15 December 2011



Import a CSV file to create new entries for a certain section, or export an existing section to a CSV file


The master of this extension is compatible with Symphony 2.3. For earlier versions of Symphony, you should download the 2.2.5-tag instead.

Import drivers

The import- and export-functions are provided by importdrivers. These are located in the folder drivers. By default, the import/export-function looks for a driver called ImportDriver_(fieldname) to handle the imports and export of a specific field.

For example, for select-fields the ImportDriver_select is used and for upload-fields the ImportDriver_upload is used. If no exact driver can be found, it falls back to ImportDriver_default which is good for most fields (as it simply relies on a value-field in your database table).

Default drivers

Default drivers are packaged for:

  • Frontend Member Manager Password (to prevent double MD5-ing)
  • Select (to provide selecting of multiple values)
  • Selectbox link (to import and export while remaining human-readable values in your CSV)
  • Reference link (to import and export while remaining human-readable values in your CSV)
  • Status (to select the right value from the dedicated statusses-table)
  • Subsection Manager (to keep the multiple ID's intact)
  • Upload (to import files with CSV)

Write your own driver

Do you have an exotic field where the default driver just isn't enough? Then you should write your own driver. Don't worry! It's not that difficult. Just look at the default driver and at the pre-packaged drivers installed with the extension to get an idea about how it works.

Most important to remember are the functions import($value, $entry_id) and export($data, $entry_id).

import($value, $entry_id)

The import function processes the value fetched from the CSV-file and prepares it for storing into the entry. Sometimes some pre-processing must be done to store the entry correct. For example, look at the select-driver, which breaks the value into an array so it gets sent to the entry. Or the upload-driver which loads some meta-data to store in the entry. The function should return a $data-parameter. This parameter is used by the extension to provide the entry with data: $entry->setData($fieldID, $data);.

export($data, $entry_id)

The export function processes the data fetch from the entry by the $entry->getData($field->get('id'));-function. It is the raw data that is provided by Symphony. Here you can do some post-processing to alter the data before it gets stored in the CSV. For example: the select-driver stores multiple values as a single string, combining them with a comma. And the selectbox-link driver loads the human-readable value of the item to store in the CSV. The function should return a $value-parameter. This parameter is used by the extension to be placed in the CSV file.


This is also an important function. It is used for updating entries. Basicly what it does, is scan the database to find an entry with the value specified. If a match is found, it returns the ID of the entry which in turn will get updated. If no match is found, null is returned.

In the import-process it is used as followed: when you want to import something, and you selected a specific field as 'unique', that field will be used to scan the database for an existing value. Most of the times these are input fields or something, like an ID, a e-mail address, or something else that has a value-row in the database (which is the default behaviour).

But if you have a field which doesn't have a value-row in the database, you need to specify an adjusted query in the driver. Otherwise it will always get imported as a new entry when that field is selected as the unique field.

Make this extension better!

Did you write a driver for a field? Share it with us! It will only make this extension better and stronger!


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