This is a generic app for using a drag & drop position field, wherever you want to.
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Django Generic Positions

This is a generic app for using a drag & drop position field, wherever you want to.

You often have items that should have a position field so that the user can manipulate their ordering by entering intergers into that field. This app allows you to easily add drag and drop functionality to that model's Django admin or even to your frontend.

You don't need to manipulate your models, which means that you can even make third party models that don't have a position field at all position aware.


You need at least the following packages in your virtualenv:

  • Django 1.4
  • South


To get the latest stable release from PyPi:

$ pip install django-generic-positions

To get the latest commit from GitHub:

$ pip install -e git://

Add the app to your INSTALLED_APPS:


Add this to your main

urlpatterns = patterns(
    url(r'^pos/', include('generic_positions.urls')),

Run the south migrations to create the app's database tables:

$ ./ migrate generic_positions


If you want to add the position feature to the model of a third party app, do the following in one of your files:

from django.contrib.contenttypes import generic
from thirdpartyapp.models import TheModel


If you are extending on of your own models, simply add this to your model:

from django.contrib.contenttypes import generic

class YourModel(models.Model):
    generic_position = generic.GenericRelation(

IMPORTANT. If you are using multiple models, which have generic relations to the positioning model, this is what you should NOT do: For some reason there will be duplicates of your model appearing in the templates. Please don't use ordering = ['generic_position__position'].

Usage in templates

There are several template tags and filters you can use. Let's start with a simple view, which orders the object list by position:

{% load position_tags %}
{% for obj in object_list|order_by_position %}
    <p>{{ obj }}</p>
{% endfor %}

You want to reverse the ordering? Go for it:

{% load position_tags %}
{% for obj in object_list|order_by_position:'reverse' %}
    <p>{{ obj }}</p>
{% endfor %}

Let's show the current position, too:

{% load position_tags %}
{% for obj in object_list|order_by_position:'reverse' %}
    <p>{% position_input obj 'visible' %} &raquo; {{ obj }}</p>
{% endfor %}

The position_input tag will add a hidden field with the position nr. and if you add visible it will also append a span element.

If you also want the drag & drop functionality, have a look at the following example of a complete implementation:

{% load position_tags %}
{% load url from future %}
<form method="post" action="{% url "position_bulk_update" %}">
    {% csrf_token %}
    <ul id="positionContainer">
        {% for obj in object_list|order_by_position %}
            <li>{{ obj }}{% position_input obj %}</li>
        {% endfor %}

# You might want to place these scripts in your base template
<script src="//"></script>
<script>window.jQuery || document.write('<script src="{{ STATIC_URL }}js/libs/jquery.min.js"><\/script>')</script>
<script src="//"></script>
<script>window.jQuery || document.write('<script src="{{ STATIC_URL }}js/libs/jquery-ui.min.js"><\/script>')</script>
<script type="text/javascript" src="{{ STATIC_URL }}generic_positions/js/reorder.js"></script>

A few things are important here:

  • You must put a form around your position aware objects
  • The form must POST to the url position_bulk_update
  • Don't forget to add the csrf_token
  • Inside the form you need a wrapper element that wraps all your position aware items. A <ul id="positionContainer"> tag is usually recommended.
  • Make sure that your wrapper element has the ID positionContainer.
  • Next to each of your position items you need to render a hidden field with its current position, that can be posted to the form. Use the template tag {% position_input obj %} to automatically add the right input field.

Usage with Django Admin

If you want to use the drag & drop positioning in the Django admin use:

from generic_positions.admin import GenericPositionsAdmin, GenericPositionsAdmin)


See the issue tracker for current and upcoming features.