at djangocodemirror.fields.CodeMirrorWidget.

Usage example on a form field :

from djangocodemirror.fields import CodeMirrorWidget

class CodeMirrorSampleForm(forms.Form):
    content = forms.CharField(label=u"Your content", widget=CodeMirrorWidget)

    def save(self, *args, **kwargs):

The widget accept some additional arguments :

  • codemirror_only A boolean to disable the DjangoCodeMirror usage at benefit of CodeMirror. It is False by default;
  • config_name : name of the settings to use, a valid key name from settings.CODEMIRROR_SETTINGS;
  • codemirror_settings_extra an optional dict to override some settings;
  • embed_settings : A boolean to active the automatic embed of the needed Javascript code to launch a CodeMirror instance for the field. This is False by default because there is lots of possible scenarios to manage your assets and Javascript code. So if you active this, DjangoCodeMirror assets must be loaded BEFORE your field appear in the HTML code;
  • add_jquery an string to specify a path to the jQuery lib to add to the used assets, it’s not really usefull because generally your pages allready embed it;

Another example where the content field will be a CodeMirror editor with enabled line numbers :

from djangocodemirror.fields import CodeMirrorWidget

class CodeMirrorSampleForm(forms.Form):
    content = forms.CharField(label="Your content", widget=CodeMirrorWidget(config_name='default'}))

    def save(self, *args, **kwargs):

Note that previously, CodeMirrorWidget required the codemirror_attrs to directly receives settings as a dict. This is not the behavior anymore, because the widget was not aware of the settings name that is needed with the Assets bundle system. If you don’t want to use Assets bundles and want to directly specify settings as a dict, you will have to use the CodeMirrorAttrsWidget that accepts the same argument as CodeMirrorWidget but with codemirror_attrs instead of config_name.

Using within the Django admin

To use the plugin within your model forms without to edit their admin templates or admin forms, you will have to specify some special arguments. The process is to use the _media property so the admin can automatically load all of them.

So for example with a model like this :

class MyModel(models.Model):
    title = models.CharField('title', blank=False, max_length=255)
    content = models.TextField('content', blank=False)

You would have a model admin like this :

class MyModelAdmin(admin.ModelAdmin):
    formfield_overrides = {
        models.TextField: {'widget': CodeMirrorWidget(config_name='default', embed_settings=True, add_jquery=True)},

Note the embed_settings and add_jquery arguments :

  • embed_settings specify to add the Javascript settings directly bellow the textarea tag and the second one;
  • add_jquery specify a path to load the jQuery lib in the widget medias (because the shipped one within Django admin is outdated and binded on a specify spacename). See DEFAULT_JQUERY_PATH;


This inherit from django.forms.CharField to automatically use CodeMirrorWidget as the widget field. The widget set the codemirror_only attribute to True to use only the CodeMirror editor.

It take an additional named argument config_name like CodeMirrorWidget, his default value correspond to the default setting of CODEMIRROR_SETTINGS.

from django import forms
from djangocodemirror.fields import CodeMirrorField

class CodeMirrorSampleForm(forms.Form):
    content_codemirror = CodeMirrorField(label=u"Your content", config_name='default'})

    def save(self, *args, **kwargs):


It is identical as CodeMirrorField but for usage of DjangoCodeMirror as the widget field.

His default value for config_name corresponds to DJANGOCODEMIRROR_DEFAULT_SETTING.

from django import forms
from djangocodemirror.fields import CodeMirrorField

class CodeMirrorSampleForm(forms.Form):
    content_djangocodemirror = DjangoCodeMirrorField(label=u"Your content", config_name='djangocodemirror'})

    def save(self, *args, **kwargs):

Application settings

All default app settings is located in the file of djangocodemirror, you can modify them in your project settings using the CODEMIRROR_SETTINGS setting.


Type : string

HTML code to instantiate CodeMirror in form fields, this is a template string (usable with String.format()) which expect two variable places :

  • {inputid} : Will be the unique field id;
  • {settings} : Will be a JSON string representation of the editor settings.


Type : string

This identical to CODEMIRROR_FIELD_INIT_JS but for DjangoCodeMirror usage only.


Type : dict

The settings schemes to use with CodeMirror and DjangoCodeMirror editors. Each editor form fields use this schemes to get their default settings. Note that these options must be suitable to be transformed by the Python JSON parser.

The default available settings schemes are :

  • default : Only for enable the option to show line numbers;
  • djangocodemirror : Minimal options for DjangoCodeMirror (line numbers and mode rst for ReStructuredText);
  • djangocodemirror_with_preview : Same as djangocodemirror but enable the preview option on preview/;
  • djangocodemirror_sample_demo : Same as djangocodemirror but enable all stuff needed in the Sample demonstration.


Type : string

The keyword to use to select the default settings with DjangoCodeMirrorField. Note that CodeMirrorField always use the keyword default to select his default settings.


Type : string

The default path to use with the add_jquery widget argument. It will only be used if the add_jquery argument is True. If add_jquery argument is a string, the string will be used as the path. The default value for this settings is pointed to a jQuery version (1.10.x) embedded in the djangocodemirror statics.


Type : list or tuple

A list of paths for available translations.


Type : list or tuple

A list of paths for available themes to load with CodeMirror. There is actually no loaded theme by default, you will have to set one in your CODEMIRROR_SETTINGS


Type : list or tuple

A list of tuples for the various syntax coloration modes supported by CodeMirror. This list is generated from the available mode files in CodeMirror.

Fields static files

All given paths will be assumed to be in your staticfiles directory (see Django staticfiles).

Direct assets

If you plan to use the simple assets system, they are now defined in the templates/djangocodemirror/include_field_assets.html template, with some conditional includes from the widget settings. This is the default template used with the djangocodemirror_get_assets template filter.

Bundle assets

If you plan to only use Bundle assets with django-assets, assets are defined in the module that is automatically loaded by django-assets. You will have to use the djangocodemirror_get_bundles template filter, that is using the templates/djangocodemirror/include_field_bundles.html template.

Template tags

For inputs

You will need to load the template tags module in your templates like this :

{% load djangocodemirror_inputs %}



Get the generated widget settings and return it as JSON. It take the form field as required argument like this :

{{ form.content|djangocodemirror_input_settings }}
Return the HTML tag to embed the Javascript init for a djangocodemirror input field. Take the same argument as djangocodemirror_input_settings.

For assets

You will need to load the template tags module in your templates like this :

{% load djangocodemirror_assets %}



Return the html to load all needed assets for all given djangocodemirror fields

This can only be used on a field that have allready been rendered.

Usage :

{% load djangocodemirror_assets %}

    {% djangocodemirror_get_assets form.myfield1 form.myfield2 %}

Warning, the tag does not throw explicit template errors for invalid fields.

It works exactly like the djangocodemirror_get_assets except it use django-assets bundles in place of direct assets. You should not use this if you don’t have django-assets installed.

Sample demonstration

You can rapidly insert Django-CodeMirror in your project in adding djangocodemirror.urls to your project file. This will use djangocodemirror.views which contains the demonstration views.

urlpatterns = patterns('',
    (r'^djangocodemirror-sample/', include('djangocodemirror.urls')),

Three views are avalaible :

  • The editor demonstration on djangocodemirror-sample/ using ReStructuredText;
  • The preview view preview/ used in editor demo, it require sveedocuments to work correctly or it will simply return a dummy content. This view accepts only POST request and return an empty response for all request type (like GET);
  • The quicksave view quicksave/ used in editor demo, doesn’t really save anything, just do some validation. It require sveedocuments to work correctly.
  • A public view settings/ usable to edit some settings for the editor. These custom settings will be saved in a cookie.

The sample view uses the djangocodemirror/sample.html template that is using by default the Direct assets. If your project use Bundle assets, you will have to overload this template in your project by creating a djangocodemirror/sample.html template in your project templates directory and use the correct filter like this :

{% extends "djangocodemirror/sample_base.html" %}
{% load djangocodemirror_assets %}

{% block djangocodemirror_assets_loading %}{% djangocodemirror_get_bundles form.content %}{% endblock %}

Internationalization and localization

This application make usage of the Django internationalization system only in his demonstration. However the editor is translated with his own system using a javascript file for each available language.

To add a new language, you will have to add a new javascript file that will register the new available language. Just create a file with this :

DCM_Translations["NAME"] = {
    // Translations goes here

Where NAME is the language locale name to register and // Translations goes here must be replaced by the content to translate. To see a full translation see the french version in static/djangocodemirror/ where you can see all the string to translate.

You can save your file where you want in your project or application, you will just have to register it in the setting DJANGOCODEMIRROR_TRANSLATIONS.

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