The Options Fieldtype provides single and multi choice selectable options in ProcessWire. For features and highlights see our post on the Options Fieldtype or continue reading here to learn more about how to use it.

About the Options Fieldtype

While we usually recommend using the Page Fieldtype for selectable options, this Options Fieldtype provides a convenient alternative for when the selectable options will not benefit from being pages, or when a speedy definition process outweighs the benefits of using pages. Like with the Page Fieldtype, you can define what type of input should be used with the field settings. The input type can be any core or 3rd party Inputfield that extends ProcessWire's InputfieldSelect module. For core Inputfields, this includes: Single Select, Multiple Select, Checkboxes, Radio Buttons, and AsmSelect (a sortable multi-select).

Options are stored in a relational database normalized manner, ensuring that changes to existing options apply across existing selections.

The Options Fieldtype was added to the core in ProcessWire 2.5.17.

Options Administration

Creating an Options field

  1. Confim that you are running ProcessWire 2.5.17 or newer.
  2. Install the Select Options Fieldtype module, if it is not already installed. Do this by going to Modules > Core > Fieldtype > Select Options (or from the drop-down menus: Modules > Install > FieldtypeOptions). If you don't see it, you may need to first click on Modules > Refresh, and try again.
  3. Create a new field (Setup > Fields > Add New) and choose "Options" as the type.
  4. After creating the field, click to the Details tab, where you can define your options.

Defining options

You can define options on the Details tab when editing an Options field (Setup > Fields > your field). Options are defined in a multi-line text box, where each line represents one option. You may type or paste in a list of options (like a list of countries for example, 1 per line) and save.

Once an option exists in the database, it is assigned an ID number. When selected options are saved on a page, the ID number [for each option] is stored rather than the option title or value. This enables you to go back and later modify options without breaking existing selections on a page. However, it does require that that the assigned ID number always remain with the option.

In addition, these ID numbers enable mutli-language support by connecting an option in one language with a translation in another language. Please note that these ID numbers need not symbolize anything about your option title or value, and are not typically used for anything on the front-end of your site.

Adding New Options

Enter the text of each new option on a new line anywhere in the existing options. You may omit the ID number as one will be automatically assigned after you save. Once assigned, you should never change this ID number, but you can change the title (or value) as much as you like.

While we recommend letting the Options Fieldtype assign unique ID numbers for you, you may optionally assign your own. To do this, specify 123=title when adding a new option, where 123 is the ID number you wish to assign and title is the title text for your option. If you need separate "value" and "title" properties for each option, see the last section in these notes.

Moving or Sorting Options

Copy entire line(s), including ID number, and paste wherever you want them to go.

Editing or Renaming Options

Modify the option title or value as you would like, ensuring that the original ID number remains connected with the option.

Deleting Options

Delete the entire lines containing the options that you want to delete. You will be asked to confirm the deletion after you submit the form. The option will not be deleted until you click the box to confirm and submit the form again. Note that this also deletes any selections for that option in the database.

If using multi-language options, deleting the option in the default language deletes it for all languages, and deleting an option in a non-default language only deletes the translation.

Multi-Language: Translating Options

Multi-language support with options requires that you have the LanguageSupportFields module installed (Modules > Core > Language > Language Support Fields).

Define your options in the default language and save, before defining them in other languages. Copy the options you want to translate from the default language tab to the other language tab. Paste in and translate the titles (and/or values). Untranslated options inherit the default language title and value. If using separate option values (as described in the next section) your translation does not need to include the "value" portion unless you want it to.

Separate Option Values

By default only titles are kept with each option. If you want to maintain a separate value and title, enter your option in the format value|title (for new options) or 123=value|title (for existing options that already have an ID assigned). The text for value and title will be kept as separate $option->value and $option->title properties from the API. These properties can also be independently queried to find pages from the API.

Options API

Outputting selected options on a page

You output options in exactly the same way that you would page titles. For our example, lets assume you created an Options field called "countries" and you wanted to output an HTML list of those countries:

foreach($page->countries as $country) {
  echo "<li>$country->title</li>";

If Options field only supports 1 selection, the above example would still work. However, you can also do this:

echo $page->countries->title; 

There is no distinction between single-value and multi-value options at the API level. You can simply choose to treat it as a single or multi-value field as you see fit. This works because when you access the title (or other) property from the field, it simply gives you the value for that property from the first item.

Manipulating options on a page from the API

The value of your Options field (i.e.$page->countries) is a WireArray, and can be manipulated using any of the methods supported by WireArray. Once manipulated, you would either save the page they live on, or save the page field, i.e. $page->save('countries');

Before manipulation options on a page, always make sure that output formatting is OFF first:

$page->of(false); // set output formatting off

If working with an Options field that supports a single selected value, you can set it directly as the title:

$page->countries = 'Finland';

For a multi-value Options field, set it as an array…

$page->countries = array('Finland', 'Sweden', 'Norway');

…or a pipe "|" separated string:

$page->countries = 'Finland|Sweden|Norway';

The above examples demonstrate setting the value by the option's title property. You can also set it from the option's id property, the value property, or directly with SelectableOption or SelectableOptionArray objects. If setting with the value property, note that the title property is considered before the value property (if there are any conflicts).

A note about numeric titles: Any time you set from a numeric value, it is assumed to be the id property. If your situation involves options that have a numeric title, this is someting to consider, as you'll likely want to stick to setting the options by id in order to avoid confusion. Or, you can use one of the methods described below to retrieve all options and determine which ones you need. In particular, see the "Getting the id property of an option when you only know the title" section below.

Getting all possible options

This retrieves all possible options for the field, regardless of whether they are selected or not (there is no page involved here).

$field = $fields->get('countries');
$all_options = $field->type->getOptions($field);

Getting the id property of an option when you only know the title:

The following code examples build upon the previous example (getting all possible options), so make sure to include that first.

$option = $all_options->get("title=Finland"); 
echo "The id for $option->title is: $option->id"; 

If you need to pull multiple options out of a set:

$options = $all_options->find("title=Finland|Sweden|Norway");
foreach($options as $option) {
  echo "<li>The id for $option->title is: $option->id</li>";

You can use these values (objects) you pulled from $all_options to set the value of your options field:

$options = $all_options->find("title=Finland|Sweden|Norway");
$page->countries = $options;

Manipulating available options for all pages

This section coming soon. For additional info now, see the bottom of the /wire/modules/Fieldtype/FieldtypeOptions/FieldtypeOptions.module file, which contains all the public API methods for adding, updating and deleting available options at the API level.


  • Tom Reno

    Tom Reno 4 years ago 94

    Just had a conversation about this on the IRC channel today. Coincidental timing. Sounds great, the ID numbers make it sound like a a viable alternative to page fields.

  • Bernhard

    Bernhard 4 years ago 86

    This is how to check if one value is selected (eg multiple checkbox): $page->options->has(#keyofselectoption#);

    • BernhardB

      BernhardB 3 years ago 32

      if you are defining your options in value|title-format this is the way to check:

  • Pete

    Pete 4 years ago 11

    It would be great to be able to hide an option rather than delete it, maybe by putting a dash in front of the number?

    It's the same scenario as using a Page field - you have data in existing pages, you don't want to delete the option and lose the data, but you do want to remove the ability to select that option when creating future pages.

  • kixe

    kixe 4 years ago 43

    I am using this Filedtype with InputfieldChosenSelect which works great. Is there any chance to provide the ability to add options via the Inputfield, like creating pages via Inputfield with FieldtypePage?

  • LostKobrakai

    LostKobrakai 3 years ago 11

    Just noticed that $pageArray->sort("options.sort") seems to sort the array by the sort order of the option in the field settings opposed to by the id's assigned to those options. Maybe this should also find it's way into the docs.

    • ryan

      ryan 3 years ago 21

      Why look to the "sort" property when you want to sort by "id"? They are two different things. The "sort" property represents the actual sort order of the option as specified. All multi-value Fieldtypes (FieldtypeMulti) use this property and it works exactly the same way. The same "sort" property is also used by Pages, and works the same way. If you wanted to sort by "id" then you would sort by "id". :)

      I think the confusion may come from the fact that if you haven't manipulated the sort (of a fields values, pages, or anything that uses the sort property) then sorting by "sort" or "id" are likely to produce the same results. The purpose of the "sort" property is to support a user-specified sort order, independent of anything else like IDs or dates. If the user has not performed any manipulations to the sort, then the order is likely (though not guaranteed) to be the same as sorting by id.

    • Soma

      Soma 3 years ago 00

      This doesn't work for me. The sorting of the field_fieldname is always 0 for an options field. So for me it doesn't sort by the sort in the field_options table.

  • Marty

    Marty 3 years ago 20

    It'd be nice to be able to pass the options title to the "List of fields to display in the admin Page List" template setting eg: {fieldname.title}. At the moment all I can get it the value.

  • Bernhard

    Bernhard 3 years ago 01

    i find myself looking for the correct label syntax sometimes, so here it is:

    • Bernhard

      Bernhard 3 years ago 00

      sorry, of course that's already in the docs... completely missed that :)

    • kixe

      kixe 2 years ago 20

      Correct label syntax is not 'label'. Use 'title' instead.

  • Helder Cervantes

    Helder Cervantes 2 years ago 40

    How about getting getting all possible options in the current language? The example's code works, but on my test it seems to be ignoring language and always outputting default:

    $field = $fields->get('eventTypes');
    $all_options = $field->type->getOptions($field);

    foreach ($all_options as $o) {
    echo ''.$o->title.'';

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