jWYSIWYG 0.97 User Manual

Copyright (c) 2009-2010 Juan M Martínez, 2011 Akzhan Abdulin and all contributors

Dual licensed under the MIT and GPL licenses.


jQuery 1.3.2 or higher (tested with jQuery 1.5.2).

Note that we do not support officially jQuery 1.6, but will support jQuery 1.6.1.


jQuery UI Dialog and SimpleModal for insertTable and insertImage buttons.

jQuery UI Resizable for resize of editor.

Tested with

Tested in Safari 4, Firefox 3.5, Chrome 4.0, Internet Explorer 8.


In IE transparent GIF may have an issue
to resolve it:

  • open jquery.wysiwyg.css
  • replace string jquery.wysiwyg.gif with jquery.wysiwyg.no-alpha.gif

Some minor bugs still exist while 1.0 not reached.

Web site

jWYSIWYG on GitHub

Quick Start

The following code creates a jWYSIWYG editor with the default options:

<script type="text/javascript" src="jquery.wysiwyg.js"></script>
<script type="text/javascript">
$(function() {

<textarea id="wysiwyg"></textarea>

Activating Hidden Controls

Toolbar buttons are selected with the controls configuration option:

    controls: {
        strikeThrough: { visible: true },
        underline: { visible: true },
        subscript: { visible: true },
        superscript: { visible: true }

A full list of available controls options is available in ____.

Adding Custom Controls

Custom controls can also be specified with the controls option:

    controls: {
        alertSep: { separator: true },
        alert: {
            visible: true,
            exec: function() { alert('Hello World'); },
            className: 'alert'

Another way:

        icon: "/path/to/icon.png",
        exec:  function() { alert('Hello World'); }

Styling the Content Inside the Editor

To apply a CSS stylesheet to the content inside the editor, use the css
configuration option:

    css: 'editor.css'

The editor will not inherit the style of the containing page anyway, you must
specify a CSS file to apply to it.

Clear the Editor

To clear the editor at any time:


Focus the Editor

To focus on the editor at any time:


Insert an Image

When the #insertImage link is clicked, insert an image inline at the current
cursor location in the editor:

$('a[href="#insertImage"]').click(function() {
    $('#wysiwyg').wysiwyg('insertImage', 'img/hourglass.gif');


Include file wysiwyg.image.js to provide this function

Insert an Image with Attributes

Add some additional attributes to the image, as well:

$('a[href="#insertImage"]').click(function() {
    $('#wysiwyg').wysiwyg('insertImage', 'img/hourglass.gif', { 'class': 'myClass', 'className': 'myClass' });

Note that the class attribute is added twice, because the class DOM
attribute is recognized on IE but not on Firefox, and the className
attribute is recognized on Firefox but not on IE.


Include file wysiwyg.image.js to provide this function

Advanced Customization

Available Configuration Options

Additional configuration options are specified by passing a javascript object to
the wysiwyg() function when it is first called on a textarea. Available keys are:

A string containing the source HTML code used inside the editor’s iframe.
This is a template where INITIAL_CONTENT later replaced by the
appropriate code for the editor instance, so this string must be present in
this option.
A boolean, enabling or disabling debugging.
A string containing the path to a CSS file which will be included in the
editor’s iframe.
A boolean.
A boolean. If true, the editor will copy its contents back to the
original textarea anytime it is updated. If false, this must be done
A boolean. If true, a <br/> will be inserted for a newline in IE.
This is also true for other browsers and may seem a bit peculiar for users
if they use “Header 1”, or similar styles. The ENTER key will no longer reset
the style to “Paragraph”, but continue writing “Header 1” until users explicitly
choose “Paragraph” in the toolbar.
An integer. Height of dialog form.
An integer. Width of dialog form.
A string, that specify class attribute of iframe element
A string. Default <p>Initial Content</p>
An integer. autoGrow max height
An integer. The maxlength attribute specifies the maximum length (in characters) that the editor will accept. This number won’t include any HTML markup.

A javascript object with key, value pairs setting custom messages for
certain conditions. Available keys are:

  • nonSelection: Message to display when the Create Link button is
    pressed with no text selected.
A bool or object. If false then no autoload, if true then defaults
is used, otherwise you can override provided defaults
A bool or object. If false then no internationalization, otherwise you
can set default language { lang: "ru" }
A bool. If true then remove MS Word markup is used


To run rmFormat by clicking on remove format control or using triggerControl
you also should set $.wysiwyg.rmFormat.enabled = true before they being used

A string containing the source HTML code
A boolean. Depends on jquery.ui.resizable. If false the editor will
not be resizeable.
A boolean. If true, the editor will remove also headings when remove format
is used. Otherwise headings will not be removed. Default is false.

A boolean. If true, the editor will remove all controls which are not
mentioned in controls option.
In this example only bold control will be available in toolbar:

    rmUnusedControls: true,
    controls: {
        bold: { visible : true },

See also help/examples/10-custom-controls.html

A boolean. If true, the editor will not add extraneous <br/> tags.
A string. Default Lorem ipsum

A javascript object specifying events. Events are specified as key: value
pairs in the javascript object,
where the key is the name of the event and the value is javascript function:

    click: function(event) {
        if ($("#click-inform:checked").length > 0) {
            alert("You have clicked jWysiwyg content!");

A javascript object specifying control buttons and separators to include in
the toolbar. This can consist of built-in controls and custom controls.
Controls are specified as key, value pairs in the javascript object, where
the key is the name of the control and the value is another javascript
object with a specific signature.

The signature of a control object looks like this:

    // If true, this object will just be a vertical separator bar,
    // and no other keys should be set.
    separator: { true | false },

    // If false, this button will be hidden.
    visible: { true | false },

    // In toolbar there are groups of controls. At the end of each group
    // is placed an auto separator.
    // Set which group to assign or create a new group with unique number.
    groupIndex: { number },

    // Tags are used to hilight control when current selection
    // is wrapped by one of these tags.
    tags: ['b', 'strong'],

    // CSS classes are used to hilight control when current selection
    // has chosen css classes.
    css: {
        textAlign: 'left',
        fontStyle: 'italic',

    // Function to execute when this command is triggered. If this
    // key is provided, CSS classes/tags will not be applied, and
    // any built-in functionality will not be triggered.
    exec: function() { ... },

    // Hotkeys binds on keydown event
    hotkey: {
        "alt":   1 | 0,
        "ctrl":  1 | 0,
        "shift": 1 | 0,
        "key":   { event.keyCode }

    // Tooltip
    tooltip: { string },

    // Path to icon
    icon: { string },

    // Automatically set when custom control is used
    custom: { true | false }

If you wish to override the default behavior of built-in controls, you can
do so by specifying only the keys which you wish to change the behavior of.
For example, since the strikeThrough control is not visibly by default,
to enable it we only have to specify:

strikeThrough: { visible: true }

Additionally, custom controls may be specified by adding new keys with the
same signature as a control object. For example, if we wish to create a
quote control which creates <blockquote> tags, we could do specify
this key:

quote: { visible: true, tags: ['blockquote'], css: { class: 'quote', className: 'quote' } }

Note that when defining custom controls, you will most likely want to add
additional CSS to style the resulting toolbar button. The CSS to style a
button looks like this:

div.wysiwyg ul.toolbar li a.quote {
    background: url('quote-button.gif') no-repeat 0px 0px;

Available built-in controls are:

  • bold: Make text bold.
  • italic: Make text italic.
  • strikeThrough: Make text strikethrough.
  • underline: Make text underlined.
  • justifyLeft: Left-align text.
  • justifyCenter: Center-align text.
  • justifyRight: Right-align text.
  • justifyFull: Justify text.
  • indent: Indent text.
  • outdent: Outdent text.
  • subscript: Make text subscript.
  • superscript: Make text superscript.
  • undo: Undo last action.
  • redo: Redo last action.
  • insertOrderedList: Insert ordered (numbered) list.
  • insertUnorderedList: Insert unordered (bullet) list.
  • insertHorizontalRule: Insert horizontal rule.
  • createLink: Create a link from the selected text, by prompting the
    user for the URL.
  • unLink: Remove a link from the selected text.
  • insertImage: Insert an image, by prompting the user for the image path.
  • h1: Make text an h1 header
  • h2: Make text an h2 header
  • h3: Make text an h3 header
  • paragraph: Make paragraph from text or h1-h6 headers
  • cut: Cut selected text.
  • copy: Copy selected text.
  • paste: Paste from clipboard.
  • increaseFontSize: Increase font size.
  • decreaseFontSize: Decrease font size.
  • html: Show the original textarea with HTML source. When clicked again,
    copy the textarea code back to the jWYSIWYG editor.
  • removeFormat: Remove all formatting.
  • insertTable: Insert a table, by prompting the user for the table

Available Built-In Functions

Built-in editor functions can be triggered manually with the
.wysiwyg("functionName"[, arg1[, arg2[, ...]]]) call.

  • addControl(name, settings)

  • clear

  • createLink(szURL)


    Include file wysiwyg.link.js to provide this function

  • destroy

  • document

  • getContent

  • insertHtml(szHTML)

  • insertImage(szURL, attributes)


    Include file wysiwyg.image.js to provide this function

  • insertTable(colCount, rowCount, filler)


    Include file wysiwyg.table.js to provide this function

  • removeFormat

  • save – save changes from editor to related textarea

  • selectAll

  • setContent

For example, if you want to set new content to original textarea, and then
remove the jWYSIWYG editor to bring original textarea back:

$("#original").wysiwyg("setContent", "<p>My new content</p>").wysiwyg("destroy")

The jWYSIWYG File Manager

jWYSIWYG has a simple plugin for server-side ajax file management.
The plugin uses a set of predefined server-side handlers for retrieving content of remote directories.
The plugin supports four basic actions:

  1. Upload files
  2. Create directories
  3. Rename files
  4. Remove files


The File Manager plugin needs to be setup on server-side before it can be used.
Along with the jWYSIWYG source code, come handlers for different languages, so you can use it on different platforms.
The handler that shuold be set with .setAjaxHandler(“…”) is the one that contains the authentication response. This is usually the “file_manager.*” handler.
Note that usually you will need to rewrite some of the handlers code, so it will fit your application.

After you setup the server-side part, you need to add the javascript and css files for the file manager:

<link rel="stylesheet" href="../../plugins/fileManager/wysiwyg.fileManager.css" type="text/css"/>
<script type="text/javascript" src="../../plugins/wysiwyg.fileManager.js"></script>

Then, all you have to do is start using it, as explained below.


The file manager has pretty simple syntax, and it uses two basic methods:

  • $.wysiwyg.fileManager.setAjaxHandler()
  • $.wysiwyg.fileManager.init()

And another important boolean value:

  • $.wysiwyg.fileManager.ready

First, you must set an ajax handler. The plugin does not force you to use its official available handlers, it enables you to set your own route for the handler.
In order to initiate the file manager interface, you should call ‘init()’. The init() method will not fire until there is an ajax handler.
This may look something like:

// First we set the handler:

// Then we fire-up the interface:
$.wysiwyg.fileManager.init(function (selected) {
// The init() method takes a callback function, and returns the URL of the selected file.

For convinience, the setAjaxHandler() method returns the $.wysiwyg.fileManager object, so it can be used in a short form:

$.wysiwyg.fileManager.setAjaxHandler("http://example.com/jwysiwyg/handler.php").init(function (selected) {

Use Within Other Plugins

In addition to its stand-alone usage, the File Manager plugin can be incorporated quite easily into other plugins.
Actually, the only thing the should be checked before using the plugin, is whether its ajax handler is set:

if ($.wysiwyg.fileManager.ready) {
    $.wysiwyg.fileManager.init(function (selected) {

This method exists in order to assure third-party plugins that the file manager is ready-to-go.


In order to display the file manager icon, one can use a div with a “wysiwyg-fileManager” class.

Sample custom File Manager Control

This is a quick example of how to use the jWYSIWYG editor with a custom file manager control:

        controls: {
                'fileManager': {
                        visible: true,
                        groupIndex: 12,
                        tooltip: "File Manager",
                        exec: function () {
                                $.wysiwyg.fileManager.init(function (file) {
                                        file ? alert(file) : alert("No file selected.");

The file manager’s css file contains the icon for this control, so it is recommended that if you use a custom control, you will name it “fileManager”.

Writing Custom Handlers

It is possible to use custom ajax handlers that you write, with the File Manager.
As mentioned before, the file manager enables you to set the ajax handler you want. The only thing that is required, is for the handler to follow the protocol documented here:


Customizing the Editor Look and Feel

How it Works

When jWYSIWYG is called on a textarea, it does the following things:

  1. Creates an additional container div to encapsulate the new editor.
  2. Hides the existing textarea.
  3. Creates an iframe inside the container div, populated with editor window and
  4. When saveContent() is called, copy its content to existing textarea.
  5. Listen for submit event of closest form to apply saveContent() before
    form submition.


Read document help/docs/plugins.rst


Read document help/docs/contributing.rst

How to build jWYSIWYG


$ git clone git://github.com/jquery/jquery.git
$ cd jwysiwyg/
$ git submodule update --init

to make uglify work::

    ln -s "`pwd`/build/uglify/uglify-js.js ~/.node_libraries/

to build Jasmine:

    .. code:: bash

    $ cd test/lib/jasmine
    $ rake

to build jQuery::

    $ cd test/lib/jquery

    Following the rules in README

Change directory back to jwysiwyg:

$ cd ../../../
$ rake

The built version of jWYSIWYG will be put in the dist/ subdirectory.

Additional Resources

Look at http://akzhan.github.com/jwysiwyg/examples/

Dive into help folder that contains:

  • bin
    compile.sh – to compile all files into one jquery.wysiwyg.full.js
    (jquery.wysiwyg.js, controls/*, i18n/* and plugins/*)
  • docs
    documents to help contributors
  • examples
    latest examples
  • lib
    to run examples and tests
  • tests
    files that demonstrate some issues


View Github