plone.z3cform is a library that allows use of z3c.form with Zope 2 and the CMF.
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README.rst

plone.z3cform

plone.z3cform is a library that enables the use of z3c.form in Zope. It depends only on Zope and z3c.form.

For Plone integration, there is also plone.app.z3cform, which can be installed to make the default form templates more Ploneish. That package pulls in this one as a dependency.

In addition to pure interoperability support, a few patterns which are useful in Zope 2 applications are implemented here.

Installation

To use this package, simply install it as a dependency of the package where you are using forms, via the install_requires line in setup.py. Then loads its configuration via ZCML:

<include package="plone.z3cform" />

Standalone forms

If you are using Zope 2.12 or later, z3c.form forms will almost work out of the box. However, two obstacles remain:

  • The standard file upload data converter does not work with Zope 2, so fields (like zope.schema.Bytes) using the file widget will not work correctly.
  • z3c.form expects request values to be decoded to unicode strings by the publisher, which does not happen in Zope 2.

To address the first problem, this package provides an override for the standard data converter adapter (registered on the zope.schema.Bytes class directly, so as to override the default, which is registered for the less general IBytes interface). To address the second, it applies a monkey patch to the update() methods of BaseForm and GroupForm from z3c.form which performs the necessary decoding in a way that is consistent with the Zope 3-style publisher.

Note: If you override update() in your own form you must either call the base class version or call the function plone.z3cform.z2.processInputs() on the request before any values in the request are used. For example:

from plone.z3cform.z2 import processInputs
from z3c.form import form

...

class MyForm(form.Form):

    ...

    def update(self):
        processInputs(self.request)
        ...

Other than that, you can create a form using standard z3c.form conventions. For example:

from zope.interface import Interface
from zope import schema
from z3c.form import form, button

class IMyFormSchema(Interface):
    field1 = schema.TextLine(title=u"A field")
    field2 = schema.Int(title=u"Another field")

class MyForm(form.Form):
    fields = field.Fields(IMyformSchema)

    @button.buttonAndHandler(u'Submit')
    def handleApply(self, action):
        data, errors = self.extractData()
        # do something

You can register this as a view in ZCML using the standard <browser:page /> directive:

<browser:page
    for="*"
    name="my-form"
    class=".forms.MyForm"
    permission="zope2.View"
    />

A default template will be used to render the form. If you want to associate a custom template, you should do so by setting the template class variable instead of using the template attribute of the ZCML directive:

from Products.Five.browser.pagetemplatefile import ViewPageTemplateFile

class MyForm(form.Form):
    fields = field.Fields(IMyformSchema)
    template = ViewPageTemplateFile('mytemplate.pt')

    @button.buttonAndHandler(u'Submit')
    def handleApply(self, action):
        data, errors = self.extractData()
        # do something

See below for more details about standard form macros.

Note that to render any of the standard widgets, you will also need to make sure the request is marked with z3c.form.interfaces.IFormLayer, as is the norm with z3c.form. If you install plone.app.z3cform in Plone, that is already done for you, but in other scenarios, you will need to do this in whichever way Zope browser layers are normally applied.

Layout form wrapper

In versions of Zope prior to 2.12, z3c.form instances cannot be registered as views directly, because they do not support Zope 2 security (via the acquisition mechanism). Whilst it may be possible to support this via custom mix-ins, the preferred approach is to use a wrapper view, which separates the rendering of the form from the page layout.

There are a few other reasons why you may want to use the wrapper view, even in later versions of Zope:

  • To support both an earlier version of Zope and Zope 2.12+
  • To re-use the same form in multiple views or viewlets
  • To use the IPageTemplate adapter lookup semantics from z3c.form to provide a different default or override template for the overall page layout, while retaining (or indeed customising independently) the default layout of the form.

When using the wrapper view, you do not need to ensure your requests are marked with IFormLayer, as it is applied automatically during the rendering of the wrapper view.

The easiest way to create a wrapper view is to call the wrap_form() function:

from zope.interface import Interface
from zope import schema
from z3c.form import form, button

from plone.z3cform import layout

class IMyFormSchema(Interface):
    field1 = schema.TextLine(title=u"A field")
    field2 = schema.Int(title=u"Another field")

class MyForm(form.Form):
    fields = field.Fields(IMyformSchema)

    @button.buttonAndHandler(u'Submit')
    def handleApply(self, action):
        data, errors = self.extractData()
        # do something

MyFormView = layout.wrap_form(MyForm)

You can now register the (generated) MyFormView class as a browser view:

<browser:page
    for="*"
    name="my-form"
    class=".forms.MyFormView"
    permission="zope2.View"
    />

If you want to have more control, you can define the wrapper class manually. You should derive from the default version to get the correct semantics. The following is equivalent to the wrap_form() call above:

class MyFormView(layout.FormWrapper):
    form = MyForm

You can of then add additional methods to the class, use a custom page template, and so on.

The default FormWrapper class exposes a few methods and properties:

  • update() is called to prepare the request and then update the wrapped form.
  • render() is called to render the wrapper view. If a template has been set (normally via the template attribute of the <browser:page /> directive), it will be rendered here. Otherwise, a default page template is found by adapting the view (self) and the request to zope.pagetemplate.interfaces.IPageTemplate, in the same way that z3c.form does for its views. A default template is supplied with this package (and customised in plone.app.z3cform to achieve a standard Plone look and feel).
  • form is a class variable referring to the form class, as set above.
  • form_instance is an instance variable set to the current form instance once the view has been initialised.

When a form is rendered in a wrapper view, the form instance is temporarily marked with plone.z3cform.interfaces.IWrappedForm (unless the form is a subform), to allow custom adapter registrations. Specifically, this is used to ensure that a form rendered "standalone" gets a full-page template applied, while a form rendered in a wrapper is rendered using a template that renders the form elements only.

Default templates and macros

Several standard templates are provided with this package. These are all registered as adapters from (view, request) to IPageTemplate, as is the convention in z3c.form. It therefore follows that these defaults can be customised with an adapter override, e.g. for a specific browser layer. This is useful if you want to override the standard rendering of all forms. If you just want to provide a custom template for a particular form or wrapper view, you can specify a template directly on the form or view, as shown above.

  • templates/layout.pt is the default template for the layout wrapper view. It uses the CMFDefault main_template and fills the header slot.
  • templates/wrappedform.pt is the default template for wrapped forms. It renders the titlelessform macro from the @@ploneform-macros view.
  • templates/subform.pt is the default template for sub-forms. It uses the macros in @@ploneform-macros view to render a heading, top/bottom content (verbatim) and the fields and actions of the subform (but does not) render the <form /> tag itself.
  • templates/form.pt is the default template for a standalone form. It uses the macro context/@@standard_macros/page (supplied by Five and normally delegating to CMF's main_template) to render a form where the form label is the page heading.

As hinted, this package also registers a view @@ploneform-macros, which contains a set of macros that be used to construct forms with a standard layout, error message display, and so on. It contains the following macros:

  • form is a full page form, including the label (output as an <h3 />), description, and all the elements of titlelessform. It defines two slots: title contains the label, and description contains the description.
  • titlelessform includes the form status at the top, the <form /> element, and the contents of the fields and actions macros. It also defines four slots: formtop is just inside the opening <form> tag; formbottom` is just inside the closing </form> tag; fields contains the fields macro; and actions contains the actions macro.
  • fields iterates over all widgets in the form and renders each, using the contents of the field macro. It also defines one slot, field which contains the field macro.
  • field renders a single field. It expects the variable widget to be defined in the TAL scope, referring to a z3c.form widget instance. It will output an error message if there is a field validation error, a label, a marker to say whether the field is required, the field description, and the widget itself (normally just an <input /> element).
  • actions renders all actions (buttons) on the form. This normally results in a row of <input type="submit" ... /> elements.

Thus, to use the titlelessform macro, you could add something like the following in a custom form template:

<metal:use use-macro="context/@@ploneform-macros/titlelessform" />

Note that all of the templates mentioned above are customised by plone.app.z3cform to use standard Plone markup (but still retain the same macros), so if you are using that package to configure this one, you should look for the Plone-specific versions there.

Template factories

If you want to provide an IPageTemplate adapter to customise the default page template used for wrapper views, forms or sub-forms, this package provides helper classes to create an adapter factory for that purpose. You should use these instead of z3c.form.form.FormTemplateFactory and (possibly) z3c.form.widget.WidgetTemplateFactory to get page templates with Zope 2 semantics. These factories are also Chameleon aware, if you have five.pt installed.

The most commonly used factory is plone.z3cform.templates.ZopeTwoFormTemplateFactory, which can be used to render a wrapper view or a standalone form.

To render a wrapped form, you can use plone.z3cform.templates.FormTemplateFactory, which is closer to the default z3c.form version, but adds Chameleon-awareness.

To render a widget, the default WidgetTemplateFactory from z3c.form should suffice, but if you need Zope 2 semantics for any reason, you can use plone.z3cform.templates.ZopeTwoWidgetTemplateFactory.

As an example, here are the default registrations from this package:

import z3c.form.interfaces
import plone.z3cform.interfaces

from plone.z3cform.templates import ZopeTwoFormTemplateFactory
from plone.z3cform.templates import FormTemplateFactory

path = lambda p: os.path.join(os.path.dirname(plone.z3cform.__file__), 'templates', p)

layout_factory = ZopeTwoFormTemplateFactory(path('layout.pt'),
    form=plone.z3cform.interfaces.IFormWrapper
)

wrapped_form_factory = FormTemplateFactory(path('wrappedform.pt'),
        form=plone.z3cform.interfaces.IWrappedForm,
    )

# Default templates for the standalone form use case

standalone_form_factory = ZopeTwoFormTemplateFactory(path('form.pt'),
        form=z3c.form.interfaces.IForm
    )

subform_factory = FormTemplateFactory(path('subform.pt'),
        form=z3c.form.interfaces.ISubForm
    )

These are registered in ZCML like so:

<!-- Form templates for wrapped layout use case -->
<adapter factory=".templates.layout_factory" />
<adapter factory=".templates.wrapped_form_factory" />

<!-- Form templates for standalone form use case -->
<adapter factory=".templates.standalone_form_factory" />
<adapter factory=".templates.subform_factory" />

The widget traverser

It is sometimes useful to be able to register a view on a widget and be able to traverse to that view, for example during a background AJAX request. As an example of widget doing this, see plone.formwidget.autocomplete.

This package provides a ++widget++ namespace traversal adapter which can be used for this purpose. It is looked up on either the form wrapper view, or the form itself (in the case of standalone) forms. Thus, if you have a form view called @@my-form, with a field called myfield, you could traverse to the widget for that view using:

http://example.com/@@my-form/++widget++myfield

The widget may be on the form itself, or in a group (fieldset). If it exists in multiple groups, the first one found will be used.

The example above will yield widget, but it is probably not publishable. You would therefore commonly register a view on the widget itself and use that. In this case, self.context in the view is the widget instance. Such a view could be looked up with:

http://example.com/@@my-form/++widget++myfield/@@some-view

A caveat about security

In Zope 2.12 and later, the security machinery is aware of __parent__ pointers. Thus, traversal and authorisation on @@some-view in the example above will work just fine for a standard widget. In earlier versions of Zope, you will need to mix acquisition into your widget (which rules out using any of the standard z3c.form widgets). For example:

from Acquisition import Explicit
from z3c.form.widget import Widget

class MyWidget(Widget, Explicit):
    ...

Unfortunately, in Zope 2.12, this will cause some problems during traversal unless you also mix acquisition into the view you registered on the widget (@@some-view above). Specifically, you will get an error as the publisher tries to wrap the view in the widget.

To stay compatible with both Zope 2.12+ and earlier versions, you have two options:

  • Ensure that you mix acquisition into the view on the widget
  • Ensure that the widget inherits from Explicit, but does not provide the IAcquirer interface. This tricks the publisiher into relying on __parent__ pointers in Zope 2.12.

To do the latter, you can use implementsOnly(), e.g.:

from zope.interface import implementsOnly
from Acquisition import Explicit
from z3c.form.widget import Widget

...

class MyWidget(Widget, Explicit):
    implementsOnly(IMyWidget) # or just IWdget from z3c.form
    ...