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Complex Table Field


Shows a group of DataObjects as a (readonly) tabular list (similiar to TableListField.)

You can specify limits and filters for the resultset by customizing query-settings (mostly the ID-field on the other side of a one-to-many-relationship).

See TableListField for more documentation on the base-class

Source Input

See TableListField.

Setting Parent/Child-Relations

ComplexTableField tries to determine the parent-relation automatically by looking at the $has_one property on the listed child, or the record loaded into the surrounding form (see getParentClass() and getParentIdName()). You can force a specific parent relation:


Customizing Popup

By default, getCMSFields() is called on the listed DataObject. You can override this behaviour in various ways:

// option 1: implicit (left out of the constructor), chooses based on Object::useCustomClass or specific instance
$myCTF = new ComplexTableField(

// option 2: constructor
$myCTF = new ComplexTableField(
  new FieldSet(
    new TextField('Price')

// option 3: constructor function
$myCTF = new ComplexTableField(

Customizing Display & Functionality

If you don't want several functions to appear (e.g. no add-link), there's several ways:

  • Use ComplexTableField->setPermissions(array("show","edit")) to limit the functionality without touching the template (more secure). Possible values are "show","edit", "delete" and "add".

  • Subclass ComplexTableField and override the rendering-mechanism
  • Use ComplexTableField->setTemplate() and ComplexTableField->setTemplatePopup() to provide custom templates

Customising fields and Requirements in the popup

There are several ways to customise the fields in the popup. Often you would want to display more information in the popup as there is more real-estate for you to play with.

ComplexTableField gives you several options to do this. You can either

  • Pass a FieldSet in the constructor.
  • Pass a String in the constructor.

The first will simply add the fieldset to the form, and populate it with the source class. The second will call the String as a method on the source class (Which should return a FieldSet) of fields for the Popup.

You can also customise Javascript which is loaded for the Lightbox. As Requirements::clear() is called when the popup is instantiated, ComplexTableField will look for a function to gather any specific requirements that you might need on your source class. (e.g. Inline Javascript or styling).

For this, create a function called "getRequirementsForPopup".

Getting it working on the front end (not the CMS)

Sometimes you'll want to have a nice table on the front end, so you can move away from relying on the CMS for maintaing parts of your site.

You'll have to do something like this in your form:

$tableField = new ComplexTableField(
      'MyField' => 'My awesome field name'


$fields = new FieldSet(
   new HiddenField('ID', ''),

You have to hack in an ID on the form, as the CMS forms have this, and front end forms usually do not.

It's not a perfect solution, but it works relatively well to get a simple ComplexTableField up and running on the front end.

To come: Make it a lot more flexible so tables can be easily used on the front end. It also needs to be flexible enough to use a popup as well, out of the box.


Most of the time, you need to override the following methods:

  • ComplexTableField->sourceItems() - querying
  • ComplexTableField->DetailForm() - form output
  • ComplexTableField_Popup->saveComplexTableField() - saving


API Documentation



  • Find a less fragile solution for accessing this field through the main controller and ReferencedField, e.g. build a seperate CTF-instance (doesn't necessarly have to be connected to the original by ReferencedField)
  • Control width/height of popup by constructor (hardcoded at the moment)
  • Integrate search from MemberTableField.php directly on ComplexTableField
  • Less performance-hungry implementation of detail-view paging (don't return all items on a single view)
  • Use automatic has-many and many-many functions to return a ComponentSet rather than building the join manually
  • Javascript/Ajax-Sorting (see and

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