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FormIt Hooks

Hooks are basically scripts that run during FormIt processing. The hooks always execute in the order they appear in the property. If, for example, you have an email hook followed by a validation hook, the email will be sent before the validation occurs. If any hook fails, the ones following it will not execute.

Hooks may also be Snippet names, which will then execute the Snippet as a hook. The Snippet should return true on success and false on failure.

There are three types of hooks:

  • A 'preHook', specified via the 'preHooks' property on the FormIt snippet, that executes when the form loads. Useful for pre-loading values.
  • A 'renderHook', specified via the 'renderHooks' property on the FormIt snippet, that executes when the form loads & prehooks are finished. Useful for field and error manipulation before rendering the form, as used in Formalicious.
  • The normal hook, specified via the 'hooks' property on the FormIt snippet, that executes after the form is validated. Useful for custom post-processing.

Using preHooks

Just specify the preHook in the 'preHooks' property in your FormIt snippet call. There are no built-in preHooks, but if you had a preHook called 'loadCustomValues':

[[!FormIt? &preHooks=`loadCustomValues`]]

Would then run the 'loadCustomValues' snippet before loading the form. You could then set fields on the form like so:

$hook->setValue('name','John Doe');
$hook->setValue('email','[email protected]');
return true;

Or alternatively using ->setValues:

    'name' => 'John Doe',
    'email' => '[email protected]',
return true;

Note that using the setValues() method here will make the corresponding placeholders available to your email chunk; the effect of manually setting values is similar to adding hidden fields to your form.

You can do whatever you want in the preHook as well. Remember to return true if your preHook or Hook is successful. If you want to add an error message to a field:

$hook->addError('user','User not found.');
return $hook->hasErrors();

Using renderHooks

Just specify the renderHook in the 'renderHooks' property in your FormIt snippet call. There are no built-in renderHooks, but if you had a renderHook called 'buildSessionFields':

// Get formit config & possible set values
$formit =& $hook->formit;
$values = $hook->getValues();

// Fetch sessions data
$values = array_merge($_SESSION['preset_fields_from_session'], $values);
$fields = array();
foreach ($values as $value) {
    // $value = array('label' => '', 'name' => '')
    $fields[] = $modx->getChunk('fieldChunk', $value);
$modx->toPlaceholder('extraFields', implode(PHP_EOL, $fields));

With the new hook system it's more easy to generate custom forms from sessions, database or api data.

Using hooks

Simply specify the hook in the 'hooks' property in your FormIt snippet call. For example, this loads the spam and email hooks:

[[!FormIt? &hooks=`spam,email`]]

Built-In Hooks

This is a list of the built-in hooks packaged with FormIt:

The redirect hook (if used) should always be the last hook specified. Remember that the hooks execute in the order they are specified in the property.

Custom Hooks

Any snippet can be used as a custom hook with Formit. The snippet should return true on success and either false or an array of error messages on failure (see below). If the snippet returns false, hooks listed after the snippet in the &hooks parameter will not execute. If the snippet is not found, the hooks following it in the list will execute.

Registering custom hooks

To register a custom hook, just add the name of the snippet to the &hooks parameter. The hooks will execute in the order that they appear in the &hooks parameter. Your snippet can be at any position in the list.

Accessing the FormIt fields in the Hook

The Formit fields are available via the hook api. Example:

$email = $hook->getValue('email');
$allFormFields = $hook->getValues();

If you want to set fields, however, you'll need to access them this way:

$hook->setValue('email','[email protected]');
    'name' => 'John Doe',
    'books' => 'Hunger Games,To Kill a Mockingbird,Mindset',

If you want to set an array field (i.e. a checkbox group with the same name, a select multiple field) in a preHook, you have to json_encode the array value.


Accessing FormIt scriptProperties (config)

Properties passed to the FormIt Snippet call are available in the config property of the $formit object exposed in a Hook.


Custom hook return values

Snippets should return true on success. On failure, the snippet can set error messages in the hook object's errors variable and return false. In either case, hooks listed after the custom hook in the &hooks parameter will not execute.

The fiHooks object is available in the snippet as $hook, which can be used to return generic error messages from the snippet:

$errorMsg = 'User not found';
return false;

Again, remember - if your hook succeeds, make sure you have "return true;" at the end of your Hook. If you use "return false;" or do not return a value, FormIt will assume the Hook failed. Also, be sure that any custom hooks you specify come before the redirect hook in the hooks property.

File-based Hooks

FormIt 2.0.0+ supports file-based hooks and preHooks. This means that you can point FormIt straight to a PHP file to use as a custom hook. For example:


This will evaluate the MODX tags in the hook line, and then look for the hook at assets/hooks/my.hook.php. If the file is found, it will evaluate the hook from there.

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