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Custom Zend_Form view script

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Sometimes Zend’s built-in form decorators are not flexible enough to achieve customized views. Luckily, Zend provides means to specify custom view scripts. The following example demonstrates how to set and handle such a script.

First and foremost, in your default (action) view script simply output the form as usual:

<div class="formContainer">
  <?php echo $this->form ?>

Then, in your derived Zend_Form class set your custom view script that takes care of rendering the form the way you need it:

 * Custom Zend_Form view script example.
 * @author matthias.kerstner
class Custom_Form extends Zend_Form {

    public function init() {
                    'viewScript' => '_customForm.phtml',
                    array('formId' => 'CustomForm', 'formClass' => 'customForm')

Finally, the custom Zend_Form view script looks like the following. Note that it uses additional parameters that you can specify in Custom_Form.

$params = $this->element->getDecorator('ViewScript')->getOptions();
$formId = $params[0]['formId'];
$formClass = (isset($params[0]['formClass'])) ? $params[0]['formClass'] : '';

<form id="<?php echo $formId ?>" 
      class="<?php echo $formClass ?>"
      method="<?php echo $this->element->getMethod() ?>" 
      action="<?php echo $this->element->getAction() ?>" 
      enctype="<?php echo $this->element->getEnctype() ?>">

    echo $this->element->my_element_1;
    echo $this->element->my_element_2;

    echo $this->element->submit;


Don’t forget to call parent::init(); in any of your derived classes. Using custom view scripts gives you the full power to design your form view, but remember that in contrast to using built-in decorators you need to echo your elements manually in your view script.