Extend custom designers with additional client logic

Once you create your custom designer, you, can extend it with additional client logic.

When creating the new JSON or JavaScript files for the custom logic, you need to follow the naming convention for resolving designer views and designer assets like scripts. For more information, seeNaming conventions.

NOTE: In case you are implementing your custom widget designer in an external assembly, you need to mark all files as an EmbeddedResource, including custom script references inside the JSON configuration.

Each designer view can require a set of additional scripts to be rendered. You define this set in a JSON file that has the same name as the view template. For example, if you want to add additional script reference to the designer's simple view of the Content block widget, you create a DesignerView.Simple.json with the following content:

In the code above:

  • You override the JSON with the shared-content-services.js, which is used by the default simple view of the Content block designer
  • The priority property indicates that the respective view must be displayed by default, rather than other views with lower priority.

    NOTE: If you create a new view and you want this view to be default, just set the view with highest priority.

    NOTE: If in your designer view you use only client components, the JSON file is generated automatically and you do not need to create it. If no other designer views with explicitly set priority exists, the priority of the designer view is set to 1. In case you need to have full control over the scripts that are loaded or you want to set custom priority, you will still need the JSON file. If you have a JSON file that matches the convention (even if empty), this automatic scripts registration will not occur.
    For more information, see Client components.

Create designer controllers

After you create the new designer view, Sitefinity CMS automatically creates an AngularJs controller for this view. You can, however, add your own AngularJs controller if your scenario requires more complicated logic.

By default, if the script for your view is located either in the Mvc folder of your Sitefinity CMS web application, or in a folder inside the assembly where the widget is implemented, the script is properly referenced.

NOTE: If the script file is in an assembly, make sure to add it inside the project files and set its build action to Embedded resource.

You must name your controller the same as the corresponding view but with Ctrl suffix. You can define it through the following options:

  • Directly in the designer module: angular.module('designer').controller(...);
  • In its own module and then add that module to the designer module's dependencies: angular.module('designer').requires.push('myCustomModule');
    Thus, Sitefinity CMS automatically associates the new controller with the view that you created.

    NOTE: If in your designer view you use only client components, you do not need to create the .js file – all angular dependencies will be added to the designer module. If you have a .js file that matches the convention (even if empty), this automatic modules referencing will not occur. 

The following example code demonstrates a sample controller for a view named Custom:

The controller code above demonstrates how you can populate the widget properties by invoking the property service. The feedback property comes from $rootScope and enables controllers to manipulate parts of the dialog's interface.

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