1. Getting Started
      1. Video Quick-Start Series
      2. Server Requirements
        1. MySQL 5.0.51 Issues
      3. Installation
        1. Basic Installation
          1. MODx Revolution on Debian
          2. Problems with WAMPServer 2.0i
          3. Lighttpd Guide
          4. Installation on a server running ModSecurity
          5. MODX and Suhosin
          6. Nginx Server Config
        2. Successful Installation, Now What Do I Do?
        3. Successful Installation, Now What Do I Do?
        4. Advanced Installation
        5. Git Installation
        6. Command Line Installation
          1. The Setup Config Xml File
        7. Troubleshooting Installation
        8. Using MODx Revolution from SVN
      4. An Overview of MODX
        1. Glossary of Revolution Terms
          1. Explanation of Directory Structure
        2. Roadmap
        3. MODX Revolution Framework Structure Ideology
        4. What's New in 2.3
    2. FAQs & Troubleshooting
      1. CMP Development FAQs & Troubleshooting
    3. Making Sites with MODX
      1. Structuring Your Site
        1. Resources
          1. Content Types
          2. Named Anchor
          3. Static Resource
          4. Symlink
            1. Using Resource Symlinks
          5. Weblink
        2. Templates
        3. Chunks
        4. Using Snippets
      2. Tag Syntax
      3. Customizing Content
        1. Template Variables
          1. Creating a Template Variable
          2. Adding a Custom TV Type - MODX 2.2
          3. Bindings
            1. CHUNK Binding
            2. DIRECTORY Binding
            3. EVAL Binding
            4. FILE Binding
            5. INHERIT Binding
            6. RESOURCE Binding
            7. SELECT Binding
          4. Template Variable Input Types
          5. Template Variable Output Types
            1. Date TV Output Type
            2. Delimiter TV Output Type
            3. HTML Tag TV Output Type
            4. Image TV Output Type
            5. URL TV Output Type
          6. Adding a Custom TV Input Type
          7. Adding a Custom TV Output Type
          8. Creating a multi-select box for related pages in your template
          9. Accessing Template Variable Values via the API
        2. Properties and Property Sets
        3. Input and Output Filters (Output Modifiers)
          1. Custom Output Filter Examples
      4. Commonly Used Template Tags
        1. Date Formats
    4. Administering Your Site
      1. Settings
        1. System Settings
          1. access_category_enabled
          2. date_timezone
          3. access_context_enabled
          4. access_resource_group_enabled
          5. allow_duplicate_alias
          6. allow_forward_across_contexts
          7. allow_multiple_emails
          8. allow_tags_in_post
          9. archive_with
          10. automatic_alias
          11. auto_check_pkg_updates
          12. auto_check_pkg_updates_cache_expire
          13. auto_menuindex
          14. base_help_url
          15. blocked_minutes
          16. cache_action_map
          17. cache_context_settings
          18. cache_db
          19. cache_db_expires
          20. cache_db_session
          21. cache_default
          22. cache_disabled
          23. cache_format
          24. cache_handler
          25. cache_json
          26. cache_json_expires
          27. cache_lang_js
          28. cache_lexicon_topics
          29. cache_noncore_lexicon_topics
          30. cache_resource
          31. cache_resource_expires
          32. cache_scripts
          33. cache_system_settings
          34. clear_cache_refresh_trees
          35. compress_css
          36. compress_js
          37. concat_js
          38. container_suffix
          39. cultureKey
          40. custom_resource_classes
          41. default_per_page
          42. default_template
          43. editor_css_path
          44. editor_css_selectors
          45. emailsender
          46. emailsubject
          47. enable_dragdrop
          48. error_page
          49. extension_packages
          50. failed_login_attempts
          51. feed_modx_news
          52. feed_modx_news_enabled
          53. feed_modx_security
          54. feed_modx_security_enabled
          55. fe_editor_lang
          56. filemanager_path
          57. filemanager_path_relative
          58. filemanager_url
          59. filemanager_url_relative
          60. forgot_login_email
          61. friendly_alias_lowercase_only
          62. forward_merge_excludes
          63. friendly_alias_max_length
          64. friendly_alias_restrict_chars
          65. friendly_alias_restrict_chars_pattern
          66. friendly_alias_strip_element_tags
          67. friendly_alias_translit
          68. friendly_alias_translit_class
          69. friendly_alias_translit_class_path
          70. friendly_alias_trim_chars
          71. friendly_alias_urls
          72. friendly_alias_word_delimiter
          73. friendly_alias_word_delimiters
          74. friendly_urls
          75. friendly_url_prefix
          76. friendly_url_suffix
          77. global_duplicate_uri_check
          78. hidemenu_default
          79. link_tag_scheme
          80. mail_charset
          81. mail_encoding
          82. mail_smtp_auth
          83. mail_smtp_helo
          84. mail_smtp_hosts
          85. mail_smtp_keepalive
          86. mail_smtp_pass
          87. mail_smtp_port
          88. mail_smtp_prefix
          89. mail_smtp_single_to
          90. mail_smtp_timeout
          91. mail_smtp_user
          92. mail_use_smtp
          93. manager_date_format
          94. manager_direction
          95. manager_favicon_url
          96. manager_language
          97. manager_lang_attribute
          98. manager_theme
          99. manager_time_format
          100. context_tree_sort
          101. context_tree_sortby
          102. context_tree_sortdir
          103. session_enabled
          104. upload_files
          105. modx_charset
          106. new_file_permissions
          107. new_folder_permissions
          108. password_generated_length
          109. password_min_length
          110. phpthumb_allow_src_above_docroot
          111. phpthumb_cache_maxage
          112. phpthumb_cache_maxfiles
          113. phpthumb_cache_maxsize
          114. phpthumb_cache_source_enabled
          115. phpthumb_document_root
          116. phpthumb_error_bgcolor
          117. phpthumb_error_fontsize
          118. phpthumb_error_textcolor
          119. phpthumb_far
          120. phpthumb_imagemagick_path
          121. phpthumb_nohotlink_enabled
          122. phpthumb_nohotlink_erase_image
          123. phpthumb_nohotlink_text_message
          124. phpthumb_nohotlink_valid_domains
          125. phpthumb_nooffsitelink_enabled
          126. phpthumb_nooffsitelink_erase_image
          127. phpthumb_nooffsitelink_require_refer
          128. phpthumb_nooffsitelink_text_message
          129. phpthumb_nooffsitelink_valid_domains
          130. phpthumb_nooffsitelink_watermark_src
          131. phpthumb_zoomcrop
          132. principal_targets
          133. proxy_auth_type
          134. proxy_host
          135. proxy_password
          136. proxy_port
          137. proxy_username
          138. publish_default
          139. rb_base_dir
          140. rb_base_url
          141. request_controller
          142. request_param_alias
          143. request_param_id
          144. resource_tree_node_name
          145. resource_tree_node_tooltip
          146. richtext_default
          147. search_default
          148. server_offset_time
          149. server_protocol
          150. session_cookie_domain
          151. session_cookie_lifetime
          152. session_cookie_path
          153. session_cookie_secure
          154. session_handler_class
          155. session_name
          156. settings_version
          157. signupemail_message
          158. site_name
          159. site_start
          160. site_status
          161. site_unavailable_message
          162. site_unavailable_page
          163. strip_image_paths
          164. symlink_merge_fields
          165. tree_default_sort
          166. tree_root_id
          167. tvs_below_content
          168. udperms_allowroot
          169. ui_debug_mode
          170. unauthorized_page
          171. upload_maxsize
          172. use_alias_path
          173. use_browser
          174. use_editor
          175. use_multibyte
          176. welcome_screen
          177. which_editor
          178. which_element_editor
          179. xhtml_urls
      2. Using Friendly URLs
      3. Contexts
        1. Creating a Subdomain from a Folder using Virtual Hosts
        2. Using One Gateway Plugin to Manage Multiple Domains
      4. Customizing the Manager
        1. Customizing the Manager via Plugins
        2. Form Customization Profiles
        3. Form Customization Sets
          1. Customizing Tabs via Form Customization
          2. MODX GitHub Contributor's Guide
        4. Manager Templates and Themes
      5. MODX GitHub Integrator's Guide
      6. Security
        1. Hardening MODX Revolution
        2. Policies
          1. ACLs
          2. Permissions
            1. Permissions - Administrator Policy
            2. Permissions - Resource Policy
          3. PolicyTemplates
        3. Resource Groups
        4. Roles
        5. Security Standards
        6. Security Tutorials
          1. More on the Anonymous User Group
          2. Creating a Second Super Admin User
          3. Giving a User Manager Access
          4. Making Member-Only Pages
          5. Restricting an Element from Users
        7. Troubleshooting Security
          1. Resetting a User Password Manually
        8. User Groups
        9. Users
      7. Installing a Package
        1. Troubleshooting Package Management
      8. Upgrading MODX
        1. Upgrading to Revolution 2.0.5
        2. Upgrading from 2.0.x to 2.1.x
        3. Upgrading from Versions Earlier than 2.0.5
        4. Upgrading to 2.2.x
        5. Upgrading to Revolution 2.0.0-rc-2
        6. Troubleshooting Upgrades
        7. Upgrading from MODx Evolution
          1. Functional Changes from Evolution
      9. Moving Your Site to a New Server, or to Root from Subfolder
      10. Media Sources
        1. Adding a Media Source
        2. Assigning Media Sources to TVs
        3. Media Source Types
          1. Media Source Type - File System
          2. Media Source Type - S3
        4. Securing a Media Source
          1. Creating a Media Source for Clients Tutorial
      11. Dashboards
        1. Assigning a Dashboard to a User Group
        2. Creating a Dashboard Widget
        3. Dashboard Widget Types
          1. Dashboard Widget Type - File
          2. Dashboard Widget Type - HTML
          3. Dashboard Widget Type - Inline PHP
          4. Dashboard Widget Type - Snippet
        4. Managing Your Dashboard
    5. Developing in MODX
      1. Code Standards
      2. Overview of MODX Development
        1. Developer Introduction
          1. Getting Started Developing
        2. Extras Directories
        3. Setting up a Development Environment
      3. Basic Development
        1. Static Elements
        2. Plugins
          1. System Events
            1. OnMODXInit
            2. OnFileManagerBeforeUpload
            3. OnFileManagerDirCreate
            4. OnFileManagerDirRemove
            5. OnFileManagerDirRename
            6. OnFileManagerFileCreate
            7. OnFileManagerFileRemove
            8. OnFileManagerFileRename
            9. OnFileManagerFileUpdate
            10. OnPackageInstall
            11. OnPackageUninstall
            12. OnPackageRemove
            13. OnBeforeCacheUpdate
            14. OnBeforeChunkFormDelete
            15. OnBeforeChunkFormSave
            16. OnBeforeDocFormDelete
            17. OnBeforeDocFormSave
            18. OnBeforeEmptyTrash
            19. OnBeforeManagerLogin
            20. OnBeforeManagerLogout
            21. OnBeforeManagerPageInit
            22. OnBeforePluginFormDelete
            23. OnBeforePluginFormSave
            24. OnBeforeSaveWebPageCache
            25. OnBeforeSnipFormDelete
            26. OnBeforeSnipFormSave
            27. OnBeforeTempFormDelete
            28. OnBeforeTempFormSave
            29. OnBeforeTVFormDelete
            30. OnBeforeTVFormSave
            31. OnBeforeUserActivate
            32. OnBeforeUserFormDelete
            33. OnBeforeUserFormSave
            34. OnBeforeWebLogin
            35. OnBeforeWebLogout
            36. OnCacheUpdate
            37. OnCategoryBeforeRemove
            38. OnCategoryBeforeSave
            39. OnCategoryRemove
            40. OnCategorySave
            41. OnChunkBeforeRemove
            42. OnChunkBeforeSave
            43. OnChunkFormDelete
            44. OnChunkFormPrerender
            45. OnChunkFormRender
            46. OnChunkFormSave
            47. OnChunkRemove
            48. OnChunkSave
            49. OnContextBeforeRemove
            50. OnContextBeforeSave
            51. OnContextFormPrerender
            52. OnContextFormRender
            53. OnContextRemove
            54. OnContextSave
            55. OnDocFormDelete
            56. OnDocFormPrerender
            57. OnDocFormRender
            58. OnDocFormSave
            59. OnDocPublished
            60. OnDocUnPublished
            61. OnEmptyTrash
            62. OnFileManagerUpload
            63. OnHandleRequest
            64. OnInitCulture
            65. OnLoadWebDocument
            66. OnLoadWebPageCache
            67. OnManagerAuthentication
            68. OnManagerLogin
            69. OnManagerLoginFormPrerender
            70. OnManagerLoginFormRender
            71. OnManagerLogout
            72. OnManagerPageAfterRender
            73. OnManagerPageBeforeRender
            74. OnManagerPageInit
            75. OnPageNotFound
            76. OnPageUnauthorized
            77. OnParseDocument
            78. OnPluginBeforeRemove
            79. OnPluginBeforeSave
            80. OnPluginEventRemove
            81. OnPluginFormDelete
            82. OnPluginFormPrerender
            83. OnPluginFormRender
            84. OnPluginFormSave
            85. OnPluginRemove
            86. OnPluginSave
            87. OnPropertySetBeforeRemove
            88. OnPropertySetBeforeSave
            89. OnPropertySetRemove
            90. OnPropertySetSave
            91. OnResourceGroupBeforeRemove
            92. OnResourceGroupBeforeSave
            93. OnResourceGroupRemove
            94. OnResourceGroupSave
            95. OnRichTextBrowserInit
            96. OnRichTextEditorInit
            97. OnRichTextEditorRegister
            98. OnSiteRefresh
            99. OnSiteSettingsRender
            100. OnTemplateVarBeforeRemove
            101. OnTemplateVarBeforeSave
            102. OnTemplateVarRemove
            103. OnTemplateVarSave
            104. OnUserActivate
            105. OnUserBeforeRemove
            106. OnUserBeforeSave
            107. OnUserChangePassword
            108. OnUserFormDelete
            109. OnUserFormSave
            110. OnUserNotFound
            111. OnUserRemove
            112. OnUserSave
            113. OnWebAuthentication
            114. OnWebLogin
            115. OnWebLogout
            116. OnWebPageComplete
            117. OnWebPageInit
            118. OnWebPagePrerender
        3. Snippets
          1. Adding CSS and JS to Your Pages Through Snippets
          2. How to Write a Good Chunk
          3. How to Write a Good Snippet
          4. Templating Your Snippets
        4. xPDO
      4. Advanced Development
        1. Caching
          1. Setting up Memcache in MODX
        2. Custom Manager Pages
          1. Custom Manager Pages in 2.3
          2. Actions and Menus
            1. Action List
          3. Custom Manager Pages Tutorial
          4. MODExt
            1. MODx.combo.ComboBox
            2. MODx.Console
            3. MODx.FormPanel
            4. MODx.grid.Grid
            5. MODx.grid.LocalGrid
            6. MODx.msg
            7. MODx.tree.Tree
            8. MODx.Window
            9. MODExt Tutorials
              1. 1. Ext JS Tutorial - Message Boxes
              2. 2. Ext JS Tutorial - Ajax Include
              3. 3. Ext JS Tutorial - Animation
              4. 4. Ext JS Tutorial - Manipulating Nodes
              5. 5. Ext JS Tutorial - Panels
              6. 7. Ext JS Tutoral - Advanced Grid
              7. 8. Ext JS Tutorial - Inside a CMP
            10. MODExt MODx Object
        3. Custom Resource Classes
          1. Creating a Resource Class
            1. Creating a Resource Class - Step 2
            2. Creating a Resource Class - Step 3
            3. Creating a Resource Class - Step 4
        4. Extending modUser
        5. From the Command Line (CLI)
        6. Internationalization
          1. Adding a Translation
        7. MODX Services
          1. modFileHandler
          2. modMail
          3. modRegistry
        8. Namespaces
        9. Package Management
          1. Package Dependencies
          2. Creating a 3rd Party Component Build Script
          3. Providers
          4. Transport Packages
        10. Using runProcessor
        11. Validating Requests: Tokens and Nonces
        12. Developing RESTful APIs
      5. Other Development Resources
        1. Summary of Legacy Code Removed in 2.1
        2. API Reference
        3. Class Reference
          1. modResource
            1. modResource.isMember
          2. modChunk
            1. modChunk.getContent
            2. modChunk.setContent
          3. modUser
            1. modUser.addSessionContext
            2. modUser.changePassword
            3. modUser.endSession
            4. modUser.getSessionContexts
            5. modUser.getSettings
            6. modUser.hasSessionContext
            7. modUser.isAuthenticated
            8. modUser.isMember
            9. modUser.loadAttributes
            10. modUser.removeSessionContext
            11. modUser.removeSessionContextVars
            12. modUser.removeSessionCookie
          4. modX
            1. modX.addEventListener
            2. modX.checkForLocks
            3. modX.checkSession
            4. modX.executeProcessor
            5. modX.getAuthenticatedUser
            6. modX.getCacheManager
            7. modX.getChildIds
            8. modX.getChunk
            9. modX.getConfig
            10. modX.getContext
            11. modX.getEventMap
            12. modX.getLoginUserID
            13. modX.getLoginUserName
            14. modX.getParentIds
            15. modX.getParser
            16. modX.getPlaceholder
            17. modX.getRegisteredClientScripts
            18. modX.getRegisteredClientStartupScripts
            19. modX.getRequest
            20. modX.getResponse
            21. modX.getService
            22. modX.getSessionState
            23. modX.getTree
            24. modX.getUser
            25. modX.getVersionData
            26. modX.handleRequest
            27. modX.hasPermission
            28. modX.initialize
            29. modX.invokeEvent
            30. modX.lexicon
            31. modX.makeUrl
            32. modX.parseChunk
            33. modX.regClientCSS
            34. modX.regClientHTMLBlock
            35. modX.regClientScript
            36. modX.regClientStartupHTMLBlock
            37. modX.regClientStartupScript
            38. modX.reloadConfig
            39. modX.removeAllEventListener
            40. modX.removeEventListener
            41. modX.runProcessor
            42. modX.runSnippet
            43. modX.sendError
            44. modX.sendErrorPage
            45. modX.sendForward
            46. modX.sendRedirect
            47. modX.sendUnauthorizedPage
            48. modX.setDebug
            49. modX.setPlaceholder
            50. modX.setPlaceholders
            51. modX.switchContext
            52. modX.toPlaceholder
            53. modX.toPlaceholders
            54. modX.unsetPlaceholder
            55. modX.unsetPlaceholders
        4. Loading MODX Externally
        5. Reserved Parameters
    6. Case Studies and Tutorials
      1. Developing an Extra in MODX Revolution
        1. Developing an Extra in MODX Revolution, Part II
        2. Developing an Extra in MODX Revolution, Part III
      2. Developing an Extra in MODX Revolution - MODX 2.1 and Earlier
        1. Developing an Extra in MODX Revolution, Part II - MODX 2.1 and Earlier
        2. Developing an Extra in MODX Revolution, Part III - MODX 2.1 and Earlier
      3. PHP Coding in MODx Revolution, Pt. I
        1. PHP Coding in MODx Revolution, Pt. II
        2. PHP Coding in MODx Revolution, Pt. III
      4. Using Custom Database Tables in your 3rd Party Components
      5. Creating a Blog in MODx Revolution
      6. Loading Pages in the Front-End via AJAX and jQuery Tabs
      7. Reverse Engineer xPDO Classes from Existing Database Table
      8. Integrating a Template into MODX Tutorial
      9. Quick and Easy MODX Tutorials
        1. Automated Server-Side Image Editing
      10. Adding Custom Fields to Manager Forms
      11. Create a Multilingual Website with migxMultiLang
      12. Managing Resources and Elements via SVN
    7. MODX Community Information
      1. Becoming a Core Contributor
      2. Filing Bug Reports
      3. Getting a MODx Account
      4. Using GitHub

Custom Manager Pages Tutorial

Last edited by Mark Hamstra on Dec 10, 2018.


We want to add a custom page to the MODx Revolution manager that will load (i.e. execute) the contents of an PHP file that has been uploaded to the webserver. Technically, such a page is called a Custom Manager Page, or CMP; please refer to the page on Custom Manager Pages for a more detailed description.

In MODx Evolution (versions 1.x and earlier), Custom Manager Pages were handled by "Modules", but those have been deprecated in Revolution.
If you want to develop a CMP for MODX 2.3 or later, then please read Custom Manager Pages in 2.3

Explanation and Mental Preparation

"What's the big deal?" you might ask. "Why can't I just add an anchor tag somewhere that links to my PHP file and be done with it?"

<a href="/path/to/my/file.php">My Custom Manager Page</a>

That should work, right? Well... maybe, but it's not that simple. There are a lot of moving parts that have to get connected to make this seemingly "simple" task work. Allowing for internationalization, permissions schema, and scalability requires that this process include several layers of abstraction that are not immediately obvious. It goes far beyond what's possible with the simple anchor tag solution above. But rest assured, the extra steps will ensure that the solution will be usable in a far greater number of scenarios.

What we'll need:

  • A PHP file on the webserver which generates the text for our CMP (a.k.a. the controller).
  • A Namespace (i.e. a path) which defines a dedicated folder for our script(s).
  • A clickable Menu object (modMenu) which associates the clickable link to the action.
  • An Action object (modAction) which points to a specific file. As of MODX 2.3, you should be using namespace-based custom manager page routing instead.
  • And optionally, a Lexicon entry which would allow you to translate the label on your menu item.

Maybe you're baffled by the complexity here, and to be fair, for simple scenarios, this is more complicated than is strictly required, but you may find yourself at some point getting into more complicated use-cases at which point you'll realize " AHA!!! THAT'S why they did it this way!" For now, just trust that the smart folks behind MODx put a lot of thought into how this was built, and there's a good reason that it is the way it is. Onward.

Create the Namespace

You can think of the Namespace as a dedicated directory for your PHP file(s) that pertain to this particular manager page. Keep in mind that creating the Namespace inside the MODx manager does not actually create the directory; likewise, removing a Namespace from the manager will not actually delete files and folders. When you "create" the namespace, you're just telling MODx to treat a certain folder in a certain way.

In our example, we've chosen to call our namespace (and its folder) mycmp.

  1. System->Namespaces
    1. Click Create New
    2. Name: mycmp (all lowercase, one word)
    3. Path: {core_path}components/mycmp/ (note the use of the system "core_path" placeholder, and remember to include the trailing slash)
  2. Using your FTP client, create a directory inside core/components named mycmp.
Watch out for typos! Make sure the Namespace path matches the directory name!

Make the Controller File

For our first manager page, we're going to keep it simple. Create a file named index.php which contains the following:

return 'This is my first Custom Manager Page';

Upload the file to your MODx site into the directory (i.e. the Namespace) you've just created: core/components/mycmp/index.php

As a superficial check, you may want to try navigating to the file in a browser window: http://yourdomain.com/core/components/mycmp/index.php

But for such a check, you will need to temporarily insert some HTML or a print statement in your file.

Notice that we did NOT use print, or echo, or raw HTML in our PHP. If you use any of these, you'll find that the text floats to the top of the page; remember that a Custom Manager Page is really acting as a function, so it should return a value.

Create the Action

The Action object identifies the location of your index.php file within the namespace.

Heads up: Actions are deprecated
As of MODX 2.3, you no longer need an action. Instead, you will define both the namespace and the filename on the menu. More here. On MODX 2.3 and up, skip to Create the menu object
About Actions
In this case, an Action is an abstraction, or a "wrapper" around that PHP file you created. One of the most important things that distinguishes a MODx Action from a simple link to PHP file is that you can assign different permissions to an Action: you can control who accesses it and how.
  1. System->Menu
  2. Right-click mycmp from the list of namespaces and select "Create Action Here".
  3. Controller: index (this should match the name of your PHP file WITHOUT the .php extension)
  4. Namespace: yes, use the same namespace: mycmp
  5. Parent Controller: Leave it blank or select "No Action".

Create the Menu Object

  1. System->Menu
  2. Right-Click "Components" and choose "Place Action Here"
    1. Lexicon Key: mycmp (we'll translate this in a bit)
    2. Description: mycmp.menu_desc (we'll translate this in a bit)
    3. Action: on <= 2.3, choose the created action (mynamespace - index) in the list. In MODX 2.3+, set the namespace to your namespace, and the action to the name of your file without .class.php.
    4. Save (you can ignore the Icon, Parameters, Handler, and Permissions fields for now)
  3. Refresh your browser page.
After you edit the menu item, be sure to refresh the manager page. The menu item will not be visible until you refresh your browser; likewise, any changes you make to an existing menu item will not be visible until you refresh the page. You may need to clear the cache too!
If you add any GET Parameters to the menu item under System -> Actions, steer clear of any use of the a variable or any other Reserved Parameters. You might be using various GET parameters if your CMP has multiple pages.

You should now be able to click on the "Components" menu and see your menu item, and when you click it, you should see your message!

Make your CMP Translatable (Optional)

If you never intend on internationalizing your site, then you probably have no need to create a Lexicon entry. But if you do want to provide translations, the Lexicon is MODx's way of doing it. The Lexicon key is a unique identifier, e.g. 'My CMP' which can get translated into other languages.

Create a Lexicon Directory

Go to your Namespace path (usually in your Extra's core/components/mycmp/ directory) and place a "lexicon/" directory in there. From there, add an 'en' directory as well ('en' for 'English' -- or use your language code of choice). You should have something like:


Identify your Lexicon key

  1. System->Actions
  2. Find your Menu action in the menu on the right (under Components)
  3. Update Menu
  4. Note the 'Lexicon Key' field. Set it to 'mycmp'.
  5. Set the 'Description' field to 'mycmp.menu_desc'.

We need both a Language Topic and a Lexicon Key in order to define a Lexicon entry. By doing the above, you've now pointed your Action/Menu to use a particular Topic and Key, but you haven't yet defined them in the Lexicon. It's entirely possible to set up the Lexicon entries first and then point your Action and Menu objects to reference them second, but here we're assuming that you are adding Lexicon entries after creating the Action and Menu objects.

Create the Topic File

Create a file name default.inc.php in your new 'en' lexicon directory (i.e. core/components/mycmp/lexicon/en/default.inc.php), and place your entries in them, in this format:

$_lang['lexicon_entry_key'] = 'Translation for Entry';

Create the Entries (Provide the Translations)

Go ahead and add these entries to core/components/mycmp/lexicon/en/default.inc.php:

$_lang['mycmp'] = 'My CMP';
$_lang['mycmp.menu_desc'] = 'My custom manager page.';
Strict Naming Conventions!
If you use lexicon entries to translate custom System Settings, then be aware MODX will not look for the exact lexicon entry you typed! You must follow a strict naming convention, otherwise your lexicon entry will not be loaded and your System Setting information will not be translated! The name of your System Setting must use a Lexicon entry that is named after the setting's key, prefixed with "setting_":
setting_ + Key

The Description must follow the same format and include a suffix of "desc":

setting_ + Key + _desc

See System Settings for more info.

Now, clear the site cache to reload the lexicon cache, via Site -> Clear Cache.

Use Translations in your CMP

The Systems Settings dialogs should pick up your translations as long as you've followed the expected naming conventions, but in order to use translated text inside your CMP, you need to load the lexicon. You do this using the lexicon object and its load method, something like this:


Put that at the top of your CMP code.

Add a Custom Permission (optional)

Every MODX menu item has a built-in permission already assigned to it. If you want to enforce special access permissions to your new CMP, you do this when you create or edit the menu item. Under System -> Actions, find your menu item and right-click to edit it and type in a unique name for the permission that will define access to this page. Technically, it can be anything so long as it is unique, but it's probably best to identify it with your CMP, e.g. use your namespace's name. Remember that unique permission name and save your Menu.

The counterpart to this action is to define the permission so MODX knows about it. Head to Security -> Access Controls -> Policy Templates. These list all the permissions (a.k.a. capabilities) that are available for manipulating a given area. We're interested in the MODX Admin dashboard, so we'll be dealing with the Administrator Template. Make a copy of the template before tinkering with it!

Edit the Administrator Template and add a new permission. You can select from existing permissions, or you can type in your own. Enter in the exact text you entered when you edited your Menu item, then save the Policy Template.

Now your CMP can be governed by the MODX permission schema! You can create an Access Policy that includes or omits that permission and thereby control which User Groups can use your CMP.

Troubleshooting / Errors

Having problems? Here are a couple things that you may have run into.

  1. Did you make sure you created a directory on your webserver with the EXACT path as defined by your Namespace?
  2. Are you sure your controller file is using the return statement instead of using print or echo?
  3. Your menu items aren't being translated? Be sure to clear your cache! Site->Clear Cache
  4. Translations aren't appearing in your CMP? Make sure you specified the "lexicon" in the Action object (ie, "mycmp:default")

Your action does not appear in your menu

If your new action does not appear in the menu where you placed it even though it shows up in the correct place under System -> Actions, then you may be dealing with some permissions errors on your server. Specifically, be alert to any error messages that show up when you clear your site's cache. If you any errors, it may be a sign that your permissions on your server are incorrect. You may need to change the permissions on the core/components directory, or maybe you need to go as far to as to change the user/group names that Apache uses when accessing your site.

  1. Actions and Menus
    1. Action List
  2. Custom Manager Pages in 2.3
  3. Custom Manager Pages Tutorial
  4. MODExt
    1. MODExt MODx Object
    2. MODExt Tutorials
      1. 1. Ext JS Tutorial - Message Boxes
      2. 2. Ext JS Tutorial - Ajax Include
      3. 3. Ext JS Tutorial - Animation
      4. 4. Ext JS Tutorial - Manipulating Nodes
      5. 5. Ext JS Tutorial - Panels
      6. 7. Ext JS Tutoral - Advanced Grid
      7. 8. Ext JS Tutorial - Inside a CMP
    3. MODx.combo.ComboBox
    4. MODx.Console
    5. MODx.FormPanel
    6. MODx.grid.Grid
    7. MODx.grid.LocalGrid
    8. MODx.msg
    9. MODx.tree.Tree
    10. MODx.Window

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